I have been threatening for a while to write a post about Evernote, which is an incredible tool – and free too! A couple of people recently have also mentioned why they don’t use it and I guess it would be easiest to go through those objections/thoughts to show I use it…
So, first up, when I saw Ian Addison at #TMHants said he didn’t use it because it doesn’t work on his mobile…
Well, the first answer to that is, it doesn’t work on mine either! I use Evernote pretty much all the time on my laptop. As far as I know, there are apps for the iPhone/iPad/iPodTouch some Android and a Nokia.
Then, when talking about it on Twitter, Stuart Ridout said:
So, it is workflow that is the key, and actually as Evernote can be used from pretty much anywhere, I think that it fits into my workflow pretty well. This is how:
A lot of the problem with free web2 apps is that you aren’t sure how long they will be around for, but as Evernote has a desktop programme, it means that you always have a copy on your machine at all times. The other great thing about the desktop version is that you can create notes on the fly, in meetings, on the train etc. and then when you do go online it synchronises everything.
I use this a lot, for many things. Probably, in fact, more than the desktop version. Here are the ways I get stuff into Evernote, and then I will end with what is the most useful collaborative function…
Evernote Web clipper
One of the best features of the web clipper is that you can save any web page into evernote with one click. I use Chrome as my browser, and there is an extension you can install to capture the site you are on, complete with links, url, date saved etc.
Evernote through Twitter
Slightly underused by me, but could be really quite powerful. If set up, you can add @myen to any tweet, and that tweet will end up in your evernote account. When I do use it, it is mainly when I have taken a photo of something that has been sent to twitter that I want to keep somewhere else.
Evernote through email
By far, this is where I get the most use out of Evernote (in terms of getting stuff in) – you have your own email address, that can be shared with colleagues, that you can then send notes into Evernote. I use it for everything that I need to remember – which seems to be quite a bit at the moment!
Evernote through RSS
How many times do you think, I have seen something, but can’t remember where? Since I have been using Google Reader, it has happened to me a lot! I have been using Feed My Inbox to take RSS feeds and turn them into an email that then gets sent into Evernote.
Searching within Evernote
The searching within Evernote is amazing. It can pick up pretty much anything, from text within PDFs to text within photographs. If you take a photo, and import it, you can then search the text on that image. That could be anything from a recipe, to business card etc. And, while doing a small amount of research for this, I see that it can be used with eye-fi – which I have just invested in, so I may well be using it more very soon!
What can Evernote hold?
Everything. I have everything from excel files, to pdfs, to videos and pictures. I back-up my WordPress to Evernote, and have all of the settings (font/colours) saved to save me thinking about them when I want to play.
Want to know more?
Obviously I have told you everything you need to know and more, but the tutorial videos the Evernote website are some of the best I have seen. Short, punchy, humorous and to the point, they get the message across.
So, I trailed collaboration and sharing. Well, here it is. I think the share function is incredibly powerful. For example, if we have done a press release, and are getting lots of coverage, I keep the original release, plus the clippings together in Evernote and share that folder. That means that without thinking, people can go to that folder and look at the vast amount of amazing coverage we have had. At the same time, if I have told people about the email address, then they can be posting new clippings into Evernote. I have created a shared folder to show you what I mean! It has examples of the RSS, myen, web clippings etc.