Dan Bricklin of Visicalc fame was on Triangluation this week. I was pretty excited to see he was coming on, especially given how interesting the Bob Frankston episode was. I ended up being very disappointed with his unwillingness to discuss computer history, despite the format of the show and his extremely important role in it. All he wanted to talk about was his new iPad app, Note Taker HD.
I guess it makes sense. Note Taker HD pays his bills. His role in personal computing history may be a bit of a sore subject. His genius paved the path to the personal computing revolution (creating dozens and dozens of billionaires) and it kind of left him behind in the same way it left Woz back.
But Bricklin is still a brilliant programmer, and the iPad ecosystem is lucky to have him. I bought Note Taker HD ($4.99) after the interview and I’ve been playing with it ever since. It’s a great note taking app, and easily the most feature-packed I’ve seen. The UI is great. If all you want to do is scribble on the screen it stays out of the way and let’s you go. If you want to incorporate images, graphs, and shapes that’s all there, too. The only additional thing I wish it could do is OCR.