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Brother Tobias

Feature Request: Split long notes at delimiter with new headline

Idea

Just installed new version 6.0. Disappointed to see still no reciprocal of the merge function to allow one to split a note into many notes. My reason for wanting this (and I'm sure I'm not alone!) is my collection of long documents from other info-management sources, that I would love to split into multiple smaller documents.

For example, using syntax not unlike that in the email forwarder, one could start a newline with "%" followed by the note title, and then with the @notebook and #tag coding.

This would be a real life- and data-saver, allowing me to rescue tons of data that is sitting in a moribund format. (askSam). It would be much easier to insert these delimiters rather than cut and paste.

Please consider this as a very useful addition to the already very useful program. Thanks.

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This would be useful. 
To make it simpler you could just convert the existing Note into a Notebook and use the divider line to indicate a new note. 
The first line after the divider line would become the tittle of the new note.

Typical senario.  for me :
Start a new note for the week while travelling. 
Madly make notes each separated by a divider line.
Some time on the flight home spend an hour converting each section of the note into an individual note.
Then make a notebook and file them all for the week.

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Yes, I've got 3000 or more notes in AskSam that I haven't touched in years. I would love to have a means to import them into Evernote. 

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1 hour ago, bread2u said:

Yes, I've got 3000 or more notes in AskSam that I haven't touched in years. I would love to have a means to import them into Evernote. 

What is the AskSam format?

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1 hour ago, jefito said:

What is the AskSam format?

AskSam is a configurable textual database.  I don't have the format specification, and don't even know if it is available. What I do have is an export of my notes with a tilde (~) delimiting the notes. Thus, for import, I could use my text file with the first line after the tilde as the title, and the rest of the lines up to the next tilde as the body of a note. Is there a way to do that with Evernote?

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askSam is the exact reason I've been looking for this capability to be added to Evernote, though I'm sure it would be helpful to anyone wanting to import a long document broken up into separate notes. I believe the askSam file format is proprietary, and the company seems to have gone out of active business.

 

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Yes, it is to avoid long notes that this idea came up... not just for importing long files exported from askSam (marked for division in Evernote into individual short files, picking up the note title from the first line of the delimited subsection) but it would be a great way to break down a longer document. For example:

  1. Import long document into Evernote.
  2. Mark where you want to divide this document into smaller notes (using tags as in email forwarding if desired)
  3. Run the proposed "break into smaller notes" function requested here.

This is much easier than manually creating notes cutting and pasting into Evernote. (And is the opposite of the "Merge Notes" function already present.)

The boon for moving from askSam is that one can export a single document with delimiters in place (as in the tiled suggested above) and then break it into smaller notes, replicating the original askSam individual "documents" part of a larger "database" -- without the labor of maual cut and paste, or individual export. Picking up note name from the first line would be an ideal option.

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1 hour ago, DTLow said:

I don't recommend long notes in Evernote, but people do use them

What is the problem with importing your notes in their current length

>>Thus, for import, I could use my text file with the first line after the tilde as the title, and the rest of the lines up to the next tilde as the body of a note. Is there a way to do that with Evernote?

The Evernote import uses the filename as the note title
Currently there is no splitting feature; I could script this on my Mac using 
AppleScript

They aren't particularly long notes, it's just that they are all in one file. I don't know how to program in AppleScript. Would that be hard to do?

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25 minutes ago, Brother Tobias said:

Yes, it is to avoid long notes that this idea came up... not just for importing long files exported from askSam (marked for division in Evernote into individual short files, picking up the note title from the first line of the delimited subsection) but it would be a great way to break down a longer document. For example:

  1. Import long document into Evernote.
  2. Mark where you want to divide this document into smaller notes (using tags as in email forwarding if desired)
  3. Run the proposed "break into smaller notes" function requested here.

This is much easier than manually creating notes cutting and pasting into Evernote. (And is the opposite of the "Merge Notes" function already present.)

The boon for moving from askSam is that one can export a single document with delimiters in place (as in the tiled suggested above) and then break it into smaller notes, replicating the original askSam individual "documents" part of a larger "database" -- without the labor of maual cut and paste, or individual export. Picking up note name from the first line would be an ideal option.

I would be willing to try that. Like DTLow said, sometimes things crash with large files. I've got it in a 10 MB PDF (2164 pages).  Hmm, probably can't import that. I don't have a text file exported,  and my wife's windows computer (the only windows computer in the house) is currently torn apart. So, I can't try it now. 

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58 minutes ago, Brother Tobias said:

The boon for moving from askSam is that one can export a single document

Now I understand the requirement

Do you have to combine the notes in a single document, or can each be exported as a single file?

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42 minutes ago, bread2u said:

I don't know how to program in AppleScript. Would that be hard to do?

Note - It's a Mac tool and I know this is a Windows forum

Its not that hard, but beginning learning is a steep curve.  
I estimate about 10 lines of code

If you run into problems, you can post in the forums and get help.
It would be be  better to post in the Mac forum or the Window people will start throwing stuff at us

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6 minutes ago, DTLow said:

Do you have to combine the notes in a single document, or can each be exported as a single file?

It is possible to export single notes... and I've done that for import to Evernote on a note by note basis; exporting as rtf files to a watched folder... but then the note name becomes the filename (not great) and it is a tedious task when there are thousands of notes. Bit it would be a one step operation for thousands of notes if Evernote had a "divide on delimiter" function -- as askSam does for both import and export.

Ideally, a function to reverse the "Merge Notes" based on a delimiter is a natural for data management. I'm actually surprised that Evernote had the merge function prior to having a divide function built in -- given that large files are less useful than short ones.

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2 hours ago, bread2u said:

I don't have the format specification, and don't even know if it is available. What I do have is an export of my notes with a tilde (~) delimiting the notes. Thus, for import, I could use my text file with the first line after the tilde as the title, and the rest of the lines up to the next tilde as the body of a note. Is there a way to do that with Evernote?

So you have exported your AskSam database as one long note, with tilde-delimited notes? Evernote has no way to split a single file like this into separate notes. You're sort of in the Perl or PowerShell area to do the splitting based on the text format, unless you can whip up a specialized command-line program to do this. After that, auto importing them into Evernote is pretty easy.

To be specific, each new note begins with a tilde; is that on a line by itself?

The next line is the title, and subsequent lines (up to the next tilde) are the note body, correct?

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20 minutes ago, Brother Tobias said:

I'm actually surprised that Evernote had the merge function prior to having a divide function built in -- given that large files are less useful than short ones.

I  saw a tv show where they were removing a ring from a corpse.  One person pulled out a small spray bottle of oil that she kept for situations like this.

Are there many situations like this?

This seems like a nich requirement needed by AskSam exporters

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56 minutes ago, bread2u said:

I've got it in a 10 MB PDF (2164 pages).  Hmm, probably can't import that. I don't have a text file exported, 

That adds a new complication.  Splitting a PDF file is definitely beyond Evernote capabilities.

I think you need to look at third party products

I can create the 10MB note.  Not sure about displaying a PDF that size.  Evernote's indexing feature is limited to 100 pages

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Sounds like I need to get back into this when the windows computer comes back up & that will be tomorrow at best. Then I can get on my wife's computer & try to do an export directly to text instead of to PDF. I looked at the PDF & it doesn't have any delimiters between each note. (No tilde in there. So I misspoke.)

She got a phishing message that there was a rootkit on her computer & to call "Microsoft Technical". So, I killed the power (I tried to do a hard shutdown, but MS fooled me and did a normal shutdown), pulled the drives out of her computer and am backing up her files. She has a lot of data on 2 disks, so it won't be back up today. If there really is a rootkit on it, then it will be next week before it's back up.

But I do still have AskSam still installed on her machine. I stopped using AskSam when I went to a Mac, and after trying out a few other products ended up with Evernote. Being multi-platform, which is now an essential requirement. Last I looked, AskSam (Florida) was out of business, so there's probably very little support for it anymore.

Anyway, After her computer comes back up I'll see about getting a text export and move over to the Mac section. Thanks for your suggestions. This has been on the back burner for years & it will be nice to get it done.

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2 hours ago, Brother Tobias said:

I'm actually surprised that Evernote had the merge function prior to having a divide function built in -- given that large files are less useful than short ones.

I'm not. 'Merge' is a much simpler operation that 'split': there's no need to specify delimiters, titles, etc. You just smush the notes together. Parsing arbitrary data formats is not all that hard, but specifying how data is formatted is not always easy to present to users.

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13 hours ago, bread2u said:

Yes, I've got 3000 or more notes in AskSam that I haven't touched in years. I would love to have a means to import them into Evernote. 

I don't recommend long notes in Evernote, but people do use them

What is the problem with importing your notes in their current length

>>Thus, for import, I could use my text file with the first line after the tilde as the title, and the rest of the lines up to the next tilde as the body of a note. Is there a way to do that with Evernote?

The Evernote import uses the filename as the note title
Currently there is no splitting feature; I could script this on my Mac using 
AppleScript

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