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Jan 29 2009

Evernote Note Taking Application Review


I have got quite a few reviews stacked up for release on this blog and I cannot believe that I have never published a review of Evernote before.

I did review the Evernote iPhone application a few months ago. I love Evernote and it really is one of those applications that I use on a daily basis.

Evernote is one of the most well-known organizational programs on the internet and is a great choice for users looking for a GTD application or just a better, general tool to help sort out their daily lives.

Its “remember everything” slogan encapsulates the main goal of the app; to provide an easy and convenient method of taking digital notes from the user’s daily life.

Visually, Evernote is outstanding. The simple yet detailed aesthetic cultivated by the developers makes the program very welcoming and a joy to check into.

Evernote’s main features are all clearly laid out and easy to access for new users or those who only ever really use the program at a basic, surface level.

Each form of the system from the no-download web access to portable phone usage looks and navigates extremely well so users shouldn’t be worried about how their operating system or choice in medium will be able to handle it.

The developers of Evernote have obviously spent a lot of time packing the program with important features. Interface support is, frankly, quite astonishing.

As mentioned before, Evernote can be used on the web, on a Windows or Mac Client and also on mobile devices including the Apple iPhone. The option of signing in and using the whole array of tools without a download is also great for users who wish to access the program from various computers.

Some of the more innovative aspects of the application include incredibly simple copy and pasting from the web (both words and pictures) into Evernote and text searching within images.

The “Endless Tape” view through Evernote Windows is also interesting in that it allows users to scroll through all of the ‘memories’ they’ve pasted into the program — a great feature for those who want to make sure absolutely everything gets sorted from within their various files.

Once notes have been taken it’s also quite easy to organize, store and peruse your various work which makes it an excellent choice for those who want to incorporate the program into a GTD philosophy of work.

There aren’t too many faults worth mentioning with Evernote when considering the large amount of attention and continued work that has obviously gone into the program. While it may have a fairly overwhelming number of features this is ultimately a pretty difficult aspect of the program to consider negative.

The community attached to the program should help to make the learning curve relatively gradual and exciting. In future versions it would be good to see a greater emphasis on sorting information into more detailed categories, tasks and next actions although users are still able to make this happen on their own accord with a bit of effort.

The support is pretty remarkable and it’s obvious that the popularity of the program has lead to a great, helpful community. From Evernote’s homepage users can peruse press releases, news, updates, tours and manuals along with a quick video tour which highlights the main program features for the uninitiated.

RSS feeds, Facebook fan pages, FriendFeed and Twitter options all help to further increase the level of involvement with the Evernote world that dedicated fans can choose to get into as well.

Users will no doubt be impressed by Evernote and its wealth of features no matter what kind of organizational tool they’re interested in.

Whether accessed through the website, offline mode or via a mobile phone the program is a great bet for the busy user interested in introducing a little more order to their day to day lives.

  • 23 Comments... What do you think?
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  1. Troy Malone said on January 30th, 2009 at 7:22 am

    I too can’t believe that you haven’t done a review until now! How busy we all get and how many applications to review?

    We integrated our project collaboration system with Evernote. You can find some use cases on our website. We understood that Evernote is a great Ubiquitous Capture mechanism and we should tie into that. Now you can take a voice, image, or text note in Evernote and then turn that into a task or message within Pelotonics. It’s a great marriage of Group Productivity tools and Personal Productivity tools.

    Thanks for taking the time to do a great review of Evernote!

    Troy Malone

  2. pd said on January 30th, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    Is that a review or an ad?
    From my stand point, Evernote is a good taking-notes app (and possibility the best), but far away from a ‘GTD’ compliant tool. We miss a lot of GTD oriented features (context on todo, as single sample of missing feature).

  3. Andrew Mason said on January 30th, 2009 at 2:16 pm


    Hi, it is a review but I do love Evernote!

    I agree that Evernote is not a full GTD app but I use it as part of my GTD suite of apps. From a collecting point of view it is awesome and gives you what GTD apps such as Things and OmniFocus do not.

    Thanks for your comment.

  4. Kris @ Fresh Focus said on January 30th, 2009 at 3:59 pm

    Evernote lacks some important features for me:

    Ability to change note header color
    Correct keyboard navigation of lists (tab does not indent a bulleted list)
    Ability to properly paste tables
    Ability to change a notes’ background color (or just change all the notes’ background colors)
    Ability to minimize to tray

    I’ve suggested more than one of these on their forums, but yet to see any of them implemented. Also, the ability to minimize installed (not portable) Evernote to the tray. There was a bug a few versions back that did this automatically, but once Evernote is upgraded, it disappeared. I’ve talked on the forums about this and they never designed it to minimize to tray, but for some users it did do this. I would like to have that functionality all the time.

  5. Gerhard@sunstays said on February 8th, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    Can Evernote import notes from Info Select? I have used Info Select for many years and still stick to the basic version for Windows as the subsequent versions became too complex. It has been and is like a second brain. All information in one big barrel and absolutely instant access to anything. The lack of support for the basic version and the complexity of the newer versions has had me hunting for a long time for an alternative that will operate on the Mac platform as well.

    Evernote seems to have the potential.


  6. Andrew Mason said on February 8th, 2009 at 8:22 pm


    Must admit that I have never used Select but Evernote does have a lot of import options. I have been using it as my main note taker and keeper for the past year and I love it.

    Thanks for the comment.

  7. Seth said on June 26th, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    I installed Evernote today, and as soon as I did my computer froze then completely crashed and I had to restart 5 times before my computer would boot normally, possibly a “Vista” problem? Once I realized you had to create an “online account” I decided to uninstall it. First I won’t pay for this service, and second, if corporations as large and seemingly loyal as AT&T will volunteer to hand over all information about you and offer to tap your phone, against your constitutional rights, I refuse to trust online storage solutions.

  8. RAaron said on July 22nd, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    Can anyone comment on or direct me to a good review or discussion comparing Evernote to Microsoft OneNote? I find I can intuitively use OneNote better than I can Evernote, probably because of its similarity to MS Office and because I’m a file tab kind of guy.

    Also, I understand Evernote and Google Desktop may not play well together — I have both and I can’t decide if that’s why some things keep crashing on my computer.

  9. Steven said on August 19th, 2009 at 7:15 pm

    I had been using evernote for few months, this article show me more new tricks.


  10. Brian said on October 7th, 2009 at 8:25 pm


    A user-space app like Evernote should never be able to crash your computer or prevent it from booting. Try upgrading your device drivers or check the crash dumps.

    If you don’t want your information in the hands of corporations, then you can’t use the Internet. Your ISP can see everything you do online.

  11. Rene Cum said on January 6th, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    Hey!. Evernote is really great, why you don’t check out this google Chrome extension, it help me a lot!

  12. mike012003 said on February 23rd, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    I recently started using Evernote and its “free” storage space is severely limited. I have over 4000 pics on my iphone and have used only half the iphone capacity. I uploaded 166 pics from the iphone to Evernote, used 99% of Evernote upload capacity and recieved a warning notice that Evernote utilization would be restricted until the next cycle. From a practical standpoint Evernotes data restriction allows only 2% utilization of my iphones capacity per month. With this strict data limitation, it is more functional to use my iphone, ipad, and laptops and “Forget Evernote”.

  13. Ian said on May 6th, 2011 at 7:28 am

    Mike, evernote is more for collecting ideas and thoughts together into a central place. It’s a note-taking application, not a cloud storage application. If you just want a place to store your photos, try something like Dropbox or Amazon Cloud Drive.

  14. bill wilson said on May 7th, 2011 at 9:45 pm


    Me too re Infoselect – have used since the old “tornado” and depend on it. I stayed with v6 because the new ones are so needlessly complex – they ruined a good tool by forcing upgrade income. Too bad. Now use IMac at home and really miss it. BUT with reasonably intelligent use of keywords and phrases SPOTLIGHT is quite adequate…SPOTLIGHT uses Boolean searches so I put gxx in everything I put in. For example a SPOTLIGHT search for gxx AND px AND layers will pull up anything I put in documents with gxx photoshop and layers in same. The use of keywords is annoying compared to Infoselect but still works well enough.

  15. Luis345 said on August 4th, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Somebody has tested with Evernote??

  16. Patrick Herlihy said on October 27th, 2011 at 4:11 am

    Needed you ever get answer on importing info select to Evernote ?

    We too still use basic version ,


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