Jeff Keller, DCRP Founder/Editor
Originally Posted: Wednesday, May 10, 2000
Last Updated: Wednesday, May 10, 2000
get asked to review lots of products -- and not just cameras. Usually,
I'm so backed up with my real job and the camera reviews that I
don't get a chance to do anything else. But when I briefly tried
pixid's Whiteboard Photo software
and was very impressed, I decided that a review would be needed.
Photo is a $99 software package for Windows (sorry, fellow Mac users)
that can help rid your life of one of its most onerous tasks: taking
notes. In my real life, I find myself facing page after page of
flip charts that I need to transcribe onto paper.
until now, the only real products to get white board data into electronic
format have been "electronic white boards", which cost
Whiteboard Photo, I can just bust out my Coolpix and take a picture!
Here's how it works:
a painless installation (for Windows, at least), you're ready to
go. I took two test photos with the Coolpix 990 - one of the white
board in my home office, and the other of a flip chart at my day
you can see a photo of my white board, complete with data I made
up (okay, the chart on the top is correct). Magically, when you
open the image in Whiteboard Photo, it finds the edges of the board!
next step is to "clean" the photo, which requires one
button click. And a few seconds later...
white board has been turned into a graphic! The blue color is a
bit off, but that doesn't really matter. So, instead of taking notes,
you have this info in electronic form... but what about a print
out? Well, just hit the print button and...
it comes! This is actually a picture taken with the Coolpix 990
of the print out (with the wrong white balance setting). As you
can see, Whiteboard Photo has, in about a minute, saved lots of
note taking! Of course, you have to bring your camera to meetings!
the test with the flip chart:
you see the flip chart (or, what's left of it) on the wall at work.
here's the end result. Unfortunately, you can see some of the content
from the next page in the flip chart. I guess you have to take the
picture before there's anything underneath. But overall, a pretty
good job here too. [Update 9:30am PDT: I'm told by pixid
that if I had used a flash for that picture, things would look much
can I say -- Whiteboard Photo is very useful, and cool too. The
software allows you to tweak brightness, and correct the edges of
the white board, but I never needed to. It's also easy to learn
-- I never had to open the manual. The software currently has a
$20 rebate, so it's a great buy at $79 for anyone that does lots
of note taking in meetings. I highly recommend it!
hope there's a Mac version one of these days, too. If there's enough
interest, perhaps there will be!