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Yet More Duplicate Note Problems


Okonomiyaki

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You are right, there are solutions out there that avoid the collision problem. They are all younger than EN, and were created having this problem in mind. How do they work ? They build the document from a large number of very tiny building blocks. Once one of this blocks is undergoing an editing, it is locked for all others. The rest of the document remains open. A conflict can only happen if several users try to edit this same tiny element at the same time.

Problem with EN: It treats the whole note (generally speaking) as one big container. It is not segmented down, like Google or MS Office do, just to name two apps that apply this granular design. EN could solve the problem - but they would have to completely change the fundamental design of the notes. Currently each note is sort of a web page, based on HTML. This would not work any longer.

New database, new server and new client programs, new API. In fact a complete overhaul, which would as well render all legacy clients useless. I do not think this will happen, at least not any time soon.

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On 1/7/2022 at 2:46 PM, PinkElephant said:

You are right, there are solutions out there that avoid the collision problem. They are all younger than EN, and were created having this problem in mind. How do they work ? They build the document from a large number of very tiny building blocks. Once one of this blocks is undergoing an editing, it is locked for all others. The rest of the document remains open. A conflict can only happen if several users try to edit this same tiny element at the same time.

Problem with EN: It treats the whole note (generally speaking) as one big container. It is not segmented down, like Google or MS Office do, just to name two apps that apply this granular design. EN could solve the problem - but they would have to completely change the fundamental design of the notes. Currently each note is sort of a web page, based on HTML. This would not work any longer.

New database, new server and new client programs, new API. In fact a complete overhaul, which would as well render all legacy clients useless. I do not think this will happen, at least not any time soon.

TBH I am not sure if describing CRDT/OT or any other approach and saying that EN is not that is helpful.
I am a paying customer, for many years, yet I find myself more and more often switching to Apple Notes, Google Docs, Notion, Drafts etc., because I don't have time to deal with the almost guaranteed issues and slow performance of EN.

That EN is a distributed system should be opaque to the users. The nonfunctional requirements are clear - speed and consistency, and we are paying money to you guys so that we didn't have to know how it works under the hood.

I am routinely editing very large notes lately, and considering switching away from EN.. again.. because I use it less and less.

Edit: Oh yeah, the reason why I have written this comment is because I just had 3 duplicate notes created when added 50 screenshots to a note on my iPad.

Edited by RTRex
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EN v10 is for whatever reason sensitive with large text based notes. They lead to syncing issues, at least from what was reported in the forum.

A possible workaround it to split the large note up into smaller ones.

Introduce a table-of-content note, from where you can fork to all parts. If you want to go to that extend, you can introduce note links as well at the end of each note to jump directly to the next one.

Should this be necessary ? Of course not !

Is it necessary ? Give it a try. I think it is even better practice to keep things rather short in a note taking app. If a writing attack comes over you, switch to a word processor, or even a full writing tool (Ulysses and Scrivener crosses my mind).

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Maybe I’m not being careful enough opening up only 1 note on any one device at a time but I get this error still at least once a day. It’s infuriating. The only thing that really needs to be fixed in my mind.

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How stable is your internet connection ?

By this I mean all aspects: Using WiFi or Ethernet ? How good is the link from the ISP ? Does it happen on mobile as well ? Any VPN or other privacy gadget that may interfere ?

If you know to be on a weak, intermittent internet (like in my case when I am on the train) the best method is to go offline, work on local data and sync only when on a stable connection.

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Internet connection is fine. Working from home so definitely no intermittent connection issues. I did find this response from gazumped:

which basically talks about the same thing you are i.e. internet connection problems.

Admittedly I'm only getting duplicate notes that I edit on different devices. I've got some notes that I edit only on one device and I never get duplication issues with those notes.

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Thanks for the answer. This means the prior edit on one device had not yet reached the server when you started duplicating the same note on another device. This leads to EN not knowing which version to keep - and it starts to produce security copies.

Try to avoid this situation - and the duplicates should be solved.

If not, contact support from a device where duplicates showed after editing. Attach the activity log.

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Makes sense. I guess simply closing Evernote doesn't guarantee syncing issues don't creep up. I had a note pop up after 24 hours, most likely after turning on a device I turned off without the sync having been sent.

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Correct - when you close the app it will stop syncing. The next changes on another client will modify the prior version, which in turn doesn’t match the version that is later synced from the first device.

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@PinkElephant Thanks so much for your explanation:

"Problem with EN: It treats the whole note (generally speaking) as one big container. It is not segmented down, like Google or MS Office do, just to name two apps that apply this granular design. EN could solve the problem - but they would have to completely change the fundamental design of the notes. Currently each note is sort of a web page, based on HTML. This would not work any longer"

It was driving me nuts trying to figure out why no other platform has this problem. I'm looking forward to seeing what EN does to improve sync as they stated in their plans for 2022. Just knowing the reason for the problem puts the mind a bit more at ease, so thanks once again.

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