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True Side by Side Columns


jive

Idea

I'd like to have my notes side by side (including tables).   Currently everyone is using tables to create multi column notes which seems hacky and clunky.  (not to mention you can put things like task inside a table column).  I'll admit, I left Evernote for not having this feature alone. Screens are wide these days.  It would be good to take advantage of that.

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16 replies to this idea

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I think you might run into some of the same issues on Desktop... At what point do the columns wrap since there is no page size -- both height and width? With a word processor you have a fixed page height and width. If the text overflows in columns it will add a second page.

I'm wondering how a column feature would translate, or be implemented, into an auto-size/auto-height/page-less editor like Evernote - I think you'd end up with a maybe slightly modified table structure? So I'm curious how you see it working.

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I've done this.  It's hacky at best. But still this misses the point.  Tables don't have the same formatting options. (such as todo lists etc).  And the point is to request this in Evernote, not go to some other authoring tool, that does it.  I do use those tools.  But would also love to use Evernote.   And columns seems like a an obvious feature... I'm not sure how it was missed.

lol. I'm a web developer / designer by profession.  So yes I do do various layouts when authoring web applications...

But again, the point is to have true columns (not bastardized columns, such as tables) in Evernote...

 

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The forum is user2user. You would like it, I am no fan of bloating this excellent note taking software into something other tools already do, and will always do better. So I am against adding stuff like this.

Opinions exchanged, that’s it.

To post your idea with EN, use the feedback function or a support ticket.

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That would hardly bloat it, and is actually considered "common feature" in the digital note taking space.  How do you benchmark that?  Well you look at the current most  used / popular players and if they all have it, it's considered standard.  (For example, all of them have "bold" and if one of those players are missing "bold" it would be missing a obviously standard feature)  Standard features are not really "opinion".  They just are.  You either have them or your half baked.

Also just because a (common) feature is added doesn't mean you have to use it.

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Bloating is adding features that only a fraction of users would apply, but all need to install. The forum is of course biased, but trends are visible. Multiple columns is not a popular feature (just check the vote count). Most who need some columns insert a table, and are done.

Beside this, the problem arises when notes are presented on different devices. Currently, on mobile it is simple to reformat the note to be still good looking, with fine readability. Scrolling is down, not sideways. So the content is stretched downwards.

If there were columns, they either would be reformatted to an absurdly narrow width, or horizontal scrolling would be needed. But horizontal wipes are in the mobile OS used to control actions.

This is just one example why adding columns IMHO deserves the word „bloating“. 

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vote count means nothing.  Vote count is mostly a small number of enthusiasts, and doesn't really represent the masses.  Most folks don't go to user forums or take the time to vote on features they want, they simply leave and don't use it and then use the software that has the features they want.

Any designer worth his salt  (and I've been a UX designer for close to 25 years now) finds elegant solutions for column collapsing and usability. That is zero problem if the designer is skilled enough.  But if you are saying they are not, then they need to get a better designer.

None of what you are saying above makes a strong case against columns.  Folks generally don't try to bend developers to their will.  They simply shrug and quietly leave.  I was once a evernote subscriber and it was my daily driver years ago.  I wasn't very surprised to hear that they were struggling a while back.    I check back now and then to see if they have a compelling enough offering to come back and how they stack compared to competition. But nah. Even with the newest features, It hardly stacks up.  (And it actually still feels more bloated to me than the competition)

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@jive Thanks for the screenshot, but what is the difference between that and a border-less table?

Edit: I have Craft and looked just now and don't see how to add columns in it (or tables for that matter). But I don't have OneNote installed anywhere.

Edit2: Ok - I just installed OneNote (this is the Win 10 version I believe (but I'm on a Mac)) and I don't see how to add columns, but I do see that I can add a table:

image.png.26912ec961d16d7510eee6464d71cbde.png

My Google-fu is failing me on columns for both Craft and OneNote too...

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So if I'm understanding right -- what is suggested here is a (maybe borderless) table where you can put everything into it that you could put outside of it like tasks and other things. From the Insert menu when selected on a table cell, it looks like Table is currently the only other thing (in addition to Tasks) you can't put in it currently:

image.png.7e64e03dd4b3bb9be24c42c94e760fa8.png

Tasks in tables is something that is being worked on -- or at least it's been mentioned that it is on their roadmap:

image.png.cdfadf1ce3d331c3d97286167b338ac7.png

image.png.35c1b810179887abf7f4b16a6fe48069.png

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Hey Jack,

That sounds great. Borderless tables with the capability to do in tables, whatever you can do elsewhere is a suitable compromise  to columns.   Nice to know you guys are listening and working on things.  (And as a dev, I know that things take time. )  Coming back to Evernote for a bit and seeing the new changes refreshes was is a pleasant surprise!

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Those comments from Jack were just screenshots I took of his replies in the the "Tasks in Tables" thread that I linked above. The border-less table comment was just mine based on that being the only conceivable difference between the screenshot that you first posted and a table. 

You could go to that thread I linked above and add a comment there if you wanted... And you could add an "@" in front of "Jack Lynch" if you wanted to tag him specifically so he gets some kind of a notification about it. (But note that Evernote staff don't often reply.)

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I see. so it actually looks like it's being worked on.  This is sufficient I think.  If you can do "all the things" in a table cell, then it's essentially the same thing.

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