Portable Scanning

Do you have a mobile phone with a camera? If so, with the addition of one of the apps mentioned below, your phone can easily become a scanner. Not only can you capture the document’s image, these apps will convert it into a searchable PDF – meaning you can find specific words within the text – and upload it to cloud storage, email it and more. And, many of these apps can capture multiple pages – keeping them all together in one PDF document. Continue reading “Portable Scanning”

iOS 10: Collaborative Notes


iOS 10 offers a number of new and useful features. The Notes app now supports live collaboration. All you do is open a note, then tap the “person” icon at the top of the screen. You can then invite others to add their thoughts/ideas using email, a text message or other apps. Think how much easier it will be to keep up with who’s bringing what dish to Thanksgiving dinner.

One tip . . . there’s no icon, color assignment or other way to know who entered what text. In a large group collaboration – like our Thanksgiving list – it wouldn’t hurt to ask each collaborator to add their name with their entry.

See video demo at: Yahoo Tech

New Dropbox for iOS App

This looks interesting . . .

Working from your phone or tablet can make a big difference in your productivity, but sometimes it’s still hard to match the efficiency of working at your desk. We want to change that. So today, we’re releasing a new Dropbox iOS app—and it has five new mobile productivity features that make working on your iPhone faster and easier.

Learn more at the Dropbox Blog.

Stormy Weather

We were lucky. There’s a lot of debris to clean up but no trees fell in our yard and our power outages were very short. The water in the creek was the highest I’ve ever seen it but it never came near our back fence. Family and friends are still trying to get back to their homes on the islands to see if they are habitable. It will be a long time before this area is back to “normal”.

Just a few days before Matthew started kicking things up, I had upgraded our computers to MacOS 10. During the update it asked if I wanted to “sync” the Documents and Desktop folders to my iCloud account. Hmmm. I have a 200GB account that costs me $2.99/month. My iMac has a 500GB drive and I also have two external drives. Although my computer is set up for automatic backups to the larger external drive, the idea of having my working documents available via iCloud from just about anywhere is very interesting. It became even more interesting as we prepared for the storm. There were a number of household and financial documents we wanted to keep within easy reach no matter what happened during the storm. Using Readdle’s Scanner Pro app on my iPhone, I was quickly able to scan the latest insurance policies and other important documents to my desktop and iCloud within just a few minutes. Scanner Pro even makes it possible to password-protect sensitive documents.

I’m not ready to give up my desktop scanner, but I am finding my iPhone and Scanner Pro an easy way to capture and manage all kinds of documents. They were there even when the power was out.

Get Ready for iOS 10

Apple is releasing iOS 10 on Tuesday. It has a number of interesting new features. I’m looking forward to the updates in Messages including features like handwriting, stickers and animations. Siri and Messages both will now work in some of my favorite apps too. Photos can search for object in pictures – like dogs, boats or beaches. I can’t wait to see the new features for presenting photos.

Before installing the update, make sure you have a complete backup of your device – just in case . . . There are two backup methods – iCloud and iTunes. The iTunes backup stores your backed up files on your desktop computer while iCloud backup stores them in your iCloud account. iCloud backup files are always encrypted. You choose whether you want to encrypt an iTunes backup. You need to be plugged into your computer to perform a backup or restore via iTunes while iCloud backup/restore can happen anywhere you have a WiFi connection.

You may also want to check the amount of available space on your device. In the Settings app, go to General > Storage & iCloud Storage. If the available storage is low you have two options – either update via iTunes or make space by removing some apps using the Manage Storage feature. You can delete some of your apps here. They can always be reinstalled later from the Purchased section of the App Store.

Here’s how to perform an iCloud backup . . .

  1. Make sure you have a WiFi connection.
  2. Open the Settings app and tap iCloud.
  3. Scroll down until you see the Backup item and tap it.
  4. If you have iCloud Backup turned on, it will automatically perform a daily backup as long as the phone is plugged into the charger, locked and connected to WiFi.
  5. You can also peform a backup at any time by tapping Back Up Now.

Note that iCloud backup does not backup things that are already saved to iCloud. This includes things like your contacts, bookmarks and mail messages.

How to perform an iTunes backup . . .

  1. Open the iTunes app on your desktop and connect your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Select your device when it appears in the iTunes app.
  3. iTunes will display a screen with a panel showing information about your device and below that a panel for backups. You can choose to set up automatic backups or click on Back Up Now to perform a manual backup. This panel also displays when the last backup was completed.
  4. With iTunes backup, you can choose whether you want to encrypt your backup. Note that encryption is required if you are saving Health and Activity data in your backup.

Once your backup is complete, you will be ready to upgrade the operating system. Once again, make sure your device is plugged into power and has a WiFi Internet connection.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap the General item and when that open, tap Software Update.
  3. It may take a few seconds for the screen to display the new iOS version, but once it does appear, you will see a Download and Install item just below it. Tap that.
  4. You will be presented with options to Install now, Later or Install Tonight. If you choose Install Tonight, make sure your devices is plugged into power and leave it. It will update automatically and be waiting for you in the morning.
  5. If you have assigned a passcode for your device, you will be asked to enter it.

You can also use iTunes to perform a backup. This is useful if you don’t have access to WiFi. Open iTunes, connect your device then open the Summary screen. You’ll see the update button on that screen.