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Women writing on smart tablet .technology

Celebrate Handwriting Day with MyScript

Published: 22nd January 2016

In honor of National Handwriting Day on January 23 (as well as International Handwriting Week), we are taking a moment to reflect on how handwriting impacts our lives every day. From crossing things off your to-do list to the cognitive and collaborative benefits in education and business, there is something about writing by hand that will never be replaced.

Since 1998, MyScript has been 100% devoted to bringing handwriting into the digital world. Through our technology showcase apps and partnerships with leading device manufacturers and developers, we bring new power to ink. Writing by hand on a mobile device mimics the brain activity triggered by traditional pen and paper handwriting, while allowing users to take advantage of a new level of processing power and productivity.

We encourage you to seize the power of digital ink, not just on National Handwriting Day (or the extended International Handwriting Week) but throughout the year. Here are a few ideas to get you started!

Set Yourself Up for Success-Write Down Your Goals

Each year, we all create New Year’s resolutions, and each year, we let them slip away from us. This year, turn those resolutions into true intentions and reach your goals by writing them down and sharing them with friends and family. Apps such as Smart Note for iOS and Android turn handwritten goals into digital content that you can reference all year long. Write your goals down, share them on social media, or just keep them in your notes on your mobile device so you can check back in with them as often as you’d like.

Show Some Love

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and nothing is more thoughtful than a handwritten note showing your loved one that you care. Instead of a paper card or sticky note that might be thrown away, share a handwritten note with them using MyScript so they can save your digital Valentine to their mobile device. This way, they can look back at it whenever they feel like it. And don’t just limit yourself to one day a year, a sweet and thoughtful note to your loved one is appreciated every day!

Crunch Numbers On the Go

In a hurry and need the answer to a math problem? How about trying to figure out the final cost of clothes during a 40 percent off sale at the store? Using MyScript Calculator for iOS or Android, users can jot down a math equation right on their mobile device and have the app fill in the rest. It works for basic operations, powers, roots, logarithms and even trigonometry.

Compose a Masterpiece

For the musicians out there, check out PreSonus® Notion® for iOS (a music notation editor and playback tool app) that has been enhanced with MyScript handwriting recognition. Thanks to the integration of MyScript technology, Notion app users can write music with a finger or stylus and see it effortlessly convert to digital notation. Notion for iOS is available on the App Store and was recently featured as one of Apple’s “Amazing Apps for iPad Pro.”

Make Study Time More Fun and Engaging

With one of our many partners’ educational technology apps (powered by MyScript), you can help your children practice their writing or math studies right on their mobile device. They’re brightly colored and entertaining for your kids, making study time less of a chore and more like playing games!

Some sample apps include:

Appgebra

IXL – Math and English

Khan Academy

Mental Math Help

Multiplication Tables

myBlee Math

Quick Clocks

Quick Fractions

Quick Math – Multiplication Table & Arithmetic Game

Quick Math Jr. and Quick Math Jr. – School Edition

Quick Math+

Shape Lab

TeXscribe

Take Your Business Processes Paperless

In today’s highly mobile business environment, more and more industries are adopting tablets as seen by recent IDC research findings. Streamlining information workflows is a key area where tablets can have significant impact. Many mobile solution deployments unfortunately fall short of expected results because they are difficult to use, or require extensive training and support.

Enter naturalForms®, a user friendly data capture solution that makes it easy to transition from paper forms to digital data. naturalForms offers an optimal user experience for capturing data on iPad or Android tablets by providing a natural human machine interface leveraging MyScript technology. Click here to learn more about naturalForms.

Tell Us How You Celebrate Handwriting

We want to know – what ways do you like to use MyScript and our partner apps throughout the year?

Note to Developers

Want to leverage the power of MyScript to develop or enhance your own solution? Check out our developer toolkits.

Happy Handwriting Day!

yo

Watch This Space: If You Think You Know What a Word is, Read on

Published: 18th August 2015

yoGuest blog post by Yo Sato, Natural Language Processing Engineer at MyScript 

 

 

InthisarticleI’mgoingtotalkabouttheissuesforhandwritingrecognitionrelatedtothespacesyoufindinwrittensentences.

You may think you’ve already got the point: ‘Okay so you’re telling me how important spaces are for smooth reading, since otherwise you wouldn’t know where one word ends and another starts. Well, no, that’s *not* the point I’ll be making, it’s almost the reverse. I ask: why are spaces felt necessary, which do not really exist in reality? Think about it. There is nothing a space represents in real speech. It does not represent a pause. We, simply, do, not, talk, like, this, butjusttalklikethis. So here’s the paradox: why would one need something to separate words only in writing, while being, in speech, entirely happy without?

The existence of languages that dispense with spaces altogether -let’s call them ‘glued’ languages as opposed to ‘spaced’ ones like English-is another testimony to the fact that spaces are not a universal requirement. So another question is: why, then, are they felt indispensable in spaced languages, while glued language speakers are perfectly happy without?

These are, as I see them, pretty deep questions, but at least there is one straightforward, if partial, answer. When talking about language, people tend to first talk about its smallest sound units (like vowels and consonants) and then about words and sentences, but there is something in between: syllables.  As far as I know, the written unit (characters) of glued languages —say Chinese or Japanese— is always a syllable, and it is this property that renders spaces unnecessary. Let’s now experiment with our English sentence:

In-this-ar-ti-kul-eyem-go-ing-too-tor-ka-bout-the-i-shooz-for-hand-ray-ting-re-cog-ni-shun-ri-lay-tid-too-spey-sees-yoo-find-in-ri-ten-sen-ten-sees.

Hope it’s better? So, syllable boundaries perhaps suffice for reading. In fact we have a ‘very-much spaced’ language at the other end of the spectrum, in which *all* syllable boundaries are spaced: Vietnamese. Here the word boundaries are obscured in a totally different sense. You don’t really know which spaces do, and do not, separate words.

Now that we’ve seen two extremes in space-taking —glued and very-much-spaced varieties, you might have imagined all sorts of possibilities in between. Sure enough, you do get them, and Korean is one. Its orthography is syllable-based, so you don’t strictly need spaces, but didn’t you find the ‘all-syllable’ writing as above still quite a bit awkward to read? So, Koreans have decided to introduce –surprise, surprise– spaces! Voila the birth of a semi-spaced language.

The big problem here is, ‘where’. Between words, or maybe phrases? But where are they! You’re in the sea of syllables, like the all-syllable sequence of English above, and are asked to put spaces ‘to ease up reading’. You could perhaps see there’s a lot of freedom in how you can slice it up, and this ‘freedom’ —or chaos, depending on how you look at it— is what has in fact ensued. Some people like to have more spaces than others. It’s a bit of the rule of the wild.

This has been a big problem for us, the developer of handwriting recognizer. A simple set of rules do not work, or rather, would annoy the user: we are fully aware that nothing is more annoying than the computer trying to be clever and overcorrecting you. Like any rule of the wild, however, this problem is not a complete chaos. There are regularities, and in some places, people are more likely to put a space, while in others, less likely to do so. Taking advantage of these patterns, we have been addressing the issue statistically, to better predict where spaces are intended by the writer. Our recent releases of Korean recognizer incorporate such improvements, although the process is gradual and more improvements are forthcoming.

To me, the ‘deeper’ issue in this whole space saga is the fuzziness of the notion of ‘word’, which the writers of a spaced language may just take for granted. For them, perhaps, it is simply a blob of ink surrounded by spaces. And this notion of ‘word’ (chicken-and-egg anyhow, because the spacing relies on it) is not so solid either. Is “I’m” a word, or perhaps two? What about “handwriting”, maybe you’re also happy with “hand writing”? Even “going to”, which is pronounced “gonna” in casual speech, could be considered a single word maybe? There are languages where “I’m going to talk” is represented as a ‘word’ after all!

What people care most about in language is meaning, but as long as meaning is clear, they may opt for various ‘spacing’ arrangements. Very likely, a completely glued language like Chinese has developed as such thanks to the meaning ‘support’ coming from characters themselves (ideographs). To a large degree however, how a language uses spaces is a result of historical accidents. While there definitely is something like word (meaning unit), to pinpoint what it is, and where it is, is a rather tricky question.

So, you still think you know what a word is?

Yo Sato is a Natural Language Processing Engineer at MyScript. After obtaining a Ph.D. from King’s College London, U.K., (computational linguistics), he joined MyScript in 2012 and is responsible for developing ‘language models’, a backbone of handwriting recogniser, of various languages, with an inevitable attachment to his native language Japanese.

Notes-Plus-logo

Developer Success Story: Prime Circa Leverages MyScript Technology in Its Award-Winning Notes Plus App

Published: 11th February 2015

In our Developer Success Story series on the blog, we highlight developers who have leveraged MyScript technology to enhance their solutions and grow their businesses

Mobile devices come in all sizes: from small smart watches to one of the largest tablets yet. This variation has caused an increased consumer demand in handwriting recognition technology over standard keyboard options in all of their connected devices. To help our partners keep up with users’ ever-changing preferences, we offer them access to market-leading handwriting recognition technology.

A Success Story

One MyScript partner who has taken advantage of our technology, and received great reviews because of it, is Viet Tran founder of Prime Circa. While its first version offered attractive features, it wasn’t until version 2.0 when the app began to take off. For Tran it was simple. User experience needed to be a top priority. And luckily for him, this decision paid off as Notes Plus rose to top four in paid iPad apps after only a few weeks. Not to mention within the first year Notes Plus made its first million dollars.

Notes Plus Features

But let’s dive deeper – Notes Plus is successful because it is continuously updated with the latest technology, making its users’ lives easier. Four years of development, 30 version upgrades, three complete overhauls and eight million downloads, Notes Plus is a powerful note-taking tool that its users rave about. It supports features that make digital note taking easier than ever: digital handwriting, audio recording, document annotation, shape detection, automatic backup to Dropbox, built-in web browser and more. Leveraging MyScript technology, it enables users to conveniently convert handwriting to searchable text. Lost notepads and Post-its are a thing of the past.

Why MyScript Technology

Initially, Tran used another handwriting recognition software but found that it didn’t meet the high accuracy standards Notes Plus required. In 2011, just before that 2.0 launch, Tran switched to our MyScript technology because we offered nearly 100 languages, easy search for handwritten text, as well as accurate recognition of complex equations and shapes, all for almost any desktop and mobile operating system.

Top four is no small feat and Notes Plus’ development required a sophisticated, customizable solution, causing them to use our advanced MyScript Software Development Kit. But for those developers that want a quick widget, just head over to our MyScript Application Toolkits. Any developer looking for an intuitive handwriting recognition technology solution – simple or complex – can use our seamless integrations.

User Testimonials

We can toot our own horn all day long. We can even let you know what our developers love about MyScript handwriting recognition technology, but really your success relies on your users’ experience. Read through some of Notes Plus’ user testimonials below to see what users are saying about their experiences.

Unrivaled

Notes Plus is the most versatile, consistent, dependable, productivity-enhancing app on my iPad. It has earned and retained a place in my dock. Note taking, Brainstorming, PDF and Word Annotating, Quick sketches, Flawless Handwriting Recognition: check, check, check, check, check. In addition, I can think of only one or two apps that rival Notes Plus for developer commitment, responsiveness, innovation and sheer effort. Simply put: Notes Plus is the app I would choose if I had to choose just one.

Gr8 Note Taking App

I’ve purchase quite a few note apps but Notes Plus seems far superior, easy to use and has some good features the MyScript handwriting recognition is excellent.

THE must-have app for iPad

For me, Notes Plus is THE app that makes the iPad. From its rich feature set and intuitive interface to the lightening-fast support provided by the always-helpful developers… The integration with VisionObjects’ MyScript handwriting recognition is the icing on the cake, propels this app well beyond VisionObjects’ own note taking app, and EverNote doesn’t even come close.

The Best Tool for Organizing Notes

I tried 5-6 different apps before settling on Notes Plus. I love the convert handwriting to text, which makes all your notes searchable. The Dropbox sync is great, I can take notes in a meeting, and when I’m back at my desk, it has already synced to my Dropbox…

Simply Incredible.

I’ve resisted getting a note-taking app for some time, because I have a lot of difficulty with muscle pain in my hand if I write for very long (I’m very dependent on keyboards). However, using my iPad with a stylus significantly reduces the pain and allows me to quickly take notes during meetings. The ability to convert handwriting to editable text is invaluable… My advice: Walk, don’t run – get it!

Boost your productivity!

…This app with a good stylus definitely is a game changer, it’s a true substitute of pen and paper. What I love is the handwriting recognition module that transforms the notes taken with a stylus in text! It saves me a lot of time creating word documents! This app will boost your daily productivity! I definitely recommend it!

In February 2015, Prime Circa announced that it will offer handwriting recognition (HWR) technology for free to all current and future app users as of February 2015. The $9.99 app will no longer require an in-app purchase for HWR capabilities. Read the full press release here.

Interested in developing your own app using MyScript technology? Click here to join our Developer Program today.

Women writing on smart tablet .technology

National Handwriting Day – Celebrate The MyScript Way

Published: 23rd January 2015

In honor of National Handwriting Day, we’d like to take a moment to appreciate how handwriting impacts our lives every day. From nostalgic love notes to crossing things off your to-do list, there is just something about writing by hand that can’t be replaced. Until now.

MyScript has given handwriting a digital makeover. Through our own technology showcase apps and partnerships with developers, we give users the best of both worlds. Writing by hand on a tablet or mobile device mimics the brain activity triggered by traditional pen and paper handwriting, while also allowing users to organize their content in an interactive and dynamic digital form.

Here are a few ways MyScript is keeping the love of beautiful penmanship and convenience of note taking alive on National Handwriting Day and throughout the year.

Reflect On The Year Ahead

Each year, we all create New Year’s resolutions and each year, we let them slip away from us. This year, keep your resolutions alive using our Smart Note app for iOS and Android, which turns handwritten goals into digital content that you can reference all year long. Write your goals down, share them on social, or just keep them in your notes on your mobile device so you can check back in with them as often as you’d like.

Crunch Numbers In A Flash

In a hurry and need the answer to a math problem? How about trying to figure out the final cost of clothes during a 40 percent off sale at the store? Using MyScript Calculator for iOS or Android, users can jot down a math equation right on their mobile device and have the app fill in the rest. It works for basic operations, powers, roots, logarithms and even trigonometry.

Send A Love Note

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and nothing is more thoughtful than a handwritten note showing your loved one that you care. Instead of a paper card or sticky note that might be thrown away, share a note with them using MyScript Smart Note so they can save your digital Valentine to their mobile device. This way, they can look back at it whenever they feel like it.

Ditch The Keyboard And Use Handwriting In Any iOS App 

With MyScript Stack for iOS, you can use handwriting as a way to enter information in almost any app. Using superimposed input (also known as overwriting) , this innovative natural input panel allows you to continuously and quickly write characters on top of each other, making short text entry convenient and efficient. With MyScript Stack, you can easily input phone numbers, look up names in address books, compose tweets, and write chat or SMS messages with your fingertips. The handwritten input is instantly recognized and converted to digital text.

Get Some Family Time In

Between work, practice and school, it can be difficult to find one-on-one time with your kids. Why not combine study time with family time? With one of our many partners’ math, writing or shapes apps (using MyScript HWR technology), you can help your children practice their writing or math studies right on your mobile device. They’re brightly colored and entertaining for you and your kids!

While National Handwriting Day is just once a year, enjoy the feeling of writing on your digital devices year round with MyScript. Check out this video to discover the possibilities of handwriting.

We want to know – what other ways do you like to use MyScript and our partner apps throughout the year?

Note to developers: We have tools available that will help  you harness the power of handwriting for your applications. Click here to learn more.

 

metamoji-logo

Developer Success Story: MetaMoJi Provides A Global Input Option

Published: 8th January 2015

Consumers of all nationalities, ages, demographics and languages want to upgrade their standard feature cell phones for smartphones. So much so that Gartner predicts that the high-tech devices will make up 90 percent of the global market by 2018.

As consumers in non-Western markets like those in Southeast Asia and the Middle East continue to choose smartphones over feature phones, phone manufacturers and developers will need to incorporate technology that adapts to new markets’ input preferences. For example, typing Mandarin Chinese or Japanese kanji on a regular keyboard can be very tedious because for each phonetic spelling there are multiple words or characters, leaving you to wonder if the standard Western keyboard is really the best global input option.

A Success Story

metamoji_logo

Whether writing in English, Japanese or Hindi in Devanagari script, it’s important that your mobile device can easily capture and translate the language accurately. This was the ultimate goal of MetaMoJi founders Kazunori and Hatsuko Ukigawa: to transform computer interaction into a more natural experience that goes beyond the traditional QWERTY keyboard while also providing a smooth experience– regardless of the operating systems, formats or languages.

Fully qualified to tackle this task, both founders had more than 30 years’ experience in computer programming and had already developed the first complete keyboard-based word processing system that was compatible with kanji for PCs. With such strong resumes, in 2009 Mr. and Mrs. Ukigawa took on their next challenge by founding MetaMoJi, a company that focuses on stroke-based business productivity for touchscreen devices for users across Asia and the world.

During the development, MetaMoJi sought out handwriting recognition technology from vendors around the world. After vetting several companies, they ultimately chose MyScript because of our industry-leading accuracy and our shared dedication to international communities. It was invaluable that our technology supports nearly 100 languages.

MetaMoJi is committed to breaking down barriers between devices and users by turning mobile devices into “smart paper” with its apps: 7Notes, MetaMoJi Note and the Su-Pen Stylus. Today, MetaMoJi’s apps offer the comfort of an analog experience combined with the convenience of digital technology that can be e-mailed, printed, archived or shared – in real time. Click here to learn more about MetaMoJi apps.

Use Case

metamojiblog

Before the iPad, retailers recorded all customer data manually by pen and paper, but with the help of MetaMoJi and MyScript’s HWR technology, they’re able to capture customer information on-site. For instance, ABC Cooking Studio, a cooking school in Japan that has more than 20,000 new registrations per month, is a great example of the impact digital handwriting can have on a business. By implementing MetaMoJi’s mazec on iPads in ABC Cooking Studio locations, they have saved around 20-30 minutes of paperwork per person. What took up to 90 minutes on a busy Saturday or Sunday, now takes just a fraction of the time. That’s astounding!

Not only are customers happier because they can write like they would on any registration form, but the cooking studio is also running more smoothly overall. They’re able to eliminate wasted paper and time on clerical work while maintaining up-to-date records of students. Most importantly, the new registration method enabled teachers to focus on their core job, providing amazing cooking instruction to their students.

This is just one way MetaMoJi, leveraging MyScript’s HWR technology, has helped elevate customers’ experiences in Japan. But this solution applies to any business, in any country that is still offering its customers an old, analog experience. Allowing customers to use their native language and intuitive input method on an iPad saves time, paper, as well as the risk of scaring off customers with a long registration process.

Note to developers: Interested in developing your own application or solution using MyScript technology? Click here to learn more about our Developer Program.

Developer Success Story: XMS Penvision Bridges the Gap Between Paper and Tablet

Published: 10th December 2014

In our Developer Success Story series, we highlight developers who have leveraged MyScript technology to enhance their solutions and grow their businesses

Pen and paper have gone the way of the Walkman… or so we thought. Many industries still rely heavily on written documents in their day-to-day processes but to meet ever-increasing productivity targets and green standards, they must incorporate new innovations. For instance, XMS Penvision has combined traditional handwriting practices with the power of digital technology to elevate the idea and functionality of a pen and paper.

XMS Penvision specializes in data capture through digital writing technology. Their platform Formidable uses MyScript’s handwriting recognition (HWR) technology for ultimate input accuracy. It enables staff in field services, government, animal welfare, healthcare and many other organizations to automate handwriting data capture and processing.

How It’s Rolled Out

Interestingly, this innovative technology has two adoption tactics: users can use a digital pen on standard paper that has thousands of embedded dots per sheet which record their strokes and send the information to Formidable via a mobile device, docking to a PC, or users can leverage a mobile tablet directly. Why the multiple options? It’s largely for transition and adoption. Many small and medium-sized businesses have been using handwritten processes for decades so a sharp technological transition can be a huge barrier to adoption. Rolling out digital paper first then adding in tablets requires less extreme change-management for these traditional businesses.

Case in point, the XMS platform now has more than 30,000 users with companies deploying and using Formidable as a strategic forms creation and processing platform with multiple input options.

Use Cases

Take NHS Rotherham for example. The physiotherapists there write as they used to, but leveraging digital pen and paper, notes are converted to computer text. At the end of each session, the physio updates the electronic patient record with key pieces of data and a PDF of the notes for later reference. Ultimately, the digital pen solution improved the efficiency of the NHS Rotherhams physio team by 35% and reduced patient waiting times.

At the Stockton on Tees Borough Council, animal welfare officers and the kennel security and surveillance team are equipped with a smart phone, a digital pen and digitized forms. The animal’s description, photo and entire journey through the system is documented and updated to the customized portal automatically, resulting in more animals being safely returned to their owners.

E.ON UK created a solution that enables audit reports to be sent electronically while integrating instantly with a custom developed database. Audit reports are completed with a digital pen. The recording is then sent via a mobile device to Formidable where automatically and within seconds, PDFs and data formats are sent and integrated with the customer’s designed database and reporting tool. The deployment gives EON evidence of compliance to health and safety when commercial meters are moved, installed or removed.

While these are just a few examples, it shows the diverse range of use cases for digital handwriting technology and proves that while the tools may have changed, the principle and benefits of ‘pen and paper’ are very much alive today.

Note to developers: Interested in developing your own application or solution using MyScript technology? Click here to learn more about our Developer Program.

MyScript Smart Note Solves Penultimate Users’ Woes

Published: 5th December 2014

What’s more important – delivering useful features to today’s customers or building tools for those that may exist later on? In a recent blog post, Evernote admitted to releasing their latest update to Penultimate too soon and to missing the mark on user expectations.

For a note-taking app, that’s simple UI, ability to easily find and share notes, and integration with other functions such as email and browsing. These are ideals we keep at our core for MyScript Smart Note as we ensure our users can easily use our app for daily notes, work, studying, drawing, etc.

Take the natural flow of handwriting for example. With MyScript Smart Note on iOS, we enable a scrolling input that also allows you to see the full text simultaneously, just as you would when writing on paper or typing on a mobile device. While this may seem specific, imagine writing without being able to see what you just wrote a few seconds ago and having to toggle back to a view screen. This can sometimes be the case with people who write largely. Our input lens allows you to write in your natural size, while the output displays smaller to fill the page with more content.

Functionality is another important aspect of any app in the note-taking space. Search is a key feature for MyScript Smart Note, which allows a breadth of functionalities to make your note taking interactive and seamless. It’s easy to search for any word or phrase within your notes, whether it’s hundreds or just a few. Once you’ve found the note you were searching for, you can share it with friends via social media, email clients, Dropbox, and Evernote. Not to mention you can also find definitions online from within MyScript Smart Note while searching for a word.

Accuracy is also a critical user requirement. MyScript has developed the most advanced handwriting recognition software in the world. MyScript Smart Note gives users the power to convert even handwritten jots into digital text which can be sent as a note to a friend in your contact list or pasted into other apps . MyScript Smart Note also has a unique math equations feature and is available in 54 languages.

All combined, this is what separates the most useful apps from all the others. While we agree with Evernote that redesigns are important, we always want to make sure our fundamental functionality remains a priority for our users. We believe keeping natural and interactive note-taking capabilities at the core of Smart Note is the best way to provide our users with the experience they want now and in the future. To download MyScript Smart Note for iOS, please go here and for Android, please go here.

Note to developers: A Smart Note Taking Toolkit is available for developers to leverage the core technology showcased in the MyScript Smart Note application. To learn more, visit the Developer Program web site or feel free to contact us

Developer Success Story: Shiny Things Makes Math Education Fun

Published: 19th November 2014

In our Developer Success Story series on the blog, we will be highlighting developers who have leveraged MyScript technology to enhance their solutions and grow their businesses

Technology for the classroom isn’t just a priority for Microsoft and Google, but for app developers all over the world. However, there are two very different schools of thought. While the tech giants focus mainly on educators’ pain points with online lesson planning and homework assignment solutions, others believe technology can be used to get to the root of the challenge – the students.

An Education App Success Story

Shiny Things is the perfect example of a company supporting students and children. To date, the MyScript partner has already created 14 interactive learning apps. Some focus on math education, but all of them are designed to be simple, engaging and packed full of educational content. And the proof is in the numbers. Shiny Things’ apps have already received 1.5 million downloads, with about 400,000 coming from schools.

Quick Math, Shiny Kids, Classroom

What’s so cool about Shiny Things’ apps? Utilizing handwriting recognition (HWR) technology, they help kids work through problems, solidifying foundational concepts, instead of enabling guessing. In fact, one of their apps, Quick Math was the first ever education app featuring HWR technology, helping to challenge students to evaluate their answers rather than relying on multiple-choice.

While Shiny Things’ apps are certainly educational, we all know educational doesn’t win over most students. The important thing is they’re also fun for kids. They encourage the development of mental arithmetic skills as students race the clock to improve their score, earn stars and unlock exciting avatars.

In addition to kid-focused apps, Shiny Things also has one app designed for in-classroom use: Shape Lab. It’s an open-ended app that allows students and teachers to explore shape and measurement concepts on the iPad. Using MyScript’s advanced shape recognition technology, Shape Lab allows students to draw, manipulate and investigate shapes directly on the screen.

Why MyScript Technology for Education

For the first six months, Shiny Things used their own HWR technology for their apps. They collected over 200,000 handwriting samples, but because people write differently all over the world – varying slants to their handwriting, additional or omitted cross lines in numbers and letters, sharp edges versus bubbly letters, etc. – they were unable to reach sufficient levels of accuracy. HWR technology wasn’t their specialty.

Then they learned of MyScript Calculator and knew they needed to incorporate MyScript’s HWR technology in their apps to achieve best-in-class accuracy. Once they discovered the MyScript’s Software Development Kit, it only took approximately two weeks to re-code their apps. Since then, they’ve consistently earned four and five-star reviews from children, parents and teachers.

Shiny Things: What’s Next     

Since 2011, Shiny Things has created apps that impact kids’ learning experiences. They’ve earned multiple awards including the kidSAFE certification, Apple’s Best of 2013, Best Apps for Kids from Geeks with Juniors, Best Maths App of 2013 from Teachers with Apps, and Top 100 App for Kids from Smart Apps for Special Needs. The last is notable because children with special needs, who often have difficulty writing, are still able to enjoy Shiny Things’ apps because of MyScript’s advanced handwriting recognition technology.

Next, Shiny Things has an extensive roadmap for their geometry app, leveraging MyScript Shape, and hopes to continue building out the app. Eventually, since founder Mat Peterson has an interest in music, they’d also love to incorporate the MyScript Music SDK in future children’s apps.

Interested in developing your own app using MyScript technology? Click here to join our Developer Program today.

Developer Success Story: Prime Circa

Published: 5th November 2014

In our Developer Success Story series on the blog, we will be highlighting developers who have leveraged MyScript technology to enhance their solutions and grow their businesses

Mobile devices come in all sizes: from small smart watches to one of the largest tablets yet. This variation has caused an increased consumer demand in handwriting recognition technology over standard keyboard options in all of their connected devices. To help our partners keep up with users’ ever-changing preferences, we offer them access to market-leading handwriting recognition technology.

A Success Story

One MyScript partner who has taken advantage of our technology, and received great reviews because of it, is Viet Tran founder of Prime Circa. While its first version offered attractive features, it wasn’t until version 2.0 when the app began to take off. For Tran it was simple. User experience needed to be a top priority. And luckily for him, this decision paid off as Notes Plus rose to top four in paid iPad apps after only a few weeks. Not to mention within the first year Notes Plus made its first million dollars.

Notes Plus Features

But let’s dive deeper – Notes Plus is successful because it is continuously updated with the latest technology, making its users’ lives easier. Four years of development, 29 version upgrades, three complete overhauls and eight million downloads, Notes Plus is a powerful note-taking tool that its users rave about. It supports features that make digital note taking easier than ever: digital handwriting, audio recording, document annotation, shape detection, automatic backup to Dropbox, built-in web browser and more. Leveraging MyScript technology, it enables users to conveniently convert handwriting to searchable text. Lost notepads and Post-its are a thing of the past.

Why MyScript Technology

Initially, Tran used another handwriting recognition software but found that it didn’t meet the high accuracy standards Notes Plus required. In 2011, just before that 2.0 launch, Tran switched to our MyScript technology because we offered nearly 100 languages, easy search for handwritten text, as well as accurate recognition of complex equations and shapes, all for almost any desktop and mobile operating system.

Top four is no small feat and Notes Plus’ development required a sophisticated, customizable solution, causing them to use our advanced MyScript Software Development Kit. But for those developers that want a quick widget, just head over to our MyScript Application Toolkits. Any developer looking for an intuitive handwriting recognition technology solution – simple or complex – can use our seamless integrations.

User Testimonials

We can toot our own horn all day long. We can even let you know what our developers love about MyScript handwriting recognition technology, but really your success relies on your users’ experience. Read through some of Notes Plus’ user testimonials below to see what users are saying about their experiences.

Unrivaled

Notes Plus is the most versatile, consistent, dependable, productivity-enhancing app on my iPad. It has earned and retained a place in my dock. Note taking, Brainstorming, PDF and Word Annotating, Quick sketches, Flawless Handwriting Recognition: check, check, check, check, check. In addition, I can think of only one or two apps that rival Notes Plus for developer commitment, responsiveness, innovation and sheer effort. Simply put: Notes Plus is the app I would choose if I had to choose just one.

Gr8 Note Taking App

I’ve purchase quite a few note apps but Notes Plus seems far superior, easy to use and has some good features the MyScript handwriting recognition is excellent.

THE must-have app for iPad

For me, Notes Plus is THE app that makes the iPad. From its rich feature set and intuitive interface to the lightening-fast support provided by the always-helpful developers… The integration with VisionObjects’ MyScript handwriting recognition is the icing on the cake, propels this app well beyond VisionObjects’ own note taking app, and EverNote doesn’t even come close.

The Best Tool for Organizing Notes

I tried 5-6 different apps before settling on Notes Plus. I love the convert handwriting to text, which makes all your notes searchable. The Dropbox sync is great, I can take notes in a meeting, and when I’m back at my desk, it has already synced to my Dropbox…

Simply Incredible.

I’ve resisted getting a note-taking app for some time, because I have a lot of difficulty with muscle pain in my hand if I write for very long (I’m very dependent on keyboards). However, using my iPad with a stylus significantly reduces the pain and allows me to quickly take notes during meetings. The ability to convert handwriting to editable text is invaluable… My advice: Walk, don’t run – get it!

Boost your productivity!

…This app with a good stylus definitely is a game changer, it’s a true substitute of pen and paper. What I love is the handwriting recognition module that transforms the notes taken with a stylus in text! It saves me a lot of time creating word documents! This app will boost your daily productivity! I definitely recommend it!

Interested in developing your own app using MyScript technology? Click here to join our Developer Program today.

Smart Note-Taking is Here: Developers – Seize the Power

Published: 28th October 2014

Smart note-taking is here, and it is time for developers and device manufacturers to seize the power.

MyScript recently launched MyScript Smart Note, an advanced note-taking application that turns handwritten input into interactive, actionable digital text that can be edited, searched, and shared.

A Smart Note Taking Toolkit is available for developers to leverage the core technology showcased in the MyScript Smart Note application. The toolkit covers the various note-taking use cases from jotting down a small piece of information to building a rich note. It aims at making handwriting as natural as on paper while providing advanced features to leverage the benefits of digital devices.

Within the toolkit, developers will find:

Interactive Text Component which manages all the background processing attached to handwriting text on a page. It processes new incoming digital ink and gestures to update an internal representation of the page content. API parameters allow you to control the different processing modes such as handwriting recognition or real time transformation of digital ink into typeset characters.

The Multi-Line Text Widget displays an area where the user can enter several lines of text using a finger or a stylus. The widget API allows converting the handwritten text into digital text in real time while keeping the original digital ink displayed. This allows delivering a comprehensive set of features and gestures that combine the feeling of writing on paper with all the benefits of a digital device: text editing, space creation, identification of data types within the content. The widget also includes features such as vertical scrolling and candidate selection.

To learn more, visit the Developer Program web site or feel free to contact us. Also check out the video.