MultiAdaptor creates connected notepad for Think With Google

Branding agency MultiAdaptor has created a paper notepad and pencil that uses conductive ink to control an app for Google marketing service, Think With Google.


MultiAdaptor was asked to promote Think With Google, which publishes marketing research, articles and case studies, to creative companies and brands. The agency was initially asked to design an exhibition but decided to create an interactive product that could be sent out to potential readers instead.



To create the notepad, industrial designer Roland Ellis developed a conductive bookbinding glue to connect an Arduino circuit board to printed pages without having to use cables or any other parts (the agency claims the conductive glue is the world’s first, as far as it is aware). Conductive ink was screen-printed on to paper pages and can be activated with a standard graphite pencil.

“Our notepad had to be compact and convincing,” says MultiAdaptor. “Conductive ink allowed us to interface with digital content using a pencil, but we wanted to avoid the expected ‘R&D’ aesthetic of cables and circuitry and create something more simple and human.”



To activate the notepad, users have to plug it in to their desktop using the cable provided, visit Think With Google and select two options from a list of statements using a pencil. Content matching their selection, from articles to stats and case studies, is then displayed on a dashboard titled ‘My Edit’. Users can then share a link to their edit or ‘rip a page off’ the notepad and create a new one.



The site can be used independently of the notepad and the notepad can be used as a normal work book (there are blank pages for note taking). When used with the app, it’s a fun and fairly simple way to introduce potential readers to the site and is bound to spark some curiosity when it arrives in the post.

“The digital experience is also designed to reflect the Google brand – something simple and helpful, but playful and innovative too,” says MultiAdaptor.



1000 notepads have been printed and assembled so far and will be sent out to agencies in the UK and Italy. This video from MultiAdaptor shows a little more of how it was made:


Concept and design: MultiAdaptor

Industrial design and manufacture: Roland Ellis

Technology and production: Artists & Engineers

Conductive print: Novalia

Print and packaging: Generation Press

Web development: Psycle

  • Guest

    errr, sorry, what does this actually do?

  • Kevin Stevenson

    Sorry, I didn’t get that at all. You didn’t actually say what it does.

  • My friend did something like that a few years ago: