STANDARD KINDLE TOUCH TOOLBAR AND MENU ITEMS
The Kindle Touch displays a standard toolbar that cannot be changed or removed by an application. This bar includes the Menu button, the Back button, and the Shopping Cart button. Tapping on either the Back button or Shopping Cart will exit TakeNote.
Applications (like TakeNote) can add menu items to the Menu, but all menus include two system items (“Turn On/Off Wireless” and “Shop in Kindle Store”) that cannot be removed. Anything below these are TakeNote’s menu options. As you will see, TakeNote uses menus as little as possible and instead enables direct touch interaction with the interface.
Directly below the standard Kindle Touch toolbar is TakeNote’s toolbar. This will typically consist of a title on the left and icon buttons to the right providing context-specific functionality. Some buttons will be disabled or enabled depending on whether their actions are appropriate at any given time.
A status bar is visible on the main screen and help screen, and provides information such as page numbers, etc.
The large center area of each screen contains the main functionality – list of notes, note content, help content, etc. this is where most of the interaction with TakeNote will occur.
TakeNote surfaces as much functionality as possible through direct “touch” interaction instead of menu options. However, there are some features for which menu options are more appropriate or provide convenience. These will be described later in the context of their features.
MAIN SCREEN – NOTEBOOK
The Title bar of the main screen displays the name of the current Notebook at the left and two functional icons on the right. We will describe these features in more detail later. The center area of of the screen displays the list of notes, and the footer bar shows the number of notes in the notebook and the number of pages of notes.
CREATING A NEW NOTE
Create a new Note by tapping on the New Note icon – the right-most icon on the title bar. This will take you to the Note Editor screen where you can enter the contents of your note.
Once you have created a good number of notes, the ability to search through them for specific text becomes really important. Tap on the magnifying glass icon on the title bar to display the search options dialog.
The on-screen keyboard will be displayed when and you can enter whatever text you would like to find. TakeNote provides three options for finding the text that you entered – the exact word or phrase that was entered, notes containing all of the words entered (the words can appear anywhere in a note), or notes containing any of the words entered (one or more of the words).
Tap on the Find button to activate the search. TakeNote will look for notes that match the criteria in either the title or the body. The note list area will display the notes matching the criteria. You will notice that the search icon on the title bar now has a darkened background. This indicates that a filter is in effect. To “cancel” the search and go back to displaying the full list of notes, simply tap on the icon again.
The note list displays information about each note (title, date created, and date last modified). Tapping on a note will open it in the note editor screen. (More on this later.)
The number of notes in your notebook will be displayed on the right side of the screen footer. When you have multiple pages of notes, the page indicator on the left side of the footer will indicate the number of pages of notes and the page that is currently being displayed. For example, it may say “Page 1 of 3”. Flip forward to the next page by swiping your finger across the screen from right to left. Flip backwards to the previous page by swiping your finger across the screen from left to right.
Doing a long-tap (press and hold for about a second or two) on a note will display a pop-up menu of available actions that can be performed on the note. These are “Delete this note” and “Make a copy of this note”. Tapping on the “delete” option will display a confirmation dialog asking if you are sure you’d like to delete the note. Tapping on the “make a copy” option will display the Save As dialog. Enter the new title and tap Ok, and a copy of the note will be saved under the new title you entered.
The menu on the notebook (note list) screen provides access to the following features.
Opens the TakeNote Help screen to display this document.
Tap the “Sort Notes By…” menu option to display the sort options dialog. Notes can be sorted by last modified date in chronological and reverse chronological order. The default sort is by reverse chronological order – with notes displayed from newest to oldest. Notes can also be sorted by Title in ascending or descending order. TakeNote remembers your selection, so notes will be displayed in the selected order whenever you use the application, until the next time you change the sorting option.
EXPORT TO HTML
The “Export Notebook to HTML” menu option will export the current notebook to a nicely formatted HTML document. If there is currently a search filter in effect, then only the filtered list of notes will be exported.
TakeNote allows you to organize your notes into different Notebooks. For example, you may have one Notebook for general quick notes, another for meeting notes at work, yet another for your poetry, etc, etc. Switching between Notebooks is as easy as selecting the “Switch to Another Notebook” menu option.
Selecting the “Switch to Another Notebook” menu option will display the Notebooks screen, which is very similar to the Notebook (note list) screen. There is a title bar with functional icons on the right, a list of Notebooks in the center, and a footer bar displaying the number of notebooks and number of pages of notebooks. Each entry in the notebook list shows the name of the notebook and the number of notes it contains.
The Notebooks screen’s title bar contains two icons on the right. The “X” icon will “close” this view and go back to the Note list screen. Use this icon if you want to just go back to the Notebook you were already in without selecting a different Notebook.
The second icon (to the left of the “X”) is the “New Notebook” icon. Tap on this and a dialog will be displayed asking for the name of the new Notebook. Enter the name using the on-screen keyboard, then tap the “OK” button. The new, empty Notebook will be created and displayed in the Notebook list. (Note: The list of notebooks is sorted alphabetically.)
Notebook names can be up to 30 characters, with no limitation on the use of symbols.
There is no limit to the number of Notebooks you can create.
Tap on your new Notebook and it will be opened on the main notes list screen, with the notebook’s name displayed on the title bar.
Navigating a multi-page list of Notebooks is just like navigating pages of Notes in the main screen – swipe left to go to the next page, and swipe right to go to the previous page. Tapping on a Notebook in the list opens the Notebook.
As mentioned before, tapping on a Note in the Notebook screen’s list of Notes opens it in the Note Editor screen. Here you will find a toolbar of icons at the top, a text field for the title of the Note, and the text area for the body of the Note.
When a new Note is created, the cursor will be in the note title field, and the on-screen keyboard will be displayed. Enter a title for your Note, then tap into the body field where you can begin entering the content of your Note.
The tool bar contains icons that represent the actions that can be taken on a Note. Let’s look at each of these, starting from the right-more icon.
The “X” icon is the Close action. Tapping on this icon will close the Note Editor and go back to the list of Notes on the Notebook screen. If you have not made any changes to the Note, the editor will just close. However, if any changes were made, a confirmation dialog will be displayed, asking whether you would like to save the changes before exiting. This gives you the opportunity to save your Note if you accidentally tapped on the Close icon.
The floppy disc icon is the Save action. Notice that is is disabled (grayed out) when you first go into a Note. This is because no changes have been made yet. As soon as you make a change to the Note, the icon will become enabled, indicating that there are changes to be saved. Tap on this icon when you are done editing a Note. The Note will be saved, and the editor will be closed. The floppy disk icon with the “+” on it is the Save As button, which allows you to save a note with a new name.
The keyboard icon allows you to toggle between edit and read-only modes. This can be handy when you want to just read through a Note without the on-screen keyboard getting in the way. Tap on this icon and the keyboard will disappear, and the size of the note body area will expand to the bottom of the screen. Simply tap on the icon again to switch back to edit mode. Tapping on either the note title of body area will cause the on-screen keyboard to appear.
TakeNote allows undo/redo of up to 100 changes during and editing session. The two left-most icons on the toolbar provide the undo/redo actions. These icons will be disabled if no changes were made to the Note. As you make changes to the Note, the Undo icon will get enabled. Tap on the icon to unto an edit operation. You can tap on the icon repeatedly, undoing back through up to 100 changes. If you use Undo, the Redo icon will become enabled, allowing you to re-apply the changes that were undone.
One thing to note is that the redo buffer will get reset if you perform an edit operation. For example, let’s say you entered a 10 letters, then tapped Undo 5 times. Both the Undo and Redo icons will now be enabled, and you will be able to tap on Redo to get back the 5 characters that were undone. Now, suppose that after tapping Undo 5 times, you then entered another character with the keyboard. This now makes invalidates any characters that could have been re-done. Therefore, the Redo icon will become disabled.
Tap into the text at any location to start inserting or deleting characters from that location.
Once the content of a note exceeds the available size of the edit area, you will notice that a scroll bar appears on the right side, and two page navigation buttons appear at the bottom of the edit area. These allow you to page up and down through the Note’s content.
The edit area is also touch-enabled for navigation. Swipe upwards in the edit area to move down through the Note content, and swipe downwards to scroll up.
The size of the editor fonts can be easily changed by using “pinch” and “spread” gestures, just like any other touch-enabled device. Pinch your fingers together in the edit area, and the font will become smaller. Spread your fingers apart in the edit area, and the font will become larger. TakeNote remembers the font size change, so it will be the same the next time you use the application.
As you can see, all common actions we have talked about so far is done via touch, without using any menus. The Note Editor does, however, contain a few menu options for actions that you probably won’t be using on a regular basis. These include saving your changes without closing the editor, closing the editor without saving any changes, deleting the Note, and accessing the TakeNote Help screen.