With the limitation of desktop software, annotations — or “notes on documents” — hasn’t really taken of, let alone be useful in a practical way. A.nnotate, a web app which lets you upload documents, annotate, and share them, looks to change that.
The tool requires no sign ups, and by simply choosing a document from your computer and uploading it (with the upload box on their homepage), you can get annotating very quickly. A Flash-based view of the document, which can be either a .doc, .pdf, .ppt, .xls, or OpenOffice file, is presented, and highlighting any text brings an annotate box which lets you enter notes, colour code, and tag.
Once annotated, the note stays on display on top of the document view. You can then export, or download the document as a .PDF or .DOC file, or share it with a simple e-mail by clicking on “send.” The e-mail sends a link to the web version of the document with the annotations, which the receiver can choose to add more notes to if they have an account.
While the service doesn’t require registration upto this point, if you find it useful, you can enter your e-mail address at the top which sends you activation info and sets you up with an account. Just by signing up, you’re equipped with 270 credits, and at a rate of around 5 credits per page per document you edit, that means you can edit around 54 pages. You’re given 150 credits per month on top, but if you find that you’re using the service more than that, you can get a premium subscription. Pricing is as follows:
A.nottate puts forward a healthy offering, and to anyone who finds a use for it, it can be extremely valuable. Annotating digitally in general has not been as practical and useful as we’d expect, and A.nnotate solves that. See what WebWare has to say about it here.