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machine last won the day on December 23 2018

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  1. Just wanted to say goodbye to my beloved Evernote that I have been using as a premium customer since 2011 and had around 10k notes. This was not an easy decision, and I had to do a lot of research and trial and error to find the right tools for my needs which I hope to share here with the community in case someone might find them useful with similar goals. First of all, why I moved out of Evernote? Here is a small list: I needed a document management system more then a note taking system I was uncertain as to the future of Evernote I needed metadata for my notes, for filtering, search etc I needed a better editor I wanted an app designed for taking hand written notes, using a stylus etc Before plunging head first into another tool, I did a mapping exercise of what my content was, and how I was using Evernote, and I realized that I was mainly using it as a document management system, there were some notes sure, but mainly it was documents. My use cases involved archiving Bills, bank statements, invoices, receipts, health history, family documents etc. At least 90% of my usage was documents, the rest was notes. The most important thing for me was to have a contextual and chronological order of these documents, for example when (date) a document was published/printed on. That way I could see context and timeline of events leading up-to a certain document. In Evernote, I was using the "Created" column for this purpose, which even though a work around, did the job well. Once it was clear to me that my use case mainly was document management, and then note taking, I started looking at various document management systems, both free and paid for. I tried LogicalDoc Community Edition in a docker container, it was good, but it lacked a lot of feature in the Community Edition, for example the ability to bulk update metadata on several items, and that was a deal breaker for me. It also didn't had any note taking features whatsoever, so no mobile app etc. I tried a few other tools and eventually found the best combination of tools that worked for me. Say hello to SharePoint Online (or Office 365), yep, I know what you are thinking, that's not a note taking app, nope, it's an enterprise document management system, however it is integrated with OneNote, the other Evernote competitor for notes. What that integration means is your OneNote notebook get's stored in SharePoint, and therefore is searchable from within SharePoint. Once you start uploading your documents in SharePoint and start managing your notes in OneNote, you only need to search from one place to find everything. That also means that you will now have to manage your documents and notes in seperate apps, even though they are integrated, they actualy workflow of getting content into this system, is via two different apps, SharePoint (or OneDrive) and OneNote. However, SharePoint offered a whole bunch of other possibilities that were simply not possible with Evernote, for example: Create custom metadata for documents, so for example now I could setup a "Invoices" document library (or notebook) in SharePoint, and give it columns like Invoice Date, Amount etc, this way now I can sort/filter based on those columns SharePoint indexes images (yes OCR), and so does OneNote, it all becomes part of your master index SharePoint does scored or weighted search, unlike Evernote which just displayed the most recent document on the top, SharePoint prioritizes search results a bit like google, bringing the most relevant results to the top. Tags are called Enterprise Keywords in SharePoint (same concept as Evernote, just different lingo) ScanSnap can scan directly to SharePoint Ability to create Wikis, custom web pages, custom styles Ability to take hand written notes in an app (OneNote), and it goes directly into SharePoint For my notes, I use OneNote, or Word, depending on what I am doing, end of the day it doesn't matter, what matters is it's all searchable from a single place. and a lot of other features that I have yet to fully explore I have tried OneNote before, but it didn't work for me, the reason was simply, I was trying to use it as a document management system, which it is not. Evernote provided both the features in one simple apps, but the downside of that was it never fully offered to best of either. As to the costs, I signed up for an Enterprise Licence, which is around $11 CAD a month, a tad bit more expensive then evernote, but I am getting fully office suite and unlimited storage. I still love Evernote, and I hope things improve one day and I might come back, but as of now, this is my next archive solution. I understand this solution is not for everyone, and you need a bit of technical know how to fully adopt this workflow. Feel free to ask me any questions. Thanks
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