Ink blogging – using Windows Journal and Silverlight Streaming!


Are you using Windows Journal to jot down your thoughts on your Tablet PC? Did you ever wish to publish your handwritten notes to your blog?


Here is one way to do this: The TabletPC SDK provides a Journal Reader API that provides access to the content of the .jnt file. Now you can read all content and convert it into a ‘blog-friendly’ format. Since Silverlight offers great ways to present content in an attractive, interactive way, I decided to write a Journal -> Silverlight converter. The result of this test project is now available as SDK sample on microsoft.com/downloads.


The converter is easy enough to use. Just drop down to a command box and run “JntToSilverlight.exe  MyNotes.jnt“. This will produce a ‘MyNotes’ folder that contains the resulting Silverlight application. You can test the results now by double-clicking the ‘default.htm’ file to load the app into your browser.


OK, now how do I get all this onto my blog? Using Silverlight Streaming, it’s very easy: just zip it up, upload it to the service and then stick an IFrame into your blog’s HTML. See my previous post on this subject.


To summarize the steps:


1)     Create a note in Windows Journal


2)     Convert note to Silverlight app


3)     Upload to Silverlight Streaming service


4)     Insert IFrame into blog


This is still a lot of steps and a bit tedious, but it’s a proof of concept. Steps 2-4 all have an API they so are automatable and one could create a tool that does all that in one step.


Here is one example of a converted note on my blog (the original .jnt is attached to this post, if you want to compare). Besides flipping through the pages, you can add more ink, move selected content around and erase ink. Also don’t miss the full-screen mode and the mouse-wheel zoom feature!

InkBlog.jnt

Comments (12)

  1. Microsoft's Stefan Wick continues to dish out good stuff in the areas of ink and Silverlight, this

  2. archiwiz says:

    Is there a way that you can please provide a step-by-step approach to this for someone who knows practically nothing about programming and just wants to blog in ink from Journal?

    P.S. I’ve tried the steps above but the command line gives me an error with the converter file.

  3. swick says:

    Hi archiwitz,

    what error are you getting from the command line? What operating system are you using?

    One thing to make sure is that you close Windows Journal before running the converter against the .jnt file. This is because Journal opens its files in exclusive mode, so no other app can access them while Journal is running.

    Also be sure to read the ReadMe that comes with the converter sample.

    This blog post was meant to be a proof-of-concept sample to demonstrate how developers can put together these different technology components in order to create rich ink experiences on the web.

    It was not a goal for me to provide a complete solution that meets the bar for end-users.

    Thanks,

    Stefan Wick

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