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SahilC

higher ed How do you Computer Science majors take notes with Evernote?

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Hey guys! I'm new to Evernote.

 

I picked it up mainly because I heard it's great for taking notes in college. I'll be a freshman in a couple of months!

 

I'm gonna be majoring in Computer Science. Is there anyone out there who can share some tips about taking notes on CS classes?

 

 

 

Thanks in advance! :)

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I am not a CS person so some of what I say may not pertain to you.

 

First, consider how you want to take notes. Even as a high tech person, you should give some thought to taking your notes by hand because doing so causes greater success in your most important low tech asset, your brain: http://m.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/05/to-remember-a-lecture-better-take-notes-by-hand/361478/

 

However, you could consider a high tech way to use this low tech method. There are now several including Samsung Note Tablets and phones which have a pen that converts your hand writing to text: https://www.samsung.com/us/mobile/galaxy-note/, Live scribe pens which write on paper but then send your notes into your computer and Evernote:  http://store.livescribe.com/?gclid=CJTirKq1tr4CFc1QOgodhlsA9Q.

 

You can also utilize Evernote's handwriting option and your own finger or an add on stylus. Consider the Jot Script stylus: https://www.evernote.com/market/feature/stylus?sku=STYL001001&gclid=CMyX3cq1tr4CFQNqOgodE04AEQ

 

Or you can take your notes the old fashioned way in a notebook and later scan or use your phone to copy them in. Use the digital page camera in Evernote if you use your phone. Use the Evernote scanner: https://www.evernote.com/market/feature/scanner?sku=SCAN00101 to scan in ordinary paper. Or buy the moleskin notesbooks from Evernote for even more power when you use the page scanner on your phone: https://www.evernote.com/market/feature/moleskine-family

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I have two Livescribe pens that I use for important meetings. If I were taking classes, I would definitately use them. IME. sometimes, when something is very important, low tech (pen & paper) is the most reliable method. Plus, I like being able to listen to the audio.

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Hey, are you a Mac or PC user?

 

I have used a bunch of Coding Suites in my time, but being a Mac (at work) user I tend to do all of my Coding with Coda2 from Panic. That being said, Evernote is one of the most important additions to my coding life because of this one simple plugin: http://ngs.github.io/evernote-codaplugin/

 

Basically I can clip code directly into Evernote. I just wish that there were other programs what would work for the PC or for other coding suites...

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Thank you to everyone for your helpful suggestions!

 

 

Hey, are you a Mac or PC user?

 

I have used a bunch of Coding Suites in my time, but being a Mac (at work) user I tend to do all of my Coding with Coda2 from Panic. That being said, Evernote is one of the most important additions to my coding life because of this one simple plugin: http://ngs.github.io/evernote-codaplugin/

 

Basically I can clip code directly into Evernote. I just wish that there were other programs what would work for the PC or for other coding suites...

 

Thanks! What exactly does Coda do, though? Is there an alternative?

 

So I'm still not in college yet, and I'm really not sure what kind of notes I'll be taking (or how to take those notes). I'm wondering if evernote would even help in this regard?

 

I know I can probably figure it out in college, but I'm free now anyways, so why not be prepared? ;)

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One of the big drawbacks (in my humble opinion) of using Evernote in Computer Science is the inability to easily save programming code. That is a round about way of saying that Coda 2 is a coding software package from Panic Software. It will export - with the plugin I mentioned - most of the Web programming languages directly into Evernote notebooks, and it is the only nice way to do it. 

 

There have been other teams that have tried at getting programming languages to display correctly in Evernote (like evercode for example) but they have had little success. I would second what was said earlier, get a livescribe pen, or use penultimate, or get an Evernote notebook to record the majority of your notes. As a CS major, you will have a lot of Math and Programming that you will have to learn - two areas where Evernote is weaker for documentation.

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From a Community College Faculty perspective:

 

Only from what I have observed, I do not teach CS:  Typically, most CS classes involve using Computer Labs, where the student works on a computer as the instructor teaches. This will leave very little time/space for an additional note taking device (computer).  

 

I would spend a moment with your instructor in college (before class) asking their preference for note taking.  Each has their own teaching method, which can have a direct impact on how you can best take notes.  However, you may find time to switch screens to copy/paste code to an editor other than the platform you will be learning on, depending on the Network Design of the lab computers.  Some do not allow for switching screens without "exiting" the program, which will get you behind in a hurry. (My experience as a one time CS student)

 

As BNF mentioned, you will most likely have room for the pencil & paper.  That has the multitude of advantages Candid referenced with his link.  Storing/studying those notes in Evernote is a great idea!  I highly recommend taking handwritten notes as often a practical.

 

When studying outside of class, the language you are studying will likely dictate the software you will want to work with to save/archive your study material and your creations.  That in itself will help you determine if Evernote will be suitable for your note taking about a particular programming language.  In the limited experience I have with writing code, xhtml, I tend to keep those code snippets saved in their respective programming platforms, for displaying purposes as vfitzjarrald mentioned.

 

As a teacher, parent (&grandparent) and growing user of Evernote, I believe you could use Evernote for the following:

  • Photograph or Scan your handwritten notes into Evernote, to later study on any device you wish/own.
  • Directly type notes & reports into Evernote, web clip from the web for study material, copy/paste some code snippets to study/store for future use
  • Store Audio Notes from college classes, discussions with teachers (another great suggestion from BNF)
  • Journaling, personal as well as college related activities
  • Archiving all of your works for future reference.  You may want to write a Thesis one day. (if only I had EN when I was young)
  • Share/compare your material with other students and faculty (Parents too!)

Keep in mind, your college courses will not be limited to math & computer classes.  Evernote can be very helpful in all other courses you may be studying.  

 

I am currently in the process of helping my third college age child utilize EN for her Forensic/Psychology major.  She is finding it extremely helpful in all the ways I have mentioned above and more.  She is a bit more computer savvy than I, so I expect she will be teaching me soon.

 

Good luck and keep this Forum in mind as you progress through college.  The users here are exceptionally talented people as you have already gathered from the posts above and can provide help when/if you run into issues with Evernote.

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Thanks so much for the suggestions!

 

About the code part - I'm still pretty confused.

 

I think I'll just have to start using it to get the hang of it!

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Hey there, 

 

I'm graduating from college this fall after using Evernote for the last 4 years. I am a Computer Science major. All of the above are nice suggestions but truly you need to find your own style to take notes. 

 

I have recently just got Evernote Premium and wish I had done it early as it allows you to search the text from images and would have been extremely helpful in my math classes (you have to take Calculus III plus some depending on your University). I am actually in the process of taking all my handwritten notes from the math classes and taking photos to add them as I love Calculus and wish to know it for years to come. 

 

As for my CS classes, I take all my notes in Evernote and took photos of the homework, quizzes and exams of the paper to keep them for records. Note I only did this because this was because some teachers require it this way. For notes, it's just like using Word or Google Docs. As for equations or code snippets from books, I actually just take a screen shot (or a picture from a book) and copy it into my notebook. 

 

You can even link files or add attachments to Evernote's notes. The nice thing is you can add tags so that if Evernote can't search your code then you can still find what you are looking for. You can then mix and match the information from different sources as I use Evernote Clipper for Safari (available for all major browsers) and then I copy the URL into the note as well just in case. The cool thing is that you can mark up the web article you clip. 

 

I am waiting for the new iPad to come out and will use that to take notes on with the Adonit Jot Script. I have a couple different note taking application for the iPad I've tried over the years but really want to try the Adonit Jot Script. 

 

If this seems expensive or not what you want, then I HIGHLY recommend getting a (mini) whiteboard. The reason is this, it will help you design the layouts of your applications (in your later years). Not only this but it is great for doing your math homework on and taking photos on it to move to Evernote, this saves on paper. I also use the whiteboard to do pseudocode which some of your professors require you to do for class (I highly recommend it for any project though). Again, you can take photos of it and make a digital, searchable image in Evernote (using the Premium). I wish I had done this earlier as it has made doing all my projects easier. 

 

Lastly, always take a Post-It pad with you every where with a pen or pencil. Again, you can digitalize it with Evernote by taking a photo of it. The reason I suggest this is because if you code often and you have a problem you can't figure it out after working on it for hours, sometimes the answer will smack you in the face. Having this Post-It pad around will be extremely helpful and fits in the back pocket of jeans. 

 

A nice alternative to Coda (I use Coda and if you have Mac, I recommended it), you should look into Sublime. It is free to use but you have to be asked every so often if you want to upgrade. 

 

I love Evernote. Please feel free to ask me any questions. 

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