digitize handwritten notes

Easiest Ways to Digitize Handwritten Notes

September 22, 2017
8 min read
Home Blog Easiest Ways to Digitize Handwritten Notes

With the modern obsession with smartphones and apps, most people tend to forget the importance of a handwritten journal and the need to digitize handwritten notes and transcribe handwriting to text. Digital tools are cool, but truth be told, a simple handwritten journal is sometimes the simplest and easiest way to jot down your thoughts. Research has also shown that we tend to remember something if we note it through long-hard writing, more than when we type it. This is a secret that students have been using for years, and we are sure you have used it too. How many times have you have taken a pen and jotted notes when reading for an exam?

The main issue with old journal entry rests in the way you can access, share, secure, and use them in the future, and this is why it pays to digitize handwritten notes. Diary to Word or journal to word tools are the perfect tools for handwritten journal digitizing. We will give examples of the best tool for digitizing handwritten notes, but first things first, let’s discuss the evolution of digitization.

From the mid-1950s, development of the internet has transformed the way we bank, educate, travel, work, manage our health, enjoy life, govern, and of course, life journal typing and life journal transcription. Digitization technology facilitates the conversion of hard copies such as photographs, and paper into the zeros (0s) and ones (1s) (binary codes); digital information. But how has digitization come about?

Introduction to the Evolution of Digitization

Below is a short summary of the adoption and advancement of today’s most used digital language:

  • 1679 – Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz developed the modern binary number system.
  • 1703 – Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz published Explanation of Binary Arithmetic (Explication de l’Arithmetique Binaire), linking it to traditional China.
  • 1755 – Samuel Johnson published a Dictionary of the English Language that included an entry for Binary Arithmetic.
  • 1847 – George Boole introduced Boolean algebra in the Mathematical Analysis of Logic.
  • 1854 – George Boole wrote in an Investigation into the Laws of Thought to interpret the symbols 0 as Nothing and 1 as Universe.
  • 1937 – Claude Shannon submitted his master’s thesis at MIT, ascertaining the theoretical supporting the digital circuits. He demonstrated how Boolean algebra would optimize the design of systems of electronic relays that were later used in phone routing switches.
  • 1938 – Alec Reeves conceived the use of pulse-code modulation for voice communication and digitally represented sampled analog signals.
  • 1940 – John V, Atansoff wrote in Computing Machine for Solution of Large Systems of Linear Algebraic Equations, a paper explaining the electronic digital computing machine he developed with Clifford Berry.
  • 1943 – SIGSLAY secure speech system performed the 1st digital voice transmission.
  • 1945 – John von Neumann’s work the First Draft of a Report on the EDVAC  was distributed to twenty-four people working on the advancement of the EDVAC (computers).
  • 1948 –Claude Shannon Published a Mathematical Theory of Communication in the Bell System Technical Journal.
  • 1949 – Claude Shannon listed in his notebook the storage space in bits of a number of things.
  • 1954 – General Electric’s Major Appliance Division plant installed the UNIVACI computer.

Reasons Why One May Need to Digitize a Journal

Writing coaches Mari L. McCarthy and Nathan Ohren looked at the pros and cons of a handwritten journal and a digitized one. They both argued that both formats are good (choose what works for you).

With that said, there are a few things that might require you to digitize a journal or diary:

  • Secure – Some of the best journals to word tools have password lock that ensures your material is secure.
  • Flexible – A digital journal is more flexible, especially if it is on your smartphone or iPad.
  • Easier to revise – Typed text is usually easier to revise and edit.
  • Easier sharing – A digital journal allows for easier sharing on the web.
  • Backing up – A digital journal is simpler to backup and archive and the content can be converted to other forms.
  • Graphic – You can paste pictures and text from other sources into your digital diary.

5 Apps That Can Help You Capture the Important

Today, you will find numerous diary to word apps on the market, but not all are good. Here is a list of the best apps to digitize handwritten notes and convert typing to handwriting online.

1. Journey

Journey manages to be one of the best journaling apps due to its beautiful presentation, intuitive user interface, and a lot of amazing features. It allows you to write entries or create photos and access your diary from your computer, smartphone, or any other digital device that can be connected to the web and has a screen. Journey uses material design to facilitate easier navigation via the app and even journal typing from your smart device.

2. Day Journey

This diary delivers an amazing journaling experience with a focus on media. When writing, you will get a word count as well as other features to help personalize your entries. These include location tags, detecting local weather, tagging, and ability to add your feeling.

3. Diaro

This diary aims to offer you total control of how you organize your entries into your digital platform. Every time you add retype a journal, you will be able to choose a tag and folder for it to live in. It makes it easier to trace specific entries.

4. Penzu

Penzu aims to provide you a stress-free journal entry experience. When you begin, you will generate a new diary and name it. You will be able to store all your entries in this section. The other thing about this journal is that it enables you to add photos and change format.

5. Day One

This journal has credited as the premier dairy app for iOS. It features a beautiful design and comes with a wide range of features. To work on your computer, you need to buy Mac App.

Difficulties That Might Occur When Transcribing Journal Entries

Here are the 2 main concerns of digitizing handwritten notes:

  • Editorial Judgment

People who have transcribed handwritten notes or proofread the final copy know that no typeface can produce all the slight distinctions in the original. Any printed or typed transcription of such source is vital as it incorporates hundreds of editorial decisions and judgment.

  • Author Writing

Some authors use different handwriting styles and marks to reflect their friends, formal way, or even professional styles. Generally, standardizing these marks and styles make it hard to transcribe journals and retain their original flavor. In fact, some typists find it hard to ignore slips of the pen and assume that the writer wanted to note something. At the end, the digital notes may differ slightly from the old journal.

Tips on How to Properly Transcribe Handwritten Texts

How do you digitize handwritten notes without losing the original message?

  • Don’t worry about the formatting of the original document
  • Transcribe words as they are written (spelled or misspelled)
  • Use the comment tool if you are unsure of a word when transcribing
  • Transcribe abbreviation as they are written
  • Transcribe crossed out texts using the stroke-through-text option
  • Describe images using your own words using the comment option
  • Transcribe all the elements in the document

Useful Tools That Help Transcribe

Here are some of the best webs/tools that will help you with your life journal transcription:

  • Cogi – a free app for both Androids and iPhones for recording interviews with your phone.
  • O Transcribe – combines text editor and audio player into a single tool for transcribing your material.
  • Dictation.io – works just like O Transcribe and is easy to open in your browser.
  • Rev – you upload your content online, pay a small fee and get it transcribed for you.
  • Dragon – you speak into this tool and your word shows on the screen. Life journal typing is done for you.

Reasons to Hire a Professional Transcriber

The truth is, handwritten journal digitizing might be a time-wasting and tiring experience if you do it on your own. Instead, you should hire a professional to do all the work. They have the following benefits:

  • Speed – professional does the job faster than you would do.
  • Language – they are able to convert spoken words into various languages.
  • Cost – you will save more money when you hire an expert than having someone do it in-house.
  • Punctuation – adding the right punctuation is quite easy when you hire a professional.
  • Grammar – professionals will get it right, every time.

If you have an old journal or diary that you want to transcribe or digitize, ensure that you get some of the above tools. As you have seen, getting your notes into digital form is easy with the right tool.

Or better, contact us and have our professional digitize handwritten notes for you!

Stop Wasting Time on Routine Tasks!

Let trained professionals take over so you can focus on more important issues and even reclaim your weekends.

Order now