If we’ve learned anything from science fiction, it’s that one day our robot slaves will one day rise up and kill their carbon-based overlords. Or, a tiny, seemingly weak robot will save humanity from its addiction to cheeseburgers and laziness. It’s easy to see that the evil geniuses over at Tapbots have more faith in the latter, as they keep pumping out adorable little robo-helpers for iPhone. This is the third one they’ve put out, and it might just be the most helpful one yet. You might have seen clipboard apps on the iPhone before, but you’ve never seen one this pretty, and with so many little helpful features packed into it.
What can robo do for you?
[tweetmeme] The fundamental structure of Pastebot is a clipboard that is limited to 99 pastings, and folders that can hold as much as your iPhone can handle. If you think of the clipboard as an inbox, it makes a lot of sense. It works as part of my GTD workflow beautifully. If I get a piece of text or a photo of something, I can copy it and paste it into Pastebot, or create text and photos in-app. After I’ve processed all these bits of data, I can delete them, email them, or file them away in a folder as reference. I could see it replacing Evernote for me entirely, except that it doesn’t handle document files like Evernote does. One of my favorite things in Pastebot is copying a batch of images in the camera roll, and pasting them as a group into Pastebot. It’s been great as a way to archive images I like as iPhone wallpapers, but don’t want getting in the way of regular photos in my iPhone photo albums. I was using Air Sharing Pro to manage this before, but Pastebot has some tools that I can use to manipulate photos.
The real fun of Pastebot is in the options. Pastebot gives you a whole bunch of actions you can apply to text and images. With text, you can change case, mess with HTML, and lots of other stuff you’d normally need a heavy-duty word processor for. With images, you can apply filters like B&W, sepia, and adjust saturation. You can even crop and rotate. After you’re done editing, you can save them back out to the camera roll too. Pastebot could replace those special cropping and rotating apps you might already have on your iPhone. It’s fast and clean, just how I like my ladies.
To further enhance your copying and pasting experience, Mac users can download a free OS X preference pane that will run in the background, and anytime the Pastebot app is open on the same network, your Mac will auto copy your Mac’s clipboard contents to your phone. And like Deanna on Battlestar Galactica, Pastebot goes both ways. You can choose “Paste to Mac” from any item in Pastebot. It’s a seamless process, and is very snappy with transfers.
Is this our Wall-E?
While I’m really happy with Pastebot, there are things I wish it had. It does so many things, and does them so well, that I want to make it my single repository for collected data. In order to do that, it needs sync and backup. While syncing to my Mac, like Things, would be okay, I really want an online solution. I’m imaging something akin to Evernote, but I don’t need the text recognition. Pastebot is a capable notes app, handles images fantastically, and is gorgeous. Lastly, my only complaints about how the app currently works are that there’s no option to not auto-paste clipboard contents upon launch and that images don’t auto-rotate when you tilt your device. Also, it needs a “Create New Folder” option when moving an item. Tapbots’ Mark Jardine indicated that should be remedied in 1.1. Also in the works for the future is a landscape mode for editing text, the ability to choose which menu the app opens up to, and possibly turning off the auto-paste every you open up the app.
If you like Tapbots’ design, you’ll be thrilled with Pastebot. It’s well worth the asking price of $2.99 ($1.99 at launch). Even if you aren’t sure if you’d use a clipboard app, you’re wrong. I thought the same thing at first. Pastebot is not merely a clipboard app, it’s a data management app. If you think of it that way, it will at the very least get you more organized than you probably are right now. Go buy it in the App Store.