The Livescribe Pulse smartpen is on the verge of getting smarter with new applications. The electronic pen records everything you write, and with a tap, will record audio as well. For client interviews and meetings, that can be incredibly useful.

Developers have caught onto the pen, and over 6,500 developers have downloaded the software necessary to create their own apps. Among the most promising is a language translation application. Set the pen to Spanish, write the word “please,” and the pen will say “por favor.” This is no substitute for actually speaking a language. But if you need a method to communicate with clients on a very basic level, this is a nice tool to have.

If you are considering the move to a paperless office, that is just one more reason to give this device a try. For around $200, it can save time, space, and money.


  1. Nick says:

    A pen that translates your handwriting one word at a time into another language is not “a nice tool to have,” even if you’re only trying to communicate on a very basic level. How about an online dictionary, which is free? Or hand gestures, if you’re really only trying to say please and thank you.

    I know The Lawyerist needs to post on a regular basis, but does a post like this help or hurt your readership?

  2. Randall Ryder says:

    The main utility of the pen is that it will digitally record what you write, and if you want, what you say.

    I would not buy the pen solely for the language feature – and I’m not sure where it says that in the post. The language feature is a nice tool to have, if you decide to buy the pen. Just curious, how do you say please with a hand gesture?

  3. David Armor says:

    Please with gestures:

    Extend head forward a little, drop the face slightly, raise eyebrows, and extend a hand forward, open-palmed.

    Got it?

  4. Randall Ryder says:

    That sounds more like acting than a hand gesture.

  5. Hi Randall,
    Did you review the Echo smartpen? What are your thoughts?

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