[OS X TeX] iPad presentation
garleanu at berkeley.edu
Mon Mar 12 21:25:08 EDT 2018
Thanks to all who shared their knowledge and experience on this topic. I have finally been able to do a test run (teaching starts later this month), and here are some observations; perhaps they will be helpful to someone searching this list in the future.
1. First, I used GoodNotes, on an iPad Pro. I have the Apple pen.
2. Once I connected to a display — either wirelessly (our school has purchased a license for Solstice, which allows mirroring the tablet screen on a desktop computer) or via a dongle — I can use the TV Out mode. As noted before, the nice thing about this is that the output is only the (possibly annotated) page, i.e., it does not include the writing tools, menus, etc.
3. Page transitions are somewhat clunky, for two reasons.
(a) One has to swipe with the finger (no tapping, let alone clicking from afar); hopefully, there is not much need for fast page progression. There is also a feature that allows one to see the images of many pages (b/c shown small) simultaneously and go to the desired one directly; as per 2, this is only visible on the iPad, not projection screen.
(b) The transition can involve a quite brusque “flash,” which I would think quite jarring for the audience. After experimentation, I concluded that the issue is much milder if one does not go through pages too fast. Thus, if one wanted to show the next bullet point (next pdf page), then best that it come perhaps a couple of seconds after the previous page was loaded. I don’t know whether this is a hardware problem — I would be very surprised that the newest iPad pro is that “feeble” — or a software design problem, which is my guess. I would guess that, even if so, the GoodNotes people wouldn’t have much interest to track the problem down and solve it. (It could also be an Apple issue, I suppose. As I wrote before on this forum, the pdf output takes time to focus, when moving to the last pages in particular, or using the single-page view mode, on all my Macs if I used either the TexShop previewer or Skim, though not Acrobat.)
4. The Dropbox interface, as one would expect, is slightly less convenient than on a PC, when the folder can be kept synchronized automatically. Thus, if you make a last edit on the file, it will show up on the tablet. Here, you must import the file when you (think you) are ready, and save it back to dropbox at the end. Small inconveniences, I would think. I’ll have a better sense when I use it regularly.
On Mar 2, 2018, at 06:08, Themis Matsoukas <tmatsoukas at icloud.com> wrote:
I have been using GoodNotes as well, and I find it an excellent way to (a) annotate PDF, (b) keep hand-written notes on anything, (c) import graphics on all standard formats (from dropbox, for example) and (d) give lectures on the iPad.
The yellow page doesn’t bother me, and I am sure you can import your own pages. An easy workaround is to include a blank PDF page (in the color of your preference) as the last page of your document. This becomes the default new page when you flip past the end of the document.
In my case I do lectures that are based mostly on handwriting (i.e. iPad replaces the blackboard), with the added advantage of including PDFs and images in all acceptable formats, which I could have never done on the blackboard.
tmatsoukas at iCloud.com
> On Mar 1, 2018, at 4:54 PM, Cecile Hebert <cecile.hebert at epfl.ch> wrote:
> Hi !
> I have been using GoodNotes for teaching purpose for the past 2 years, using it to annotate pdf files generated with LaTeX.
> The projection mode (full screen) works well, you have access to the tools on the ipad, but they are not visible for the audience.
> One thing to check when trying an application is if the writing is "real time" on the projected slide too. When I was looking for a solution, I first tried pdf expert, would have been nice in principle, but the written thing would only appear on the projected image after you lift the pen, which made a very strange feeling.
>>> This is quite off topic, but I have noticed over the years that the contributors to this list have highly eclectic interests and knowledge.
>>> I have been looking for years to be able to give lectures using an iPad. The set-up is trivial in Windows, using PDF Annotator. Buying a computer for that sole purpose, though, is something I would really want to avoid. Alas, I have not found the desired setup. Here are the main features I would like:
>>> 1. Project (landscape) PDF file in full-screen mode. (How to connect to the projector is a different topic, there are solutions.)
>>> 2. Make page transition immediate — so that, if another piece shows up on the page, it does not involve the simulation of a turning page or some other effect.
>>> 3. PDF (slides) can be annotated (using pen) with hand-written input.
>>> 4. An extra slide (blank, white, landscape) can be inserted for additional notes.
>>> 5. Page can be advanced remotely — e.g., with clicker.
>>> Given the material that I teach, I found latex to be the natural way to go, which means that I cannot use Keynote, say, which may well have all the features above (other than PDF). Other things I looked at are GoodNotes (transitions leave to be desired, can only add yellow (?!) pages in landscape; I have to try projecting to see how the full-page feature works then, in what they call the “TV-Out” mode) and Explain Everything (transitions are really unsuitable, didn’t look any further). Feature 5 is a problem with all PDF apps I came across, may have to be sacrificed.
>>> I imagine that the world has moved on from this kind of presentation style, which is why the more “modern” tools (in particular, iOS based) do not offer the capability; the demand is too low. The Windows space, the traditional habitat of business, appears to be dominated by PDF Annotator, which keeps developing; this suggests that there is a market there, but perhaps not attractive enough to foster real competition. That said, it may be worth trying to see whether anyone on this list has come across anything that holds promise. Thanks!
>> An iPad app called Notability meets most, if not all, of your requirements. Page transitions might be
>> a bit too clumsy for you, but that's probably the main failure.
>> To import a PDF into the app, store it first in DropBox from your computer, whence you can download it
>> directly into Notability. You can write on PDF pages, or on blank pages the app create and will store
>> on DropBox as PDFs. Use one of Adonit's JotPro styli (about $20) instead of an Apple pen (~$100).
>> [If the stylus' writing becomes flaky, put a drop of conducting lubricant in the ball joint near the tip.]
>> If you want, you can altogether give up using a black (white) board and project lecturenotes you hand
>> write in class (or your annotated LaTex output) in Notability. Then you can upload them directly to
>> DropBox as PDFs on---which you can make available on the Web. (DropBox isn't very suitable for the
>> latter: DropBox allows you to make files Web-accessible, but it imposes download limits that a class
>> of any size will quickly bump into.)
> Prof. Cecile Hebert, EPFL SB-IPHYS, Batiment PHD2 354
> Station 3, 1015 LAUSANNE, Switzerland
> cecile.hebert at epfl.ch tel +41 21 693 05 71
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