Designing ConNote, A System for Contextual Notetaking

Despite the plethora of electronic notetaking devices such as PDAs and Tablet PCs in the market, paper remains the dominant medium for taking micronotes. Micronotes are quick, informal notes which serve as reminders or organizers. Notwithstanding its ubiquity in the workplace in the form of Post-It notes and torn napkins, micronotes nevertheless have been shown to be dicult to interpret after the fact. Illegible handwriting, the passage of time and forgotten abbreviations all conspire to obfuscate the original note’s meaning for the note’s author. In this paper, we describe our exploratory design of ConNote, a system for contextual notetaking that allows context to be quickly tagged to digital notes taken on a Tablet PC, both by the user and system. Notes are then saved with this context metadata for later retrieval. ConNote supports a distinction between incidental and intentional context—context which occurred while a note was taken, and context manually attached by the user to a note to indicate relevance. Finally, ConNote addresses the ephemeral nature of context by discerning past, current and intermediate context.

By: Daniel Gruen; Norman M. Su

Published in: RC23481 in 2005


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