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saileshpanchal

Markdown WYSIWYG support plz?

Idea

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The funny thing is there's two functions within Evernote that prove an automated formatting function can work: Simplify Formatting and Remove Formatting. It should be a simple third option. Maybe Simplify Formatting (Markdown), Simplify Formatting (RTF), and Remove Formatting (Plain Text). Just a suggestion.

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+1 for markdown.

 

I use Evernote as a preview editor for Jira which is less necessary now that it is a Web2.0 app, but still nice to have to share between devices.

 

So, markdown would be of great benefit!

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Count me in as one who want Markdown support in Evernote. It might be that I'm even satisfied with a simpler solution than most of you.

 

I would like to use Evernote as the backend for keeping notes written in (multi)markdown - I want to use Marked to format in the cases when I want HTML/PDF etc. But mostly I just want Evernote to store the raw markdown which I then can read/edit in some application. In other words I would like Evernote to support the ODB Editor Suite on the Mac (I have no idea how this works on Windows). I also would like to have a good text editor on iOS - Byword can publish to Evernote but is there some app that uses Evernote as the note database?

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Count me in as one who want Markdown support in Evernote. It might be that I'm even satisfied with a simpler solution than most of you.

I would like to use Evernote as the backend for keeping notes written in (multi)markdown - I want to use Marked to format in the cases when I want HTML/PDF etc. But mostly I just want Evernote to store the raw markdown which I then can read/edit in some application. In other words I would like Evernote to support the ODB Editor Suite on the Mac (I have no idea how this works on Windows). I also would like to have a good text editor on iOS - Byword can publish to Evernote but is there some app that uses Evernote as the note database?

Hi. Raw markdown? Do you mean plain text? Evernote works just fine with plain text (actually, not really plain text, but close enough).

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

As for using Evernote as the "database" for something else, it is possible through a third party integration, but no one has done it for Markdown. The API is there if anyone wants to make the app!

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Hi. Raw markdown? Do you mean plain text? Evernote works just fine with plain text (actually, not really plain text, but close enough).

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

As for using Evernote as the "database" for something else, it is possible through a third party integration, but no one has done it for Markdown. The API is there if anyone wants to make the app!

 

 

Yep, I'm a very modest person :D

 

So what I would like to see is builtin support for ODB (makes the workflow for editing text soooo much better) - something that needs to implemented by Evernote. But the "markdown" iOS editor could be implemented by someone else ... perhaps one already exists?

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Hi. Raw markdown? Do you mean plain text? Evernote works just fine with plain text (actually, not really plain text, but close enough).

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

 

Yes, Evernote doesn't actually handle plaintext. "Close enough" isn't enough. I put plaintext into a note, then Evernote has to be told to Remove Formatting. And that doesn't take, since it insists on changing it from plaintext to a formatted font. In order to fake it, I had to change the default font to a monospaced typeface. Which still isn't using plaintext. 

 

Plaintext is simpler, smaller, and faster. It's weird that Evernote doesn't play nice with it. I understand the appeal of various forms of formatting, but to neglect the most basic format of them all? That's just odd.

 

Evernote supporting plaintext and Markdown would make Evernote pretty much perfect for me. And, I suspect, for a lot more people, too.

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Hi. Raw markdown? Do you mean plain text? Evernote works just fine with plain text (actually, not really plain text, but close enough).

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

 

Yes, Evernote doesn't actually handle plaintext. "Close enough" isn't enough. I put plaintext into a note, then Evernote has to be told to Remove Formatting. And that doesn't take, since it insists on changing it from plaintext to a formatted font. In order to fake it, I had to change the default font to a monospaced typeface. Which still isn't using plaintext. 

 

Plaintext is simpler, smaller, and faster. It's weird that Evernote doesn't play nice with it. I understand the appeal of various forms of formatting, but to neglect the most basic format of them all? That's just odd.

 

Evernote supporting plaintext and Markdown would make Evernote pretty much perfect for me. And, I suspect, for a lot more people, too.

 

 

I don't know which client you are using, but the Mac has "Make Plain Text," which will strip out the formatting and ought to leave you with a monospace font (you can adjust this in the Preferences). 

 

I think the reason Evernote doesn't have plain text (a .txt file) is that EVERYTHING in Evernote is contained within an .xhtml file (they use a modified version called .enex), so it is impossible (as I understand it) to have pure plain text. I think this is a limitation we have to accept. That said, as I posted on my blog, it is "good enough" for some use cases.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

 

Ideally, Evernote would support Markdown within the app (by support, I mean render the Markdown in .html, perhaps in a separate window), and maybe it will someday. At the moment, you'll have to export out of the app into another one (this is what I do), or copy/paste.

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Plain text / Markdown, Latex, MathML and SVG: These are all aspects of the same thing: A much more polyglot approach to note content.

 

I still don't understand why XML in its various forms (or a subset of them) isn't supported. And I use the words "I don't understand" as there's probably some reasonable engineering explanation.

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I don't know which client you are using, but the Mac has "Make Plain Text," which will strip out the formatting and ought to leave you with a monospace font (you can adjust this in the Preferences). 

 

 

I think the reason Evernote doesn't have plain text (a .txt file) is that EVERYTHING in Evernote is contained within an .xhtml file (they use a modified version called .enex), so it is impossible (as I understand it) to have pure plain text. I think this is a limitation we have to accept. That said, as I posted on my blog, it is "good enough" for some use cases.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

 

Ideally, Evernote would support Markdown within the app (by support, I mean render the Markdown in .html, perhaps in a separate window), and maybe it will someday. At the moment, you'll have to export out of the app into another one (this is what I do), or copy/paste.

 

 

1. I'm not using the Mac client. And when it "makes plain text", is it actually making the note plain text or is it simply the same as Simplify Formatting? Based on your own description of the fact that "EVERYTHING in Evernote is contained within an .xhtml file", then I'd say no, the Mac client isn't actually making it plaintext either.

 

2. I understand that everything is within an XHTML file. But how would that make it impossible to be plaintext? XHTML *is* a text file, simply showing as formatted otherwise, thanks to an interpreter/renderer.

 

3. I f it was good enough, then why would we all be asking for proper plaintext support. I'd argue that "good enough" isn't good enough. And your blog post (and many others) all seem to point to adding extra steps to the  process, whether through an add-on or an additional application. Why would it be so hard to allow Evernote notes to be either in .ENEX or plaintext?

 

We're asking for a feature, but you're arguing that we should just be happy with what already exists. Why?

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Plain text / Markdown, Latex, MathML and SVG: These are all aspects of the same thing: A much more polyglot approach to note content.

 

I still don't understand why XML in its various forms (or a subset of them) isn't supported. And I use the words "I don't understand" as there's probably some reasonable engineering explanation.

 

It might not be an engineering explanation. It might be a niche use case one. Honestly, at least in my circles, very few people use Markdown or LaTex. An overwhelming majority just want WYSIWYG, and they are quite satisfied with the rich text options available. Frankly, as a business, I think Evernote is smart to focus on these folks.

 

Yes, it makes it more difficult for me, because I rely on Markdown, but I can understand why they might have decided not to support it (yet). I could be wrong! Maybe the developers there don't use Markdown and this is the first they are hearing about it :) My guess, though, is that they do know all about it, and they even realize its benefits. They tend to be pretty knowledgable about such things. However, there are also business decisions to make that are a separate thing entirely. 

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Frankly, as a business, I think Evernote is smart to focus on these folks.

 

I don't buy that. We're not talking about people who are saying "support RTF" vs "support HTML". This is plaintext, which is what the damn .ENEX files are already actually in.

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I don't know which client you are using, but the Mac has "Make Plain Text," which will strip out the formatting and ought to leave you with a monospace font (you can adjust this in the Preferences). 

 

 

I think the reason Evernote doesn't have plain text (a .txt file) is that EVERYTHING in Evernote is contained within an .xhtml file (they use a modified version called .enex), so it is impossible (as I understand it) to have pure plain text. I think this is a limitation we have to accept. That said, as I posted on my blog, it is "good enough" for some use cases.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

 

Ideally, Evernote would support Markdown within the app (by support, I mean render the Markdown in .html, perhaps in a separate window), and maybe it will someday. At the moment, you'll have to export out of the app into another one (this is what I do), or copy/paste.

 

 

1. I'm not using the Mac client. And when it "makes plain text", is it actually making the note plain text or is it simply the same as Simplify Formatting? Based on your own description of the fact that "EVERYTHING in Evernote is contained within an .xhtml file", then I'd say no, the Mac client isn't actually making it plaintext either.

 

2. I understand that everything is within an XHTML file. But how would that make it impossible to be plaintext? XHTML *is* a text file, simply showing as formatted otherwise, thanks to an interpreter/renderer.

 

3. I f it was good enough, then why would we all be asking for proper plaintext support. I'd argue that "good enough" isn't good enough. And your blog post (and many others) all seem to point to adding extra steps to the  process, whether through an add-on or an additional application. Why would it be so hard to allow Evernote notes to be either in .ENEX or plaintext?

 

We're asking for a feature, but you're arguing that we should just be happy with what already exists. Why?

 

 

1. It takes it a bit further than simplify formatting. You lose images, note links, etc. when you apply plain text. In terms of the .enex, almost nothing is left for rendering purposes.

 

2. It is a text file that has to be interpreted by the app, so it needs cues like headers, <div>, etc. That is my understanding, anyhow, and if that is the case, then "true" plain text is impossible (given the constraints of the service).

 

3. I agree that it would be "ideal" if we had Markdown support, though I don't think we will ever be able to see .txt support. It could be a limitation of my imagination or it could be that I am just plain wrong, but that is my understanding of how the service works.

 

I am asking for the feature as well. Please read my posts -- "Ideally, Evernote would support Markdown within the app..." I've also got a bunch of blog posts extolling the virtues of plain text, so please understand that I would be very happy to see plain text and Markdown support. 

 

However, I believe there are technical limitations and perhaps practical considerations in Evernote that will prevent us from seeing plain text. This is a discussion forum and I am expressing my views. Occasionally, I am totally wrong. Maybe this will be one of those cases. In the meantime, if / until we ever get Markdown support, I am suggesting solutions that are "good enough for some use cases." 

 

It sounds like you are not one of those use cases. That's cool. For the benefit of other users, though, I think it is worth making suggestions. Feel free to ignore them if you want.

 

 

 

Frankly, as a business, I think Evernote is smart to focus on these folks.

 

I don't buy that. We're not talking about people who are saying "support RTF" vs "support HTML". This is plaintext, which is what the damn .ENEX files are already actually in.

 

That's cool. Again, I could be totally wrong. It is just my opinion based on what I know about the service. 

 

[EDIT:] By the way, smarter people than me have tackled this question over the years. Here is one of the answers -- basically, it is conceivable, but not without reworking the service, and it would still (as I understand it) need to be contained inside of an .enml wrapper.

http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/22897-wheres-evernote-going/page-2#entry119356

 

If you read the thread, you'll see that I was asking for exactly the same thing you are (plaintext) a couple years ago. I've decided (based on what I have read) that it is unlikely to happen, and perhaps even impossible within the app. Perhaps, as I said, I am wrong. 

 

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Apparently both <pre> and <code> are legal in ENML. Not sure why that doesn't cover the plain text need - but then I don't understand it.

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Apparently both <pre> and <code> are legal in ENML. Not sure why that doesn't cover the plain text need - but then I don't understand it.

 

I agree. It's not "really" plain text, though, because it has the <pre> tag in it. It would be fine with me if we had that. In the end, it wouldn't affect my current workflow at all (see the link I posted above).

 

However, I don't think we need <pre> just to get Markdown rendering support. Theoretically, the app ought to be able to easily handle Markdown support (I think) even if we are working in rich text (by ignoring any .enml tags).

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1. It takes it a bit further than simplify formatting. You lose images, note links, etc. when you apply plain text. In terms of the .enex, almost nothing is left for rendering purposes.

 

2. It is a text file that has to be interpreted by the app, so it needs cues like headers, <div>, etc. That is my understanding, anyhow, and if that is the case, then "true" plain text is impossible (given the constraints of the service).

 

3. I agree that it would be "ideal" if we had Markdown support, though I don't think we will ever be able to see .txt support. It could be a limitation of my imagination or it could be that I am just plain wrong, but that is my understanding of how the service works.

 

I am asking for the feature as well. Please read my posts -- "Ideally, Evernote would support Markdown within the app..." I've also got a bunch of blog posts extolling the virtues of plain text, so please understand that I would be very happy to see plain text and Markdown support. 

 

However, I believe there are technical limitations and perhaps practical considerations in Evernote that will prevent us from seeing plain text. This is a discussion forum and I am expressing my views. Occasionally, I am totally wrong. Maybe this will be one of those cases. In the meantime, if / until we ever get Markdown support, I am suggesting solutions that are "good enough for some use cases." 

 

It sounds like you are not one of those use cases. That's cool. For the benefit of other users, though, I think it is worth making suggestions. Feel free to ignore them if you want.

 

 

 

Frankly, as a business, I think Evernote is smart to focus on these folks.

 

I don't buy that. We're not talking about people who are saying "support RTF" vs "support HTML". This is plaintext, which is what the damn .ENEX files are already actually in.

 

That's cool. Again, I could be totally wrong. It is just my opinion based on what I know about the service. 

 

[EDIT:] By the way, smarter people than me have tackled this question over the years. Here is one of the answers -- basically, it is conceivable, but not without reworking the service, and it would still (as I understand it) need to be contained inside of an .enml wrapper.

http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/22897-wheres-evernote-going/page-2#entry119356

 

If you read the thread, you'll see that I was asking for exactly the same thing you are (plaintext) a couple years ago. I've decided (based on what I have read) that it is unlikely to happen, and perhaps even impossible within the app. Perhaps, as I said, I am wrong. 

 

 

 

1. Yes, it loses all of the formatting and images — that's the point.

 

2. Interpreting the individual items? You mean as in the way Markdown fundamentally is meant to work?

 

3. It already supports plaintext in the form of ENEX files — the interpreter simply reads the ENEX files and renders it as formatted text. How could it be *harder* to tell it to *not* render?

 

4. I get that you seem to be pro-plaintext and pro-Markdown, but you keep offering reasons why we shouldn't even bother asking.

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However, I don't think we need <pre> just to get Markdown rendering support. Theoretically, the app ought to be able to easily handle Markdown support (I think) even if we are working in rich text (by ignoring any .enml tags).

Markdown support entails:

  • Being able to understand some Markdown dialect (duh! But you need to pick the dialect first)
  • Being able to faithfully map that Markdown dialect into supported Evernote ENML constructs. That seems feasible.
  • Being able to faithfully map supported Evernote ENML back into Markdown. This is where I go "uh-oh". Markdown was, in its inception, at least, a text --> HTML conversion tool (https://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/). Now you can find tools out there that at least claim to go HTML --> Markdown. I've never used one, so I can't verify how well they work. But what I can tell you is that if Evernote can't provide a faithful and seamless roundtrip between ENML and Markdown, then that just opens the door to more customer unhappiness. I've seen a similar effect in a Wiki tool (might have been Atlassian's Confluence) that let you edit your entries in either rich text or in Markdown, and you could switch either way just by pressing a button. The problem was that it could lose formatting when going back and forth, and that was exceedingly frustrating. It's either that or you wind up in the same situation as some of the formatting on mobile devices ("Sorry, but we can't handle that formatting") and that's not a good place to be. Or maybe an input-only Markdown control, ditto.

HTML is not my realm of expertise, but the mix here just seems, well, fraught with potential difficulties. Let's face it, if and until they can nail down the current editing problems (well known to one and all), I'd just as soon they held back on something like this. 

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However, I don't think we need <pre> just to get Markdown rendering support. Theoretically, the app ought to be able to easily handle Markdown support (I think) even if we are working in rich text (by ignoring any .enml tags).

Markdown support entails:

  • Being able to understand some Markdown dialect (duh! But you need to pick the dialect first)
  • Being able to faithfully map that Markdown dialect into supported Evernote ENML constructs. That seems feasible.
  • Being able to faithfully map supported Evernote ENML back into Markdown. This is where I go "uh-oh". Markdown was, in its inception, at least, a text --> HTML conversion tool (https://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/). Now you can find tools out there that at least claim to go HTML --> Markdown. I've never used one, so I can't verify how well they work. But what I can tell you is that if Evernote can't provide a faithful and seamless roundtrip between ENML and Markdown, then that just opens the door to more customer unhappiness. I've seen a similar effect in a Wiki tool (might have been Atlassian's Confluence) that let you edit your entries in either rich text or in Markdown, and you could switch either way just by pressing a button. The problem was that it could lose formatting when going back and forth, and that was exceedingly frustrating. It's either that or you wind up in the same situation as some of the formatting on mobile devices ("Sorry, but we can't handle that formatting") and that's not a good place to be. Or maybe an input-only Markdown control, ditto.
HTML is not my realm of expertise, but the mix here just seems, well, fraught with potential difficulties. Let's face it, if and until they can nail down the current editing problems (well known to one and all), I'd just as soon they held back on something like this.

Sure, "theoretically" the editor ought to be working just fine now. It doesn't, though, and it wasn't my intention to downplay the work involved. I think we are talking about different things.

For fairly straightforward .html to Markdown, a lot of apps do fine (I mention nvALT, for example, on my blog). By "fine" I mean that the results are not perfect, but "good enough" for me (I've got screen shots of Markdownified websites). You're correct about Evernote users and their expectations -- I imagine lost formatting would cause a lot of grumbling. And, as you said, the current editor doesn't even work as expected. So, we agree here.

However, I don't expect rich text to make the round trip. I think that is the difference in understanding. If my current workflow round-trips OK then there isn't any reason Evernote couldn't automate that, right? I do Enml > html > txt > markdown. Certainly, doing this in a preview window seems benign enough, because no bits or bytes in the note would be harmed. It wouldn't be "true" plain text, but it would work as if it was.

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I think there is a mix up here between two things:

  1. The functionality of using markdown (or plain text file - if we get one we get the other)
  2. The format used to store the notes

As I see it these are to a large degree independent. I'm looking for better support for (1) - being able to use my favorite text editor to write markdown code and marked for generating HTML/PDF/LaTeX when needed. For that I think that ODB Editor support is the best way to go on the Mac.

 

(2) is something else and probably only of interest to developers of programs that uses the API. But I opened an enml file and took a quick look (no I didn't read the docs :) ) and from what I can see it's an XML file ... which means that it just a matter of defining what you want to store and create a definition of how it should look like. To me it looks like Evernote stores one note per enml file with one content node per file. The content seem to be a note node with some attributes and then HTML code in the text node. So storing plain text here shouldn't be a problem (displaying it is another thing).

 

My personal opinion here is that Evernote has to be careful in designing their programs, they can't make the clients too confusing and should probably focus on the core features and only add new features when they are really needed. And even if we think that markdown is an essential features (I think so) we might only be 0.01% of the Evernote users ... which would make a stupid design decision to include markdown support since it would probably confuse at least 95% of the others who use Evernote making it a bad product for them. On the other hand if 30% or so of the users asked for markdown support we would probably see markdown support real soon.

 

So I'm pretty sure that it isn't a technical issue that has prevented us from seeing markdown support in Evernote, but a design decision - which might change over time.

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I think there is a mix up here between two things:

  • The functionality of using markdown (or plain text file - if we get one we get the other)
  • The format used to store the notes

I don't see how Markdown and plain text are equivalent. Sure, Markup is done using plain text (so is HTML), but that's not what it represents. You don't get Markdown automatically if you have plain text (ask my text editor). It has to be interpreted. You can store Markdown and HTML in a note already. Is that what's wanted? I don't think so, but what you (and maybe GM) are asking for isn't actually all that clear to me. Not that it matters -- it needs to be clear to Evernote, though.

 

(2) is something else and probably only of interest to developers of programs that uses the API. But I opened an enml file and took a quick look (no I didn't read the docs :) ) and from what I can see it's an XML file ... which means that it just a matter of defining what you want to store and create a definition of how it should look like. To me it looks like Evernote stores one note per enml file with one content node per file. The content seem to be a note node with some attributes and then HTML code in the text node. So storing plain text here shouldn't be a problem (displaying it is another thing).

ENML Format: XHTML subset, with augmentation. See http://dev.evernote.com/doc/articles/enml.php.

More than one note can be stored per file (easy enough to do, at least in the Windows client, and probably the Mac. Select some notes and export them -- they'll come out as one file.

 

So I'm pretty sure that it isn't a technical issue that has prevented us from seeing markdown support in Evernote, but a design decision - which might change over time.

I believe it's a practical decision, based on technical reasons. See, e.g., post #5 in this topic: http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=40681, post #14 http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=64718 and so on. They can't provide a full editing experience with Markdown, so it's unlikely to happen. That could change, I do understand.

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I think there is a mix up here between two things:

  •  
  • The functionality of using markdown (or plain text file - if we get one we get the other)
  • The format used to store the notes

I don't see how Markdown and plain text are equivalent. Sure, Markup is done using plain text (so is HTML), but that's not what it represents. You don't get Markdown automatically if you have plain text (ask my text editor). It has to be interpreted. You can store Markdown and HTML in a note already. Is that what's wanted? I don't think so, but what you (and maybe GM) are asking for isn't actually all that clear to me. Not that it matters -- it needs to be clear to Evernote, though.

 

(2) is something else and probably only of interest to developers of programs that uses the API. But I opened an enml file and took a quick look (no I didn't read the docs :) ) and from what I can see it's an XML file ... which means that it just a matter of defining what you want to store and create a definition of how it should look like. To me it looks like Evernote stores one note per enml file with one content node per file. The content seem to be a note node with some attributes and then HTML code in the text node. So storing plain text here shouldn't be a problem (displaying it is another thing).

ENML Format: XHTML subset, with augmentation. See http://dev.evernote.com/doc/articles/enml.php.

More than one note can be stored per file (easy enough to do, at least in the Windows client, and probably the Mac. Select some notes and export them -- they'll come out as one file.

 

So I'm pretty sure that it isn't a technical issue that has prevented us from seeing markdown support in Evernote, but a design decision - which might change over time.

I believe it's a practical decision, based on technical reasons. See, e.g., post #5 in this topic: http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=40681, post #14 http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=64718 and so on. They can't provide a full editing experience with Markdown, so it's unlikely to happen. That could change, I do understand.

 

 

I am asking for Evernote to supply a "preview window" of some kind (activated in other programs using Control + Command + P) that would take the content of my note and display it "marked up" as it would look in .html (convert # to <h1>, ## to <h2>, etc.). This would require no changes to the notes themselves, and if you didn't use any markup in your notes, it would just appear wrong in the preview (naturally). 

 

The plain text thing is something else entirely (in my mind), and we can leave that off the table -- as I mentioned earlier in the thread, I don't see that happening. Basically, to echo what jemostrom said, I want to be able to display Markdown. The format the note is in doesn't have to change.

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> I don't see how Markdown and plain text are equivalent. Sure, Markup is done using plain text (so is HTML), but that's not what it represents. You don't get Markdown automatically if you have plain text (ask my text editor). It has to be interpreted. You can store Markdown and HTML in a note already. Is that what's wanted? I don't think so

 

This is mixing two things again, storing markdown is the same as storing text which is the same as storing the current HTML content. Like I said above this shouldn't be a problem (you can do it now). The other thing is how, as I said above, to displaying it. Here you have to differ between three different markups:

  • Plain text - already possible
  • HTML - already possible
  • Markdown

It's the last one where I'm a bit different from many others who ask for Markdown support. I have no need for built-in rendering of markdown I'm fine with a plain text display of markdown notes. I just want an efficient way of working with plain text files in Evernote (so in reality I don't need any special markdown support at all). From my experience with other programs (for example VoodooPad, Devonthink), the most efficient way of working with an external editor is to use the ODB Editor protocol (on the Mac).

 

> ENML Format: XHTML subset, with augmentation. See http://dev.evernote.com/doc/articles/enml.php.

> More than one note can be stored per file (easy enough to do, at least in the Windows client, and probably the Mac. Select some notes and export them -- they'll come out as one file.

 

 

Yes, it looks like then the separate notes are stored as XML notes "within" the multinote file ... interesting.

 

 

> I believe it's a practical decision, based on technical reasons. See, e.g., post #5 in this topic: http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=40681, post #14 http://discussion.evernote.com/topic/33759-markdown-wysiwyg-support-plz/?p=64718 and so on. They can't provide a full editing experience with Markdown, so it's unlikely to happen. That could change, I do understand.

 

 

That I understand and I'm OK with that (others might not like it), as I said above, I just want to use Evernote as a "storage database" for text. Of course, this can be done by any text editor by implementing support for Evernotes API - which is unlikely to happen. However, on the Mac many text editors support the ODB Editor protocol which would mean that if Evernote implemented support for it, these editors would all get the ability to work efficiently with text files (= click a button in Evernote to edit with external editor, when I save in my text editor Evernote sees the changes and updates the note).

 

As for iOS, the text editor would have to implement support for the Evernote API.

 

I'm pretty sure that we will never see support for the ODB Editor protocol for reasons given in a previous post. Some iOS editor might implement support for using Evernote as the storage backend (there are a couple of note takers but I haven't seen a text editor). I haven't seen a Mac text editor that uses the Evernote API (does one exist?).

 

In short, I'll probably never see what I'm looking for ... but I can dream :)

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In short, I'll probably never see what I'm looking for ... but I can dream :)

Nothing wrong with that. :)

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Let.ter (http://theletterapp.com/) implements just the kind of markdown support that makes writing md a pleasure. Inline, no need for a preview window, and instant feedback.

This is what note editing should be like.

One day—I am looking forward to it.

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I just posted this feature request:

 

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/62973-feature-request-inline-preview-of-markdown-and-plain-text-attachments/

 

It's just asking for Evernote to support inline preview for Markdown attachments (much like it does for PDFs, Excel spreadsheets, and others).  This would scratch my itch as far as Markdown in Evernote is concerned, and hopefully shouldn't be too difficult to implement.

 

Maybe I should have posted this here instead, but I thought it was distinct enough to warrant a separate topic to avoid confusing two separate, albeit related, issues.

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It's just asking for Evernote to support inline preview for Markdown attachments (much like it does for PDFs, Excel spreadsheets, and others).  This would scratch my itch as far as Markdown in Evernote is concerned, and hopefully shouldn't be too difficult to implement.

You should note that some Evernote clients don't support all of the named previews on all clients; e.g. PDF is previewed on the Windows, but not the MS Office formats; the Android and web clients don't even preview PDFs. It's anybody's guess as to how easy / difficult it'd be for Evernote to implement. One problem: it's not clear that there is an official way to recognize Markdown files via file extension (which is what you need to identify attachments at Markdown-previewable); there's a case for ".md" and ".markdown" an others, but also for ".text".  There's also the problem of whose Markdown are you going to recognize, as there are several variations. None of these are insurmountable, but they do present obstacles to implementation.

 

Links:

http://daringfireball.net/linked/2014/01/08/markdown-extension

http://superuser.com/questions/249436/file-extension-for-markdown-files

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Markdown.

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I have to agree with jemostrom above -- I couldn't care less about Evernote's support of Markdown attachments. Markdown is not a display format, it's a writing format. I don't want to attach "Markdown" documents (if I did, they'd be in a display format). I want to be able to write notes using Markdown syntax instead of Evernote's dreadful formatting options.

 

I think Evernote has officially indicated their uninterest in this feature (apparently, producing $30 water bottles is more in line with their increasingly incomprehensible product vision) so I've long since given up and no longer write in Evernote. I use the Byword markdown editor, which allows automatic publishing to Evernote. It's not ideal, but it's usable, unlike Evernote's ridiculous interface. 

 

Given that Evernote doesn't seem to understand the concept of "writing" (beyond something they can use to sell you stupid notebooks, pens, postits, etc), I would rather see this implemented via the API, by a developer who cares about words. 

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The thing is, at least for the way I work, this *does* allow writing Markdown.  When I open the attachment, up pops FoldingText where I can make my changes in a Markdown editor I like, and when I save the document in FoldingText the attachment in Evernote automatically updates.  Ok, it's not the same as WYSIWYG support right in Evernote, but it means I can write Markdown and have it saved in Evernote without needing copy anything back-and-forth.  I actually do this quite a lot, this way I can keep drafts of Markdown documents in Evernote along with notes related to the document (which I just write directly into Evernote), and I can edit those drafts without worrying that anything will get out-of-sync.  Having Evernote display the rendered Markdown right there would be great for me because it would mean I don't need to open the Markdown to see it, but even if it just shows the Markdown source (i.e. plain-text) I'd be pretty happy.

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Thanks for the interesting discussions. I agree totally with KenF that Evernote will never add this feature to the product. Their lack of attention to their core product staggers the imagination, but they must be making good money on overpriced rucksacks, leather notebooks, and business socks. Emanual offered a good suggestion on using .md attachments. I just tested this successfully using Byword. The problem is that it is tied to a single platform, which is one of the constraints I was trying to use Evernote to solve.

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This nonsense about bags and socks is really childish.

 

Do you honestly think that the same people who are re-writing the editor are also involved in the Market?

 

As it stands at the moment, it looks like they aren't going to support Markdown - it's not really surprising, I wonder how many of the 100m+ users even know what Markdown is.

 

Yes, if you are a bit techie then you are probably very familiar with it, but the average Joe is I am sure blissfully unaware.

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In addition to what Jefito & Metrodon said, there are only so many things any one or any company can do & do well. The forum is filled with dozens & dozens of feature requests. EN must make decisions about what they will add & what they will not add (for whatever reason). Then the items they have decided to add must be prioritized & some of those features should sync & work across all the clients. IE, highlighting, reminders, shortcuts, etc. So there are always going to be those who are disappointed that their particular feature request is not granted. It appears that those who want markdown will have to wallow in their disappointment along with those wanting nested notebooks & a Linux client.

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The thing is, at least for the way I work, this *does* allow writing Markdown.  When I open the attachment, up pops FoldingText where I can make my changes in a Markdown editor I like, and when I save the document in FoldingText the attachment in Evernote automatically updates.

By this I understand that there's a file association of Markdown files and a Markdown editor? Is that via file extension, or some OS attribute? I'm not particularly Mac-savvy, so that's all good information for the discussion. Unfortunately, that still leaves Markdown in somewhat the same situation as LaTex.

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By this I understand that there's a file association of Markdown files and a Markdown editor? Is that via file extension, or some OS attribute? I'm not particularly Mac-savvy, so that's all good information for the discussion. Unfortunately, that still leaves Markdown in somewhat the same situation as LaTex.

 

 

I believe it's via the OS's usual extension-to-application mappings.  When I open a `.md` file it opens with the same application that's the default when I double-click a `.md` file in the Finder.  Similarly, the `Open With` submenu contains the same list of Markdown-supporting applications as the Finder.

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By this I understand that there's a file association of Markdown files and a Markdown editor? Is that via file extension, or some OS attribute? I'm not particularly Mac-savvy, so that's all good information for the discussion. Unfortunately, that still leaves Markdown in somewhat the same situation as LaTex.

 

 

I believe it's via the OS's usual extension-to-application mappings.  When I open a `.md` file it opens with the same application that's the default when I double-click a `.md` file in the Finder.  Similarly, the `Open With` submenu contains the same list of Markdown-supporting applications as the Finder.

 

OK, so pretty similar to Windows and other OS's. No great surprise there, but good to get the verification. Thanks.

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I have to agree with jemostrom above -- I couldn't care less about Evernote's support of Markdown attachments. Markdown is not a display format, it's a writing format. I don't want to attach "Markdown" documents (if I did, they'd be in a display format). I want to be able to write notes using Markdown syntax instead of Evernote's dreadful formatting options.

 

I think Evernote has officially indicated their uninterest in this feature (apparently, producing $30 water bottles is more in line with their increasingly incomprehensible product vision) so I've long since given up and no longer write in Evernote. I use the Byword markdown editor, which allows automatic publishing to Evernote. It's not ideal, but it's usable, unlike Evernote's ridiculous interface. 

 

Given that Evernote doesn't seem to understand the concept of "writing" (beyond something they can use to sell you stupid notebooks, pens, postits, etc), I would rather see this implemented via the API, by a developer who cares about words. 

 

$30 water bottles ... LOL :)

 

Given that Evernote still doesn't support the most basic of styles (H1, H2, H3, Body), the fact that Simplify Formatting and Clear Formatting clear the whole note and not just selected text, and bullets don't work with any reliability, I have given up on Evernote handling basic text let along Markdown. Byword seems like a great tool but the cost is prohibitive since I use multiple environments and it lacks a Windows version for times when I'm in that world. I'm still using Markdown though.

 

My solution bypasses Evernote. I use Dropbox with a Markdown-savvy tool to view a formatted version (to make my visual brain happy) for each platform I use. Markdown and Dropbox give me portability across environments. Not as nice as an Evernote solution could be, and I can't get an overpriced water bottle, but it works everywhere I need it to be and it is available now.  

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Please folks, don't mix two discussions here. The markdown feature is too important as we should mix it with a merchandising thread… although we should start it at some other  place… will be fun  ;)

 

Back to topic. 

 

As I wrote earlier in this discussion, I don't believe the EN guys will ever implement this markdown feature. I also checked the public beta of 5.6.0 of the new Mac version. And since there is no feedback from the EN folks here, we had to move on.

 

As Mike Korner wrote, in the meantime we also did established a different workflow. But since I can't trust Dropbox, we installed a Git on our server and created a special repository for some stuff. If you think Git is too techie, please know even our assistants are working with that, using a tool like Gitbox for checking in and out. So we are creating and maintaining our files in all formats we need - we're not using just Markdown, but also AsciiDoc for our documentation. The files were created with the writing tools of our choice, every employee has its own favorite (BBEdit, Ulysses, Textedit etc). With Git we do have not only the perfect synchronization, but also the best version comparison (which is another weakness of EN, see this thread). Later, when a version of the file is finished, it will be exported and embedded as a final version into Evernote. The target format depends on the later usage of the file. Unfortunately we can not use EN for sending out PDFs to our customers because of this issue) - so, most notes are in RTF and HTML format.

 

Ok, I just realized that I also mix discussions here (adding the versioning and mailing issue). But please understand this only as an additional description to explain what and why we're doing this and that.

 

You may realized our main use of EN is now only to store files. Changes in EN notes are very rare. I just stick to EN because of this blog post of Phil Libin. After he promised to increase the quality, I decided to give him another year (maybe a little more) to work on the tool.

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This nonsense about bags and socks is really childish.

 

Do you honestly think that the same people who are re-writing the editor are also involved in the Market?

 

Perhaps it's your understanding of how large companies work that is "childish." Do you honestly think the people implementing market, or editor features, make their own decisions about their priorities?  Evernote, and any maturely run company, makes decisions on product strategy at an executive level, and those decisions then drive budgeting, goals, etc, for each group. Evernote, as a company, is clearly choosing to focus on one group of not-at-all-average people (techie enough to use an online note service, wealthy/foolish enough to spend money on special pens, postits, Moleskine notebooks, etc) rather than the group of not-at-all-average people like me (who are serious about writing/organizing/note-taking). 

 

 

Yes, if you are a bit techie then you are probably very familiar with it, but the average Joe is I am sure blissfully unaware.

 

Markdown is hardly "techie." It was created as a markup language for people who either didn't understand, or didn't want to bother typing, HTML. 

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As I wrote earlier in this discussion, I don't believe the EN guys will ever implement this markdown feature. I also checked the public beta of 5.6.0 of the new Mac version. And since there is no feedback from the EN folks here, we had to move on.

 

Well said; that was essentially my point. I have moved on from writing in Evernote. 

 

 

 

As Mike Korner wrote, in the meantime we also did established a different workflow. But since I can't trust Dropbox, we installed a Git on our server and created a special repository for some stuff. If you think Git is too techie, please know even our assistants are working with that, using a tool like Gitbox for checking in and out. So we are creating and maintaining our files in all formats we need - we're not using just Markdown, but also AsciiDoc for our documentation. The files were created with the writing tools of our choice, every employee has its own favorite (BBEdit, Ulysses, Textedit etc). With Git we do have not only the perfect synchronization, but also the best version comparison (which is another weakness of EN, see this thread). Later, when a version of the file is finished, it will be exported and embedded as a final version into Evernote. The target format depends on the later usage of the file. Unfortunately we can not use EN for sending out PDFs to our customers because of this issue) - so, most notes are in RTF and HTML format.

 

 

Sounds like you've also addressed a problem outside the scope of this thread (workflow and versioning), and I'd love to read more about the solution you've created. But it sounds like you're ready to move on completely from Evernote. Surely it wouldn't be much more work to add tagging and searching? Given the strategic direction Evernote is taking, why are Libin's promises meaningful? I mean, great, a software executive is committing to delivering quality software. But his vision for the software doesn't make any sense, and we're using fewer and fewer of its features, so who cares if their next big product improvement ("Write On Your Hand With Evernote's New EverGloves! Only $99 in the Store Now! Available in White Or Bright Green!") is well-implemented or not? 

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Sounds like you've also addressed a problem outside the scope of this thread (workflow and versioning), and I'd love to read more about the solution you've created. But it sounds like you're ready to move on completely from Evernote. Surely it wouldn't be much more work to add tagging and searching? 

 

 

 

Ok, I just realized that I also mix discussions here (adding the versioning and mailing issue). But please understand this only as an additional description to explain what and why we're doing this and that.

 

You may realized our main use of EN is now only to store files. Changes in EN notes are very rare. I just stick to EN because of this blog post of Phil Libin. After he promised to increase the quality, I decided to give him another year (maybe a little more) to work on the tool.

 

 

 

No, not really. As I wrote in my last paragraph, I'll give EN the time to improve. 

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It appears that those who want markdown will have to wallow in their disappointment along with those wanting nested notebooks & a Linux client.

 

I know you don't speak for Evernote, but this is exactly what I believe the company's attitude is. And it's not for me to judge your preference for wallowing; I'd rather continue pursuing worthwhile workarounds or alternatives, and evaluating whether or not I should remain a paying customer of the company. 

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No, not really. As I wrote in my last paragraph, I'll give EN the time to improve. 

 

 

I'm sorry, yes, I edited my post to reflect that. I am as well (obviously, or I wouldn't spend time posting here), but increasingly I wonder why. My question wasn't a troll though; I'm seriously asking what role Evernote's software plays in your solution. Not as in "What's wrong with you that you're still using it," but as in, "Is there value here that I'm missing?"

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It appears that those who want markdown will have to wallow in their disappointment along with those wanting nested notebooks & a Linux client.

 

I know you don't speak for Evernote, but this is exactly what I believe the company's attitude is. And it's not for me to judge your preference for wallowing; I'd rather continue pursuing worthwhile workarounds or alternatives, and evaluating whether or not I should remain a paying customer of the company. 

 

 

 

As I said, any company must make decisions based upon priorities.  I'm sure they wish they could please ALL 100+ million users, but of course, that's not possible.  Rather than ascribe attitudes to Evernote that really only simply reflect your dissatisfaction is unfounded and quite frankly, serve no purpose.  Your goal of "pursuing worthwhile workarounds or alternatives", OTOH, is useful & is exactly what many of us regularly post here on the board to those who say feature XXX is a dealbreaker.  Since EN does not post their roadmap, each user must decide if their prized missing feature is a deal breaker (and find an alternative app) or find a viable workaround.  That's pretty much how many things in life work.

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This nonsense about bags and socks is really childish.

 

Do you honestly think that the same people who are re-writing the editor are also involved in the Market?

 

Perhaps it's your understanding of how large companies work that is "childish." Do you honestly think the people implementing market, or editor features, make their own decisions about their priorities?  Evernote, and any maturely run company, makes decisions on product strategy at an executive level, and those decisions then drive budgeting, goals, etc, for each group. Evernote, as a company, is clearly choosing to focus on one group of not-at-all-average people (techie enough to use an online note service, wealthy/foolish enough to spend money on special pens, postits, Moleskine notebooks, etc) rather than the group of not-at-all-average people like me (who are serious about writing/organizing/note-taking). 

 

 

Yes, if you are a bit techie then you are probably very familiar with it, but the average Joe is I am sure blissfully unaware.

 

Markdown is hardly "techie." It was created as a markup language for people who either didn't understand, or didn't want to bother typing, HTML. 

 

 

I think you are absolutely 100% correct. Evernote are building an application and service that is hugely useful for a wide and general audience. They are avoiding building in special features that will help small groups (like code formatting that would undoubtedly be really useful for programmers) and are instead aiming pretty much straight down the middle of the road.

 

If you are serious about writing then my suggestion is to use a serious writing app, there are lots and lots of them out there that will do the job and have all the extra bells and whistles to make writing a better experience.

 

Of course, Markdown is techie - in the real world, most people have no idea what HTML is never mind what the alternatives are. Show me a single main stream application that supports Markdown and I'll of course change my mind. I don't see it in Word or Pages or Open Office though - surely these are the most mainstream and most used word processors that if your assertion is correct would already support what is basically a Gruber creation without any true standard.

 

Finally, Evernote is a very well funded company that is continually adding new technical staff. Given the speed of the development cycles it does seem dumb to assume that the Market (whatever you think of the products) is having any impact on the application and service direction and code.

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No, not really. As I wrote in my last paragraph, I'll give EN the time to improve. 

 

 

I'm sorry, yes, I edited my post to reflect that. I am as well (obviously, or I wouldn't spend time posting here), but increasingly I wonder why. My question wasn't a troll though; I'm seriously asking what role Evernote's software plays in your solution. Not as in "What's wrong with you that you're still using it," but as in, "Is there value here that I'm missing?"

 

 

There are many things we love at EN. Here are some reasons (but not in a special order and only focused to us):

 

- EN is a beautiful software and love to work with beautiful software

- The web clipper saves us a lot of time and works like a charm (perfect for our press clippings)

- The overview in the card view with its picture in the card (again we're very visual)

- It replaced our CRM since we just have a few but special needs in our company setup and focus

- and many more…

 

(but I am afraid we're a bit off-tpoic now ;-)

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The subthread about writing tools and their relationship to Evernote is interesting. For me, when writing (usually blog posts) Evernote might be an eventual DESTINATION. More likely I'll use M(ultim)arkdown to write and I probable won't store the resulting HTML in Evernote: There's just too much work (i.e. any) :-) in getting the results into Evernote.

 

So Evernote isn't central to my writing apart, perhaps, from research. But I'd like it to be the place I store my work-in-progress Markdown. So "round tripping" is an important part of this.

 

And the reasons for preferring Markdown to authoring direct in Evernote are manifold but usually centre around 1) ease of use, 2) tooling on iOS and OSX (and distantly Linux).

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I'd say that the round-tripping is a problem; Evernote can express things in its ENML that most likely cannot be expressed in Markdown.

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Actually Markdown allows embedded HTML so even the "ENML-only" stuff might be catered for. But that's not an entirely satisfactory solution.

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Actually Markdown allows embedded HTML so even the "ENML-only" stuff might be catered for. But that's not an entirely satisfactory solution.

I'm thinking the todo stuff, which isn't even HTML. I think that things get messy for the users if you represent it the way that Markdown would, or Evernote could code up some kind of Markdown extension to handle that, but that seems messy too.

I'm just recalling a Wiki that I used a few years back that had Markdown and rich-text editing of the content; round-tripping was a problem, and when things went boom, it was difficult to figure out exactly what went wrong and how to fix it, except by going back to a previous version and starting all over again. Maybe things have improved since then, but I wouldn't bet that there wouldn't be problems, either.

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@jefito Agreed: Not sure what Markdown would do with ENML - as it looks quite a bit like HTML.

I think that the technical term is is "choke"?? :) It's XML, based on a subset of XHTML, with some additions. I don't know enough about Markdown to know how it handles stuff that Markdown doesn't have a parallel for.

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@jefito maybe one day I'll experiment but I'll surmise that anything that looks like HTML is passed through by Markdown. XML is likely to look close enough like it.

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Posted · Hidden by charboyd, March 16, 2015 - spam
Hidden by charboyd, March 16, 2015 - spam

I have heard that there is a team that is building something that has the right UI, features, and support that everyone has been looking for called NoteHash. Evernote seems to be holding off features and is always charging more (which really stinks).


I really have high hopes for these guys…


http://www.notehash.com/


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