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Search is not functioning properly....

Albert Mergeay


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You know it is there - but you can’t find it on the first try. Welcome to our world, silver ager ...

Then you remember it was an invoice ...

Then you remember it was last autumn ...

Maybe you have to look through some hits, but you will find it. I always did.

On the other hand, including the search term even when not at the beginning would often cause bloated search results. It is worth the time to understand the search logic of EN.

P.S. Tagging would help to narrow things down faster.

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3 hours ago, INomad said:

So, is that the only answer? 

Is there maybe some planning to introduce this in the future? Of not at all?

I mean, how should I find this note among 5000 notes if I do only remember 'SCHERM' to search for...????
This note would be for ever lost.....????


When I setup my Evernote  (and now an other software stack) I first analyzed how my brain works. How will I search for something if it wasn't in digital space. What if it was in a filing cabinet, on paper... Then I looked at the options available in Evernote (or other tools) and setup a way to find stuff and  is easy to maintain.

Every productivity system (and note taking is part of this) should be:
- Simple in every day use, not hours of work to maintain or use
- Flexible to adjust, because over time you will change so your setup will change
- Trustworthy, once in you must find it in a couple of seconds. Otherwise you'll try to remember, or write is somewhere else.
- Must match with your way of working, if you must change your workflow you'll get frustrated and than to system will fail you.
If you must adept your workflow because of the application, please look for an other piece of software.

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Thank you for your reactions!

Although I am still dissappointed of the searchfunctionality EN

(I use Evernote Premium since 2012)

I have a lot of experience in my private and in my professional carreer with note taking.

My lessons Learned: (is my own best practice)

  • I have a title syntax: date/ subject
    • 20210215 this is an example
  • I have a big structure of notebooks based on stacking of notebooks 
  • I stopped using tags
    • I have a lot of tags and years ago it was too much so I don't use them anymore
    • Because I trusted to find everything via SEARCH
    • Because I have a lot of notebooks, so mostly I can find it there
    • Maybe in the future I will start again using a restricted set of tags... 😉

But I still regret there is a only limited searchfunctionality compared to other databases. Allthough I am no programming expert, I cannot imagine why it is so difficult to have the 'normal' searchfunctionality. 





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Personally I went in love and then back to a rather cold relation with notebooks. 

It is simple to stuff notes into notebooks. But then there is the restriction that a note can only be in one notebooks at any time. And it does not really help with organizing - in some issues you have a „flat“ structure, in others it grows wider and wider.

So back to tagging, much more flexible, more control, more efficient.

The transition is pretty simple: Because your notebooks made sense in the first place, you can simply assign the name of the notebook as tag, the move the notes to a new notebook that will hold the notes from many of the prior notebooks. You can always reproduce from where a note has come, but you take probably 90% of your notebooks out of your structure.

To keep your tags efficient and avoid a jungle, establish a pruning day from time to time: Join similar ones, eliminate those with only little usage etc. Tag management in the desktop clients helps to perform this housekeeping job.

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10 hours ago, Albert Mergeay said:
  • I have a big structure of notebooks based on stacking of notebooks 
  • I stopped using tags

Notebooks and Tags are two fields in the note's metadata    
There's also notebook/tag trees in the sidebar

The two fields are can be used interchangeably   
Can you explain your preference for using Notebooks

I prefer using tags   
- tags can be organized in a hierarchy (unlimited levels)    
-multiple tags can be assigned to a note

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As I said before, I know the power of tagging (I even gave workshops on that matter 😏)

But since I had too much tags and because I trusted too much on the sophisticated searchfunctionality of EN, I lost my discipline and focussed on notebooks.

Usually I find every note I am searching for due to the (restricted) search of EN and due to the notebooks.

And really, I can't imagine living without my EN database. I really digititallize everything I receive.

My docscanner, my papershredder and my Evernote are my ever best tools which I use every single day!!!! 👍😀

The only thing I regret is a searchfunctionality in EN that Works just like the most searchmethods that are used in officedocuments, in other databases like Lotus Notes or Microsoft Onenote.

Sometimes I have some doubts if Evernote has enough Manpower or financial Capital to keep track of developping the product.
I use EN 10.7.6 and take a local copy of EN every week... 

I hope I can keep working with EN for ever, but sometimes I don't know...

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Tags are good and bad at the same time, if you look for efficiency / productivity
When you use tags it is difficult to minimize the amount for tags. You need to choose your tags wisely else you end up with 100+ tags.
And than the struggle begins:
- You create a new note.. which tag to use? Did I already had one? Or is there a need for a new one.
- The time spent in searching for the right tags (often multiple tags are used for 1 note) , organizing the hierarchy, and maintaining correct spelling and removing unused tags takes time (Lots of time over a month).

Based on how your brain works, how will you find non digital stuff if you put it in a desk or cabinet, create a system and let the search engine do the heavy work.
Yes I use tags/labels in some occasion.
My titles are formatted in a way the search engine can find what I search, I use a text expander tool to help me in consistency. Notebooks are based on project, clear topic/goal or one big cabinet. This makes it easier to archive or even delete "clutter" if needed.

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4 hours ago, ArjenC said:

Notebooks are based on project, clear topic/goal or one big cabinet.

Your concerns apply equally to notebooks and tags

Notebooks/Tags are good and bad at the same time, if you look for efficiency / productivity   
When you use notebooks/tags it is difficult to minimize the amount for notebooks/tags. You need to choose your notebooks/tags wisely else you end up with 100+ Notebooks/tags.
And than the struggle begins:
- You create a new note.. which notebook/tag to use? Did I already had one? Or is there a need for a new one.
- The time spent in searching for the right notebook/tag (often multiple tags are used for 1 note), organizing the hierarchy, and maintaining correct spelling and removing unused notebooks/tags takes time (Lots of time over a month).

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I have 300 notebooks which are organised in 30 stacked notebooks and which contains almost 9000 notes.
Of course, if I would take a moment I think I can clean and delete some old Notebooks and notes.....

But what matters to me (my Brain 😏) is that I feel very comfortable by this wellthought (ahum) organisation of Notebooks for private use.

For more than 90% of the cases I don't miss not using the tags anymore.... 

And I am really addicted to sending mails directly to the right notebook using my default titlestructure.


I like EN very much 😀 but I regret enormous that some very important searchfunctions are not available: 😟😟😟

- the searchfunction does not search in office documents

- the searchfunction should have the basic capability to look also in the middle or at the end of te words....


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@DTLow Yes if you create enough notebooks it is the same as using tags, correct.
Why I mentioned that tags are (in most cases) inefficient is that a note can have more tags but only belongs to 1 notebook. When you use tags you probably add more tags and will move the note to a notebook. So more actions must be done to process a note. But i assume that you will move the note to a notebook and not keep al in the default notebook. 

The search engine is (should be) powerful enough to find your note based on some text (OCR etc.). This way of finding stuff is superior over clicking on the tag structure... 

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Exact. It is a personal trade off if you want to use a lot of tags in a few notebooks  (or even ONE notebook) or if you, like me, have 300 notebooks...
There is not such a thing as ONE best practice for everyone. 🤷🏻‍♂️

But everyone wants so SEARCH AND FIND the information, 

and that is the most important point of critic I have agains EN....☹️☹️

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