Friday, 4 February 2005

Note-taking software

I've been looking for years for note taking software to assign a note easily to multiple categories, where I need edit the note only once for the changes to appear in all category views. Outlook with its Categories and Group By Category view was the closest I found, but its keywords are just arranged in a flat list - I want to group keywords into hierarchical trees and assign a note to more than one category in more than one tree.

Also vital to me is easy copy/paste insertion into a note of clickable links to a file on my system or a URL, to which I can add my annotation about the file or webpage etc.

My final essential requirement is keyboard shortcuts as I hate being slowed down by having to move my hand continually between keyboard and mouse. (Gmail is superb in this regard.) I feel such shortcuts provide flexibility, which is desirable (everyone works differently; a good program should cater for all the main ways: in this context mouse, keyboard, tablet). Also, keyboard shortcuts are of course a very good thing for reasons of accessibility for people who can't use a mouse - accessibility being now a hot topic, and in some countries essential for legality.

I have Microsoft's OneNote, but found that, for the way I work, it's cumbersome and unintuitive to use.

After some research I've settled on three possible options, and I'll be trying them all out over the next month or so and reporting on the results:
  • Evernote, currently downloadable as a free beta and using a "endless tape" system
  • Zoot, an "information processor" which is available on a free trial and
  • General Knowledge Base from Baltsoft, shareware which seems to have Outlook-type categories and a full Word-like editor for individual notes.


Phillip Fayers said...

Did you get around to writing up a report on the note-taking software?

I couldn't find one elsewhere on your blog and I seem to be looking for software which fits the same cirteria you described.

Nicholas said...

Is microsoft one any good?

Man in a Suitcase said...

I'm not sure if you ever satisfied your search for a note-taking software, but you should try NoteScribe.

aasai said...

I have been using ndxCards for a number of years now and you may want to try it out. I have not found one better. It can be downloaded from


s said...

Note-taking automation software:

Anonymous said...

I would suggest FruitfulTime NoteKeeper:

Easy to use, polished UI and simply works!