11 Smartpens to Boost Your IQ
If the pen is mightier than the sword, that means the smartpen is, like, a knowledge bomb ticking away and about to explode with crazy confetti. From pens that create electrical circuit-forming doodles to ones that spell check as we scribble, we’re never the type to turn down awesome new technology that combines the best of our digital and analog worlds. Here are 11 smartpens, all with some seriously handy superpowers, that we would be okay keeping at our desks and in our office toolkits.
1. A Smartpen Fit for Photoshop ($75): It writes, it saves, it makes a digital copy of your drawing that can be loaded directly into Photoshop or Illustrator via a USB connection. In other words, the Wacom Inkling Digital Sketch Pen is an illustrator and hand letterer’s dream. Possibly the coolest feature is its ability to add layers into your work that you can then edit or remove in digital post-production.
2. The Best Smartpen for Taking Notes ($40): The sleek simplicity of this Smart Stylus Pen is what initially caught our eyes. A fairly straightforward addition to your collection of writing instruments, it pairs a soft touch sensitive nib stylus pen with a high quality rollerball. Perfect for those of us who can’t seem to choose between tablets and traditional day planners.
3. A Smartpen for Staying in Sync ($120): The perfect pen for a contemporary girl in perpetual motion, this WiFi-connected smartpen syncs your handwritten notes and any recorded audio (it can hold over 200 hours worth) with your personal Evernote account, giving you quick and effortless access to information wherever you go.
4. The Best Smartpen for Editing Your Work ($125): This Mobile Notes Pro pen captures your handwriting and then, once connected to your PC, allows you to save and edit what you’ve written.
5. A Smartpen Score for Sketching ($112): Another pen for the creatives, Staedtler’s Digital Pen 2.0 saves notes and sketches and then transfers them wirelessly to your PC or mobile devices. It also seamlessly adapts them to computer text.
6. The Tech-Savviest Smartpen ($25): You may remember our article about the Circuit Scribe pen last year, but just in case you missed it, these tools take something as simple as a pen, an LED module and two coin cell batteries and allows you to use them to create personalized electronic sketches. We just want to know why these weren’t around when we were in middle school.
7. The Top Spying Smartpen ($40): Trying to figure out whether it’s your dog or your significant other who keeps eating all the freshly baked cookies straight off the counter? Wondering who’s stealing your carefully prepared lunch at work? Just want to film a fun time-lapse scene at the next party? That’s precisely where the Video Camera Spy Pen comes in. It captures still, audio and hours of video all in one seemingly innocuous little package.
8. A Smartpen to Spark Your Creativity ($79): Still in the making, Creopop is a 3D printing art pen that has definitely caught our attention. It allows you to create objects practically out of thin air with a cool melting technology that won’t burn your fingers + the option of different inks, including, possibly, one that’s magnetic.
9. The Most Versatile Smartpen to Do All the Things ($150): This Livescribe 3 smartpen is a premium writing instrument that also contains an infrared camera, an ARM processor, Bluetooth technology, a flash memory and an ion battery all dedicated to bringing your notes to digital life on either your tablet or smartphone. Sign us up.
10. A Smartpen for Fine Points ($75): Specifically created for the art of taking crisp, clear notes on your tablet, the Jot Script Evernote Edition Stylus has a thinner barrel, a textured grip and a 1.9mm tip reminiscent of your favorite writing utensil. We’ll take two.
BONUS: A (Dream) Smartpen to Color the Rainbow (TBD): We’ll admit it. We want a Scribble. The dreamers behind this crowdfunding-bound project say they are creating a scribbler that writes in any – seriously, any – color you can find. Supposedly, you’ll be able to simply hold the pen’s scanner up to a color you like and in a matter of moments the hue will be saved in Scribble’s internal memory, where it can be used to draw on either paper or your favorite device depending on which version of this super-smartpen you purchase. Here’s hoping that this incredible idea actually comes to life, and soon!
Our smartpen research is complete. Which high-IQ piece of tech will you be adding to your purse? Let us know in the comments!
It can be intimidating to step out on your own and build a business from the ground up. As part of our collaboration with Office Depot, we're talking with Selfmade alum and solopreneur Colette Lawrence, the faith-based motivator and relationship builder behind The M.E.E. Movement, about ways in which women in business can find success.
B + C: How did you know M.E.E. Movement was your business to start?
The M.E.E Movement represents motivation, empowerment, and encouragement for women. It is what represents me. I did not know at first that it was my business to start, but then the thought of monetizing what I loved came to me. It scared me, however. I registered the business in July 2020 and have been slowly building my wings since.
B + C: What's one strategy that's helped you start your business?
Thinking through and researching what the requirements are to start my business, and then asking questions of people who are in the business. Not all advice worked; however, it helped me to figure out what I needed to do and not to do.
B + C: Did you always know life coaching would be your entrepreneurial path?
(Smiles) No, I did not. I 'stumbled" on it. I knew that people were always coming to me for advice and I found that I loved having conversations with them, especially with women, young and old.
B + C: What was your most valuable takeaway from Selfmade?
My most valuable takeaway was the first day of training: Get out of your own way. There were a lot of great moments and important takeaways from every presenter. However, getting out of my own way, pushing past doubts, was for me my most valuable takeaway. Doing something that I had never done before took courage. If I do not focus on what is happening with me mentally then I cannot deliver to my clients successfully.
B + C: What's one piece of advice you would give to female entrepreneurs on the brink of starting?
Get out of your head. You have something to offer. You have what you need to succeed so go ahead and do it.
B + C: How do you stay motivated?
I stay motivated by listening to music and listening to motivational speakers, and sometimes someone will just reach out and talk about the impact that I made in their life. That adds the extra juice or sauce I need to pummel through the day.
B + C: What's your best organizational tip?
Keep a diary and journal. It's the best way for me to keep organized and it also provides a source motivation as I record not only my "losses" but my wins as well.
B + C: Who inspires you in the entrepreneurial space?
Shirley Toliver – She motivates and empowers and makes me always want to show up.
B + C: What has receiving the Office Depot scholarship to Selfmade done to help you start or grow your business?
The scholarship was a blessing in that all the areas that were covered offered valuable information that I needed, from social media to HR. As a new business owner, I needed to know this to increase my own personal awareness in what it takes to run a successful business. The candidness of the presenters made it easy to see myself in their shoes and helped me to realize that I can also get there.
Want to feel motivated to take the next step for your business? Let Office Depot OfficeMax give you the confidence you need with a suite of business services & solutions to help you put your best foot forward. Make a good first impression with business cards & build the business pitch of your dreams with custom presentations. With Office Depot OfficeMax you'll find the tools to reach new customers with confidence.
Head to Office Depot's Selfmade page to check out even more amazing business resources (and discounts!) to help you accomplish more on your entrepreneurial journey. These offers are available for a limited time only, so be sure to take advantage of all this goodness while supplies last. Want to join the next Selfmade cohort this summer? Check out all of the scholarship details right here.