After trying Evernote, Workflowy, Notion, wikis, org-mode, and essentially everything else I could find, I gave up and tried building my own system for notes. Plain timestamped markdown files linked together. Edited with vim and a few bash scripts, rendered with a custom deployment of Gollum. All in a git repo.
It's... wonderful. Surprisingly easy. Fast. If there's a feature I wish it had, I can write a quick bash script to implement it. If Gollum stops being maintained, I can use whatever the next best markdown renderer is. Markdown isn't going away anytime soon.
It's liberating to be in control. I find myself more eager to write things down. I'm surprised more people don't do the same.
Edit: here's what my system looks like https://imgur.com/a/nGplj
X-post from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15057002 10 months ago. Still using & loving it.
One example is jrnl. Each journal (collection of entries) is written in a flat text file. You can optionally encrypt it with AES. They even give you reference code on how you could decrypt it yourself.
If jrnl stops being a thing, I can probably re-implement all of its functionality in a day. Or someone else can. Its output is very simple.
pushd $JRNL_DIR && git pull && echo "##### "(date) >> (date "+%Y-%m-%d.txt") && vim (date "+%Y-%m-%d.txt") && git add *.txt && git commit -m "jrnl "(date "+%Y-%m-%d.txt") && git push && popd
Would be cool if you could share your setup on GitHub.
brew cask install fsnotes
Maybe it's working now?
Now, if I could just find something as brilliant for this Surface Book 2.
I've been using a variant of the zettelkasten method for keeping book summaries and notes on index cards. It's been nice but the indexing method I'm using is cumbersome. I've been toying with the idea of moving just that into something digital.
Another thing that I recently came across is https://www.gnu.org/software/hyperbole/. It's also Emacs based and might be something I can actually use.
That's quite the value judgement. Emacs, when compared with Atom and Sublime Text, has a tremendous learning curve for little payback. It's extensible? So are they, and with programming languages that are useful outside the editor, no less. It's powerful? So are they.
And more, they implement something resembling a common UI to the rest of the applications on your system. Sure, you can emulate that with the proper installation of modes into Emacs, but at that point you're already down the rabbit hole.
Emacs may still be the king of the hill, but it's a really nasty hill to climb. And with Atom and Sublime text sitting just a little below the summit with a nice, paved road to them it's going to take more than just being a bit better than them to justify that final hill climb.
So, no, people aren't afraid. Emacs is just not worth most people's time.
Sincerely, a VIM and emacs user.
Spacemacs, Prelude, and Scimacs are all good options depending on your use-case.
I mean if all you want is a text editor, some SCM integration, some build tool integration, syntax highlighting, and code completion then going with a specialized tool just for that is a good choice.
But the power of Emacs is that it can do nigh-anything and everything is a few lines of elisp away from being tightly integrated.
* Organize your tasks and projects with org-mode and work seemelessly with your team by syncing with org-trello.
* Use mu4e and magit integration to seemelessly send and apply patches and pull projects and todo items directly from email.
* Use one of the IRC clients or emacs-slack to do the same thing. Generate snippets on the fly in your team's chat from the currently selected text.
* Use org mode with org-babel and TRAMP to create interactive notebooks carrying out tricky tasks directly on the remote server from within emacs.
* Use emacsclient --tramp when you're SSH'd on a remote box to transparently edit in your local emacs.
* Replace tmux and tmuxinator with emacs-server.
I don't realy think it's small step up.
Org mode is one of the few unique bits of software available only on Emacs, but you can get 80% (if not more) of its functionality with markdown notes and regular email/calendaring software for 20% (if not less) of the learning curve.
EDIT: And I'm not ignoring Spacemacs and its kin. Yes, they are more user friendly, but they still do not follow many of the common OS UI models, and you still are interacting with a single-purpose programming language for any customization. The abstraction falls apart quickly when you try do do something more powerful (like opening the package manager).
Not to mention, the last three times I tried to do Go development in Spacemacs it would freeze in an infinite busy loop. It's unfortunate that a broken mode can completely hose the entire editor in this day.
Otoh, I tried both atom and vscode for the same job, but quickly ran away because using an editor on which modal editing is not a first class citizen is not for me anymore.
I disagree to this point. org-trello should work in that way "in theory", but actually it doesn't. Its usage is quite opinionated, and its syncing didn't work as I expected when I tried it out. Instead, we probably should have an org-mode integration with GitHub/GitLab issues.
As for extracting meaningful info with other editors, I would say it depends on how you structure your notes. For me it's just a very long bullet list with some tags here and there. So a plain text editor will only 'add' some star characters at the beginning of each lines, which appears quite readable to my eyes.
Obviously you won't be able to execute code blocks, reformat tables, follow links, fold sections etc.. but everything is just a search away..
That’s not what that means.
I take your point in it being bound to Emacs however. Pandoc is an excellent tool for conversion though, and other editors are catching up quickly.
Note: I don't know what raw orgmode files look like, maybe they're similar to Markdown.
The thing is, Org format is defined by the way Org-mode in Emacs handles it. Beyond Markdown-like features (which are rather easy to parse out; the format is similar), you get things in the data format that to date are handled only by Emacs. Think of Emacs + org mode as a better Jupyter notebooks than just editor for static text documents.
Consider this note I have in my org file for work tasks.
** DONE [#A] Testing prior to syncup meeting :CUSTOMER_development:
CLOSED: [2018-07-13 Fri 14:04]
CLOCK: [2018-07-13 Fri 12:14]--[2018-07-13 Fri 14:04] => 1:50
- [X] Baseline test for REDACTED
- REDACTED NOTE
- [X] Baseline test for SOMETHING ELSE
In this sense, org format is both a nice Markdown alternative, and - when coupled with Emacs - enables very powerful interactive documents that can handle task management, time clocking, literate programming, spreadsheeting, and other tasks.
I suspect Org will never be as popular as Markdown simply because, if you wanted to go beyond Markdown feature parity, you'd have to reimplement half of Emacs to handle those "advanced" aspects.
With Markdown I can use any editor from a full-featured IDE all the way down to `cat` or `ed` and all I'm giving up are some quality of life features. It's the same format at the bottom, and it has the added benefit of being ubiquitous in that nearly every editor has some basic Markdown support. I can write it anywhere and take it anywhere, not so for Org-Mode.
I think I prefer the Markdown approach of keeping the file format light and plain, and building the quality of life features on top in the editor.
As for your orgmode example, it's not a very good example of "just plaintext" if the metadata code in between the bits of text is larger than the content of the note. I imagine that with nice syntax highlighting it becomes easier to parse in just a glance, but then it's no longer "just plaintext" in the same way that e.g. YAML isn't.
It probably works very well, but to me it looks a lot like a plaintext encoding of a database record or something. It's a different use case. Not a simple note that is "basically plaintext". For instance I would not feel entirely comfortable editing your example without worrying I'd mess up the structure or produce a syntax error. Though maybe the format is really forgiving, I can't tell. What happens if you forget the :END: bit, for instance?
Of course you can read Orgmode in plain text, because that’s all it is. Maybe you looked at a file with a bunch of meta-data, or a file with a bunch of code blocks, but so what? Ignore the meta-data and just read the notes. They are all delimited by asterisks by their header level. Links are simple. Tables are simple, even tables with formulas are readable.
Further more Markdown is a poorly defined plaintext format, which is why there are so many variants of it, and processors specific to those variants. If you don’t believe me, remember that GFM is not official markdown.
Orgmode is at least well defined, so when other editors catch up and are able to implement all the features Emacs has when using it, they should behave similarly. If you want a well defined plain text format that exports to HTML/PDF/Word/RichText take a look at AsciiDoc or reStructuredText.
But don’t blame Emacs for leveraging its power over a relatively simple plain text format. There are even packages these days for Vim, Sublime, Atom, Jetbrains to make good use of Orgmode without Emacs.
The org-mode file format is plaintext, just like Markdown, and you definitely can edit and view it with any text editor. You will obviously lose the convenience of org-mode, though. Additionally, it's simple enough that you can easily implement a parser/importer for any other software.
I strongly agree with this. Actually I'm surprised that creating one's own tools is not more widespread in our industry as I consider this a quite unique trait of our profession.
(In case you really meant unique rather than special or valued). Machinists, woodworkers, and craftsmen in general all make their own tools when the situation calls for it.
(and yes the above sentence was meant to be a logical moron)
Although the difference between tool-making and yak shaving is itself a yak shaveable debate.
GitHub UI for on the move web committing is also pretty well done.
For a lot of things in life, you want to have simple interface yet sophisticated functionality. It’s incredibly hard to achieve that balance and so many software products screw up that balance.
At first this was pretty annoying, but then I wrote a couple scripts to automate the upload + naming process. Now it's as simple as running the script and getting the Markdown reference copied to your clipboard (ex. "![Interesting Image](../uploads/2018-07-15_interesting_image.jpg)").
That sounds a lot like zimwiki,except it uses a media wiki derived markup, but does have wysiwyg ui.
"I find myself more eager to write things down."
I feel exactly the same. Something about the simplicity and lightweight approach makes it more inviting for writing.
I use QOwnNotes to manage the notes, it's open source and available on osx/linux/windows, uses a sqlLite DB to add tagging and fast searching.
I use nextcloud for syncing the notes to a server and across devices.
Especially because I can (if it ever becomes unmaintained), export the data to my preferred format with a simple script, as everytthing is saved in plain json files.
I love the format, enjoy using Sublime for text-editing and never had a problem with syncing (as opposed to say OneNone or Evernote).
* a git repo (private on gitlab)
* markdown editor (desktop, phone)
* and several means of rendering (pandoc, gollum, etc)
I use a container image to generate my resume, my blog, knowledgebase and presentations. All from the same files and workflow...
Now if I added some stuff to automatically link to JIRA tickets or GitHub PRs, or even specific commits if I go to that level, that would be fantastic.
I built it when OneNote had a week long outage on Windows Phone. I'll never go back. Storing everything in plain text files is wonderfully liberating. Any app can read them. There's zero lock in. I can build my own super client or just use notepad
I just don't feel like using some stupid apps for notes. I understand that someone not technical would like to use app for that.
But then I saw your screenshot. Nevermind.
Org mode has configurable todos(todo, next, scheduled, deadline). You can attach tags to notes, have nested todos with percentage completion tracking, can write code snippets in any language with full syntax completion, log time for different tasks, and this is just all I can think on the top of my head.
And to top it all, it is just plain text. You can store org documents in dropbox and access them just like your other dropbox documents.
I have found it immensely advantageous to use monospace for writting and note keeping, because I can structure the writting with indentation. So my writtings are trees, I branch them similarly to how you punctuate text in English. That's very efficient for technical writting and notes, but also for ponderings and essays. It let's you drop many non-content words, because the indentation provides for sentence-glue with visual punctuation and walks you through the "thought tree". With prose it's not easy to see the structure from a glance, you only see it's biggest features. With lists, you are constrained to the point where the medium is not expressive enough for anything beyond a grocery list. With loose-form trees, you get the benefit of visual structure, text-efficiency and expressiveness. Code editors, like vim, are good for this, because they know how to wrap indented text.
Example of such notes. They're not in English, but you can see the structure. It's a week of entries on a project: https://hastebin.com/raw/gurexecubi
MS OneNote is great however they have stopped updating their desktop application (which allows offline notes) in favor of putting everything in the cloud (which will require a subscription to yet another cloud service if you exceed the OneDrive limits.)
Indeed, one of the most important points is the Q&A in the FAQ: "Has Standard Notes completed a third-party security audit?" (Spoiler: yes, it did).
To keep legibility, I always add the images at the bottom and reference them from the text.
Eventually I want to try using Microsoft Whiteboard but I'm waiting to buy the Surface Pen before I try it out.
For anything more technical I use Quiver which supports MarkDown, code with pretty printing, LaTex and diagram markup, but it doesn't have an iPad editor (just reader).
From various Apple support forum requests it seems that a lot of people were having similar - but also a number were totally unaffected.
tell application "Notes" to get body of every note
Same goes for the Markdown. Maybe some people find Markdown codes scattered all over the place "beautiful", but I don't.
Bear also doesn't handle images very well, at least on iOS (I don't remember how it behaves on the Mac). Images are rendered full width. You can't create nice grids of images like you can with Evernote.
As others have mentioned, organization can feel like a bit of a pain sometimes with how you have to organize with tags, but it hasn’t really hindered me as much as I thought it would.
Too expensive by half, and I don't think it is client side encrypted which is a deal breaker for anything sensitive. I really enjoy the simplicity though, great for checklists, writing papers, and all those little rare but important non-calendar based lists, ie. books to read, music to buy, etc.
My ideal note-app would be like workflowy, but allow de-hierarch-ising the list mentality. I mean, workflowy is basically a database back end and I can link tags between lists. But why not just have all the tags separate in the first place? You could have the constructed hierarchy tree to the left (ie bullet list), and the links tree to the right so you can see how the entries both compose and decompose.
Two things I dislike though, 1) as far as I can tell the dates/times can't trigger notifications. 2) the paid plan is expensive.. they give so much away for free, but then charge a lot for seemingly little. A $3/m tier is a good price point imo for a todo app. Right now it costs basically the same as Netflix..
The idea is that the issue with tags is they can be difficult to trace to all their referenced locations. I find myself not using them because they are difficult to keep track of.. you can't 'see' them at a glance.
But we don't need to see all the referenced locations, just the tree which leads away from the item you are looking at. So you get strict split between, and easy to understand, [left / right], [hierarchy / reference] organisation. Would make it easy to position and re-reference information. And would let you see referencing visually. Below for a really rough idea of what I am talking about.
- list 1 - sub-list 1 - item A | - sub-list 1 - list 1
- item B |
- item C | - sub-list 1
| \ sub-list 3 - list 2
- sub-list 2 - item D | - sub-list 2 - list 1
| \ sub-list 3 - list 2
- item E |
- item F | - sub-list 4 - list 2
- list 2 - sub-list 3 - item G | - sub-list 3 - list 2
- item C | - sub-list 1 - list 1
| \ sub-list 3 - list 2
- item D | - sub-list 2 - list 1
| \ sub-list 3 - list 2
I'm also using another method of note taking, which I prefer more, but which is not always accessible on the go. I stumbled upon a script here and modified it a little. (changed vim to nano and added some other):
if [ "$1" == "cat" ]; then
elif [ "$1" == "rg" ]; then
rg "$2" "$fpath"
elif [ "$1" == "nano" ]; then
elif [ "$1" == "--help" ]; then
printf 'Commands: \n-----------------------------------------------\n
$ notes \n
$ notes --help\t\t--\tdisplay this help\n
$ notes date\t\t--\tadd date row to notes\n
$ notes <text>\t\t--\tadd new entry \n
$ notes cat\t\t--\tprint notes using cat\n
$ notes rg <pattern>\t--\tripgrep notes\n
Remember to use #tags (for easier grepping)!\n\n'
elif [ "$1" == "date" ]; then
echo '# '"$(date +"%m-%d-%Y-%T")"
} >> "$fpath"
elif [ "$1" == "" ]; then
less +G "$fpath"
I very often keep this (with extended bash history) to keep notes about long commands I need to use later in the future, but not often. One had to do with imagemagick and resizing/compressing bunch of images in a directory. Added tags #imagemagick #command and in split of second I can get the command again whenever needed ;)
This is extremely handy!
Notepad can't do any of that.
Do you also complain about the size of blue-ray movies, when .txt documents are so much smaller?
Lets take another monster, Visual Studio Code. Its installation is 72mb, but i get so much more installing it including markdown editor.
I know you're not suggesting everything needs to be perfect. We just have different lines we draw where our UX outweighs things like RAM or disk space. For me, if it gives a great UX, 75MB is a tiny fraction of my RAM, I'd gladly pay it.
Besides, I'm only going to have one copy of this thing running. If it was 75MBx25 or something then I'd be concerned, but 75x1? meh.
Then why are you using Windows (dozens of Gb) and not Ubuntu (<5 Gb) or Debian (<1 Gb)?
(And this is coming from a guy that used to program entirely on text editors, because I didn't like how bloaty Eclipse was... I'm not deaf to your plight. I'm just curious that the idea of others making trade offs is so foreign to you.)
Why install a single-purpose Markdown editor when you already have VSCode installed that is an excellent Markdown editor plus a lightweight IDE for nearly every language ever?
One tool, one job is fine for things that actually stick to the Unix principle and keep it lightweight and minimal. Single-purpose apps should be aiming at the 10MB mark, not 100MB. At 100MB+, you can probably find a multipurpose app to do the same job just as well if not better.
Because life is short.
I understand when it started but why now it has to be a single page JS powered app which comes with so many restrictions.
Nothing beats the fact I can use it instantly across all devices (not Apple-only) and it's free.
My issue with Keep is that in my experience, if you aren’t religious with organization, it gets out of hand and unuseable fast.
iCloud's website does not work on Android devices. You can't even use "Find My iPhone" on a friend's device if you lose yours.
One thing that bothers me is the time for starting a new note in Google Docs - quite a few seconds. But there's probably a VSCode extension for that.
This is your core note-taking system that will last longer than you.
On top of that use any app or editor you fancy. I'm on a Mac, I use iaWriter as my markdown editor (I love that you can drag and drop images into the files), houdahspot to search, Monosnap to take screenshots. And a few OSX tags. But I expect all this to change anytime.
I have around 15 years worth of notes and journalling entries and this setup has emerged as the clear winner. If you care at all about long-levity, I highly advise against proprietary data formats.
I especially like being able to add any type of element (code, image, video, todo) to any page, the drag-and-drop reordering, and that I can export everything to Markdown if they ever go under because they (inexplicably) decided to remove limits on mobile users.
things that should be encrypted are either gpg encrytped or put in my password manager.
Bonus if you format your plain text with markdown or asciidoc or whatever your fav. plain text markup language is.
Don't make it more complicated than it needs to be.
Put it in a VCS for super double bonus points :)
Vim, asciidoc and in a fossil repo.
I tried this solution as well, but I missed one core feature of Evernote, that you can search by tags or keywords, and it instantly list all related notes.
- Markdown rendering can be done with pandoc
- Structure and search can be done with a solid file structure and grep
- Sync can be done with git or any other syncing solution out there.
- Encryption can be done with gpg (vim-gnupg)
Serious question: What feature is missing from this workflow (assuming the audience are developers)?
Oh and forwarding emails, adding todos and have them show up as due today, sorted, etc.
The last part could be scripted somewhat easily.
You're missing a big part: user experience.
Everything you said, sure, that's great. But the majority of developers (or really just people in general) don't want to spend their time learning each one of those things and trying to piece something together when a single app can do it good enough for them.
I too stopped using a dedicated note taking app but I already understand how to use markdown, git, etc. But for the average user or the user who just wants something to work without trying to look up multiple things or, hell, even the user who wants access on all of their devices like a phone, this solution make absolutely no sense.
Edit: and there is! I'm definitely using this.
When I'm on my phone I use Google Keep. What I love about it are the colored background, tile view and checklists. I wish Keep allowed inline embedding of images.
Apple Notes for the rest.
I honestly didn't realize how much I was using Apple Notes on iOS and Mac, until recently. The ability to create folders, and iCloud sync (after it became useful enough) are amazing.
I only wish Apple Notes would get a lot more features similar to Google Doc, but at that point it'd be an another replacement for Apple Pages.
I was never hooked to Evernote, despite the amount of traction it got. So I'm not sure if Notes on iOS and mac will be a good replacement for Evernote users though.
Unless I write it myself, but I'm trying hard to avoid that temptation, as are probably half the people commenting here.
For longer-form stuff (brainstorms mostly) I switch to Markdown in whichever text editor I'm using that day, and... ooh I'm setting myself up here... Dropbox.
Outliners are good for noting ideas. It makes you think more structural and organized. The less bullet you spend, the simple the idea becomes, that way reading it requires less energy.
I use Dynalist because of the reasons above and its mobile app is 10/10.
Though, I guess I'll run into an issue if I need to edit this on mobile at some point.
It's been tough to find the exact right note tool for myself. Might end up going with synced .txt files instead, who knows.
Still like the look of this for more detailed "overview" type of notes or brainstorming
I'm in the process of teaching myself Emacs because I like the idea of simple txt notes (org-mode) but I'm visual in my learning so treesheets works for me.
I find myself in a lot of situations where information isn't coming to me in a particularly organised fashion - interviews, presentations with several presenters, being on the receiving end of braindumps, etc. For those situations, I really need a mindmap app to be able to reorganise information with minimal effort into a structure that makes sense to me. It's a not-cheap, Apple-only app, but it can output into a variety of formats if I want to consume it on some other platform.
It also works well as a presentation tool if I don't know the audience's knowledge level. Rather than be tied into e.g a sequence of slides, using a mindmap tool I can skip over stuff the audience already knows, while still having the content there (just not visible) if I need to drill down deeply. I can go from receiving an unstructured braindump to presenting that same info in an organised fashion within a few minutes
I used to use Freemind and Freeplane, but the lack of an iOS option was a killer.
For most other situations, I find Evernote is great
So, how do you all deal with plain text notes? If you had a good WYSIWYG editor that fits in your workflow, would you switch?
Before going full Org Mode, I used MS OneNote, and liked it very much. My notes from that period has tons of images and annotated screenshots dumped into them. I miss that in my Emacs workflow nowadays. My dream software would be pieces of Org Mode on a OneNote-like canvas, with support for easily pasting images and drawing on them (especially using a graphics tablet, or at least a touchscreen). And of course with plaintext format (though the attachments could go into directories, automatically managed by the notetaking software).
I personally seem to gravitate towards OneNote for pure note taking. I personally like Notion.so more for notes that refer to tasks, using Notionas more of a task management and organization app vs pure note taking.
Outliner is a great app for quick note taking in nested format.
They've helped me organise my life - I've built a small personal "wiki" of study notes, WIP writing, calendar plans & email drafts.
I recently persuaded a friend to get it (so we can collaboratively work on a startup idea) and it's worked really smoothly. We both love it. Can't recommend enough.
They have fantastic customer support -- try emailing them?
I have used many other options, but Notes works best.
As I’m fully in the Apple ecosystem I now just use Apple Notes and in all honesty am totally happy with it. It’s fairly simple but does everything I need for free.
I also use Notability on the iPad for when I want to scribble something with the Apple Pencil and am also quite happy with that!
Honestly it’s pretty good. I am much more productive than on paper.
On laptop or desktop I stick with vim and copy to Word if required. I use Inkscape for diagrams.
So you write something, circle it and move it to the right spot.
If your brain works in chaotic ways at times it is such a cool feature to just write/dump everything and then order it later.
Also excellent for drawing diagrams and mockups and all kinds of other flows that require expansion or significant change later on.
Using the pen/ipad combo feels quite natural to write so this has been my solution for a while and has stuck more than any solution I have tried over the past 20 years aside from regular pen/paper.
It would also be nice with a good editor that was somewhat Dropbox aware, so I had fewer edit conflicts between my laptop and phone..
I use Brackets and Typora to edit .md files on pc/mac/linux. I find image handling in .md files fairly simple as long as you maintain an appropriate folder structure on the backend. Typora makes this especially easy.
I would like to build a better self-hosted tagging/viewing program for my huge cache of notes - something like Google Keep without being, well, Google. Turtl comes closest to my needs, but the lack of import/export at this point is a problem. I do not wish to be tied to a particular format or storage space.
Also, what do you mean by "Dropbox-aware"? It's all just files after all.
Except, annoyingly, Google Docs.
Too invested in the Google ecosystem to also depend on Dropbox.
I have tried some folder sync apps, but I prefer not to depend on those either.
I wound up writing a Quiver-alike for the windows/linux world at work.
* open source
* stored as a bunch of linked text files
* can version control with git
* wysiwyg markdown(media-wiki syntax) editor
My TODO lists with tickboxes are in Zim. (use  to make a box). This way I can check what tasks are left and which are done. When the list of "done"-tasks grows, I move those to an own page to declutter and have a searchable history.
When I read an interesting paper or book, I add summaries to be reviewed later. When I develop, I build "case files" of things I am doing (e.g. set of commands, replies from a device, mini-HOWTOs, observations). Often these can be communicated to other people after a little polish.
One problem is that some notes tend to become spread out and somewhat chaotic, especially when having to multitask under time pressure. Many notes taken have little if any value after some weeks or months so I don't pay much attention to strict discipline there. Zim is essentially a somewhat messy lab journal intended for myself.
* The files can live anywhere (say, the Dropbox folder)
* The files are plain text
* The markup is minimal and there is UI for it
* The app is a bit old-school - none of the flat ui, panes, online-email-style stuff. No Electron.
All good so far. Yet the app forces the user to organize stuff into linked pages. Let's see whether I have the patience to stick with it.
* manage to-do-lists based on the page they occur, and/or their tags, deadlines and priority level.
* table of contents for a larger one page note
* auto git add/commit upon application start
What I would love to see is:
* automated and robust git push/pull with GUI based conflict resolvement so I could collaborate with colleagues who are not too comfi with git using zim
* organize pages using a nested tag structure (like gmail lables) instead of folder structure.
Saved me a couple times with re-occurring or forgettable issues.
Recently with Virtual Box I needed to install the Intel USB 3.0 driver when spinning up an old WES7 VM. Had the note and the executable right there.
I find it is a computer tool that actually helps and encourages me to write and organize information and does not impede me in this activity. ("Clippings" together with a program called FinderNote on Mac OS Classic are another.)
Github repo with set-up instructions: https://github.com/fedwiki
Site with introductory information: http://fed.wiki.org/view/welcome-visitors
"Sandbox" to get a feel for how it works: http://sandbox.fed.wiki.org/view/welcome-visitors (NB: This is an older version of the software, but the core features are still pretty much the same.)
FinderNote for Mac OS Classic downloads:
Edit: Add FinderNote links.
1. Google Keep: For light weight temporary note taking - grocery items, during travel - hotel addresses, rental details etc.
Where lighting quick sync is needed between web and mobile interface, for transferring data between my laptop and mobile.
2. Microsoft OneNote: For heavy duty archival note taking, where font formatting, picture and document embedding is a necessity.
Which should be also available on mobile, but quick sync is not necessary.
Specifically, the incremental reading feature and annotated notes. Essentially you can add an article like it's a flashcard, and then it'll schedule it for reviews, and you can even review your notes. If you need something specific, you can search for the note itself.
Although not ideal, I ended up with OneNote. Also for temporary notes, I use Trello (easily accessible from my mobile), but the notes don't live there for more than a week.
I like how many people advice to build your own system with git and markdown. Ideally, I want such a system to work quickly on non-cutting edge mobile and sync on the fly, so maybe that's an idea for a side project.
It allows you to very quickly do a full text search, it saves the files as plain text, it supports external editors (I use MacVim) and it syncs with simplenote.com so I can see my notes on NV on my various macs and the simplenote app on my phone. It's very minimal and I like it a lot.
For linux users, there is nvPy: https://github.com/cpbotha/nvpy
It's a pretty ugly skin, but it works.
It ticks a lot of the boxes other people mention in this thread: markdown for interoperability, filebased and quick searches.
Good to see the best features of Notational Velocity being carried forward. I like the sound of iCloud syncing, too.
Out of curiousity, is there a more ideal format for import/export?
I suspect that turtl appeals to a lot of users with a large directory of plaintext notes who would be enticed to adopt the service if bulk textfile import were also streamlined. I hope the next release is a success!
mobile: termux + vim
windows: cygwin vim
chromeOS: crouton vim
Tried evil with OrgMode and deft but always come back to VimWiki
TiddlyWiki if only non-mobile
I have it convert all to HTML into syncthing folder, so I can access it read-only on mobile.
On Linux, which is my primary desktop, I use Ecco Pro on Wine.
If using OSX / IOS, I would recommend Omni Outliner.
Regarding two pane outliners vs singleness pane, I simply don't find the fragmentation of information across two panes intuitive. This may be subjective though. To me, having all information in a single tree, flows much better when brainstorming.
For Android, I don't have many good options for Outlining and therefore a regular note taker for now that's Evernote.
I prefer not having to use a bunch of tools for the same task, but here it seems like that's probably the best idea. Use a light note-taking app (or a physical notebook) to scribble things down, then enter it into a more repository-like software when I'm back at my computer.
On Windows: Ubuntu environment and vi
On Linux and BSD: vi
On phones and tablets: email client
Alternate for all platforms: email client
Endless Clients, Rich Text/HTML, Images, Open Format, Searchable, Selfhosted, Sync with Mobile, Tags ..
Only partially editable (drafts), ..?
I can then grep across the directory, or use VSC in built search in folder tool. I also get the formatting of markdown. It is already on my machine and usually already open and running.
No matter what I tried, a mind map app felt extremely natural. I just dump random bits of stuff into the map and it works.
If I’m not in my pc, always paper
Then bigger notes in devonthink because of its superb search and classification
So far I haven’t found any alternative that suits me better. I really like being able to use different notebooks for different purposes and being able to tag individual notes. (This is something that e.g. Apple’s Notes is missing.)
I won’t trust Evernote to stay around forever so my plan is to research alternatives in two years or so just to see if any good alternatives are available. (NTS: I should also make backups of my Evernote data...)
Tags also clutter notes. Do you put them at the beginning? At the end? Either way you will see the tags. Very strange for an app which boasts about providing "beautiful" notes.
If only we could tag a paragraph too.