If you have been following my blog since I started it, now is a good time to introduce to you note-taking and time management apps. As you start blogging or running your business, you will find that you will quickly become overwhelmed. You will also see really great ideas everywhere for your next inspirational blog post. What do you do? Grab a pen and notepad? Use a text editor like WordPad? I have a better idea.
Here are two of the most popular note-taking apps. Which is best for you? When it comes to note-taking apps – OneNote or Evernote? OneNote is a free app for Windows or Mac for consumers. Evernote has a free and a business paid version that is currently $10 USD per user per month.
So, whether you are just starting to use a note-taking app or if you are considering switching, the first thing I suggest you do is to think about what features you will need and use the most. Both applications work on the same platforms now (including Windows OS X, Android, iPhone, iPad, tablets).
What is the main reason you should use a note-taking app? To help you get organized by keeping all your ideas, saved web pages, and other documents in one place. They also offer similar features, such as a web clipper, Optical Character Recognition (or OCR, which interprets images or scanned information as text), instant syncing of notes to all your devices, and integration with third-party services.
What a great time to do business! With all this technology, there really is no excuse not to be organized and on time for all your tasks and appointments both personal and business. As I reminded you in my post about your blog security, I am not a techy blogger so I will not be doing a heavy in-depth review about these two apps. I am just going to go over the main points and differences that will be important for the average user. I have done all the research for you so you don’t have to. At the end of this post, I will reveal which one I intend to use after I take you on my research journey. Let’s see if you agree with me!
ONENOTE OR EVERNOTE
OneNote functions as a digital notebook by organizing your notes into colored-tabbed sections when you create a new notebook. Firsst you break your notebook up into sections using tabs. You will be pleased to know that there are no limits as to how many tabs you create in each notebook! Any section tab can contain any unlimited number of pages. You can color code and name these tabs and rearrange however you would like. Microsoft has now created a free version for the “modern” Windows 8 interface and synced it all in the cloud.
Just like a page in a notebook, you can add pictures, text, charts, and other things anywhere just like in a Word document or PowerPoint. You can customize each page in your notebook including the background color, page sizes and so on. You can also use text formatting for headers and footer, use the format painter to copy and apply formatting. There are also various templates you can use to make your pages (or notes) stand out. It even includes a research panel so you are able to look up reference sources, a spell checker, a thesaurus, and language translation.
One feature that I think will be great to me is that you can dock your note to a small window on your desktop for easy note-taking while you surf the web.
OneNote also offers browser add-ins for all the top browsers like Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari and Firefox. Internet Explorer actually has two convenient page clippers: Send to OneNote and Link to OneNote. The clippers preserbe the page formatting, it will timestamp when you clipped, and adds the source URL If you are on a web page and you decide you want to clip content, you can click and drag just like when you use the Windows Snipping Tool and grab whatever you want. If you grab a section with links in it, be aware the links will not work, the clip is an image.
I couldn’t believe it, you can actually embed just about anything on your page such as photos, images, audio and video, files — all drag-and-drop. For example, let’s say you attended a lecture. You could put your text notes to the left on the page, a photo of the lecturer on top, and an audio recording of the lecture to the right. You can link your notes to the original document, or to a meeting from your Outlook calendar. This is particularly handy to get the agenda, job titles, or make sure you have everyone’s name spelled correctly. You can send information from any file or web page directly into OneNote.
What’s really neat for a person like me that enjoys images with quotes, I can insert an image and optical character recognition picks up any text in it automatically. As a photographer, using all the visual mediums that your eyes love is a high priority and it seems OneNote will let you get as creative as you desire.
Now, this is really powerful; you can search for text within images, audio, and video files! Even your handwritten notes! It can actually read your handwriting without you having to convert it to text (which you can if you like but it’s not required). I read that stylus support is one of OneNote’s best features which actually sets it apart from other note-taking apps like Evernote. To use a stylus you will need a tablet PC. OneNote 2013 seems to have improved support for the writing or drawing on your pages with your fingers.
I am a person that likes to stay organized but I like things to be attractive as well. Since the notebook idea is very familiar to me, I am sure it would work great when I am brainstorming to write a new post, create a new journal entry, take notes for my continuing education in photography, and draw or hand-write notes anywhere I like as well. There is also the option to make some notes “subnotes” or “subpages” so they appear inset from the main page menu to create a visual hierarchy. To this day, my brain still works in an outline format so again, this is very comfortable for me.
A fellow blogger and friend of mine, Sue Bride, created a post about how she uses OneNote for her business and personal life.
I always keep One Note open and available for every time I want to make any kind of notes. I have a few separate “Notebooks” open at a time, which are all accessible from any page I am on. Within each Notebook I have different “Sections”, subdivided yet again into different “Pages” and “Sub-pages”. Automatic color coding of the different areas makes it easy to find what you are looking for. If you are familiar with Evernote then One Note Notebooks are like Evernote Stacks and One Note Pages equate to Evernote Notebooks.
Read Full Article here: One Note Examples of Use
Here’s a short video to see OneNote 2013 in action:
ONENOTE FOR MACS
The MAC version is free as well and includes 7GB of storage on Microsoft’s servers with no limit on the amount of data you can upload/download in a given time period. If you choose to subscribe to Office 365, you are given 20GB of space. Now since I already reviewed the Windows Version of OneNote, let me just state some of the important differences in the MAC version.
- If you saved OneNote files on your hard-drive, you cannot open existing OneNote Files.
- If you want to print, you have to email yourself a PDF version and print it. You cannot print directly from the app.
- You can insert web links, (not web pages) to your notes.
- You cannot insert a PDF or other Microsoft Office Documents to your OneNote notes like you can in the Windows version of OneNote.
- To add text from an external document, you have to copy-and-paste into a text field. The drag-and-drop is not supported from the Finder.
- Maybe one of the most frustrating things I hear from MAC users is that you cannot paste from an existing table into a new table in your notebook. What will happen is all the data will paste into the first cell AND not be distributed throughout the table as it should.
MAC users say that there are features that still make using OneNote desirable. It just depends on the user’s needs. You will notice online collaboration immediately though you won’t be able to track changes. Easy to use editing environment. Most felt that OneNote for MAC systems is still not at a point where it is a clear choice above Evernote. Microsoft says they are addressing the above issues and will resolve them over time.
Evernote also works on all devices with Web access, and also provides native apps for Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry. It also has dedicated client software for Windows and Mac OS X. Evernote has also developed a community with a variety of its own apps and third-party apps as well. Evernote is more of a digital file cabinet. Why the elephant logo? It’s slogan is, “Remember everything.” It has a simpler, less fussy user interface. It has a simpler note-taking style rather than more stylish like OneNote.
Since the purpose for both apps is very similar, note that Evernote can be your digital file cabinet and note-taking tool, your daily journal, task or project management system, favorite recipe saver, and more. Because it has so many uses and different features, Evernote can both appeal to a lot of people and feel like way to much to others.
It may not be super-stylish but it’s so easy to use. Quickly create a note, tag it, share it, and set a reminder for it. Some users claim that you can do all that by the time it would take you to find out how to share a note in OneNote? Even though it uses the term “notebook,” it seems to be more of a database of everything you’ve ever saved.
You can filter your notes by the notebook name and tags, these items can appear in Google searches — one powerful feature that puts it ahead of OneNote when it come to information you’ve reviewed before. OneNote does have a really neat summary pages feature that works similar to saved searches, but seems to be a bit easier to use.
Both apps can help you go paperless, scan everything into either OneNote or Evernote. Since they are searchable like a database, you’ll be able to find whatever you want quickly.
Here’s one user’s experience with Evernote:
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See what Powerbot brings to these email clients for Evernote and OneNote!
After researching these two applications for the past two weeks, my conclusion is this:
There are two main streams of computers in the world; MAC Users and PC Users. Each feels that their choice is the very best choice and they are fiercely loyal to whichever system they have chosen. Each has pros and cons. It all comes down to the individual user, how they use their computer, and what features they need. It can also come down to third-party app availability.
OneNote Or Evernote?
For an initial review of the two apps, I believe it will be the Apple or Microsoft scenario. As I stated above, it will depend on the individual user and how they are going to use the apps. I know, this is probably a big letdown for you but I must be honest! They both have strengths and weaknesses, are pretty much neck and neck at this point. If we were talking about the OneNote 2010, I might say Evernote had an edge. Now that OneNote 2013 is free and Microsoft has raised the bar, they are pretty even.
I suggest since each app is free, download them both. Set a time period of say 1 week or 10 days and use each one the way you will be using the application for daily use. See which one seems comfortable, easy to use, is intuitive, and handles in an expected way. Then you will know which one is best for your particular lifestyle.
They are both great so don’t be afraid to try them out and make a mistake! It’s easily corrected! Whatever you do, get organized, manage your time so that you are the most productive and not wasting time, easily prepare your receipts and documents for tax time (it will be here before you know it!), and feel confident that you know right where everything is and that you can find anything at a moments notice!
My personal preference? OneNote. You should be able to tell that I like colorful pretty things. I want notes with style! I’m a big Google/Microsoft Fan.
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