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Penultimate Notebooks Ruined!

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My Penultimate Notebooks are ruined.


No landscape mode, no pages, handwriting sampling is much less frequent resulting in jagged handwriting.  Please return Penultimate to it's former state!


If you think I am going to switch to Evernote or continue to use this version of Penultimate you are crazy!  


All you're accomplishing is lost customers.





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What are you thinking...


This is the worst update of anything that I have ever seen in my life.


Now trying to work out how to restore the old version so I can get my notes back before I leave for another app or system all together. 


Absolutely pathetic...I am staggered with how bad it is.


Did anyone test it first!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I'm feeling the pain.

Went to access m Penultimate meeting notes only to discover the forced upgrade had made a mess of my info.

No warning given

No education provided

No easy navigation to existing notes pages

It's a mess!!

I hope someone out there in Evernote developer land is reading these comments.

We need to either get it back to what worked in the previous version.. and fast 

or please send a link to your user base to a navigation tutorial so that we don't have to waste time trying to find answers out their the hard way!!



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I also hate it and unless there is some option down stream to get the old interface back I'm gone. Make it a selectable option.

Scrolling is stupid. I write in Penulimate with a stylus. Now I have to put it down to get to a new page with the two finger scroll. Unusable. I like turning pages.

being able to get a thumbnail index of all pages. Essential.

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How do we go back to the page turning, notebook format?!?  It was awesome, but now I cannot even get around in the notebooks.  Also, it was great to be able to see small page icons all on the screen and find what I needed then bring up that page to work on/review.


Is this update final?  It renders the app useless to me and thus renders Evernote useless as well.


Please reply with some information.  I use this for work and replaced my paper notebook with it, so it is very important to me.


thank you.

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I have 22 notebooks, each on a different client with more than a year of meeting notes and data in each. That's 22 years of meeting notes and I CAN'T SEE ANY OF IT!! Where are my pages?? Where are my notebooks? How do I view data?? THIS IS HORRIBLE!! I never would have EVER gotten involved with any of this if I had known that at some point you were going to pull the rug out from under me like this. I looked like an idiot in the first meeting where I opened this new version. I had no warning and COULD NOT FIND ANYTHING!!!

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Did anyone on the re-design team actually ask anyone who uses Penultimate how they use it before making these changes? Every time I start a new meeting note, I write the date at the top of the page a little larger and I underline it in red. That way, when I have to go back and reference something, the new meeting dates are easy to pick out from the thumbnails.


Now you're telling me that I have to SCROLL THROUGH EIGHTY PAGES to see something from a meeting dated a year ago??!! Are you INSANE? Don't give me thumbnails, allow me to figure out the most effective way to use the thumbnails and then TAKE THEM AWAY!! What is wrong with you??

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I agree with everyone here.  I don't know what the designers of this were thinking but they obviously never used the app at any point in their life.  I have all of my clients divided into notebooks and it was easy to see past notes of action items highlighted in red looking at the thumbnails.  Now to scroll through over a year of notes for past items is ridiculous at best.  So many other things wrong with this app that it would take less time to describe what is right with it.......nothing!!! 

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I would love to have a locked version of the old Penultimate that can't be updated. The update happened without my knowledge. You even changed the icon so drastically on this new one I could barely find it. I want the old Penultimate and I want it in a locked, permanent version so you can't touch it. You're not just messing with a little app here...this affects my job, my livelihood and my ability to be effective in the marketplace. When I converted over to note taking in Penultimate, it was a complete change of process for me. I used to carry three ring binders into client meetings. All of the data that used to be contained in those three-ring binders was converted over to notebooks within Penultimate. This current update has rendered all that data useless to me. This is analogous to giving a carpenter unusable tools without letting him know he's losing the items he relies on to do his job. Give me back my hammer!! 

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I spent an hour or so last night working with this new version. I thought maybe I just needed some time to figure it out and maybe it's not as bad as I thought from my first impressions. I was wrong. It's bad...it is SOOOOO BAD!


The paper feed analogy in this new version, which used to be so perfect as a group of notebooks, is now seemingly a scroll. A SCROLL! We got rid of scrolls as a means for containing documents hundreds of years ago in favor of pages and bound books. We got rid of scrolls for a very good reason. Scrolls are awful! Whatever note document you have from the previous version, no matter how many dozens of pages it might be, is now one long continuous scroll. If you want to find something from a year ago, the only method I could find to get to that entry is SCROLLING. That is NUTS! And it's not a fast, fluid continuous scroll. It is a jerky, uncertain, hesitant scroll. The "two finger" scrolling method is slipshod and does not always react. I'm running this on a very up-to-date iPad Air. Even if it were a good scroll...it's still a SCROLL! WE NEED PAGES!! AND THUMBNAILS!!


Is ANYTHING good about this new version? MAYBE the zoom window for the Jotter Stylus. (yes, I am such a dupe that I spent the $75 on the Jotter for use with this program which used to be good and valuable but is now ruined). I like the placement of the window and the fact that I can see how what I'm writing is fitting on the whole page. I do NOT like the fact that the side-to-side scrolling is a continuous speed. The old "Zoom in" approach would respond to how much you were writing and how fast. If you stopped writing (waiting on a speaker or a new point to put down) the sideways scrolling would stop. This new one just keeps going. I guess you're supposed to push the "pause" button. That's annoying! Also, why would you put both the pause button and the "new line" button to the LEFT side of the paper? USABILITY PEOPLE!! TRY DOING A LITTLE TESTING SOMETIME!! It would take a single user just a couple of minutes of working with this to tell you to put the new-line button back over on the right hand side of the paper so it's at the spot where you can easily tap it with the stylus.


I should mention, I do like the highlighter. I also like the visible area at the tip of the eraser. I noticed the visible erase area was added into an interim version before this jump to the awful version. Keep that, it is very helpful when you are trying to erase something in a line.


GO BACK TO PAGES. GO BACK TO THUMBNAILS. GO BACK TO NOTEBOOKS. Why do software designers somehow constantly believe that "updates" or changes are always necessary? Sometimes it is just RIGHT. It doesn't need tweaking or re-designing or "interface enhancements".  Don't mess with it! The mouse trap was working. Leave it alone and let us all get back to work!

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Normally I'd label a cry of "ruin" hyperbole, but, in the case of the latest Penultimate app update, it's just the brutal fact. As many (probably now former) subscribers have discovered, the new app significantly damages all of their prior works by forcibly redesigning notebooks into perpetual scrolls and obliterating the concept of pages altogether. So, what was once a page is now a scroll, and what was once a notebook is now a scroll pot.

While users sometimes desire a scrolling paper, can it really be more than a 1:2000 occurrence? To journal-enthusiasts, this format is frustrating, but the real damage is in the forced restructuring of the past work into the new digital paper concept.

Journal-enthusiasts feel real grief and anguish about the loss of their work. Work is not just data. Work is also identity, and journals have been loved for a millennia because their form embraces the need for capturing self-identity through focused and analytical study. The new Penultimate release does not just mess up some virtual notebooks: like the tragic basement flood or fire in the attic, it destroys records that users feel deeply connected to because they are extensions of the self. "Ruined!" is the natural cry.

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I've very regularly been using Penultimate for about three years, since approx. 2011.

My experience of Penultimate 6.0 and 6.0.1 is catastrophic: loss of data, loss of pages, crashes, overall instability and absolute unreliability.

So I've decided to switch back to version 5.2.1 - the last almost reliable version, provided you avoid live updates with Evernote.

To do that:

- I saved my notes to Evernote;

- I uninstalled Penultimate 6.0.1 from my iPad (iOS 8.1.1);

- I replaced version 6.0.1 with version 5.2.1 in my iTunes library (I had saved a copy on my Mac);

- I reinstalled Penultimate 5.2.1 through iTunes (locally);

- I logged into Evernote and got my notes back.

Unfortunaletly, version 5 does not allow Penultimate to "communicate" with iTunes anymore, so you can't just move your .pen files from your Mac to your iPad directly -- up to version 4, you could do that, which was extremely useful, especially for archiving purposes.

My conclusions are:

- the 6.X updates should be avoided at all cost;

- Penultimate behaves badly in connection to Evernote and should be an "independant" application.

Unfortunately, I think people at Evernote AND Penultimate are not ready to listen to that.


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I agree with these comments. For a person who uses this app as a work horse, the new model is really not effective. Please, you have so many people saying they want the thumbnails, notebooks, and turning pages. I am pleading for this too! If this many customers are unhappy, it makes no sense to refuse to charge things.

I read one response from Evernote stating that there is no plan to change the design to reflect the complaints. Please don't get stuck in a model that doesn't work because of pride, or because the team worked so hard on coming up with something new and different.

Please hear your customers. Please don't think that the users need to grow up and get used to a new vision. This is not a case of people being stuck in our their. The notebook model is the most useful for the user. It just works. The thumbnails let u move pages more quickly, and turning pages is way easier to use than a long stream of notes. We aren't letting go of the notebook model because it works best. Your users think in a notebook format because it works better visually and in terms of efficiency. Please hear us. Let go of the long scroll idea. It's not useful and we won't adjust because of that. Again, please. I'm pleading.

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I feel desperate: as a psychologist I was using penultimate notebooks and had information one each patient, hundreds of pages I cannot access. I fully agree with every single comment above. I need urgent access to my former version of penultimate 5 which was working perfectly. The solutions posted so far in the Internet involve a copy in iTunes that I don't have. I even bought Evernote premium, an application Imdid not care to have, even though I felt blackmailed into doing so, in order to access my patient info, but I could not find the notebooks anyway. The damages to my professional performance are countless. Help please! I only have an IPad with penultimate, no iMac or MacBook with backups.

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I tried using the "point-1" fix in a meeting yesterday. It is still a huge mess, even with the feeble attempt at adding back thumbnails.


Some quick complaints:


- Does not remember page position or stay on the page when you nav to something else. I had to access a file from File Explorer (which I've done hundreds of times with the old version). When I returned to Penultimate, which was still open, I was shown the "notebook circle" at the front. For a quick ten second move to another program, I had to re-open the notebook area, then open the note on the specific client THEN OPEN THE THUMBNAIL AREA AND WAIT FOR IT TO PAGINATE the one hundred and fifty plus pages in the note, THEN it re-opened on one of the first pages in the note so I had to scroll through more than a hundred pages to get back to the page I had JUST been working on!! I NEED THIS TO HOLD POSITION IF I HAVE TO GO LOOK AT A PICTURE, OR CHECK A FILE SOME WHERE ELSE. It USED TO!


- The re-pagination everytime you open the thumbnail bar is incredibly slow and annoying.




-I've said several times how stupid the scroll analogy is...but if you are going to force me to scroll, make it a SCROLL THAT WORKS!! THIS SCROLL IS SLOW, SLUGGISH, HARD TO GET GOING AND ONCE YOU GET IT GOING, IT IS NOT FLUID OR EASY TO MAINTAIN. RETURN TO PAGE TURNS!!


Watching you try to add back some of the functionality that was already there is like watching a brilliant person suffer a stroke. Version 6 was Penultimate's horrible, debilitating stroke...now we are being forced to watch as the patient slowly resumes some of its former faculties...but, like with a stroke patient...it's just not the same as it was before.




I wasn't this mad at Microsoft after the whole "Vista" debacle. At least I got to hold on to XP without them FORCING me to upgrade...

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I feel desperate: as a psychologist I was using penultimate notebooks and had information one each patient, hundreds of pages I cannot access. I fully agree with every single comment above. I need urgent access to my former version of penultimate 5 which was working perfectly. The solutions posted so far in the Internet involve a copy in iTunes that I don't have. I even bought Evernote premium, an application Imdid not care to have, even though I felt blackmailed into doing so, in order to access my patient info, but I could not find the notebooks anyway. The damages to my professional performance are countless. Help please! I only have an IPad with penultimate, no iMac or MacBook with backups.

Just an FYI:

As a psychologist you might want to look into whether or not you can legally store patient data in an unencrypted format on a server. Some jurisdictions place significant limits on where patient data can be stored. I'm sure that you have done your due diligence here, but I just wanted to make sure you knew that Evernote is not often a sufficiently secure location for patient information (As a researcher, I'm not allowed to keep my participant's data in Evernote or any of the major popular cloud providers, and my data is not nearly as sensitive as psych/medical data!)


If you don't need premium you can ask for a refund. Usually they are pretty good about that. 


You might be able to recover your data if you had a hard drive backup of your computer that had Evernote installed. You can restore the database from a backup which should recover your penultimate data stored in that Evernote account (this is discussed at great length in these forums so a quick search should help you get on track). 

Otherwise this is definitely a lesson in keeping backups, especially when your job and your patient's wellbeing is on the line. (also, for your patient's sake, encrypt those backups!). 


Another possibility, though it sounds like you've been thorough, is that they may still be there, collapsed into a single "Penultimate" notebook.... usually this is rather self-evident so I'm sure if this were the case you'd already have noticed, but it might be worth a double check to ensure that your former "Notebooks" for each patient aren't now just residing as "notes" in the single "Penultimate" notebook (I realize that sounds like total gibberish....).

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