Saturday, April 27, 2013

The long way to Evernote

Have you ever think about the application (and/or service) which can satisfy all your "productivity" needs? The term "productivity" in this context is very simple - it's something (tools or methods) which helps you work with higher productivity, spent less time resolving boring tasks and concentrate on your business needs.

Here I describe the areas which helps me be more productive and tools related with them.
  1. Personal Knowledge Base (KB) System. It's might be wiki, some notes taking application. I'd been using MS OneNote. It's very powerful application with tons of nice features. Except it's supported on Microsoft OS's only. Also, I love using tons of tags for everything, but OneNote doesn't work well with tags.
  2. Task Management System. I've been practicing the Pomodoro Technique. And it's very hard to manage tons of tasks without some application. If you google a little you will find huge amount of applications and services which might be used for Pomodoro. I've configured TodoList application to use it properly in scope of Pomodoro. It's was fun. But there was one drawback - I had one application for knowledge base and another for tasks management. It was a pain to link some tasks with article from my KB system.
  3. Bookmarking. I don't like to have super huge bookmark list inside my browser. I prefer to store the next thing in browser bookmarks: a) resources which I've been visiting on daily/weekly basis and b) temporary links. All the bookmarks were stored on social bookmarking platform delicious. And again I had 3d tool which hard to integrate with others.
OneNote and TodoList is Windows based application. But, I've switched Mac and Android as my target home devices. My work machine is Windows based. So, I've started research of analogues for KB and todo list applications which works quite well on Windows, Mac OS X and Android.

As you probably guess it's Evernote. Here I highlight features which I love:
  • almost cross-platform (Windows, Mac OS X, iOS and Android), Linux isn't supported officially. But there is a work for Linux as well NixNote (old name NeverNote).
  • Evernote is a service. I.e. all my notes are synchronized between all my devices. Even more,  Evernote has Web analogue of native note taking application. So, I can have access to my notes from anywhere.
  • Evernote has very power tag support. I can apply multiple tags my notes. It improves notes search and classification.
  • Knowledge Base, Pomodoro System and Bookmarks are all integrated into Evernote. I have single application for managing all these stuff. And it's real benefit, because my user experience is shared between all my devices and productivity concepts (KB, Pomodoro/Todo and Bookmarks).
  • Evernote has public Cloud API and Local API. I.e. we can automate Evernote experince.
  • There is very nice browser plugin Evernote Web Clipper which store web pages (link, selected part of page or full page) into the notes. Very cool feature for bookmarking and KB.

Evernote is very flexible application and a service. It was required some time for me to completely switch to Evernote from other application and services. But now I'm more productive.

If you have any question about my Evernote experience ask me. I will be glad to share it.

8 comments:

  1. The web clipper for Evernote is cross-browser so it will work on various devices including a PC, Mac and even a smartphone or iPad.

    This makes saving content to Evernote very easy.

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  2. Do you use premium Evernote account? Or just use it for free?

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  3. Thanks for this post. How do you use Evernote to implement Pomodoro?

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  4. Basically I've been using EN for Todo's and Activity Inventory.
    Here is nice video for start: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfsYo2Q_ldM

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  5. Hi! I'm a happy Evernote user looking for still more functionality. you write, "Knowledge Base, Pomodoro System and Bookmarks are all integrated into Evernote. I have single application for managing all these stuff." How exactly is Pomodoro integrated into Evernote, for you? Is there an actual Pomodoro extension for Evernote (like Skitch integration and other add-ons), which brings a timer etc? Or do you mean you just use Evernote notes to list/prioritize in a Pomodoro way, and use something else for a timer?
    Many thanks,
    Bill

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    Replies
    1. I've tried http://www.thesecretweapon.org/ for managing todo and activity inventory lists. I'm not aware about evernote-pomodoro-timers. Now, I can confirm that it's not trivial task to build fully effective pomodoro tool on top of Evernote.

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    2. EN for activity inventory lists is superb (see www.thesecretweapon.org)

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