Recently I started experiencing pain and tenderness in my left wrist. After a few days, I went to my doctor and she told me that I unfortunately have Tendonitis in my left wrist.

My work has been great and quickly helped by purchasing a Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic keyboard for me, which I now use in rotation with my normal keyboard. I really appreciate their effort and continued support. However, I spend a lot of my time at home reading, typing notes or programming on my laptop, which is undoubtably damaging my wrist.

I decided to do something a bit different. Instead of following the traditional advice of buying an ergonomic keyboard for home, I bought an iPad Pro and an Apple Pencil. The idea behind buying the iPad is fairly simple; do less with my left hand. By moving the time I would have spent on my laptop to the iPad, I've taken a big step in helping my wrist heal.

I'm right handed and I've always enjoyed taking notes on paper but hated carrying A4 notebooks. In the past I've found smaller field notes and moleskin's too limiting - a lot of my notes are diagrams.


Apparently, an added benefit of writing with pen and paper is that it's better for learning compared to typing. When I was studying for exams at university, I always studied with pen and paper. Throughout a semester, I would flip-flop between typing and writing during lectures. Since getting the iPad, I have what feels like the best of both worlds; digital notebooks, containing both hand written and typed notes. I am envious of those who get to grow up using and learning with this technology.


Currently, I am reading a book using iBooks and goodnotes in split screen mode.

Screenshot of iBooks and goodnotes in splitscreen

Some features of goodnotes:

  • OCR - searchable notes
  • Annotate PDFs
  • Organise notebooks by nestedable categories
  • Move, resize, copy and paste notes and diagram on the page

I'm hoping goodnotes will update to allow a two page view so I can edit a PDF on one side and take notes on the other. This means I spend more time using the Apple Pencil and less time using a keyboard. Thanks to picture-in-picture, I can take notes on a video while watching them - something the iPad couldn't do before.

Thanks to goodnotes I have an automatic starting point when I want to take notes or write a blog post. This has always been an issue for me, never knowing where or how I should store notes - especially if they contain code and images. Now I just save it all into a notebook!

iPad Pro

The overall experience has been great. I really believe that this class of device is part of the future of learning. I've had it just over a week and I am unsure how I could work without it. I even wrote this whole blog post on the iPad with the pencil.

I would definitely recommend this device to anyone especially if they are dealing with RSI or related issues.