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Neil Rutledge

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Everything posted by Neil Rutledge

  1. I think this completely misses the point. The problem is that Evernote Mac's UX is terribly designed. You can't drag and drop notebooks/tags without diving into another screen. You can't click on a tag and simply search within it. You can delete a notebook (rarely performed action) from the context menu, yet you can't rename it or move it (common actions). And the list goes on... For comparison, try Notion.so and you will see how well designed software functions. If Evernote doesn't start improving the user experience, they are going to lose out long term. Edit: certain things are very well implemented in Evernote Mac (annotation, searching within notebooks, the new tables, etc.). My problem is that they don't seem to be putting in any effort to bring improvements from Evernote Windows into the Mac version. It's as if the teams are working in complete isolation.
  2. Wow, I'm surprised that people here find having another screen to click into for viewing notebooks useful whatsoever. Everything is in the left menu already. My complaint is the fact that you can't edit/organize the notebooks in the left menu instead of having to click into a redundant screen.
  3. Agreed, in so much as I cannot readily think of a better system. Just the same as, although Evernote is not a perfect app (and I find myself constantly frustrated by various UX issues), it is still the best overall note taking app.
  4. Yeah, I get that. Donald Trump is proof that voting systems don't always work. From a UX standpoint, this just seems like such a low effort, high impact feature (one that rolled out to Evernote Windows years ago).
  5. Evernote Mac team, WHY has this option not made its way to Mac yet? Let's compare performing a search on a tag in Bear (could just as easily be OneNote) to Evernote: Find something within a tag in Bear: Click tag and realize list is very long. Enter search phrase to filter results. Filtered results within tag are displayed. Find something within a tag in Evernote: Click tag and realize list is very long. Attempt to search within the tag (fail, there is no immediate option). Manually key tag into search box (slow and redundant). Select tag from search results. Enter search phrase to filter results. Filtered results within tag are displayed.
  6. Yes please provide a separate setting to disable recent notes! I'm sure there are people that love it, but for many people it's just taking up space, creating a distraction or compromising their privacy. For me personally, it just drives me nuts. I want to put things in their place, not have things jumping around. It takes more time and mental energy to scan a recent list in hopes of finding the note I was recently viewing then to just go to where I know where to find it.
  7. I still cannot believe there is no quick way to search within the current context, or tag. Notebooks are extremely limited, forcing people to use tags for organization...but Evernote Mac doesn't provide a way to search within tags without extremely tedious extra steps. I've made the switch back to OneNote for the time being and am finding it a huge relief to be able to just click into a section and search within.
  8. Thank you Evernote team for the Google Drive integration! It would be ideal if the view matched the nested folder structure of Google Drive, and if there was a way to enable a preview of docs/sheets when attached to a note, but otherwise it is perfect!
  9. Yes, the system color picker on Mac is a torturous tool to deal with. It would be amazing if we could use a simplified color picker.
  10. Personally, I feel these Outlook 2011 toolbar icons look dated and somewhat hideous. I am all for the flat design in Evernote. What I do not like about the Evernote Mac interface is that it is completely grey (with a tiny splash of blue). It would be great if it followed the color scheme of web/mobile AND allowed for color-coding the tags like Windows.
  11. I work for a software company. Just because a particular feature is relatively simple to implement doesn't automatically mean it's going to make it into the software immediately. There can be countless other feature requests, enhancements and fixes that are higher priority. That being said, Evernote's Mac interface is so incredibly grey and lifeless that sometimes I wonder if I'm looking at the other side of my Macbook's display. The only clue is that there's no white apple. There is no tool quite like Evernote. I absolutely love it. I do wish it had some basic color-coding options though. (The fact this has been rolled out for Windows has me feeling somewhat optimistic though.)
  12. Any word on whether the color-coding implemented in EN Windows will soon be added to EN Mac? I would so love some color-coding capabilities!
  13. I'm glad you asked this because that's the one thing I've been wondering this whole time I've been commenting on this discussion.
  14. Right now, I use my calendar for all recurring tasks, as well as any tasks that must absolutely happen at specific dates/times. Even when using tools like Asana (which I use at work as part of a team) that handle recurring tasks very well and integrate with my calendar... I still prefer to just put the items directly into my calendar.
  15. Since any actionable item is always set as a reminder (same as your workflow from the sounds of it), I work directly from the reminders list. It is the reminders list that I sort (by disabling the "Sort reminders by date" option at the top of the reminders section). I much prefer to have manual control and the ability to drag things around then to have things sorted based on date or some other metric (although I will switch this setting when I need to see things sorted by date on occasion). I had experimented in the past using much the same approach as you where everything worked off saved searches and date was the method of prioritization. I loved that I could set something to appear on my radar at some specific point in the future. But I soon found myself constantly deferring reminders to another day...and they were building up. My Evernote reminders started feeling like emails appearing in my inbox in the morning -- I didn't feel in control. The other thing I found problematic is that it was hard to identify what was a reminder I had simply deferred to a later date because it was lower priority, and what was something that actually needed to be done on that given day. This is a nice approach. These types of notes are what I put in my Dashboard notebook (as reminders so they appear right at the top of my reminder section under a "DASHBOARD" header). But using a shortcut works just as well.
  16. Forgive me if you are already familiar with Agile Methodology, but splitting work into smaller batches is exactly the goal when dividing things into workflow buckets: Example using Evernote: Let's say I have the following notebooks (and a tags list breaking things down by area/project): .Dashboard <-- This contains goals and other quick reference info Actions .To Do (containing 12 reminders) .Waiting (containing 3 reminders) Backlog (containing about 50+ reminders) Reference <-- All the non-actionable notes go here All of the notes in the 'Actions' stack are reminders and sort by date is disabled so that they can be manually sorted to indicate priority and are grouped by notebook. At a set interval (say once per week), I have a weekly review where the following is performed: I review my list of goals so they are fresh in my mind. I then go into my 'Backlog' notebook and scan through to ensure everything is in priority order (top reminder in the list is the thing that will deliver the highest value). I can also filter my backlog easily by project tag at any time to get a specific view during this process. If I come across something that is no longer relevant, I delete it. I then click a saved search in my shortcuts menu called "Completed" to view all the completed reminders over the last 7 days to assess what I actually got done. I also click a saved search called 'Due This Week' to see the few notes that do have fixed dates coming up this next week. Based on what I got done in the past week, and what's due this week, I put an appropriate amount of items from the top of the 'Backlog' notebook into my 'To Do' notebook. Such a process creates a cycle of Doing > Reviewing > Planning > Doing, etc. where you are able to correct course based on the results of previous action and always focus on the highest priority work that can be done. You never work directly from the backlog of items, only the small batch of highest priority items in the To Do list. Note: the notebooks can be broken down further to include 'In Progress' items, or a notebook for 'Today' etc., as needed. I'm currently using a 'Today' notebook to plan what I intend to do each day in the morning.
  17. This argument between dating everything vs. using simple buckets to me is similar to the argument between traditional "waterfall" project management vs. "agile" project management. In the traditional approach, you plan everything in great detail ahead of time (start date, end date, who is responsible, blah blah). The Agile approach is to do just in time planning. You simply maintain a prioritized backlog of items, and then pull from the top of the backlog when there is capacity (whether scrum, kanban, or whatever specific approach). We live in an increasingly complex world where "precise thinking" about when something will need to be done in the future is next to impossible (it's the equivalent of predicting the weather on a certain day two months from now). It's drastically simpler and more effective to have a workflow such as "To Do", "Doing" and "Done" than it is to maintain a detailed plan, by date, of what will be performed on each day. All that being said, there are obviously certain things that MUST be done on a specific day...and that's why I have a calendar.
  18. I see what @kilavos point was. When tomorrow rolls around, notes in your 'soon' tag don't magically roll into your 'today' tag the way they would if you actually had reminder dates set to tomorrow and a saved search to filter for today's date. That being said, this is the very reason people organize tasks into simple buckets like 'today' or 'to do' and 'later or 'backlog', etc. They don't know precisely when they will finish each task and be able to pull a new task into the 'today or 'to do' list. If you follow Kanban or Agile methodology, you will understand why this is extremely beneficial for productivity vs. assigning precise dates to everything.
  19. There is some crazy talk going on comparing notebooks to tables in a database.... To my knowledge, based on Evernote's developer documentation, notebooks and tags would both be rows in a table. There is a Notebook table and a Tag table (as well as a 'Note' table and many others). The notebook and tag tables contain a listing of notebooks and tags, respectively. There is no difference in the database structure between a notebook and a tag based on the insight their documentation provides (it only explains the API not the internal database structure...but I would presume it matches). The only reason that a note can exist in one notebook at a time is the way Evernote created the Note data structure to contain only one reference to a notebook, while being able to reference multiple tags. There is no physical difference in the database between notebooks and tags themselves. It's purely a logical constraint created by Evernote.
  20. I keep track of all my actions in Evernote (including business stuff, workout stuff, reading, errands, etc.). The "2-Repeating" notebook gives me a bucket to drop everything that is ongoing (i.e., stuff that I can't just sit down at a coffee shop and complete on my Mac). I don't directly work from this notebook, it's always context specific stuff that I am looking at by filtering by tag. Workout workflow example: I come across random exercises I want to try online and I clip them into my "Backlog" notebook as a reminder, with a 'Workout' tag. Then, when I am ready to incorporate a particular exercise into my current routine, I simply drag it into my "Repeating" notebook. Reading example: I come across something I want to read and clip into my 'To Do' notebook as a reminder, with a 'Reading' tag. Once I have read it, I drag it into the 'Repeating' notebook to review later until the material sinks in. Afterwards, I clear the reminder. Note: I obviously could just dump all this into the "To Do" notebook... but then that notebook just becomes a giant mess of stuff that I need to do now with ongoing/repeating stuff mixed in. I could also date everything I need to do now and use my saved search to isolate that, but I really, really hate adding dates to notes and only do so when something absolutely must be done on a certain date. Also, I must point out, that this is only useful if reminders are set to group by notebook instead of by date.
  21. All tags in Evernote are, of course, "actual tags" by definition...I shouldn't write on these forums after consuming alcohol. To clarify what I meant, I view tags as simple labels. If you are creating a parent/container tag with child-tags that include the parent as a prefix, you have created a structure with redundancy. Where there is redundancy in the structure, it feels like a cabinet/folder structure to me more so than a tag/label based structure. (And yes, I know that notebooks are the actual equivalent of folders in Evernote.) Example: The following seems like a folder structure (to me): Cars Cars.Blue Cars.Green Cars.Red Cars.White Eggs Eggs.Green Eggs.White Fruit Fruit.Blue Fruit.Green Fruit.Red The following seems more like a tag/label structure (to me): Colours Blue Green Red White Objects Cars Eggs Fruit Now, while the "folder" structure has redundancy (more tags required overall), it requires less tags to be applied to each note. A note about green eggs can simply be slotted into the "Eggs.Green" tag (as if it were a folder). For this reason, I'm currently using that type of structure...but I change my mind all the time about this.
  22. Here's the reason I use notebooks to establish a workflow, and not simply one giant notebook containing everything: I'm a visual person and I would sooner use a tool like Trello to organize information if it had the power of Evernote (note editing, web clipping, desktop app, etc.). I tried implementing TSW in Evernote for months but felt more disorganized than ever. I need to see how each task/note exists in relation to others. If I just have an isolated view based on a saved search or tag, I always feel like I'm missing the big picture. With that being said, I have set up a notebook structure similar to the following (I'm constantly experimenting with different structures): .Inbox .Reference Actions 1 - To Do 2 - Repeating 3 - Waiting 4 - Backlog Trash Every single note within the 'Actions' stack is a reminder, and these notes only get dated if they are time sensitive. This way, I can also use reminders in the '.Reference' notebook as a means of pinning a note for reference at the top of a given view. If all I had was one giant notebook, I would see nothing but a long list of reminders, I wouldn't know what's a pinned note, what's something I have committed to doing ('To Do'), something that I'm doing daily/weekly ('Repeating'), or something I'm considering for the future ('Backlog'). Evernote has a beautiful way of displaying reminders in separate sections with the notebook name as the header (when 'sort by date' is off) and I leverage this to create a view similar to a Asana / Trello / whiteboard where items are divided into sections. It also gives me the ability to easily drag notes up/down to set priority. On top of this, I use tags to divide everything by area/project and a couple saved searches to see what's overdue or due this week.
  23. There are advantages and disadvantages to any tag naming convention / structure. It really comes down to whether you like to view your tags as folders / categories or actual tags. Both are valid (but adding some sort of "NB" prefix seems to add no value.) The Secret Weapon method of using tags to establish a workflow makes no sense to me though (e.g., "1-Now", "2-Soon", "6-Waiting"). Why would I establish a workflow with tags, when any given item can only exist in one state at a time and there are only a handful of states... NOTEBOOKS are perfect for this. I use notebooks in conjunction with reminders to establish a workflow, and tags to categorize information. Once a tag goes on, it doesn't change, but a note will move from notebook to notebook. If I tried to do this TSW way, I'd have to constantly add/remove tags and worry about accidentally missing a tag.
  24. I've only been using it for about five minutes. My initial feedback would be that this is the greatest update to date (since I have been using EN anyway). Being able to quickly filter by a tag on the note and actually being able to see the current selection highlighted in the left menu...these are huge improvements. The zoom and search features, of course, are great as well. Keep up the awesome work Evernote Mac team! Now that the current selection is highlighted, perhaps we could also consider being able to add notes directly into the currently selected tag/context. Also, welcome Alex. Looking forward to what you and the team come up with in the future.
  25. Yes, I want this too! This is something possible in Windows through a registry hack (or at least was back when I used Windows). On Mac, there is no way and it is the one thing that makes me contemplate using another tool. To me, it would be vastly more intuitive and efficient to simply add notes to whatever context I am viewing. It should be setting that can be toggled on or off.
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