RocketBook as a tool for Makers?

I typically document ideas and sketches in a spiral notebook before I share online or prior to starting a project in a more formal tool. If the project is simple I use the sketch as the master and often fabricate from the sketch.

I have many Maker notebooks and I struggle to find older stuff when I need it.

For Father’s Day, I received a unique gift … a ROCKET Book.

This device is an interesting intersection of new and old-school technology to solve an age-old problem … ideation, note taking, sketching & planning.

What’s unique about the RocketBook is that it uses erasable ink pens (FriXion) written on unique erasable paper paired perfectly [IMO] with a mobile app.

The well-done companion mobile app scans, sends, and translates* [OCR] the page positioned under the device’s camera. Various destinations can be set up so that when the associated icon at the bottom of the page is X’d out the app will send that page to the preprogrammed destination. Each defined destination has a series of properties that can be set to control how and in what format the page is sent and stored. Multiple pages can be sent in a bundle [all in one document] as a single page or as an image.

The information on the reusable papers can be retained or it can be erased with a damp cloth. There is a version of the notebook where its entirety can be erased in the microwave :astonished:

You can buy separate notebook pages, or clipboard or spiral versions. The pens (FriXion) are readily available in many colors. My wife uses these erasable pens for playing paper-based Suduko.

Here is an example page before it is sent:

The destination is set by putting an X over the faint icons at the bottom of the page
The ## delimiters on the RocketBooks header assigns a file name to the sent file :+1: :+1:

This image is what showed up in my Google Photos. Note the file name in the right panel.

Things I do not like :frowning:

  • The OCR feature creates a separate text file. No easy way to keep the image and OCR file linked.
  • The “bundle” function, which allows you to scan multiple pages into a single file, does not allow automatic send. Don’t know why the app cannot just let you tell it when you are done scanning i.e. the last page???

I think this can replace my physical sprial notebooks and clipboard that I use in conjunction with other modeling tools during the process of making stuff!


is the capture resolution really that high? Never mind, I see now you use your own phone device to “scan”(ie take a picture of the page) so the resolution is what your phone camera default is.

Also, any chance they open source the app? Never mind, this really is 99% a phone application doing everything and the notebook is just a waxed page / whiteboard type of device to accommodate the writing and erasing in a notebook format. Since their product is the application it’s doubtful they would open source that and allow people to improve it.

Still sounds like a nice tool.

I remember seeing this on shark tank when they were trying to get funding. Looks like they’re doing well.

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@HalfNormal … You need one in your toolbox.

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You had to go there!

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It appears there are lots of Android and iPhone OCR apps and some like Google Keep, F-Droid_OCR are free and/or open source. RocketBook seems to have picked up a following such that there are lots of DIY notebook and template options which has me wondering if the DIY(or OEM) RocketBook notepad can be used as well with any of the other OCR apps what really differentiates them from one another?

As Don mentioned, linking the OCR text file with a cloud stored image file seem really easy and necessary. Lots of my script capturing($history > myProjectInfo.txt ) and project documenting includes one or more lines referencing web pages, PDF, or image files either at the top of the document or embedded within near each relevant section.

Having a notebook page with a drawing AND text would be super useful to have the OCRed text file have a link to the image in the text document where the image was in the original.

With them separate there remains lots of organizational effort and skills and you might just as well just use an OCR-only app.

Beat it up a bit Don and let us know what you think and if it can fit into the makers toolboxes well.

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