The paper and pencil method has its own set of problems, e.g. there is a limit of how much erasing you can do before having to use another sheet of paper. One interesting piece of hardware that I will certainly try when it will be available is the NoteSlate but meanwhile I installed a whiteboard in my office, and it had been an improvement, excepted for the fact that I could not easily keep a copy of whatever design was on the whiteboard when I had to switch to another project.
A copyboard is the obvious solution to this problem, but there is a reason why you see this kind of tool only in your lawyer's office: With a minimum price of $1200, it is really expensive. So what I did is to install my SLR camera on a tripod in front of the whiteboard, and to connect the camera to my computer, so I can take a picture of the whiteboard at any time.
The picture above shows the exact setting, excepted that I had to remove the camera to take this picture, because it was my only camera with the field of view required for this picture.
The camera is connected to the computer through USB and is powered by an AC adapter so there is no need to recharge the battery. I did not want to have to go to the computer each time I wanted a picture, so the camera is triggered by a wireless remote controller.
The next step was to write a small script that automatically downloads the picture as soon it is taken and display it on the monitor:
case $ACTION in
display -resize 1600 $ARGUMENT & ;;
gphoto2 --capture-tethered --hook-script=$0 --filename="/home/petithug/.whiteboard/wb%Y%m%d%H%M%S.%C"