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(Archived) Fluid keyboard entry of new notes, editing of existing ones



SMALL changes to TAB will give very smooth fast entry of new notes + editing of existing notes from the keyboard.


- Cursor positioned in note title (no change)

- Tab goes into Tags (no change)

- Tab goes into Body (CHANGE: no need to go to source URL - if needed it would almost always be done by the Clipper; and waste of time to tab through all the formatting fields)

- Shift-TAB does these in reverse


- Use Search field to find some possible matches (no change)

- Tab goes into list of Matches (CHANGE: no need to go through 3 other useless TABS)

- Up/Down Arrow changes selection in List and selected expanded note (no change)

- Tab goes into BODY either at location of match in note body, or at end of note if no match in body (CHANGE: this would be the most common path for editing existing note)

- Further Tab or Shift-TAB behaves like NEW NOTE above

This borrows some ideas from "Notational Velocity", fantastic Mac app.


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15 replies to this idea

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You are welcome.

If I may make one more (related) suggestion: when creating the match list for a search, it would really be nice if Evernote used some ranking of the matches. This does not have to be fancy, even something as simple as:

Title match > Tag match > Body match > match anywhere else

would be great. Titles and Tags tend to be primary classifiers, others are (relatively) detailed ones.

This will not be as simple to implement as the TAB re-ordering. But it would greatly increase the number of times that Evernote showed the primary target first on the list, with its details already visible.

It would raise the question of "which column is the match list sorted by", and I would say it is a "ranking" column :( which only appears when Search is non-empty, and is the always the default initial sort for searches (possibly customizable).


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I'd also like to second the suggestion regarding the tab key navigation sequence. This is something I've been longing for for a while.

Note that the tab key sequence is nearly ideal when "Full Keyboard Access" is set to "Text boxes and lists only" (the default) in System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts. But then, people who like to efficiently jump around with the tab key are likely to have that set to "All Controls".

Thanks for your consideration!

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+1 on tab sequence. And one more tweak: I'd love the keyboard shortcut for "Insert Checkbox" to insert a checkbox at the end (or beginning) of the edit window even when the focus is not there. I really want to create a "todo" with as few keystrokes as possible. Right now it's:

Ctl-Cmd-N for a new note

type title, TAB

type tags, TAB 11 times

Shift-Cmd-T for todo box

Cmd-W to close the window

Cmd-Tab to return to the app I was in originally

As a comparison, for OmniFocus, it's Ctrl-Option-Space, type title, tab, type tags, ESC, and you're back to your application.


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i think i've made the point before somewhere else but lack of keyboard shortcuts and overall friendliness is a major weak spot of Evernote. i am hoping they bring on more Macheads that know how to build a great Mac UX.

keeping our fingers crossed =)

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To prevent the "tab" key from going through all of the text formatting buttons, change your tab preferences in the Keyboard system preferences panel

As I suggested above, turning off Full Keyboard Access (for all applications!) is not an option for users who like to use the keyboard for navigation.

I really hope you'll consider a fix on the lines proposed above; I imagine it should be relatively easy (just a matter of setting the nextKeyView outlets to the appropriate controls?), and I don't see any drawbacks (one seldom sets the font before entering the note content).

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As I suggested above, turning off Full Keyboard Access (for all applications!) is not an option for users who like to use the keyboard for navigation.

i fully agree. i use the keyboard for almost everything on my mac.

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I agree with tx114 and pendolino: disabling full keyboard access is not an viable option. There are lots of other applications I use (like the browser) where I want the global setting to let me tab between all controls.

As I stated in another thread...

There was at least one version that worked exactly like we are asking for (about the time of the UI redesign for the title, URL, and tag inputs). As usual when creating notes, I typed in the note title and tags, tabbed once instinctively, and found my cursor in the note body. I rejoiced and my faith in Evernote's UI designers was renewed. Then I upgraded to the next version and all the joy was sucked away because the old behavior was back. I love Evernote, but I shake a fist at this stupidity every time I create a new note and can't tab to the body.

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1.11.0 has improved the tab flow for an individual open note - but shift-tab does not work in reverse. The tabbing with a search results list is still painful.

Any chance of bumping this one up? It would make a huge step up in usability for rapid note-taking, note-finding, and note-editing.

Currently the multiple steps interrupt my flow so much that I avoid jotting notes while doing other things.


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