There are two versions of OneNote that work with the Surface, and therefore one of the first things you have to decide is which version you want to associate to the top button of the Surface Pen. When you click the button, the version of OneNote that you associate to the button will launch.

The two versions are OneNote Touch and OneNote 2013, which may be best thought of as OneNote for Windows tablet (read Windows 8.1) and OneNote for Windows desktop. The desktop version has more features and is designed for use with a keyboard and mouse, while the tablet version has less features and is optimized for use with a pen.

For me the choice of which to use comes down to two relatively simple features. In OneNote 2013 you can set up each new note to have a default background (or paper), such as the lined paper that I use. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear to be possible to define a default paper for OneNote Touch.

OneNote Touch has a very handy menu for switching between ink colors and selecting features that displays by tapping and holding the pen, or your finger, on the screen.

I want both features in one version of OneNote, and I find it odd that Microsoft decided to not allow users to set a default paper in OneNote Touch, such a feature has obvious value in the tablet version.

While I really like the radial menu, I've decided that for quick note taking, which I think is the purpose for Pen top button button click, having lined paper is more important, and therefore I have associated OneNote 2013 with the Pen top button click.

05/25/15; 11:01:06 AM

I bought the Microsoft Surface 3 bundle from Costco, and it arrived yesterday. Of course, I went through the setup process, which I found to be a good reminder that the Surface 3 is more computer than tablet. The most stunning thing were the number of updates to Windows that had to download and install, I don't think any other tablet that I set up required so many updates.

The bundle that I bought includes the 4 GB of RAM, 128 GB model Surface 3, the Type Cover, and Pen for about $100 cheaper than buying the each of the items separately. (Note that bundle is only available to Costco members.) There are two reasons why I bought the Surface 3, first is that I really find the integration with OneNote and the Pen useful, and second reason is that I believe I needed a newer computer for running Windows 8 and later this year Windows 10.

After following the initial setup that requires signing in using a Windows Live account, the next step was to pair the Pen. The pairing is done via Bluetooth and I think Bluetooth is used for communicating the button commands. There are three buttons on the pen, one at the top of the pen, similar to where you find the clicker on a ballpoint pen, and two on the sides. The top button provides the integration with OneNote, when you click it while the Surface 3 is unlocked, it launches OneNote. If you click the top button on the Pen when the Surface 3 is unlocked, OneNote launches and automatically creates a new note, ready for you to start writing.

05/20/15; 10:03:18 AM

Turned the Nexus 7 on for the first time in a while, after updating a ton of apps, I checked the settings for a system update, and sure enough 5.1 was available.

I am anxious to get this update on my Nexus 9 because of the promised performance improvements. It will be interesting to see how well 5.1 performs on the Nexus 7, which has been noticeably slow ever since I upgraded it to Lollipop.

  • The Nexus 9 was recently upgraded to Android 5.0.2 and ever since I have been seeing far fewer app shutdowns do to memory leaks. Performance is better.

Android Central: What's New in Android 5.1

Well, that's interesting, I just received a notice that Android 5.1.1 update just downloaded. Restart and install in progress. It's a small update, so I am guessing it is a bug fix to Android 5.1.

05/14/15; 03:00:20 PM

Dave has made changes to the backend server hosting Fargo. Here is a test of the Fargo broadcast system.

  • And we have success! Nice.
05/11/15; 11:20:37 AM

Last built: Mon, Aug 8, 2016 at 4:12 PM

By Frank McPherson, Monday, May 11, 2015 at 11:20 AM.