Android Word Processors and Notepads

When it comes to apps for Android, there’s good new and bad news. The good news is that there are lots of apps. The bad news is that there are lots of apps! This is certainly true for word processing and notepad applications. There are so many offerings that it’s difficult to know where to start. Sure, you can pick from some of the “best 25 apps” listings, and there are even some blogs that make software recommendations (grin). However, one interesting problem is that many apps assume that the user has an Android phone with an always-on Internet connection. Clearly this is not the case for those of us Wi-Fi tablets who rely on a residential wireless router or hot-spot connectivity. And, this can negate the value of some software suggestions.

I found this out directly when trying out some of the recommended Android apps. Many word processors (notably Google Docs) store their data files in the cloud. This was fine while my tablet was connected to my wireless router but, once the tablet was out in the cold, I found I was no longer able to access my test file. And, I didn’t even make first base with some of the notepads (e.g. Evernote) as these wanted me to set up an account which clearly indicated yet another (undesirable) path into the cloud.

I found considerable sympathy with the forum poster who said “I just want a simple text editor that can open and save .txt files, but I can’t find one!” However, the trick seems to be to keep looking. Many of the software reviews I looked at featured a list of “Users who viewed this also viewed…” in the left margin of the web page and, by following some of these links I eventually ended up at Jota Text Editor.

Jota is truly a simple text editor than can save and restore. txt files on local storage media; however, the program has many useful features, and a vast array of configurable preferences.

One useful feature is that a tool bar, containing a set of buttons for frequent tasks (e.g. Save, Copy, Paste, etc.), is displayed on the main screen. The best part is that the tool bar is configurable. Not only can individual buttons be removed, and other buttons (e.g. centre current line) added, but the tiny button size that is evidently designed for a phone can be set as “Big button” which is much more appropriate for the larger screen of a tablet (and real people’s fingers!)

Many other settings can be customized such as case sensitivity for the search function, font type and size, options for viewing a file such as word wrap, line spacing, and line numbering. In addition, a range of optional program extensions are available (through an “Insert” menu option) from the program developer’s web site.

However, the bottom line is that, straight-out-of-the-box, Jota Text Editor provides the simple text editor that many are seeking.

References:

Jota Text Editor
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=jp.sblo.pandora.jota&hl=en

Aquamarine Networks – Jota Text Editor
http://sites.google.com/site/aquamarinepandora/home/jota-text-editor

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