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Last post Author Topic: General brainstorming for Note-taking software  (Read 505998 times)

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #725 on: September 29, 2008, 01:13:19 PM »
urlwolf, as you wrote earlier Office 2007 can now run via Wine. Here's a thread specifically on Onenote 2007 under Wine in Ubuntu: http://ubuntuforums....wthread.php?t=744743 . The core seems ok, but some features do not work. I haven't tried it yet myself, but plan to do so sometime. If it runs well enough, and especially if there are no problems saving/opening Onenote content across the "OS border", then I will probably commit to Onenote as my primary notetaking tool. If you or anyone else here has by now tried it then please post your impressions here.

Hi Nod5,

That's great to hear. I'll be curious to see how well it works.
Unfortunately I cannot say I'm moving to linux full time.
The main reasons are:
1- PDF display is bad. I spend most of my day looking at pdfs, and this is a showstopper
2- hardware support takes a fight, and sometimes you lose. I got an external USB soundcard (Tascam US122L). There are notes to make it work, but I don't want to risk spending several hours recompiling things and have a half assed solution, if any.
3- Mostly any program for any category is inferior to the windows alternative. This is just normal. But why settle for a worse option? This is painfully evident if, as most of us have, you spent a long time looking for the best of the best under win.

So right now I cannot justify the change. I use Linux for programming, and XP under VMWare for everything else.

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #726 on: October 18, 2008, 04:51:16 AM »
Some findings for linux (all platforms really). Open source as well:
takenote
http://rasm.ods.org/takenote/

Good, if simple. Even spartan. Tab doesn't do indentation (!).

Notecase
same thing (gtk-based). There's a commercial version that adds what everyone would call basic functions in other apps.
http://notecase.sourceforge.net/

Promising?

Still, they both fail at search and highlights. I want all occurrences highlighted. It puzzles me why nobody can simply copy oneNote feature by feature. It's not that hard :)

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #727 on: October 20, 2008, 01:47:56 PM »
Notecase seems very promising BUT:
the free version doesn't keep indentation (!). And the pay version doesn't have any other feature I need. This is silly. Back to searching a half-decent oneNote replacement under linux...

muntealb

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #728 on: October 21, 2008, 12:38:11 AM »
You can ask the developer of NoteCase Pro to include the features that you want. He has a blog where he wrote recently: "Many users are now being more active in sending their improvement ideas, so if you have one, don't hesitate :) ". Any feedback is really welcomed, he answers to e-mails in 1-2 days.

NoteCase blog : http://factoriel.blogspot.com/
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 12:40:37 AM by muntealb »

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #729 on: October 21, 2008, 12:54:52 AM »
Thanks mintealb!

It seems there's a notecase version that supports syntax highlighting. This is a patched notecase v1.9.5 using GtkSourceView. Great news! I've been looking for this feature for a while.

I contacted the author.

On the other hand, zim is a personal wiki that is very promising too. It's not exactly portable, though (i.e., lots of dependencies to build it, soso support on win, forget about a pen drive)

adriatic

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #730 on: November 24, 2008, 02:24:14 AM »
It's been a while since the last time I've posted on Notecase Pro here.
Perhaps someone might be interested in a news.

Notecase Pro has been progressing quite quickly due to good feedback and ideas I've been getting lately.
Some of the new implemented features since my last post:
- task management (each note can be a task too)
- note cloning
- text alignment formatting (left, right, center)
- scripting automation by using Lua interpreter language engine
- note templates
- note bookmarks
- printing document outline (titles arranged in a hierarchy tree)
- search by regular expressions
- search by note date fields, by "is attachment" or by "is task" status
- flat view can have multiple columns, sortable

Being prepared for the next version:
- syntax highlighting
- line numbers in the text view editor
- superscript and subscript formatting
- vertical layout (notes tree over the text view)
- more Lua scripts with new exported functions

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #731 on: December 25, 2008, 10:37:23 AM »
zim (the notetaker I use on linux) is evolving a lot too.
It's being ported to python. It offers an equation editor. It runs on windows (not trivial, not portable, but interesting). Open source. PLus it's actually a personal wiki, could be very useful to crack down a site in a flash.

Version control included.

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #732 on: December 27, 2008, 10:46:38 PM »
I like what you're doing with the reviews of notetaking software, but there's another genre of notetaking software that you have missed that adds an audio recording to the notes. Within this category, there is a product that is just coming onto the market called PerfectNotesTM brand notetaking software. It is unique in that it records everything it hears while you take notes. At any time, you can create markers that you can come back to later. Then you can replay your markers later at your own pace to see what you missed. This way, when you are in a class or a lecture and you wish you could stop the professor, rewind him, and hear it again, you can! It's instant replay for your life. If you're interested, check it out at http://www.perfectnotes.com. If you're interested in doing a review, I can send you a microphone you can use.

Rachel Rehm
Marketing Manager
PerfectNotes Corporation

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #733 on: December 27, 2008, 11:41:07 PM »
This way, when you are in a class or a lecture and you wish you could stop the professor, rewind him, and hear it again, you can! It's instant replay for your life. If you're interested, check it out at http://www.perfectnotes.com.

Interesting idea.
But would need to know price/likely price.
Basic functionality seems limited.
To be used as a real-time note-taker it needs to be built for speed. But there is no right click menu.
Using mouse on timemark buttons means a lot of movement away from keyboard & writing.
Need way to add and edit timemark buttons.
Probably needs the standard note-keeping outline pane as well as tabs.
Automatic back up is essential.

Despite my preference for mouse use, notebooks are easiest done just from keyboard most of the time, so everything in perfectnotes needs to be easily done through keyboard.

Portable is better.

Being able to insert clickable checkboxes would make it much more useful.

I look forward to seeing new versions.

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #734 on: December 27, 2008, 11:52:15 PM »
Using mouse on timemark buttons means a lot of movement away from keyboard & writing.

Would work well on later editing with recording running though. But would then need to be able to do that edit on the timeline later.

Would also be good if snippets can be taken out of recording and put in notes.

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #735 on: December 28, 2008, 12:17:16 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll pass them on to product development. The price will be $9.95 per month with automatic upgrades. A microphone and CD will be shipped to each customer when they subscribe. There are many added features that will be coming in the next few months so keep checking. This is a beta version currently, so most features are not completely fully implemented.

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #736 on: December 28, 2008, 12:41:57 AM »
You can use the keyboard shortcuts to create markers quickly on the fly without having to use the mouse at all. If you click on Options and then My Timemark Hot Keys, you can configure the keyboard shortcuts to create markers in the timeline. There are many options including the Pause key, function keys, and others. You can optionally type in a short label in your marker.

What do you mean by clickable checkboxes? I'm not familiar with those. Do you mean a checkbox on the timeline that you could mark off that you have listened to that marker?

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #737 on: December 28, 2008, 05:30:22 AM »
What do you mean by clickable checkboxes? I'm not familiar with those. Do you mean a checkbox on the timeline that you could mark off that you have listened to that marker?

Clickable - so that you can click in it and have it ticked and unticked. Some progs have checkboxes that you can't click in.

No, not a checkbox on the timeline. I suspect that you are rather focussed on your original ideas about it all being about taking notes from lectures. If the program is going to be used at all, it will have to be usable for much more - and that much more will have to be general note-taking/writing functions.

One of the things I have in mind would be that from lectures (sometimes), meetings (often) some of the things noted will be actions that need to be completed. The tickbox can indicate those - and later whether they have been done or not.

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #738 on: December 28, 2008, 05:41:04 AM »
You can use the keyboard shortcuts to create markers quickly on the fly without having to use the mouse at all. If you click on Options and then My Timemark Hot Keys, you can configure the keyboard shortcuts to create markers in the timeline. There are many options including the Pause key, function keys, and others. You can optionally type in a short label in your marker.

I had tried this but not got anywhere I thought worth getting. Does put in a marker, can type a new on-the-fly comment (not quite so sure how to get out of the comment, except by pressing Return), but could not set up a new timemark with its own hotkeys.

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #739 on: December 28, 2008, 05:51:00 AM »
The price will be $9.95 per month with automatic upgrades. A microphone and CD will be shipped to each customer when they subscribe.

I can see it's a very difficult product to price. Worth a lot to a small number of people; worth something to a large number of others. I don't think the average customer will want anything posted to them, but corporates might, so might some colleges/schools. I think that $9.95 a month is a corporate/high-end price level which will keep sales low (not implying that's a bad thing, it is certainly one way of marketing the product and may be the best; allows you to issue a similar but cut-price more mass market product later, if someone else has not picked up the idea there; will require much more time and money being spent on schmoozing customers). If you look at Evernote pricing, you will see that they offer a lot for a little in comparison and are clearly going for a 'mass market'; not that they are a competitor, but people will look at other progs to work out whether yours is worth the money. And few individuals, without a very clear need, will be happy with the monthly pricing.

Dormouse

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #740 on: December 28, 2008, 05:55:53 AM »
I'd also note that a 3 or 4 day beta is pitifully short. Look at the SQLnotes strategy where the betas last much longer and people can have some confidence they will be able to use the product longer term.

I'd have to say that if I was potentially a $9.95 a month payer, I wouldn't want to be getting mixed up in such short-term betas now. I'd think my time was worth much more and would wait to evaluate the final release. And if I wasn't a $9.95 a month payer, I wouldn't bother at all since it wouldn't be realistic to think I'd get any long term benefit from using the program or helping it develop.

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #741 on: December 28, 2008, 11:35:18 AM »
The beta was a month but it's at the end of it's cycle. It should be either released or extended this week. There will be at least a month free on the real product though to give people a chance to evaluate before they decide to purchase.

urlwolf

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #742 on: December 29, 2008, 01:35:55 PM »
I think oneNote can do audiorecording and time-tag what you write while recording.
I've never used this, so I cannot comment, sorry, you may know how it compatres to perfectNotes.

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #743 on: December 29, 2008, 01:45:02 PM »
Yes, we've used it. But it's very difficult to use quickly in real time and the audio is not good at all.

markfoley

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #744 on: December 29, 2008, 10:45:37 PM »
Hi Perfectnotes,

I've just tried your software, and I think the concept is great.  It did freeze a couple of times but I'm sure those things are getting ironed out!

I think this tool would get great takeup if it could be used more as a 'companion tool' to the user's chosen application.  For example many people use Evernote for various online features, I use todolist for my notes because they are kept in a 'task-subtask' structure that suits my project management role.

Trying to replicate all the features of those things in the note taking functionality of your tool would be a lot of effort.  Some people even use more than one like I do.  However I (and I'm sure many others) would be happy to pay for something that sits in the tray and lets you record (and add inline links) within the tool of your choice.  They'd need to be inserted as url or file links, which your tool would parse and play back when the user clicks them in their own app.

Anyway, just a thought.  It's an area only one other tools seems to try (onenote, and it isn't great at it!) so if you could make this tool complement people's existing toolsets (with the notetaking as something optional) it'd be an amazing benefit.

Anyway just a thought, good luck with perfectnotes!

Mark

perfectnotes

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #745 on: December 30, 2008, 04:43:39 PM »
Thanks for trying it out and thanks for the comments. I'm curious to know when it was freezing on you. If you wouldn't mind going into the program, clicking on Help and then Contact Us, it would be great if you could give our development team feedback on the problems you are having so they make sure they get it fixed.

Thanks for the feedback.

sazzen

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #746 on: January 10, 2009, 10:05:39 AM »
TreepadX Enterprise is by far and away the best - - If only mine would start working again  :(

Jimdoria

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #747 on: January 10, 2009, 01:06:20 PM »
Yes, we've used it. But it's very difficult to use quickly in real time and the audio is not good at all.

Ok, well I've got to chime in here.

As for "difficult to use quickly in real time" I can see where this comes from - maybe - but seems like an inflated claim. In OneNote, there's a button to display the recording toolbar, which has the usual play-pause-stop-record buttons. Two clicks to start recording (one, if you had the foresight to turn on the audio recording toolbar before you started notetaking) doesn't seem to me to be "difficult to use." There's no keyboard shortcut, though, which is a bit annoying. Switching between notes while recording can also confuse things. But for the most likely scenario - recording on a single page while you take notes - OneNote's audio recording is perfectly usable.

OneNote's audio quality is skewed out of the box to produce small file sizes, so the quality is limited, though OK for spoken audio around a conference table or with a clip-on mic. However you can tweak the audio quality to be as high as you want. Bumping up the recording parameters gives much better quality audio, albeit with a slightly larger file size. You also get to choose the codec that will be used to encode the audio. It defaults to the Windows Media Voice codec, again assuming spoken word recording. But you can use the regular WMA codec for better quality.

Microphone quality is a much bigger factor in quality of audio anyway. No program is going to work magic with the crappy audio you'll probably get from a laptop's built-in mic. For recording something like a lecture, an inexpensive external mic would be a better investment.

When you play back the audio, the app will highlight the text you typed as the recording was made, which is neat to watch, and possibly even helpful. There's even an add-in that lets you tweak this timing if it somehow gets unsynced, or if you're extremely picky and have lots of free time.

My biggest gripe with OneNote's audio is that there's no audio meter in the program, so it's not easy to see what level you are recording at. If your mic is set to low or too high, or your external mic is not completely plugged in, causing you to record either buzzing or the sound of your own typing via the built-in mic, you can't really tell this while you are recording. (And yes, I 've had all of these happen.  :-[ )

For things like lectures or meetings where you've only got one chance to capture the audio, this is a major oversight.  Since OneNote just uses the system audio settings, you could theoretically run a separate app or widget to display audio levels during recording. I've been looking for such a thing for a long time though, and it doesn't seem to exist. The recording level gauge built into Windows is too klunky and hard to access to be of much use.
- Jimdoria ~@>@

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kartal

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #748 on: January 10, 2009, 01:36:06 PM »
I just bought livescribe Pulse pen for notetaking and recording. I think it is an amazing tool for note taking.

tranglos

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Re: General brainstorming for Note-taking software
« Reply #749 on: January 10, 2009, 01:55:33 PM »
I just bought livescribe Pulse pen for notetaking and recording. I think it is an amazing tool for note taking.

This thing?
http://www.livescrib.../smartpen/index.html

It looks awesome, but what does it do? How do hand writing *and* recording work both at the same time? I don't need one personally, but I'm trying to figure out if it would be suitable for my wife, as she's taking lots of longhand notes at meetings, etc.

(Do you have to use it with the microdot paper they sell? How does the functionality degrade with regular writing pads?)
« Last Edit: January 10, 2009, 01:58:16 PM by tranglos »