Jump to content
ibrown

I want to change paragraph formatting to single-normal line size.

Recommended Posts

Many of my notes have paragraphs that are oddly spaced - I'm not sure if they're 1.5 or double spaced, or if the lines are always 20 point (or whatever), even if the text font is changed to 12. Anyway, how can I change those paragraphs to "normal", so they're not oddly spaced? Is there a way to do this?

It seems like Simplify Formatting should do this, but it doesn't. It'll change the font and font size, but it doesn't change the line spacing.

This typically happens with notes that I've clipped into Evernote. Often I'll want to add my own comments at the top of the note, but I'm stuck with weird formatting at that point in the file.

(Of course, this question falls into the large category of "Please give us better text formatting options" questions, but I'm hoping this specific point can be addressed.)

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post

Hi.  When you clip the visible text and graphics,  you also clip the 'hidden' codes that format that text,  and (unsurprisingly) Evernote appears not to be able to differentiate between coding that you need to show (forinstance) tables and inset pictures,  and the various options of text style and spacing that differently formatted documents employ. 

AFAIK Simplify/ Remove Formatting does a pretty good job in some cases:  but the only way to remove anything that they cannot touch would be to copy the paragraphs to a text-only editor like (Windows) Notepad and copy again from there to a new note.  As an alternative you could copy a whole document across in that way in one go,  but be prepared to copy or screenshot any specific parts of the page that Notepad can't interpret. 

When you clip such material initially,  you could clip to Notepad and then from there to Evernote.  Haven't researched it,  but it is possible that there are websites out there that will copy a page 'to plain text' so that you could literally Clip a plainer version to Evernote.

More ways around this:

  • Sometimes web pages have 'Print' options that strip out formatting and present plainer copy in standard formatting;  if choosing that gives you a visible page,  clip that page.  If it's an option that triggers the printer directly,  print to PDF.
  • or the mobile (simpler) version of the page - https://ux.stackexchange.com/questions/11304/which-type-of-url-should-i-use-for-a-mobile-website
  • use Evernote's 'simplified article' option when clipping
  • print the page to PDF to preserve formatting in isolation so you can add plain text comments - if necessary create a note with a table to hold the visible PDF content on one side and your contextual comments on the other.

For existing notes,  print the note to PDF and add that PDF to a new note with the same title.

Hope some of that helps!

Edit:  Oh - forgot;  -  if the simplified website copy is what interests you,  try read-it-later websites like Instapaper - https://www.instapaper.com/ or Pocket - https://getpocket.com/

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks - 'tis a pity there isn't just a way to see the formatting codes in the note itself, but oh well.

What I tried just now was make a new note, type "my own" text at the top, and then copy the original note over below the normally formatted text. Unfortuately that messes up bits and pieces of the metadata, but as best I can tell it's the easiest way to not have bizarre spacing at the top of the note. (My typical workflow is to clip a note, and then when I get around to reading/using it, add my own comments at the top of the note.)

Weird that. Changing font or font size is easy enough - but Evernote can really mess things up with line spacing and margins, and if the beginning of the note is in that imported format, it seems impossible to add text "before" that format kicks in. This seems to vary by version as well; I'm fairly sure notes that once displayed normally on my iOS devices now display in a narrow column, with giant margins that don't appear on my iMac, and are apparently unremovable on iOS. Or those notes with pictures that render fine on one device, but the picture covers half the text on another device. "Simplify formatting" usually just seems to change the basic font effects - bold, colour, and so on - without doing anything to the line spacing or paragraph formatting. And "Make Plain Text" is massive overkill for what I want.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
5 hours ago, ibrown said:

Thanks - 'tis a pity there isn't just a way to see the formatting codes in the note itself, but oh well.

To see the formatting you can export the note in HTML format and then open the note with an editor if you like.  Make changes and import back to EN.  YMMV as to the results.  :wacko:

Share this post


Link to post
7 hours ago, ibrown said:

'tis a pity there isn't just a way to see the formatting codes in the note itself

Since we're working on a Mac, the note has a content.enml file stored in the database folder
I use a text editor to view/edit the file

I use a script to open the folder containing this file, documented here

If you make changes, make sure you update the note with a dummy change within Evernote (like adding a space).  
This registers the updated note for upload to the server

Share this post


Link to post

I am having the same issues.  It now Sep 2019 and this was written in Dec, 2017 and I've seen similar posts in 2015/2016.  I'm curious if there's been a fix for this since this post... or is Evernote ever going to improve SIMPLE FORMATTING issues (also lose indents, too!!) on their flagship that they want people to pay money for?  Why do we have to copy and paste into a third application and then copy it here.  And if we hit return we're back into 1.5 line spacing.  I liked this product at first and was about to buy premium membership but this and not able to copy and paste indents is making pull my hair out...

Share this post


Link to post
13 hours ago, Evernote-scuks said:

is Evernote ever going to improve SIMPLE FORMATTING issues

It isn't a 'simple' issue that Evernote are taking too long to fix.  The company is pretty not-stupid,  so if they could (and wanted to) fix something - they would have done it by now.  There are multiple reasons - practical "making it work in multiple operating system", and logistical "we have 1,000 things to fix: what's next?" and philosophical "do we want to complicate the editor with extra features: if so,  which?".  Boils down to:  if you can work around any perceived limitations,  then use the software.  If you'd like to see it stay around and develop,  then pay for the stuff.  TANSTAAFL.  If you really can't wait for it to work,  look around and see if there's something that better fits your needs.

Share this post


Link to post
13 hours ago, Evernote-scuks said:

or is Evernote ever going to improve SIMPLE FORMATTING issues (also lose indents, too!!) on their flagship that they want people to pay money for?

Evernote provides a free note editor with their service

For extended features, look at word processing editors

>>was about to buy premium membership

If Evernote had a $ for ever user who was "about to buy" ....  😋

Share this post


Link to post
On 9/4/2019 at 3:56 AM, gazumped said:

It isn't a 'simple' issue that Evernote are taking too long to fix.  The company is pretty not-stupid,  so if they could (and wanted to) fix something - they would have done it by now.  There are multiple reasons - practical "making it work in multiple operating system", and logistical "we have 1,000 things to fix: what's next?" and philosophical "do we want to complicate the editor with extra features: if so,  which?".  Boils down to:  if you can work around any perceived limitations,  then use the software.  If you'd like to see it stay around and develop,  then pay for the stuff.  TANSTAAFL.  If you really can't wait for it to work,  look around and see if there's something that better fits your needs.

That said, things should not be getting worse. EN used to clip really nicely, now it's inconsistent. I've had to clip web pages multiple times in order to end up with a legible note. It was never this bad before. Any web page that did not look right would generally tend to right itself with "simplified". Not any more. EN is supposed to help keep me organized and efficient.

Worse case...I ended up with a note that ended up in a column that took up only 1/3 of the note. There was no adjusting the column size, no sizing possible, and it was unreadable because there was no way to scroll to the right. Maybe it was WAAAYYY at the bottom of this bottomless note, but I scrolled down a ways, gave up, and deleted the note. Tried cutting and pasting, still the same. I used "simplify", less pictures, but also lost some important diagrams, but still a "two-inch" column. I highlighted then tried to clip "selection", still the same. It was never this difficult. Finally ended up printing to PDF but a PDF is also not easy to edit and annotate...features that EN shines at or used to...

I'm just really disappointed in the changes.

So what IS an acceptable length of time to wait? I still keep trying to clip a PDF...

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, Colleen O said:

That said, things should not be getting worse. EN used to clip really nicely, now it's inconsistent. I've had to clip web pages multiple times in order to end up with a legible note. It was never this bad before. Any web page that did not look right would generally tend to right itself with "simplified". Not any more. EN is supposed to help keep me organized and efficient.

Worse case...I ended up with a note that ended up in a column that took up only 1/3 of the note. There was no adjusting the column size, no sizing possible, and it was unreadable because there was no way to scroll to the right. Maybe it was WAAAYYY at the bottom of this bottomless note, but I scrolled down a ways, gave up, and deleted the note. Tried cutting and pasting, still the same. I used "simplify", less pictures, but also lost some important diagrams, but still a "two-inch" column. I highlighted then tried to clip "selection", still the same. It was never this difficult. Finally ended up printing to PDF but a PDF is also not easy to edit and annotate...features that EN shines at or used to...

I'm just really disappointed in the changes.

So what IS an acceptable length of time to wait? I still keep trying to clip a PDF...

This thread,  and my comments,  deal with issues to do with paragraph style.  It's not (AFAIK) about clipping issues,  which is a whole other subject to do with the zillion new and different technologies used to make web pages. 

Evernote isn't getting worse: copying page content is getting harder.  The team is actually fighting an increasingly difficult battle to copy the content of a page into a note - which in itself uses different processes to show the page that will make it visible on (almost) any device.  I use both Evernote's features and -occasionally- external browser based apps to copy web content.  If there's a PDF involved,  Evernote already clip that directly into the database.  If not, then services like Nimbus Capture can save a page as an image which Adobe (amongst others) can convert to PDF.

As to "acceptable time to wait" - that's your decision;  if you can find a way to work with Evernote,  then you can be flexible.  If your workflow stops dead at this point,  then it may be time to look around...

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...