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JMichaelTX

(Archived) MacWorld Evernote Review

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Macworld recently published a nice article about Evernote:

http://www.macworld....eek_h_cbstories

Here's the intro:

If you are familiar with Evernote (), you know that it’s an app and Web service that lets you save and organize notes, PDFs, images, and all kinds of other random bits of data. But you may not have considered how useful and versatile Evernote can be for business use. Here are some of the ways I’ve incorporated it into my workflow.

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Thanks for posting that JM!

I don't think we got to learn a lot of details about Evernote in the review, but it might be helpful for someone completely new to the world of organizational applications. Here are some of the criticisms:

1. Though it’s easy to get data into Evernote, it’s not so easy to get it back out.

Do you guys agree? I have never found this to be a problem myself. It seems like a simple matter of right-clicking on a PDF, opening it in Preview (or Adobe) and saving it wherever you want. You could also export a note as HTML and you'll have the PDF right there in a folder. I haven't tried to drag a PDF out, but I can see how that would be nice. I don't usually try and copy/paste note content out of Evernote into a word processor, so I can't comment on that.

2. You also need to consider security.

What do you think about his points? I think I agree in general, but these are true of any cloud service. I think he is wrong about encryption, though. Can't free users encrypt PDFs before they upload them?

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1. I had never exported a note before, so I just tried it out, with a note that was a simple Wikipedia page. Here's a screen shot of what happened. As you can imagine, that's not how the page looks on Wikipedia or in my Evernote account. Any idea why that happened and whether I can fix it without deleting every line break? (The rest of the page is the same, so deleting line breaks one by one is not an option).

Also, for me the exported file is .html, not a PDF. How do I get "a PDF right there in [the] folder"? I can open the HTML file in my browser and print to PDF, but that's a hassle and seemingly more work than you have to go through, GM.

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Hi. I have not looked into exporting html files saved into Evernote. I'll check and see what happens. As for PDF attachments, they ought to appear in the export forlder. My understanding from the article was that the writer wanted to drag PDFs out of Evernote onto the Desktop, but could not do that. I haven't tried to drag PDFs out, because I usually just open them in Adobe (right click, open in) and save them where I want.

I can confirm the writer's complaint about copy/paste. Specifically, I get double spacing where there is none in Evernote.

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Ah, I think I misunderstood you. Did you mean that you will have a PDF outside of Evernote if you export a note containing a PDF? If so, yes, I now see that that works easily.

Given my one test of exporting and my many attempts to copy text out of Evernote, in my experience so far I agree with him that it's near impossible to get text out of Evernote in the format that you put it into Evernote. Do you know of a way to get text—and its formatting—out the way you want?

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Hi. I understood him to be aiming for a PDF on the desktop (or somewhere out of Evernote) and I have found this to be relatively easy (open in Adobe and save as, or just export the note).

As for the formatting, I use FormatMatch to get PlainText out when I remember to Activate it. I don't want to conflate issues here (this is a Mac discussion), but the copy/paste in Mac and iOS is so very, very frustrating at times, even for simple text. It is in sorry shape in iOS for 4.1.9, and I have had to shift a lot of my work to other programs for the time being, because of it. Very sad. But, I have to wonder if the problems (random extra lines on the Mac and massive blocks of unselected text in iOS) share some kind of underlying cause. I wonder what is going on in the background to cause all of these headaches. It looks like the code is just HTML, so it ought to be no problem, but the results are unpredictable...I really hope the formatting bugs can be ironed out!

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Yeah. Can anyone else confirm that what happened to my exported note (above) also happens to them? Or did something just got wrong for me? Is there a way to reliably exports notes as they appear in Evernote?

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Most of my notes exported just fine to HTML. A couple of more complex HTML layouts were a little displaced - for example a clipped page with a sidebar on the right hand side was moved to below the article instead. I think this sort of thing is an issue with Evernote attempting to capture a complex HTML layout and all the CSS files that go along with it.

If you look at a sample of the HTML exported by Evernote you can see that it is a massive nest of HTML elements and no CSS definitions. Instead, every single HTML element has a complete set of properties for margins, padding, borders, colours, background images, font and so on. My guess is that when you clip a note into Evernote it captures the raw HTML DOM elements and stores each one with it's DOM properties. That means every element is self contained and does not rely on any CSS or JS to make it work, but it does mean that the resulting HTML is bloated and inelegant.

You'd think that would mean that the exported HTML should display correctly in the same browser that it was captured with, but perhaps something is lost in the capture process. Maybe some things are altered to make them display better in the Evernote desktop client but cause them to not look as good on export.

But most of the clipped HTML exported without noticeable display problems. HTML generated by notes written directly in the Evernote client are clean, and attached files including PDFs are downloaded fine too.

Now if only there was a way to mass export Searchable PDFs (which are the OCR text versions created if you upload a PDF of scanned pages). Exports grouped into folders by notebook would be useful too.

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1. I had never exported a note before, so I just tried it out, with a note that was a simple Wikipedia page. Here's a screen shot of what happened. As you can imagine, that's not how the page looks on Wikipedia or in my Evernote account. Any idea why that happened and whether I can fix it without deleting every line break? (The rest of the page is the same, so deleting line breaks one by one is not an option).

I would not consider the page to be a "simple" webpage.

http://en.wikipedia....nday_Compromise

I used Evernote Firefox web clipper (Clip Article - not Full Page)

Then I exported the Note using the "Export as a single HTML web page (.html) - not perfect, but pretty good.

I also tried printing to a PDF - more accurate, but not 100 perfect.

post-53124-0-22697700-1338288683_thumb.p

post-53124-0-56989600-1338288694_thumb.p

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