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I'm an avid Evernote user.  My whole life is in Evernote, both business and personal.  I use it all day, every day, not only for storage and reference, but also as my to-do list(s).  However, as my life has grown more complicated (multiple businesses, properties, etc.), I'm finding it harder and harder to come up with a good organizational system in EN, given the limited number of "tiers" (stacks, notebooks and notes).  The more blogs I read and the more Youtube videos I watch, the more I realize that I'm not alone in this dilemma.  

2 updates by EN could really help.  One would be the ability to do "sub-stacks", which many people have requested.  More importantly, would be the ability to tag entire Notebooks, not just individual notes.  This way, the same notebook could be given multiple tags, and then viewed in various different groups, as opposed to being limited to a single "stack".  This would solve a lot of the organizational issues I've been having.

 

 

 

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I'm an avid Evernote user.  My whole life is in Evernote, both business and personal.  I use it all day, every day, not only for storage and reference, but also as my to-do list(s).  However, as my life has grown more complicated (multiple businesses, properties, etc.), I'm finding it harder and harder to come up with a good organizational system in EN, given the limited number of "tiers" (stacks, notebooks and notes).  The more blogs I read and the more Youtube videos I watch, the more I realize that I'm not alone in this dilemma.  

2 updates by EN could really help.  One would be the ability to do "sub-stacks", which many people have requested.  More importantly, would be the ability to tag entire Notebooks, not just individual notes.  This way, the same notebook could be given multiple tags, and then viewed in various different groups, as opposed to being limited to a single "stack".  This would solve a lot of the organizational issues I've been having.

 

You can imitate "sub-stacks" with a tag-based system. You'll find a lot on that in the forums here. That would seem to solve the 2nd feature you mentioned (tagging notebooks): We can't search multiple notebooks in one search outside of a stack... but we can search multiple tag contexts through the syntax: any: tag:1, tag:2, tag:3

  • You can manually type it out
  • On desktop you can select multiple tags in the left panel (Ctrl + click-click-click...) then simply add "any:" after the string in the search bar
  • Or repeat the above and set up a saved search which you can access on any device easily by popping it in your shortcuts list

 

In other words, if you substituted your notebooks for tags instead (or simultaneously if you want to test it out), you would be able to search for multiple tag contexts as if they were notebooks. Your line of thought (and your notebook limitations in Evernote) points towards a tag-based setup as a possible solution for you... especially since it doesn't look like Evernote will ever implement the 2 features that you and many others have suggested. 

 

Here's a good article on how to go about rewiring your account to make use of a tag-based setup (although not practical on the new web Beta and iOS):

 

https://discussion.evernote.com/topic/71728-step-by-step-guide-on-how-to-re-organise-your-evernote-from-scratch/

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Or you could just learn to use tags, for which there are a number of useful strategies.  

 

Maybe fully nested notebooks will appear in Evernote tomorrow, but in my experience, after 6 years of fairly persistent requests (not by me), Evernote has not offered them. Personally, I don't miss them. I would rather have the ability to search multiple notebooks at a time (specified by wildcard as well), which would obviate your need for tagging notebooks.

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It would be helpful to explain what you are trying to organize, but in general tags can do this for you and be even more powerful than having sub-folders. 

 

For instance you mention mention multiple businesses and properties. Let me suppose that you are managing multiple rental  properties owned by multiple owners. You might in a folder world have an overall folder of Property management then sub folders either by location or by owner. Underneath those you might have sub-folders for maintenance and rental agreements, etc. 

 

At some point you'll have something that might be able to be in more than one folder or you'll have the need to see something in a way different than your overall organization.

 

Suppose you have a tenant who rents multiple properties and you'd like to look at the maintenance records on all those properties. But you are organized at the top by properties or by owners not by tenants. In a tag system this would be a simple search for the two tags: one for the tenant and one for maintenance. In a folder system this much more difficult to find. 

 

Similarly if this same tenant wanted one contract for multiple properties, where do you file that? Do you make copies for each sub-folder? In a tag world, you just tag with property or owner tags and you are good to go with one note. 

 

Using the tags means you could put all your property management files into one large notebook and use tags to find things. 

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Yup...tags are the way to go. I have yet to see an *organizational* case that cannot be accomplished with tags. Additionally, as has been mentioned above, tags are more flexible.

Another reason to use tags is their flexibility (and why folder organization fails with very many files) is (to use Jefito's example), if you have a photo of a round, red, rubber ball...where do you put it in a folder structure?  Do you put it under round?  Red?  Rubber?  Ball?  When using tags, it doesn't matter. Put it anywhere.  Then tag it with round, red, rubber, ball.  Then when you're looking for a red ball, you can simply select those tags & find all images of a red ball. 

 

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Yup...tags are the way to go. I have yet to see an *organizational* case that cannot be accomplished with tags. Additionally, as has been mentioned above, tags are more flexible.

Another reason to use tags is their flexibility (and why folder organization fails with very many files) is (to use Jefito's example), if you have a photo of a round, red, rubber ball...where do you put it in a folder structure?  Do you put it under round?  Red?  Rubber?  Ball?  When using tags, it doesn't matter. Put it anywhere.  Then tag it with round, red, rubber, ball.  Then when you're looking for a red ball, you can simply select those tags & find all images of a red ball.

I hate to admit it... But you're right BnF ;-)

I haven't quite gotten to the end of my rope with my notebook and stack setup... But in the future, if Notebooks in general ever get the best of me, I think I can make the transition in less than 30 minutes. I've run through an emergency simulation in my mind's eye a couple of times, haha!

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It may or may not be true that Tags can accomplish what multi-level notebooks could, but it takes more steps and more care.  I am one of those folks who can't understand why Evernote refuses to allow its users to CHOOSE which solution works best for THEM!  I think hierarchically.  I don't think in tags.  I'm sure others do.  But not me.  Why  not let me choose?  It's a paradigm that almost EVERYONE is familiar with and probably comfortable with, even if it's not their preferred mode.

 

BT

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This debate of sub-notebooks (sub-folders) vs tags rages on.  Many, many have requested sub-notebooks for well over 5 years now, and a few continue to tell us why we don't need sub-notebooks.  Oh, well, some things never change.

 

I can't say it is likely that Evernote will in the near future, or ever, provide sub-notebooks.  So, for now, if you want to use Evernote the best approach seems to be using a limited number of Stacks and Notebooks, and mostly tags and good descriptive Note Titles.

 

There has been much written about this subject.  In particular there are some lengthy, well-thought-out blogs available.

I'd suggest that you do a google search on "evernote organization" to see a broad variety of topics, from within this forum, Evernote blogs, and independent blogs.

 

Here's a few that I have found helpful:

(no particular order)

Good luck, and please feel free to post any follow-up questions.

Of course, as always, Google is your friend!

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It may or may not be true that Tags can accomplish what multi-level notebooks could, but it takes more steps and more care.  I am one of those folks who can't understand why Evernote refuses to allow its users to CHOOSE which solution works best for THEM!  I think hierarchically.  I don't think in tags.  I'm sure others do.  But not me.  Why  not let me choose?  It's a paradigm that almost EVERYONE is familiar with and probably comfortable with, even if it's not their preferred mode.

 

BT

If you think in terms of adjectives, you think in terms of tags. If you understand keywords, you understand tags. It's very unlikely that you think solely in terms of hierarchies.

 

Evernote is not refusing to let you choose anything. Evernote is what it is; it's one choice among a number of other competing products. You may still choose freely among them, according to what works for you.

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@BeachBT:  Unless someone here has found a way to read minds, I doubt from one post they could know completely what you're thinking.

Don't let the negative rhetoric deter you, nor let others put words in your mouth.  Just ignore the garbage.  ;)

 

But I can understand what you mean when you say "I think hierarchically", because I and others that have posted here do also.

So do, some don't.  That's fine.

You didn't say "solely".  I know that you meant that you don't understand why Evernote does not provide its users with the option of sub-notebooks.

 

Someone telling you that you have choices is like saying "GEICO can save you 15% in 15 minutes".  "Everybody knows that."   LOL

We are all adults here, and we all know we have choices.  Big deal.

 

Anyway feel free to express yourself.  Explore the various ways you can organize Evernote.  There are some use cases that Evernote does not support well.  Project management is one of them because it is very hierarchical.  Creating long, complex legal documents is another.

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@Explorer,

Thanks for the pointers. Some of the tips were quite clever. Sadly some of the cleverness was only necessary because we don't have sub-notebooks. But clever nonetheless. I'm not saying that tags are not a good idea, I see the power in them. But just imagine how fabulous Evernote would be if we had BOTH tags and sub-notebooks!!!!

BT

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Yeah, I get it BT.  But I think of it like this:  In my poor-man's workshop (literally), I have to make do with the tools I have (or can afford).  After years of drooling, I finally bought a router when I caught a really good one on sale.

 

If not having sub-notebooks is a show stopper for you, then I guess you'll have to look elsewhere.

But there is a great deal that you can do with the tools provided by Evernote.

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Posted · Hidden by charboyd, February 26, 2015 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War
Hidden by charboyd, February 26, 2015 - Forum Code of Conduction violation: Flame War

"Just ignore the garbage"

 

More passive-aggressive ***** from the master.

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