# ALTERNATIVES TO EN DISCUSSION

## Recommended Posts

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Thanks for this report! Have you had any sync issues at all with ON? Also, I think you have posted before about your sync problems with Evernote, but could you put a link to those posts? This would help other users and Evernote developers to better understand what is happening.

Hi there,

I think the only time I've mentioned the sync problem with EN is here - https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/73373-i-see-in-the-news-today-nov-4-2014-evernote-premium-price-may-change/page-4#entry351329

I could recover my lost work in the history of the note if I originally composed in the web version.  If I composed in the desktop version, the losses were not recoverable.  Some of the broken notes would end up in conflicting changes, but the lost data wasn't there.   The troubleshooting process was primarily a matter of working on the web version vs desktop, reinstalling desktop version, and sending logs and app/browser versions over to EN support.  They did what they could but it wasn't solved.  It may work fine now, but I don't compose in EN anymore, so I don't know.

I had one sync problem with ON from one device.  I forget the details but I was able to solve it by following the steps in a KB article.  I didn't need to get support involved.

One advantage EN has over ON in my use case is that there are more integration options with IFTTT and Zapier.  Making backups of my blog posts, youtube watch later videos, etc., just seems to work better with EN.

I find it endlessly fascinating that people can have such different experiences with the exact same software. It really makes it tricky to find the ideal solution, because one person's sync horror story could scare another away to a product that they might in turn have a sync horror story, which they might have avoided going with the original software presented. It makes my brain hurt!

I want to love OneNote sooo badly, but I've struggled with its slow sync, lack of feature support across platforms, and other glitches. For example, if you rename a Notebook in the Windows app, sometimes it does not rename it in OneDrive. I also am asked to sign in every time I open the Windows app if I want it to sync. Tags do not work on any platform except Windows. The web clipper deserves its own horror flick. Which SUCKS, because OneNote has SO much going for it and its note editor is by far the best in the game. I would marry the Windows software if I could! But my personal computer is a Mac and OneNote is very blah. As long as I have very little inside it and don't need multiple sorting/viewing options, it can work. I currently use it to brainstorm and plan design freelance projects. It's ideal for creating moodboards and other visual canvases. Outside of that... I'm struggling.

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....

Thanks for this report! Have you had any sync issues at all with ON? Also, I think you have posted before about your sync problems with Evernote, but could you put a link to those posts? This would help other users and Evernote developers to better understand what is happening.

Hi there,

I think the only time I've mentioned the sync problem with EN is here - https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/73373-i-see-in-the-news-today-nov-4-2014-evernote-premium-price-may-change/page-4#entry351329

I could recover my lost work in the history of the note if I originally composed in the web version.  If I composed in the desktop version, the losses were not recoverable.  Some of the broken notes would end up in conflicting changes, but the lost data wasn't there.   The troubleshooting process was primarily a matter of working on the web version vs desktop, reinstalling desktop version, and sending logs and app/browser versions over to EN support.  They did what they could but it wasn't solved.  It may work fine now, but I don't compose in EN anymore, so I don't know.

I had one sync problem with ON from one device.  I forget the details but I was able to solve it by following the steps in a KB article.  I didn't need to get support involved.

One advantage EN has over ON in my use case is that there are more integration options with IFTTT and Zapier.  Making backups of my blog posts, youtube watch later videos, etc., just seems to work better with EN.

I find it endlessly fascinating that people can have such different experiences with the exact same software. It really makes it tricky to find the ideal solution, because one person's sync horror story could scare another away to a product that they might in turn have a sync horror story, which they might have avoided going with the original software presented. It makes my brain hurt!

Same here.  I've had tag sync issues across time but no general sync disasters such as have appeared in the forum.  It would be interesting to know what combination of EN software, other software on a machine, settings, communications and network, general experience level, and whatever else causes some to have such issues.  Just good to be on the green grass side of the fence on this one.

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I personally would appreciate that the bickering and contention stop from this point forward.

There are enough evil and destructive forces operating on this Earth right now... for which accountability is inevitable.

The PURPOSE of this thread is: POWER USER DISCONTENT - Best Alternatives to EN ?

Please be good examples... stay on-topic... exercise applied intelligence... courtesy... and mutual respect.

~ Alan

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I find it endlessly fascinating that people can have such different experiences with the exact same software. It really makes it tricky to find the ideal solution, because one person's sync horror story could scare another away to a product that they might in turn have a sync horror story, which they might have avoided going with the original software presented. It makes my brain hurt!

I want to love OneNote sooo badly, but I've struggled with its slow sync, lack of feature support across platforms, and other glitches. For example, if you rename a Notebook in the Windows app, sometimes it does not rename it in OneDrive. I also am asked to sign in every time I open the Windows app if I want it to sync. Tags do not work on any platform except Windows. The web clipper deserves its own horror flick. Which SUCKS, because OneNote has SO much going for it and its note editor is by far the best in the game. I would marry the Windows software if I could! But my personal computer is a Mac and OneNote is very blah. As long as I have very little inside it and don't need multiple sorting/viewing options, it can work. I currently use it to brainstorm and plan design freelance projects. It's ideal for creating moodboards and other visual canvases. Outside of that... I'm struggling.

Hi, yes I suppose the user experience will depend on the use case.  I would have (likely) have never perceived a need to try ON if not for the sync disaster.  Once I lost confidence in EN as a daily workspace, I felt forced to find something new.  Once I had done that, ON won me over with a number of things, including the Microsoft ecosystem.  However, I do not rely heavily on Mac for anything, and I've been told by others at work that they do not like using it on Mac.  I do use the ON web version on my iMac and it works fine for me, but I use my PCs and desktop versions of ON more often than that.  I've never had any sync issues except for the one I mentioned before.  I do find that creating new notebooks in ON takes longer to sync than in EN, but it still works fine for me.

I would love to use EN exclusively, assuming the sync problems were fixed.  But I am not confident that the sync problems are and/or will stay fixed.  The biggest reason for that is that they were never able to solve the problem when I was using EN, and support just faded away on it.  Regardless, there are things that ON can do better than EN, and these things are tied directly to my work.

Has anyone considered whether it makes sense to keep both systems and occasionally sync them, so that each one acts like a backup to the other?  It is possible to migrate notes from one system to the other, or to duplicate content using an integration through IFTTT or Zapier.  I've never given it much thought before, but I suppose it would be one way that you could enjoy the benefits of both while also creating some redundancy in your archives.  It might be worth doing, if you really depend on one of these apps.

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@Christine: I use EN & 1N in parallel because in many ways they are complementary to each other. For example: tables in EN are pretty useless, whereas in 1N they are excellent. So if I don't want to use Excel to create a table I use 1N. That table can then either stay in 1N or be imported into EN, depending on the use.

OTOH tagging is far superior in EN than in 1N, so if I need a note to be tagged I will create it in EN. These are just 2 examples but there are many more situations like that.

The point that people need to bear in mind is that neither are perfect, in fact a perfect note-taking app does not exist in my modest opinion. Therefore it is pointless trying to make EN or 1N (or any other app for matter) do something it was not designed for in the 1st place. Many people go down that road & then get frustrated when it does not work out, blaming the app for its shortcomings. I just try to enjoy the best of both worlds, accepting that neither one nor the other will deliver all, but that between them they go a long way towards helping me achieve most, if not all, I need for my use case.

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@Christine: I use EN & 1N in parallel because in many ways they are complementary to each other. For example: tables in EN are pretty useless, whereas in 1N they are excellent. So if I don't want to use Excel to create a table I use 1N. That table can then either stay in 1N or be imported into EN, depending on the use.

OTOH tagging is far superior in EN than in 1N, so if I need a note to be tagged I will create it in EN. These are just 2 examples but there are many more situations like that.

The point that people need to bear in mind is that neither are perfect, in fact a perfect note-taking app does not exist in my modest opinion. Therefore it is pointless trying to make EN or 1N (or any other app for matter) do something it was not designed for in the 1st place. Many people go down that road & then get frustrated when it does not work out, blaming the app for its shortcomings. I just try to enjoy the best of both worlds, accepting that neither one nor the other will deliver all, but that between them they go a long way towards helping me achieve most, if not all, I need for my use case.

Sorry @dutchpete but that is way too much common sense & zen for my tastes.

Do you also duplicate notes between the two apps as a matter of redundancy?

@Christine: no I do not duplicate between the 2 apps, a note resides in either 1 or the other. My redundancy consists of back-ups.

I don't understand your remark about my comment being way too much common sense & zen for my tastes.

I answered honestly the way I use them, I cannot put a more "intellectual" or "esoteric" spin on it. Sorry.

Me thinks she was pulling your leg @dutch and giving you a compliment.  I hope anyway.

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Perhaps JMichael had a point about language - LOL. And maybe Christine was hoping for something more intricate or even useful to her, perhaps she found my use too simple, down to earth. But maybe she will explain that personally

Me thinks she was pulling your leg @dutch and giving you a compliment.  I hope anyway.

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Perhaps JMichael had a point about language - LOL. And maybe Christine was hoping for something more intricate or even useful to her, perhaps she found my use too simple, down to earth. But maybe she will explain that personally

Probably so.  My table solution is less intricate than yours.  I use EN for simple tables and everything else is in Excel as an attachment to a note.  And I am willing for a low level of workaround aggravation to stay in one application.  Also, probably too lazy to learn another.

My table solution is less intricate than yours.  I use EN for simple tables and everything else is in Excel as an attachment to a note.  And I am willing for a low level of workaround aggravation to stay in one application.  Also, probably too lazy to learn another.

Cal:

That's sure a novel approach using Excel as described.

Would appreciate a clear example... would you mind conjuring up a little case study which we can all see?

~ Alan

Perhaps JMichael had a point about language - LOL. And maybe Christine was hoping for something more intricate or even useful to her, perhaps she found my use too simple, down to earth. But maybe she will explain that personally

Me thinks she was pulling your leg @dutch and giving you a compliment.  I hope anyway.

Haha just teasing you Dutch.    And loving your answer on accepting the limitations as they are.

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My table solution is less intricate than yours.  I use EN for simple tables and everything else is in Excel as an attachment to a note.  And I am willing for a low level of workaround aggravation to stay in one application.  Also, probably too lazy to learn another.

Cal:

That's sure a novel approach using Excel as described.

Would appreciate a clear example... would you mind conjuring up a little case study which we can all see?

~ Alan

Pretty simple Alan.

I use EN tables for templates, like a phone call log, or to organize non computational information.  For example I was an executor on an estate so a table of all the particulars of the interested parties was easy to set up and use.  Anything that is data intense that I want to be able to get at on multiple platforms I put in Excel and then put that worksheet in a note.  Then I can access it from any platform, though view only my phone/tablet.

I don't expect EN to have the ultimate in table management options.  They could definitely improve the editing and formatting capabilities of tables, but so far it works okay for my needs.  We haven't hit the workaround pain threshold as yet.

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Hmmn...  interesting -

Microsoft Office Lens Scans Notes and Documents into Office Format

By Eric Ravenscraft on  04 Apr 2015 at  8:00PM

Document and note scanning is nothing new. However, Microsoft has decided to enter the game with an advantage only it can offer: excellent Office integration.

(The video didn;t make it...)

Office Lens, as the new app is called, can scan documents “from any angle” (though you should still probably aim for a head-on image) and automatically fix its perspective, crop it, and clean it up. It can also do other typical OCR tricks like pulling contact info off a business card.

Office Lens can export your notes in a variety of formats including JPEG, PDF, and Office filetypes like Word or Powerpoint. The latter comes with some extra tricks. For example, if you save a note in Powerpoint format, the app will make hand-drawn images and text into objects you can arrange separately. All scans can also be exported directly to OneNote or OneDrive.

http://www.lifehacker.co.uk/2015/04/04/microsoft-office-lens-scans-notes-documents-office-format

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Pretty simple Alan.

I use EN tables for templates, like a phone call log, or to organize non computational information.  For example I was an executor on an estate so a table of all the particulars of the interested parties was easy to set up and use.  Anything that is data intense that I want to be able to get at on multiple platforms I put in Excel and then put that worksheet in a note.  Then I can access it from any platform, though view only my phone/tablet.

I don't expect EN to have the ultimate in table management options.  They could definitely improve the editing and formatting capabilities of tables, but so far it works okay for my needs.  We haven't hit the workaround pain threshold as yet.

Cal:

Do I understand correctly?

• Simple tables - you create using EN tables.
• More complex data - you use an Excel spreadsheet which you upload into EN.

Thank you,

~ Alan

You got it Alan.  I'm just using Excel as Excel, if you will forgive the phrasing, and EN as the central storage location to enable access from multiple platforms.  Some might use Dropbox I suppose.

I also get the benefits of historical backups and having the contents of the model being searchable.  I have about 300 notes with spreadsheets in them, so not many.  FWIW.

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@Alan: there is nothing new about using Excel & EN, and you do not need to "upload" an Excel file. You can just attach an Excel file to an EN note, like you do with a PDF, JPEG, whatever. That is the beauty & ease of EN in terms of attaching files. BTW, all attachments are stored within EN itself, so you do not need to keep them as a separate copy on your hard drive. When you click to open an attachment from within a note, it is actually opened from within EN. When you subsequently amend & save it, you can close it safely. Next time you open the attachment again from within that note you'll see the amendments are there.

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Hmmn - just for general information I tried MS Office Lens (MSOL) and was impressed that a white outline immediately appeared around the document I was about to photograph,  then less impressed that it then jumped to appear around the mat that the document sat on,  then switched rapdily between the two..  and the resolution on the document when I held it still long enough to take the shot was pretty bad too...  the Android version of this is a beta,  but I think they have a ways to go....

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Cal & Pete:

Appreciate.

I did mis-speak in using the term "upload" ... having really meant "drag" or "attach" a file within an EN note... however my understanding was increased in the process... so thank you!

~ Alan

Request ADVICE - Using Excel with EN

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@Frank:

Thanks for the DropBox Composer update.  It is still very early, so who knows (outside of DropBox) what the feature set will be, but here's what one former HackPad user who had access to the  Composer Beta had to say:

http://techcrunch.com/2015/04/03/dropbox-is-testing-an-online-note-taking-service-with-project-composer/#.yyw8fn:rFjN

However, one Product Hunt user, Maggie Bignell of Pocket, who also previously used HackPad prior to its acquisition, was able to log in to Composer.

She says the site offers a clean note-taking experience, much like Evernote on the web, and allows for collaborative note-taking. Composer users can add tasks, Dropbox files, and tables all in line with their notes, Bignell explains, having now tried the product herself.

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It is still very early, so who knows (outside of DropBox) what the feature set will be...

Agreed... just a quick bit of speculation... do you think Composer will be fully baked into Dropbox itself, allowing one to pop their notes into a nested hierarchy of folders... or do you think it will just integrate with Dropbox simply to allow for the attachment of files in a flatter stack-notebook system? Are we looking at a nested folder/ notebook dynamic that many have asked of Evernote here?

@Frank:  I'd guess both:

1. Composer Note can contain/link to multiple files in DropBox
2. Composer Notes can be put in any folder/sub-folder in DropBox

So DropBox folders would work like EN Notebooks, except that they can have sub-folders, as they do now.

I would not expect Composer Notes to support sub-Notes.

But, this is just a big WAS, maybe not even that good.

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There has been some exciting news recently released. After a few more months of testing, I can see this "package" giving Evernote a serious run for the marketplace's attention. I will continue to use Evernote for web captures. I believe these programs give a good alternative and avoid the unsolved scalability problem created by cramming too much data into a single program.

• Microsoft Office Lens a mobile document scanner app that works with OneNote, for iOS and Android smartphones. Users can snap photos of receipts, business cards, paper documents, menus, whiteboards, sticky notes and more. (I currently use CamScanner but expect to switch in the future)

• OneNote as my 2nd Brain for storage

• Flickr for unlimited photo storage (1,000GB of free storage)

• WorkFlowy for outlines to organize my lists

• LibreOffice Office Suite for creating Word documents and Spreadsheets

• OneDrive and DropBox for additional storage

• Veracrypt (Truecrypt's replacement) for security

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@jbenson2: do you know what the maximum note limit is on 1N? does it have equally powerful search operators as EN?

Office suite: I find the office suite by WPS more pleasant to use than LibreOffice. It is not open source but feels a lot more familiar to MS Office than LO does. And the WPS Spreadsheets (as it is called) app has 1 big advantage of both MS & LO: tabs.

I installed VeraCrypt on my PC a while ago & am very happy with it. For my use case it replaces the need for encryption in e.g. EN.

Great minds think alike. A mirror of what I use, except that Evernote has not driven (walked) me to the point where I need to try OneNote... And I have nothing I feel I need to encrypt just yet.

An interesting piece of the article on VeraCrypt that made me chuckle (referring to the TrueCrypt developers):

"But when you look at the code, you get the idea that these people must have been in their 40s back in 1995. So now they are in their 60s, and they are probably tired or retired."

Interesting piece of self-serving information, I thought.

@jbenson2: do you know what the maximum note limit is on 1N? does it have equally powerful search operators as EN?

Office suite: I find the office suite by WPS more pleasant to use than LibreOffice. It is not open source but feels a lot more familiar to MS Office than LO does. And the WPS Spreadsheets (as it is called) app has 1 big advantage of both MS & LO: tabs.

I installed VeraCrypt on my PC a while ago & am very happy with it. For my use case it replaces the need for encryption in e.g. EN.

i think it might be unlimited for notes (depending, of course, on available storage), but note sizes might be limited to just a few gigabytes for syncing. i could be wrong. i don't use onenote.

I notice there has been no discussion here for a while - is this resolved? Anyway, I have a solution, well one that works for me. On another note. .. The implementation of this Forum sucks. Is it designed this way to make the subject (EN) look better than it is or does it demonstrate the inherent limitations of the people behind it?

DevonThink Pro now available for 50% off ($40) at MacUpdate.com DevonThink is a very good alternative to Evernote for Mac and iOS users. There is currently no Windows version, although it can be published for viewing by Windows users and other users who don't have it installed. It has been mentioned here and in other threads numerous times. I haven't used it much yet -- just bought it. At$40 it's a one-time payment for less than a one-year subscription to Evernote Premium.  It is also available as a free trial.

There are several versions available, a good demo/video, and information available at their web site.

DEVONthink Pro

Document management reinvented

DEVONthink Pro is your trusted supplementary brain. It's the one store for all your documents that also helps you keep them organized and presents you with the just right data you need for your work.

• Keep your important data organized
• Research, write, create using power tools
• Capture interesting data without interrupting your work
• Integrate and automate your workflow

There seem to be quite a few close alternatives to Evernote on MAC, but not many on Windows, i guess... atleast not at the moment. The closest i see is 1N, but it hasn't appealed me enough to move ship, yet..

I notice there has been no discussion here for a while - is this resolved? Anyway, I have a solution, well one that works for me. On another note. .. The implementation of this Forum sucks. Is it designed this way to make the subject (EN) look better than it is or does it demonstrate the inherent limitations of the people behind it?

Are you holding out on us? Please do share!

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The Evernote forum seems nice to me. I'd be interested in hearing what exactly is wrong with it.

DEVONthink is pretty amazing. I've written about it a little on my blog.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=2237

Is it an Evernote replacement? Maybe. But, only if you work exclusively on Macs and mobile isn't all that important for you. The mobile app is adequate (for my needs), and a new version is on the way (no delivery date yet), but I think it is fair to say that Evernote dominates the multi-platform, mobile space right now. DT does not exist on Windows and is extremely unlikely to ever make its way there.

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@GrumpyMonkey:

Thanks for your post and your article on DT Getting Started.  I have only scanned your article so far, but it looks very helpful.

I have Evernoted (isn't that ironic) it for further study.

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Hope you can participate.

For some reason, I couldn't get the link to open. This is the first time someone has suggested linkedin as an alternative to evernote, though. I've never thought of it as more than a social network, and a so-so one at that. It's difficult to imagine as a notetaking app, but if it works for you, that's great!

Hope you can participate.

I think you will have better participation here.  Perhaps you may want to start a new thread in the Evernote Third Party section about your app.  You could then post a link to it here.

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Hope you can participate.

For some reason, I couldn't get the link to open. This is the first time someone has suggested linkedin as an alternative to evernote, though. I've never thought of it as more than a social network, and a so-so one at that. It's difficult to imagine as a notetaking app, but if it works for you, that's great!

Not sure what is so great about linkedin that you'd rather have the discussion here than there.

The Evernote forum seems nice to me. I'd be interested in hearing what exactly is wrong with it.

DEVONthink is pretty amazing. I've written about it a little on my blog.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=2237

GM, your DEVONthink Getting Starting is an excellent article.  I highly recommend it to anyone who is even considering DT.

Many thanks for posting this.

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The Evernote forum seems nice to me. I'd be interested in hearing what exactly is wrong with it.

DEVONthink is pretty amazing. I've written about it a little on my blog.

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=2237

Is it an Evernote replacement? Maybe. But, only if you work exclusively on Macs and mobile isn't all that important for you. The mobile app is adequate (for my needs), and a new version is on the way (no delivery date yet), but I think it is fair to say that Evernote dominates the multi-platform, mobile space right now. DT does not exist on Windows and is extremely unlikely to ever make its way there.

Echoing JM, your DT post is great, and definitely helped me get started with DEVONThink.

In my opinion, DEVONThink is not an outright one-to-one replacement for Evernote in a broad sense. Ultimately it depends on what a user was using Evernote for in the first place. It hasn't "replaced" Evernote for me. There came a point where I was no longer able to continue storing work-related  content in Evernote. Because of that DEVONThink has taken over that role and does it many, many times better than Evernote ever did. Even if I could still use Evernote for work, I'd probably choose not to because of how much better DEVONThink works for me in this context.

However, when it comes to a lot of household management things, my partner and I still use Evernote because of how straightforward capturing and sharing is. This is where Evernote truly shines in my day-to-day, and why it remains indispensable. So, while I now spend about 75% of my time (100% of my work time) in DEVONThink, the 25% of my time spent in Evernote dealing with household stuff and cooking and whatnot, is a long way away from being replaced by DEVONThink or anything else.

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DEVONthink (DT) and Evernote (EN) -- new thread

Hey guys, I have started a new thread so we can continue our in-depth discussion about using DT and EN together.

Thanks.

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Hope you can participate.

For some reason, I couldn't get the link to open. This is the first time someone has suggested linkedin as an alternative to evernote, though. I've never thought of it as more than a social network, and a so-so one at that. It's difficult to imagine as a notetaking app, but if it works for you, that's great!

Not sure what is so great about linkedin that you'd rather have the discussion here than there.

Yeah. I see it now. Some low opinions of our discussion there. I'm not sure why. It seems like it has been relatively productive and has covered several products, some of which rarely even get a look.

Apologies if you can't open the link I posted - here is my project:

First: the real reason why I don’t want to use Evernote any more – aside from productivity issues and let’s face it nothing can be all things to all men (and women) so that was never an issue for me, is that I don’t want to put all of my precious notes into a system which I can never leave. There is no adequate system for converting out of EN. So that’s it as far as I am concerned and, in fact, it was this thread on the Forum which got me thinking about all of this and I was surprised to find such vehement detractors of EN here.

I have developed an ‘application’ using a CMS install (WordPress) and their Android WP application. This isn’t going to suit everyone for obvious reasons but it also introduces some very nice features which I wish EN employed eg Random notes (those ones you saved eons ago and might wonder why and a good way of maintaining a DB which has accumulated a lot of fluff?), most popular notes (handy auto-shortcuts), infinite widgets, indexing etc. The ingenuity of presentation/capture/filing is only limited by the plugins available (how many are there now?). In any case I prefer to use dedicated cameras/recording devices/reminders (Google) etc and either leave them where they are zapped or ‘share’ them up to the site. I was potentially going to make a Zip file of a design with some plugins etc which people might test – but I’m still shuffling stuff around.

A cost-effective solution would be to combine a WP install using DigitalOcean’s Droplet (https://www.digitalocean.com/?refcode=98753a8ae9d4 – please use my referral). The advantages:

* As more people use this more solutions will become available (and fast)
* The solution is infinitely extensible
* Cost-effective
* Portable and exportable !!
* designed the way you want – for example, my home page is a list of my tasks
* functionality you need
* OpenSource
* Support (one of the big issues on the Forum)
* Secure
* Easy backups

Currently I can do everything I was using EN for with these added advantages and also knowing that I am in control of its trajectory. It’s just a slow process copying it all over…

Just a couple of things. Wordpress is hugely insecure so good luck with that. Why will support be any better than Evernote?

I am not here to defend WP just offer up an idea. But with 75+million websites worldwide I think you are carping. There are ways to beef up security. It isn't less secure than other internet options where security is pretty much in the hands of the developer.

It wasn't me that found fault with EN's support but others on this Forum. Support is available for WP and its plugins on all sorts of BBSs etc etc.

Apologies if you can't open the link I posted - here is my project:

First: the real reason why I don’t want to use Evernote any more – aside from productivity issues and let’s face it nothing can be all things to all men (and women) so that was never an issue for me, is that I don’t want to put all of my precious notes into a system which I can never leave. There is no adequate system for converting out of EN. So that’s it as far as I am concerned and, in fact, it was this thread on the Forum which got me thinking about all of this and I was surprised to find such vehement detractors of EN here.

I have developed an ‘application’ using a CMS install (WordPress) and their Android WP application. This isn’t going to suit everyone for obvious reasons but it also introduces some very nice features which I wish EN employed eg Random notes (those ones you saved eons ago and might wonder why and a good way of maintaining a DB which has accumulated a lot of fluff?), most popular notes (handy auto-shortcuts), infinite widgets, indexing etc. The ingenuity of presentation/capture/filing is only limited by the plugins available (how many are there now?). In any case I prefer to use dedicated cameras/recording devices/reminders (Google) etc and either leave them where they are zapped or ‘share’ them up to the site. I was potentially going to make a Zip file of a design with some plugins etc which people might test – but I’m still shuffling stuff around.

A cost-effective solution would be to combine a WP install using DigitalOcean’s Droplet (https://www.digitalocean.com/?refcode=98753a8ae9d4 – please use my referral). The advantages:

* As more people use this more solutions will become available (and fast)

* The solution is infinitely extensible

* Cost-effective

* Portable and exportable !!

* designed the way you want – for example, my home page is a list of my tasks

* functionality you need

* OpenSource

* Support (one of the big issues on the Forum)

* Secure

* Easy backups

Currently I can do everything I was using EN for with these added advantages and also knowing that I am in control of its trajectory. It’s just a slow process copying it all over…

I think that discontented users here have particular needs that few apps can meet, and they aren't generally criticizing Evernote, but discussing what happens when they fall outside of Evernote's target area. It sounds like the amount of control you are looking to have will probably not be met by (m)any services, and you may have simply fallen outside of the target user group.

As for leaving or signing up for Evernote, it seems like a simple and painless process to me. Even with tens of thousands of notes, you can probably be out, up, and running with something else in fifteen minutes or so. Perhaps faster if you have just plain text. I'd say portability is one of its strong points.

EN notes are portable, but only to HTML & MHT, that's not much. I am not aware that you can have plain text notes in EN.

And as for up & running in 15 mins: importing HTML into other apps is not that simple, if possible at all. Even if the app allows it, you would still have to do a lot of manual work to make those notes usable as before again. The importing bit into the other app is just the start but that does not mean they are immediately usable, so I would not call that up & running. Plain text notes woud indeed be a lot easier to import & for the user to be & running relatively quickly. But EN does not support PT does it?

I think that discontented users here have particular needs that few apps can meet, and they aren't generally criticizing Evernote, but discussing what happens when they fall outside of Evernote's target area. It sounds like the amount of control you are looking to have will probably not be met by (m)any services, and you may have simply fallen outside of the target user group.

As for leaving or signing up for Evernote, it seems like a simple and painless process to me. Even with tens of thousands of notes, you can probably be out, up, and running with something else in fifteen minutes or so. Perhaps faster if you have just plain text. I'd say portability is one of its strong points.

@GrumpyMonkey

Thanks for the input.

Even with tens of thousands of notes, you can probably be out, up, and running with something else in fifteen minutes or so

Would you care to elaborate with some specific examples of how to export EN into a usable format ?

• 1

Hi. Export as HTML. You can stop there, because the notes can be imported into anything at that point, or you can convert the resulting files into something else, like plain text. From the beginning, I set up my account for this eventuality (see other posts in this forum -- plaintext notes, attachments separate but linked, information-rich titles, etc.). YMMV.

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/37457-sharing-evernote-to-devonthink/?p=208352

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=367

2. Your use of Markdown conventions might work in Voodoo or DevonThink, but many apps use Markdown flavours, which are always slightly different.

Hi. Export as HTML. You can stop there, because the notes can be imported into anything at that point, or you can convert the resulting files into something else, like plain text. From the beginning, I set up my account for this eventuality (see other posts in this forum -- plaintext notes, attachments separate but linked, information-rich titles, etc.). YMMV.

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/37457-sharing-evernote-to-devonthink/?p=208352

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=1564

http://www.christopher-mayo.com/?p=367

I am not here to defend WP just offer up an idea. But with 75+million websites worldwide I think you are carping. There are ways to beef up security. It isn't less secure than other internet options where security is pretty much in the hands of the developer.

It wasn't me that found fault with EN's support but others on this Forum. Support is available for WP and its plugins on all sorts of BBSs etc etc.

I'm not specifically knocking WP either and there are lots of support forums for WP (many dealing with lots of security issues....) - the people who have found fault with Evernote support are generally complaining about email or chat not with the information they receive on the forum.

Anyway, good luck with your project.

2. Your use of Markdown conventions might work in Voodoo or DevonThink, but many apps use Markdown flavours, which are always slightly different.

Hi. Export as HTML. You can stop there, because the notes can be imported into anything at that point, or you can convert the resulting files into something else, like plain text. From the beginning, I set up my account for this eventuality (see other posts in this forum -- plaintext notes, attachments separate but linked, information-rich titles, etc.). YMMV.

Yes. For what I do, I have often found multiple solutions available in the Appleverse to most problems I encounter. In this case, nvALT is another great option.

The relatively straightforward Markdown I recommend (basically Gruber's) is usually fine in any app. But, you can use whatever you like, as long as you know the app you are moving to will support it. As always, I recommend planning ahead, using the lowest common denominator of features, and testing everything out before plunging into it.

nvAlt = Mac too

Gruber's basic Markdown will only be read by apps that support it, but, like I said, many apps only support a "flavour" (= official name for it I believe), i.e. a variation on it, and those apps therefore do not accept Gruber's markdown. I have tried a number.

If I am not mistaken, your planning ahead consisted of leaving EN altogether, except for web clippings. But if all users plan ahead like that EN would have to close shop.

GM, I am not trying to be awkward, believe me, but I contest your premise that it is easy to export from EN into a usable format & be up & running within 15 minutes. At any rate, Windows users don't have that possibility, perhaps because EN was originally designed for Mac users so easy export facilities were created for those users. A Windows UI was tacked on at a later stage, by which time easy export for them was forgotten about. Whatever the reason may be, having Windows users' notes up & running within 15 mins is pie in the sky.

Yes. For what I do, I have often found multiple solutions to any problem available in the Appleverse. In this case, nvALT is another great option. The relatively straightforward Markdown I recommend (basically Gruber's) is usually fine in any app. But, you can use whatever you like, as long as you know the app you are moving to will support it. As always, I recommend planning ahead, using the lowest common denominator of features, and testing everything out before plunging into it.

nvAlt = Mac too

Gruber's basic Markdown will only be read by apps that support it, but, like I said, many apps only support a "flavour" (= official name for it I believe), i.e. a variation on it, and those apps therefore do not accept Gruber's markdown. I have tried a number.

If I am not mistaken, your planning ahead consisted of leaving EN altogether, except for web clippings. But if all users plan ahead like that EN would have to close shop.

GM, I am not trying to be awkward, believe me, but I contest your premise that it is easy to export from EN into a usable format & be up & running within 15 minutes. At any rate, Windows users don't have that possibility, perhaps because EN was originally designed for Mac users so easy export facilities were created for those users. A Windows UI was tacked on at a later stage, by which time easy export for them was forgotten about. Whatever the reason may be, having Windows users' notes up & running within 15 mins is pie in the sky.

Yes. For what I do, I have often found multiple solutions to any problem available in the Appleverse. In this case, nvALT is another great option. The relatively straightforward Markdown I recommend (basically Gruber's) is usually fine in any app. But, you can use whatever you like, as long as you know the app you are moving to will support it. As always, I recommend planning ahead, using the lowest common denominator of features, and testing everything out before plunging into it.

Yes. All of my suggestions are for Mac. And, all of them will work for Mac users. Borrow a friend's Mac for 15 minutes I can't offer any other help for Windows folks who use Markdown, except to say that Evernote doesn't support Markdown, so you can use whatever flavor you want, as long as you match that flavor up with the app you are intending to move your data into.

.

Actually, Evernote was originally designed for Windows. And, interestingly, last I checked, there are more export options in Windows. Export is easy in both Windows and Mac. In fact, I am certain you can get it all out in just a few minutes. Just export as .html. Done!

The challenge for Windows users, especially, is to take that data and put it into a different app. Doesn't OneNote have some kind of import tool? I hear that it works fine. I can't be certain about the fifteen minute thing -- I never tested it because I never planned on going back to ON (I used to use it, and I have flirted with it since then, but I've never seriously considered it a viable option for me). But, again, as I said, you'll want to manage your Evernote account in a way that best fits your environment. If you might be heading to OneNote, make sure everything is set up to make the transition a smooth one. If the ON route doesn't work, and there is no other route out, then I would recommend no Windows user ever try Evernote. Seriously. I love the service, but I'd never recommend any dead-end software.

It is extremely rare for me to use any app without an exit plan of some kind. If I couldn't figure out a way to leave Evernote, I never would have started using it (I originally moved from BladeWiki on Windows into Evernote on Windows). I'd recommend any Power User looking for an alternative think the same way about whatever they might go to next. The fact that Evernote does value portability makes it more appealing to me, not less.

By the way, back in the day, getting everything out of ON was a real nightmare (.mht format?). The same was (is?) true of Outlook. Those miserable experiences taught me lifelong lessons about portability.

Thinking about Evernote's origins and ON's rigidity, as I recall, VoodooPad was one app that sprang up in the early 2000s to deal with the fact that there were no robust personal wikis out there on the Mac, and I think it had portability in mind from its early incarnations because apps like Onenote (unavailable on Mac at the time) didn't. People were looking for .html as a solution to the terrible state of affairs that existed.

Evernote came along a few years later. It eventually developed wiki-like features, but I think it (and apps like VoodooPad) were born with the idea that you would put a limited amount of necessary data into the program. VP invited you to "put your brain in it" and Evernote called itself an "external brain," but neither one was quite ready for that. Gus gave VP away a little while back and it has (apparently) been abandoned, though the new owners have promised an update, so it might be on life support. Evernote began talking about this workspace thing a few years back and finally abandoned its external brain idea last year or so. It's too bad, because these were inspiring visions.

DEVONthink is also an old app from that period in the early 2000s as well, and it has probably come the closest to the external brain thingy. You can easily manage relatively massive databases, depending in how much text content you have, and it has robust personal wiki features. You can actually link to anything in a database simply by typing the file name. Powerful stuff! I wish VP and EN wouldn't have given up on this idea of an external brain, but I am happy to say the idea is still alive out there.

And, if you are wondering, everything pops right out of DT in just a few seconds: folders, tags, files, and all. In fact, with "indexing," you don't have to put anything into it in the first place. It is as portable as you can get. EN cannot do it quite this way because of how it is built. This is both the secret of its success, and one of the reasons why it causes trouble for some power users. It's interesting how some early decisions have tremendously important effects down the road: EN has become a simple, ubiquitous app for anyone in he world while DT has become a complex, Mac/iOS app that is customizable for each individual.

Neither app is well-known for it, but DT and EN do still share one thing from those days in the early 2000s -- an emphasis on AI. Their visions of how it should work, though, diverge in really interesting ways, and it seems like an area where cross-fertilization of ideas could help both.

@GM:

I don't recall any AI in Evernote prior to 2014 with the introduction of EN Context.  Even then, I'm not sure I would call it an "emphasis".

Evernote didn't even exist until 2008.

Are you thinking of something different?

@GM:

I don't recall any AI in Evernote prior to 2014 with the introduction of EN Context.  Even then, I'm not sure I would call it an "emphasis".

Evernote didn't even exist until 2008.

Are you thinking of something different?

"Related Notes" existed for a number of years prior to the release of "context" in 2014, which was basically the same as Context minus the media tie-ins. I suppose this could be considered a degree of AI but it isn't nearly as robust, as DT's which I'm sure you've discovered in your DT adventures!

• 1

@ScottLougheed:

Sorry, I don't buy that "Related Notes" is anything close to Artificial Intelligence (AI).
That's just search results.

Frankly, I'm not sure I would even classify EN Context as AI -- seems more like marketing hype than anything else.

Real AI would be if the Evernote algorithms (not data, but code) were changing (learning) in response to what you have entered in your Note.

Real artificial intelligence is effectively thinking for itself. It can go beyond the built-in programming. It can evolve. AI can learn for itself

• 1

All this obsession on better 'productivity tools'...

Maybe we are better off with type writers.

Obsessions with features and how Evernote should be etc. in order to get more 'work done'...

Yet I see guys like JMichael flooding the forum with every single glitch text for pages and pages each time their is a minor patch update.. Obsession with glithces... New features... Features we want, or dont want... Existent and non-existent. Obession with everything this little app has... People are disapointed and apparently looking for 'alternatives'... We hide behind a mask, called the 'Power User'... But I think its more a case of Power Procrastination.

Have we lost the plot? Is this constant engagement on a forum for what is essentially an "app" not a bit OCD? Are we obsessing too much about our tools? And less about how work is actually done?

Just a thought.

Ok rant over.

Just saying.

• 4

DT, as far as I know, began in the early 2000s (EDIT: 2002). It had AI. Evernote, as far as I know, started in the early 2000s as well (2000?). The version of the service we use now (everything post 2.0?) began in 2008. If I remember correctly, they referred to their handwriting recognition (introduced in 2007?) in images as AI. (EDIT: VP was a "personal wiki" when it was released in 2003 and OneNote was for "capturing and organizing thoughts" when it was announced in 2002 -- released in 2003).

My point was that several developers recognized a need and an opportunity, but they interpreted it in different ways, and have taken quite different paths to get there. They are not "right" or "wrong." Just different. They all do great things really well, but I think the need or desire for an external brain is still there, and, as far as I know, only one of the three mentioned is still pursuing it. I think DT calls it a "supplementary" brain.

My guess is that Evernote is chasing users, and it has decided that it can distinguish itself from everyone else by creating a better "workspace" to get to that billion-user goal. They may have decided there aren't a billion folks who need an external brain, so they shifted focus. Gus (VP) is an independent developer who decided to focus on another project (Acorn) and the folks who took it over have been letting it ferment. DT seems more interested in scratching a particular itch (smart data processing / information management?), and not so interested in expansion. These different goals might help to explain what happened. Or, they are my poor guesses divorced from reality. At any rate power users (power procrastinators) might benefit from getting a sense of where an app has been, where it is, and where it is going before they jump into it. This attitude probably explains my aversion to apps that began a few days ago offering everything under the sun.

EDIT: Earlier, I mentioned VP existed before Evernote. That was incorrect. I think VP began in 2003 or 2004, which probably puts it a little after Evernote (which was on Windows only).

Evernote, as far as I know, started in the early 2000s as well (2000?). The version of the service we use now (everything post 2.0?) began in 2008. If I remember correctly, they referred to their handwriting recognition (introduced in 2007?) in images as AI.

The official Evernote About page at Evernote.com states the company was founded in 2007, which is consistent with Wikipedia and Crunchbase:

Evernote is an independent, privately held company headquartered in Redwood City, California. Founded in 2007, Evernote products reach more than 100 million users worldwide

@GM, if you have references that point to earlier dates, please share them with us.

IAC, I have no idea what Evernote was thinking internally, but the first product feature that even comes close to being real AI is EN Context, released in 2014.

AI is the current rage, the current buzzword.  Lots of companies may claim they have an AI product, but few, IMO, meet the requirements for AI (see my above post).  It's mostly marketing hype, IMO.

AI is very different from having clever, powerful, easy-to-use search engines.

So, at this point, a company's claims have little effect on my selection of their products.  They have to deliver the product.

IMO, it is dangerous to select a product based on where you think the company is headed.  For one thing, we almost never have the full picture.  And companies can, and do, change their strategic direction with little or no prior notice to their customers.  Evernote is a perfect example.  Microsoft also.

All this obsession on better 'productivity tools'...

Maybe we are better off with type writers.

Obsessions with features and how Evernote should be etc. in order to get more 'work done'...

Yet I see guys like JMichael flooding the forum with every single glitch text for pages and pages each time their is a minor patch update.. Obsession with glithces... New features... Features we want, or dont want... Existent and non-existent. Obession with everything this little app has... People are disapointed and apparently looking for 'alternatives'... We hide behind a mask, called the 'Power User'... But I think its more a case of Power Procrastination.

Have we lost the plot? Is this constant engagement on a forum for what is essentially an "app" not a bit OCD? Are we obsessing too much about our tools? And less about how work is actually done?

Just a thought.

Ok rant over.

Just saying.

Great article. Thanks a lot. I spend a lot of time these days with pen, paper, an iPad for reading (Internet off), and noise canceling headphones (Bose qc20). I find that I am really productive writing by hand with large blocks of uninterrupted time. Everything in life isn't about productivity, but when you want to get something done, it does help to have a strategy for cutting distracting stuff out of your environment.

Ah, Wikipedia, that wonderland of truthiness. I think Wikipedia is great for

Evernote, as far as I know, started in the early 2000s as well (2000?). The version of the service we use now (everything post 2.0?) began in 2008. If I remember correctly, they referred to their handwriting recognition (introduced in 2007?) in images as AI.

The official Evernote About page at Evernote.com states the company was founded in 2007, which is consistent with Wikipedia and Crunchbase:

Evernote is an independent, privately held company headquartered in Redwood City, California. Founded in 2007, Evernote products reach more than 100 million users worldwide

@GM, if you have references that point to earlier dates, please share them with us.

IAC, I have no idea what Evernote was thinking internally, but the first product feature that even comes close to being real AI is EN Context, released in 2014.

AI is the current rage, the current buzzword.  Lots of companies may claim they have an AI product, but few, IMO, meet the requirements for AI (see my above post).  It's mostly marketing hype, IMO.

AI is very different from having clever, powerful, easy-to-use search engines.

So, at this point, a company's claims have little effect on my selection of their products.  They have to deliver the product.
IMO, it is dangerous to select a product based on where you think the company is headed.  For one thing, we almost never have the full picture.  And companies can, and do, change their strategic direction with little or no prior notice to their customers.  Evernote is a perfect example.  Microsoft also.

Well, if it is in Wikipedia, it's almost certainly correct

The earliest date I know of for Evernote is February 29, 2000. It was Pachikov's idea back then. But, perhaps you could trace its origins back to Apple's Newton -- Phil has suggested the connections with that project. The early 2000s were exciting: EN in 2000, DT in 2002, ON and VP in 2003. It was EN, though, that pioneered the jump to multiple operating systems (2008).

AI? Nothing is quite like Ava from Ex Machina, but whatever you call it, it's cool, and is sometimes implemented in a way that helps.

The future? OK. I haven't found speculating about future app development to be dangerous. Quite the opposite, in fact.

@GrumpyMonkey:

Really?  I gave you 3 references, and you choose to make fun of one?

You've provide no references, so all of your statements are just hearsay.

You disappoint me.  I expect much more from a highly educated, collegiate person like you.

But as a matter of fact, I, and many others, have been using Wikipedia for years.

Every time I have cross-checked them, they have been correct.

You can do a Google for yourself on "accuracy of wikipedia", but here's one I found:

@ScottLougheed:

Sorry, I don't buy that "Related Notes" is anything close to Artificial Intelligence (AI).
That's just search results.

Frankly, I'm not sure I would even classify EN Context as AI -- seems more like marketing hype than anything else.

Real AI would be if the Evernote algorithms (not data, but code) were changing (learning) in response to what you have entered in your Note.

Real artificial intelligence is effectively thinking for itself. It can go beyond the built-in programming. It can evolve. AI can learn for itself

Wasn't my claim, just suggesting that might have been the intended meaning.

AI is the current rage, the current buzzword.  Lots of companies may claim they have an AI product, but few, IMO, meet the requirements for AI (see my above post).  It's mostly marketing hype, IMO.

AI is very different from having clever, powerful, easy-to-use search engines.

In general the use of the term AI has been intended to refer to the feature called AI by DEVONThink (and, subsequently, other people's use of "AI" to refer to similar features). While I can't speak for GM, I certainly did not mean to suggest that this truly was some form of AI, as I am not knowledgeable enough to make any accurate claims about what is or is not AI. Just using the noun that the company tosses around.

@GrumpyMonkey:

Really?  I gave you 3 references, and you choose to make fun of one?
You've provide no references, so all of your statements are just hearsay.
You disappoint me.  I expect much more from a highly educated, collegiate person like you.

But as a matter of fact, I, and many others, have been using Wikipedia for years.
Every time I have cross-checked them, they have been correct.

You can do a Google for yourself on "accuracy of wikipedia", but here's one I found:

WIKIPEDIA

I use Wikipedia nearly every day. It's a great service. I'm even registered as a user / editor there (I keep meaning to edit some stuff, but never get around to it). I don't, however, consider it authoritative, and neither does Wikipedia!

EN ORIGINS

At best, Wikipedia contains "truthiness," which is sometimes a lot better start for finding out about something than having no information at all. We all benefit from having it around. I recommend that people don't stop there, though. If you take a stab at searching yourself for the information, you will be rewarded with something a little more satisfying. You could start with a search of these very forums, which will yield the following discussion.

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/39335-evernote-turns-5-years-old/

ALTERNATIVES

Getting back to the topic at hand, if we are talking about alternatives to Evernote, it helps to know the history of these alternatives in order to better understand how we got here in the first place. For users like myself, who are still inspired by those external brain visions of the early 2000s, Evernote might still fit, but I wouldn't expect to see this aspect of the service to get much development, because they are into "workspaces" these days. The two aren't mutually exclusive, but the emphases are different. EN remains an amazing service that is constantly improving. Speculating about the future, it could work as my "external brain." However, I don't expect it will ever meet my security needs, which I consider to be an important part of the external brain vision. Since at least 2006, users have been asking EN for large-scale, high-quality encryption. I figure a decade is long enough to wait, and I am guessing that we haven't seen it yet because EN just isn't that into encryption. That's fine. They have a reasonable security system in place now. It may be better for their goals if they avoid beefing it up. Our goals just don't seem to align. If I had a different career, and didn't have to handle so much sensitive information (mine and others), I might have no complaints at all.

OneNote, which (as far as I know) hasn't ever had this goal of an external brain in mind (poor pun intended), hasn't given any indication that they will try and become a brain in the future. If you are into creating an external brain, that leaves OS-specific apps such as VoodooPad and DEVONthink. VP doesn't appear to be under active development anymore, so you have DT, which is pretty amazing, if you are willing to live almost exclusively in the Appleverse (there is a workaround of sorts, thanks to DT's robust features, but I'll talk about that in a blog post sometime).

What all of this means is that "Power Users" (power procrastinators) who are into working on multiple operating systems will probably be better off sticking with EN (as I mentioned earlier in the thread), though ON might fit as well -- YMMV. Everything else mentioned is a gamble or a dead-end that wouldn't appeal to me.

@Scott

Yep

• 1

@GM:

Thanks for your post.  All of your links/references seem to confirm my earlier post that Evernote was founded in 2007.

It is also most interesting that Wikipedia is cited as the first reference a number of times.

I understand, and accept, that Wikipedia is not an original, authoritative source for academic studies.

But then, is any encyclopedia?  I think not.  They are, by definition, a summary of information provided by other sources.

My main point above is that we should challenge any software developer who claims to provide AI in their product.

"AI" has now become a marketing term, and is claimed by far more vendors than actually provide it.

I'm just getting started evaluating DEVONthink.  They do claim AI, but I'm not convinced yet.

I am also not convinced that Evernote's Context is real AI.  I've not seen any evidence that EN Context is self-learning, and updates/improves its own algorithms as it is used.  Could be, I just have not seen it.

Refreshed my memory:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evernote

" the Evernote web service launched into open beta on June 24, 2008"

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/06/24/evernote-public-launch/

June 24, 2008

"Big news today: Evernote is now in Open Beta and we’ve rolled out many changes, including premium accounts.

Four months ago, we introduced the invitation-only private beta of the new Evernote service.  Our goal was to get about 10,000 people to use the system so we could fine-tune our servers and try out new features.  We were blown away by the response and watched with equal parts of glee and horror as the closed beta users count passed 10,000, then 25,000, then 50,000…  By the end of the four months, over 125,000 people had participated in the closed-beta!  Luckily, our hardware, software and team held up with only minor incidents of spontaneous combustion."

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/02/21/invite-only-beta-launches/

Feb 21, 2008

Big news today, we officially launched our invitation-only beta for the all new Evernote Service. Read all about it in TechCrunch. There are only a limited number of beta invites available right now, but we’ll be releasing more in the coming days and weeks.

So I guess I jumped in 1-2 months into the closed beta.

Scary how time has flown.

External brain sounds like an amazing feature, but anything that holds your thoughts, documents, sketches, .... can be classified as your external brain. So any note-taking app could qualify, including 1N. In fact, your whole computer could be classified as such. I know we are talking apps here, but "external brain" does not mean anything  & is therefore nonsense.

I wholeheartedly agree with your last sentence (in bold below).

OneNote, which (as far as I know) hasn't ever had this goal of an external brain in mind (poor pun intended), hasn't given any indication that they will try and become a brain in the future. If you are into creating an external brain, that leaves OS-specific apps such as VoodooPad and DEVONthink. VP doesn't appear to be under active development anymore, so you have DT, which is pretty amazing, if you are willing to live almost exclusively in the Appleverse (there is a workaround of sorts, thanks to DT's robust features, but I'll talk about that in a blog post sometime).

What all of this means is that "Power Users" (power procrastinators) who are into working on multiple operating systems will probably be better off sticking with EN (as I mentioned earlier in the thread), though ON might fit as well -- YMMV. Everything else mentioned is a gamble or a dead-end that wouldn't appeal to me.

I have added a post to the thread dedicated to DEVONthink to discuss its AI.

If you are interested, please see:  Does DT have True AI?

@GM:

Thanks for your post. All of your links/references seem to confirm my earlier post that Evernote was founded in 2007.

It is also most interesting that Wikipedia is cited as the first reference a number of times.

I understand, and accept, that Wikipedia is not an original, authoritative source for academic studies.

But then, is any encyclopedia? I think not. They are, by definition, a summary of information provided by other sources.

My main point above is that we should challenge any software developer who claims to provide AI in their product.

"AI" has now become a marketing term, and is claimed by far more vendors than actually provide it.

I'm just getting started evaluating DEVONthink. They do claim AI, but I'm not convinced yet.

I am also not convinced that Evernote's Context is real AI. I've not seen any evidence that EN Context is self-learning, and updates/improves its own algorithms as it is used. Could be, I just have not seen it.

Refreshed my memory:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evernote

" the Evernote web service launched into open beta on June 24, 2008"

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/06/24/evernote-public-launch/

June 24, 2008

"Big news today: Evernote is now in Open Beta and we’ve rolled out many changes, including premium accounts.

Four months ago, we introduced the invitation-only private beta of the new Evernote service. Our goal was to get about 10,000 people to use the system so we could fine-tune our servers and try out new features. We were blown away by the response and watched with equal parts of glee and horror as the closed beta users count passed 10,000, then 25,000, then 50,000… By the end of the four months, over 125,000 people had participated in the closed-beta! Luckily, our hardware, software and team held up with only minor incidents of spontaneous combustion."

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/02/21/invite-only-beta-launches/

Feb 21, 2008

Big news today, we officially launched our invitation-only beta for the all new Evernote Service. Read all about it in TechCrunch. There are only a limited number of beta invites available right now, but we’ll be releasing more in the coming days and weeks.

So I guess I jumped in 1-2 months into the closed beta.

Scary how time has flown.

@JM

Please read the thread again. The date of 2000 is clearly written there. If you prefer to rely upon Wikipedia, then maybe I can go over there and change the date to 2000 so that everyone will then be in agreement

I don't have much to say about AI. Phil Libin calls AI "augmented intelligence." Whatever this assistance is called, it helps me get stuff done and find new connections, so I am glad to see developers working on it, though I find it most useful when I can participate a bit in the process. For example, showing only three related notes at the bottom of notes on some platforms without any explanation of why they are there, any way to comment on their actual relevance, and no way to scroll further down through the related notes results seems like a wasted opportunity to me.

@ DP

An external brain / supplementary brain doesn't sound like nonsense to me. I think of it as something like Luhmann's Zettelkasten. Luhmann had some interesting thoughts on how one interacts with their collection of notes. Some aspects of EN and DEVONthink make me feel like we are getting really close to some of the exciting possibilities he described. Call it an external brain, a zettelkasten, or a database. It doesn't matter much to me as long as the emphasis of the developers is on making my experience of working with it as meaningful as possible -- along with that, considering the content, I expect a higher-than-average level of security too.

Your'r right. I actually think that Apple's OSX gives you many of the tools you need to make your own external brain right out of the box. It's just a bit clunky and limited, especially with the current tagging system, and I feel that DT takes it a step further to make things a bit more fluid. For example, if you try cobbling together a personal wiki in OSX, I think you'll basically have to code the .html yourself to link everything. But, an app like DT will build all of it automatically. It's got a table of contents feature much like EN's (I think DT was years ahead with theirs), so you can build all of those synapses with hardly any effort at all.

Augmented Intelligence, it seems, would be easier to make a claim on. That is what Context (and Related Notes) is referred to as.

True, but even that I think is a nonsense because intelligence in the human sense does not exist (yet?), and neither does an external brain in the human sense. These words are just marketing hype to try to get an edge on the competition. And that's not unique to EN.

However, at the end of the day it does not really matter which qualifications one uses, we know the strengths & weaknesses of EN. And like GM says, there does not seem to be a viable, broad-based cross-platform alternative to EN & 1N out there (yet?).

Augmented Intelligence, it seems, would be easier to make a claim on. That is what Context (and Related Notes) is referred to as.

My main point above is that we should challenge any software developer who claims to provide AI in their product.

"AI" has now become a marketing term, and is claimed by far more vendors than actually provide it.

Valiant and certainly legitimate, but I'm going to devote my energy towards using the so-called AI, erroneous name or not, to completing my work!

@GM:

Thanks for your post. All of your links/references seem to confirm my earlier post that Evernote was founded in 2007.

It is also most interesting that Wikipedia is cited as the first reference a number of times.

I understand, and accept, that Wikipedia is not an original, authoritative source for academic studies.

But then, is any encyclopedia? I think not. They are, by definition, a summary of information provided by other sources.

My main point above is that we should challenge any software developer who claims to provide AI in their product.

"AI" has now become a marketing term, and is claimed by far more vendors than actually provide it.

I'm just getting started evaluating DEVONthink. They do claim AI, but I'm not convinced yet.

I am also not convinced that Evernote's Context is real AI. I've not seen any evidence that EN Context is self-learning, and updates/improves its own algorithms as it is used. Could be, I just have not seen it.

Refreshed my memory:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evernote

" the Evernote web service launched into open beta on June 24, 2008"

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/06/24/evernote-public-launch/

June 24, 2008

"Big news today: Evernote is now in Open Beta and we’ve rolled out many changes, including premium accounts.

Four months ago, we introduced the invitation-only private beta of the new Evernote service. Our goal was to get about 10,000 people to use the system so we could fine-tune our servers and try out new features. We were blown away by the response and watched with equal parts of glee and horror as the closed beta users count passed 10,000, then 25,000, then 50,000… By the end of the four months, over 125,000 people had participated in the closed-beta! Luckily, our hardware, software and team held up with only minor incidents of spontaneous combustion."

http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2008/02/21/invite-only-beta-launches/

Feb 21, 2008

Big news today, we officially launched our invitation-only beta for the all new Evernote Service. Read all about it in TechCrunch. There are only a limited number of beta invites available right now, but we’ll be releasing more in the coming days and weeks.

So I guess I jumped in 1-2 months into the closed beta.

Scary how time has flown.

@JM

Please read the thread again. The date of 2000 is clearly written there. If you prefer to rely upon Wikipedia, then maybe I can go over there and change the date to 2000 so that everyone will then be in agreement

I hate to perpetuate what has now diverged from the main topic of discussion, but GM, are you referring to the Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evernote ?

If so, I actually can't find 2000 mentioned anywhere which now has me puzzled.

@ Scott

You really want to get us talking about Wikipedia again, don't you "Thread," not link. Specifically, just a post or two down from where JM stopped reading.

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/39335-evernote-turns-5-years-old/?p=213209

To restate my point(s) a different way: this idea of doing something more than sticking files in folders, but developing new connections among them, and turning them into invaluable complements to your meat brain (call it a zettelkasten, external brain, AI, or whatever) has been around a while and seems to have generated some exciting projects in the early 2000s. But, something happened along the way. Of the ones I mentioned, only DT has stuck with it.

It could, of course, be that no one is interested anymore. But, I am guessing that we haven't quite reached the point where the promise is being realized, and many users are less enthusiastic about revolutionizing their lives some time in the future than improving the workspace in the here and now. Perhaps Evernote is capitalizing on that. Personally, with DT's AI, I feel like we are closer than ever, and I'm already seeing big benefits from it along the lines of what Luhmann talked about with his zettelkasten. It's not thinking on its own, but it is "communicating" with me.

Anyhow, it's good to see companies out there pushing the boundaries. I just wish EN and ON would step out of those workplaces and do something a bit more adventurous and inspiring again (external brains). Better security features (encrypted notebooks) along with that would be much appreciated as well

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@ Scott

You really want to get us talking about Wikipedia again, don't you "Thread," not link. Specifically, just a post or two down from where JM stopped reading.

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/39335-evernote-turns-5-years-old/?p=213209

Ah, yes, that makes sense. In my scanning of the posts to catch up with the discussion I didn't think to follow a link to another discussion thread for this type of info!

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....

To restate my point(s) a different way: this idea of doing something more than sticking files in folders, but developing new connections among them, and turning them into invaluable complements to your meat brain (call it a zettelkasten, external brain, AI, or whatever) has been around a while and seems to have generated some exciting projects in the early 2000s. But, something happened along the way. Of the ones I mentioned, only DT has stuck with it.

Out of interest is meat brain a reference to the Terry Bisson short?  I heard it on a podcast recently, I wonder how those beings would view this AI discussion?

If you consider the Cyborg element of the human, imputing and extracting information, you could consider the internet etc. as AI.

If you consider complete Artificial Independent though, without the impetus of any biological organism, there is still a way to go.

Its a matter of definition I guess. Either way, for example Google's algorythm's are already discerning and presenting information for us in a way that is easier to access. The origin is human input, and the output is human consumption. But in the middle, its doing something we cant do ourselves. That you could consider is artificial intelligence.

The next stage I guess, would be allieviating human input and output, whereby a machine self regulates the whole process.

We are already Cyborgs, without realising it. Technology is all around us. its an extension of us. Some people have heart pacemakers allowing them to sustain life. Apple watch/google galss are wearables that extend us. Eventually we might see more ability to imput information (already happening) into transplanted devices. So at the end of the day, its a philosophical identification of definition.

Do you consider AI something completely free of human input/output. Or is it the ability to control inputs and outputs?

I dont think its a case of having 'free will'... Machines will never have much more free will than we have...

Free will does not exist. We are also essentially processing inputs and outputs, from our genetics, and environment. Every single action we take is influenced since birth, time of birth, before birth, Neurochemical processes, evolution, how a stimuli of our environment interacts with us. Etc. We think that we think freely... But we dont really. Its all input-processing and output. The last definition of AI is impossible, as it has never existed in the world in us or another species.

AI is just more input-processing-output, basically more independent processing, and depending on your definition, with or without human influence. (Yet we are part of the environment), so there will always be input, it just depends how much we 'believe' that input is part of our decision making processes, or perception that we actually have free will. We can consider ourselves part of the MAchines AI, or independent of it. Either way it exists in some way or form.

Its basically about automation processess.. To make our lives easier... Or as Stephen Hawking warns, the biggest threat to humanity, if it this automation process puts it together that we are indeed the biggest threat and comes to the conclusion that we are neither necessary or good for the world. Which would probably be a very sound, and logical reasoning process.

....

To restate my point(s) a different way: this idea of doing something more than sticking files in folders, but developing new connections among them, and turning them into invaluable complements to your meat brain (call it a zettelkasten, external brain, AI, or whatever) has been around a while and seems to have generated some exciting projects in the early 2000s. But, something happened along the way. Of the ones I mentioned, only DT has stuck with it.

Out of interest is meat brain a reference to the Terry Bisson short?  I heard it on a podcast recently, I wonder how those beings would view this AI discussion?

A wonderful story.

http://www.terrybisson.com/page6/page6.html

http://www.inc.com/magazine/201112/evernote-2011-company-of-the-year.html

By the way, the vision Phil spells out in the article is exactly what makes the external brain thing so exciting for me. Those were the days! It is tough to get excited now about productivity and workspaces...

GM you're being fast and loose with the facts and needlessly confusing.

JM is correct on the origins of the current product and current principal founders.

What you refer to is EverNote, what ultimately turned into a Windows app with a beta in late 2004. Then ultimately, EverNote Plus, as a $50 windows app as late as 2007. The original company started in 2000 "EverNote is a California Corporation with an R&D Center in Moscow, Russia. EverNote has founded by Stepan Pachikov at Feb.29, 2000" It didn't have a functional web page until around 2004 in the time frame of the company merging with Pen and Internet. And for a time Evernote.com redirected to penandinternet.com • 1 #### Share this post ##### Link to post #### Share this post ##### Link to post GM you're being fast and loose with the facts and needlessly confusing. JM is correct on the origins of the current product and current principal founders. What you refer to is EverNote, what ultimately turned into a Windows app with a beta in late 2004. Then ultimately, EverNote Plus, as a$50 windows app as late as 2007.

The original company started in 2000

"EverNote is a California Corporation with an R&D Center in Moscow, Russia.

EverNote has founded by Stepan Pachikov at Feb.29, 2000"

It didn't have a functional web page until around 2004 in the time frame of the company merging with Pen and Internet. And for a time Evernote.com redirected to penandinternet.com

I thought I was pretty clear, especially in the context of my original post about what was happening in the early 2000s. Origins are tricky. In this case, I think dating the app from 2008 (or thereabout) leaves out a critical period of early development that helps to explain what ideas, goals, capabilities, and so forth existed. Specifically, the idea of revolutionizing note-taking seems to have been a shared goal of several development efforts at the time. There was a personal wiki of sorts (VP), an external brain (EN), a supplemental brain (DT), and something to capture and organize thoughts (ON) that seems to have been closely related. EN was simply one of many developers tackling similar issues in different ways.

So, how did we get from there to here? Evernote didn't magically spring into existence in 2008, 2007, or even 2005 as the idea of a computer security software entrepreneur (Phil). If you want to stick with JM's "correct" 2008 or 2007 version, EN stumbles onto the scene nearly six years behind ON and it mysteriously has Evernote users (from the previous version) who existed before the product itself did! If that is less confusing for everyone, then, by all means, don't dig any deeper than Wikipedia.

The problem for me with 2005 (the date Phil has given for the founding of Evernote -- also predating JM's date of 2007) is that there is an unclear connection to prior events (including the earlier iteration of the app), even though one of the principal founders of the current iteration of the company (capital "N" removed) was (not coincidentally) the founder of the 2000 version. The link is a clear and direct one, from my perspective, and I don't see anything "wrong" or "loose" with my dating the company to 2000.

It may seem needlessly confusing to talk about the early days, but in reality, the 2008 Evernote already had nearly two decades of valuable experience with the project of note-taking. This seems important to me. Handwriting and its recognition, for instance, had been under a long period of development dating back to the Pachikov's days at Newton in the 90s (Phil also ties Evernote to Newton's development). The AI elements in the early days were, unsurprisingly, associated with handwriting recognition and the recognition of text in images (as far as I can tell), and Evernote remains a leader in this area, probably because of its head start. In fact, Evernote's expansion into mobile, some of its design decisions, and its acquisitions (Penultimate and Skitch), make a lot of sense when you consider more than just the truncated history of Evernote with a small "n."

Of course, my field of expertise isn't startups. I could be completely wrong about all of this, Evernote may well be a precocious child of 2008, and everything else I wrote might be gibberish.

My point wasn't to get into a discussion about EN origins, though, but to talk about alternatives to Evernote that were (more or less) born around the same time and share what I think seem to be similar aspirations. In this regard, Evernote's long track record ought to be considered when power users are looking over their options, because EN has had a while to ponder the problems, and even if I disagree with their collaborative turn, I recognize that it isn't a decision they made willy-nilly. Additionally, I suspect that DT and ON remain viable alternatives to EN in part because they have had many years to work on their solutions to the external brain problem. VP in its moribund state is still in a different league than many of its competitors -- even Evernote with over 300 employees doesn't offer 256-bit encryption of everything, wifi and Dropbox sync, and plaintext export (oft-requested features). VP does, and it was developed by a single person. Many of the newer apps mentioned in this thread, whatever their potential, usually lack the depth of experience to accomodate the needs of power users, in my opinion. They may be great someday, but they're going to need some major work before I'll use them for my external brain.

Clarity of thought and writing often eludes us, and our personal backgrounds can put a twist into statements not intended by the author.

I going to stick with 2007 as the founding date of the current Evernote corporation, since that is what they state in the official Evernote About page at Evernote.com.

Having said that, I have no doubt that the founders and principals of Evernote have a history which well precedes that.

I have no problem in conceding that Phil Libin (Evernote co-founder and CEO) and others involved in Evernote may have had thoughts and/or discussions about how they could use artificial intelligence in their products (current or in the future) in circa 2000.

@GM, if that was the intent of your earlier posts, then I accept them.

However, the first Evernote product to include any type of special intelligence was released in 2014 with the feature EN Context, and perhaps "Related Notes" somewhat earlier.  Evernote calls it "Augmented Intelligence"

I'd like to discuss more on augmented/artificial intelligence, but that's best saved for another post.

Phil Libin was not involved in the founding of the original Evernote.  He didn't discover it until it was two years old in 2006.

My thanks to GM for providing a link to this great article, which details the history of Evernote.

In 2006, Libin pulled the crew together again with the intention of starting a company called Ribbon, as in, tied around your finger. (As a big fan of Japan, Libin notes, it was a nice bonus for him that the name was similar to how people pronounce his name there.) But shortly after throwing himself into researching electronic memory aids, he discovered there was a tiny, two-year-old stealth start-up in Silicon Valley called Evernote. It was creating tools for extracting text from photos so that you could take pictures of notes and make them searchable. "I had thought of that," says Libin, "but these guys were already pretty far along with the technology."

In fact, this Evernote team had previously developed some of the key software for Apple's visionary but ill-fated Newton personal information manager, a sort of primitive iPad that came out in the late 1980s. It was a primarily Russian crew of talented coders, not unlike Libin's own team, and it was led by a brilliant techie named Stepan Pachikov. Libin flew out to meet Pachikov, liked what he heard, and suggested they merge the teams rather than compete. Libin became CEO of the company, which retained the name Evernote, while Pachikov gradually shifted his focus to other projects.

Libin and his team moved from Boston to Silicon Valley, where Libin found the culture vastly more welcoming of his offbeat, high-tech entrepreneurial style than Boston had ever been. After the teams merged, the new company was left with enough money for a year or so. That would be long enough to get a product up and running, if everyone was focused. To that end, Libin cut loose most of the projects Pachikov's team had been working on to concentrate on the key characteristics of his revolutionary memory aid: free-form capture of any type of information, simple associative retrieval, super-smartphone-friendly, fun to use.

In 2008, the company launched a "private beta" version of the software intended mostly for Silicon Valley insiders. The night before, at 3 a.m.—apparently the time at which he produces his key insights—Libin realized that the team had forgotten to put together any sort of tutorial. So Libin threw together and narrated a quick demo and put it on YouTube. "I've gotten death threats over it," he says. "I've been said to have the most annoying voice ever heard anywhere in the world." That video would eventually get more than a million hits.

Clarity of thought and writing often eludes us, and our personal backgrounds can put a twist into statements not intended by the author.

I going to stick with 2007 as the founding date of the current Evernote corporation, since that is what they state in the official Evernote About page at Evernote.com.

Having said that, I have no doubt that the founders and principals of Evernote have a history which well precedes that.

I have no problem in conceding that Phil Libin (Evernote co-founder and CEO) and others involved in Evernote may have had thoughts and/or discussions about how they could use artificial intelligence in their products (current or in the future) in circa 2000.

@GM, if that was the intent of your earlier posts, then I accept them.

However, the first Evernote product to include any type of special intelligence was released in 2014 with the feature EN Context, and perhaps "Related Notes" somewhat earlier. Evernote calls it "Augmented Intelligence"

I'd like to discuss more on augmented/artificial intelligence, but that's best saved for another post.

I think I've been very clear. The earliest date for Evernote was 2000, as far as I can tell. My detailed explanation was a response to cwb's claim that I was playing loose and fast with the facts.

Phil has said EN began in 2005, so that is another date. It seems we all disagree with one another on this one, though you and I might have to concede the point to him, because he is the founder, after all.

You say 2007 based on Evernote's site. I think Evernote celebrated it's fifth anniversary in 2013, so they have also said 2008. The conclusion, then, might be that there are several "correct" dates. I'm OK with that. I don't think I ever said you were wrong. As I said, origins are tricky things.

EDIT:

"@GM, if that was the intent of your earlier posts, then I accept them."

My original intent was not to talk about AI or hash out the details of Evernote's founding. I was trying to discuss Evernote in the context of other external brain / notetaking projects that came out of the early 2000s.

Well, I suspect most readers have long since grown tired of this discussion about Evernote's origins.  I know I have.

For anyone interested in digging deeper, IMO the Evernote history is presented in a comprehensive and clear manner in these two references.  Each of you can accept or not accept, and decide for yourself what the facts are.

IAC, I propose that we move on to more interesting discussions about augmented and artificial intelligence.

ATTN:  Mac Power Users -- EVND Released by Developer

It just keeps getting better and better for Mac users.  I have recently rediscovered DEVONthink Pro, and have started testing and evaluating it.

Today, the following EN Mac add-on (I use that term in the most general sense) was posted in the EN Third Party section.

I have NOT tried this add-on yet, but it looks like an incredible enhancement to EN Mac.

If you are a Mac power user, then you owe it to yourself to at least review this thread.

Click on the below link for details.

[OSX] EVND - Atom Editor Plugin for Evernote [Mac]

The package:  EVND (Ever Notedown)

So this is a plugin for Atom Editor by Github that acts like a second editor for the Evernote Mac Client. Basically it extends Atom's Markdown editing capacities with features like LaTeX/MathJax equation editing, TOC, footnotes, image insertion via pasting, etc. And it communicates with the Evernote Mac Client via AppleScript so it can do things like creating/updating notes (as rendered HTML), import notes from Evernote and convert to Markdown formats, etc.

I initially wrote this for my own use, and over the course of about a year, it has become increasingly…complicated. And I’m guessing that other people might find some use with this, so I thought I’d share. (And if there are developers out there interested in this project, that wuold be great -- it's open source under MIT license). I’ve been using EVND to write my notes, but I don’t have the time or means to do more serious tests, hence I can only say the status is “Works For Me”.

<extensive feature list cut>

Please read this shared Evernote note for more info (it's best viewed in the Evernote Mac Client, you can use "Save to Evernote").

That's a compelling addition to Evernote. Good find.

All this obsession on better 'productivity tools'...

Maybe we are better off with type writers.

Obsessions with features and how Evernote should be etc. in order to get more 'work done'...

Yet I see guys like JMichael flooding the forum with every single glitch text for pages and pages each time their is a minor patch update.. Obsession with glithces... New features... Features we want, or dont want... Existent and non-existent. Obession with everything this little app has... People are disapointed and apparently looking for 'alternatives'... We hide behind a mask, called the 'Power User'... But I think its more a case of Power Procrastination.

Have we lost the plot? Is this constant engagement on a forum for what is essentially an "app" not a bit OCD? Are we obsessing too much about our tools? And less about how work is actually done?

Just a thought.

Ok rant over.

Just saying.

I totally agree! I enjoy reading this thread because it's fascinating, but I've long since lost my drive to find "the perfect tool for the job." Here's another great article on the subject:

Searching for The "Perfect Tool" Is a Waste of Time | 99U

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OK, since this has now been quoted several times, I have to strongly object to the characterisation of my posts by @lykoz.

I have long been ignoring @lykoz just because he posts this kind of nonsense.

First of all, most of my posts are in response to requests for help by other users.

Second, I certainly have NOT been "flooding the forum with every single glitch".  The only "glitches" I post are serious bugs, and I only post them one time in the appropriate forum.

Finally, I have received a number of PMs from SoftwareMarcus and Jackolicious thanking me for my contributions to the forum.

Anyone who actually has read my posts know this is categorically not true:

Yet I see guys like JMichael flooding the forum with every single glitch text for pages and pages each time their is a minor patch update.. Obsession with glithces... New features... Features we want, or dont want... Existent and non-existent. Obession with everything this little app has... People are disapointed and apparently looking for 'alternatives'... We hide behind a mask, called the 'Power User'... But I think its more a case of Power Procrastination.

I totally agree! I enjoy reading this thread because it's fascinating, but I've long since lost my drive to find "the perfect tool for the job."

@chirmer:  I sincerely hope that you did not mean that you agree with @lykoz's libelous statements about me.

• 1

Seems we have various threads here and it's becoming complicated following what this is supposed to be about. Can the AI lot take a hike? The History of EN users set up a new thread? This is what moderators (good ones) do for a bustling Forum, but I guess there aren't any here.

lykov: functionality, output, format, design are probably the most crucial  things which would justify using anything like EN, otherwise, yes, why not go back to typewriters? Before EN, and even before that, I wrote in notebooks. They're still in my office under 6 inches of dust and I really need to dispose of them before they become part of my legacy. We're not clerks; this isn't a filing system it's a retrieval mechanism. Contextual note searches, tagging etc could, if used properly, improve the way we write, create or implement a project. That's what this is about, why it's important and why this discussion has merit. There are, I think, many more fundamental questions which might be considered as 'features' albeit they're not really anything more than refining the thought processes. Let's take tagging: why tag? What with? What's the result? Using my WP example above - this now comes with 'affinitomics' - which will be an improvement. [ Learning doesn't have to mean AI for those contributors still around ]. And, my other example of 'Popular Posts'. Whose counting? Certainly not me, but its relevance is astonishing. I can't think of a specific example where EN has helped me creatively (eg helped me come up with an idea), even if I hope to use it for just that - somehow my brain still functions better. I do know that I have used it extensively to store and retrieve snippets of code, quotations etc which has streamlined my work process and I ain't going back to notebooks.

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I use Dropbox. I like it a lot. But, I avoid putting anything sensitive into it.

FWIW, you *can* put an encrypted container in Dropbox & open it as a virtual drive. I've done this in the past with a Truecrypted container.

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By the way, if we're talking about cloud data lockers, Amazon is now down to 60 dollars for unlimited data.

I have been using Amazon S3 servers via Jungledisk UI for many years now (at least 7). IDK offhand how much space I use, but I think it's safe to say I use more than most of the average Joes b/c I tend to be a "virtual hoarder" and have documents, files, photos and even home movies I've been collecting for about 25 years now. What used to cost me ~$90/month is now down to$40.

• 1

I use Dropbox. I like it a lot. But, I avoid putting anything sensitive into it.

FWIW, you *can* put an encrypted container in Dropbox & open it as a virtual drive. I've done this in the past with a Truecrypted container.
Yep. VoodooPad encrypts its database and syncs through Dropbox. So does DEVONthink. So does nvALT. And, you can always encrypt something before putting it in there. I should have said that I don't put anything sensitive unencrypted into Dropbox, but the truth is that I use SpiderOak for just about everything that I would have used DB for in the old days. There are some occasions with non-sensitive material, though, when Dropbox is the best solution (when using notesy, for example, on the iPad). SpiderOak sadly lacks the integration with other apps ( a huge barrier to usage for most folks, I suspect). Users who don't worry about privacy can dump anything in there. One thing that rarely gets mentioned about DB is the solid support for everyone and the version histories in case of accidental (fill in the blank) -- Evernote ought to be doing something like DB does in these two areas..

With online storage prices plummeting and Evernote prices slightly rising for some users, it is probably feeling like a tight squeeze at Evernote. But, they run their own servers (a rarity) and if they added encrypted notebooks, I think they could clearly distinguish themselves from a lot of the monolithic, data mining / data snooping competition. Perhaps this year will bring us sexy encryption

• 5

1. Audio Recording
2. Recover Deleted Notes

Microsoft released OneNote for the Mac about a year ago. Since then Microsoft has delivered frequent improvements and new experiences that have made OneNote a top 10 free app in the Mac App Store. Continuing to make OneNote for Mac even better, Microsoft is introducing today an audio recording feature (see screenshot below) which is the most requested feature by Mac fans and especially students. It's just another powerful way to capture ideas and information into OneNote.

• 1

Yep. VoodooPad encrypts its database and syncs through Dropbox. So does DEVONthink. So does nvALT.

This would be great for me.  Any suggestions for Windows apps that do this?

Yep. VoodooPad encrypts its database and syncs through Dropbox. So does DEVONthink. So does nvALT.

This would be great for me.  Any suggestions for Windows apps that do this?

There is a reason I'm on the Mac now

I'd suggest a Macbook running Parallels if you need Windows software. If you must stick with Windows, OneNote on the Surface Pro seems to be the best solution. Because the Surface is both a tablet and a computer, you don't need the iPad, and you don't need to sync with anything else, so the cloud becomes unnecessary.

• 1

Because the Surface is both a tablet and a computer, you don't need the iPad, and you don't need to sync with anything else, so the cloud becomes unnecessary.

Wouldn't work for me.  I don't always have a Mac/PC/Tablet with me, but I *always* have my iPhone 6+.  Accessing my EN Notes on my iPhone is a key, essential benefit for me.  YMMV.