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Last post Author Topic: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?  (Read 3878 times)

app103

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What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« on: September 10, 2019, 01:37 AM »
I have come to a point where replacing my old Surfulater has become a dire necessity. :(

Recovering from a hard drive crash, where I have had to replace the drive and reinstall all my software, I can no longer activate my Surfulater license and the developer hasn't been very helpful. Currently, all my Surfulater knowledgebases are in Read Only mode. :(

I tried AllMyNotes, but I can't even copy and paste text from Surfulater without AMN crashing. Not to mention that AMN doesn't support tags, and never will, because the developer thinks that nobody should ever want both a folder hierarchy AND tags, and the only people that really want tags are former Evernote users, because that's all Evernote ever offered. (ahem! Surfulate supported both tags AND folder hierarchy, and I used both!)

As a cludgy work around, the AMN developer suggests adding plain text "tags" by just sticking keywords in [brackets] at the end of your notes, to give you something to search for later. But of course that won't give you the option to switch between using folder view vs tag view.

I supposed you can also use that plain text cludge with reference links and comments, but there are some other features I am in want of that are missing from AMN, such as being able to stick an item in a folder and paste a link to it in other folders, so you only have one single note to edit if you want to make changes, without having to hunt down and edit all copies in every folder. Also need the ability to use "see also" links, to link to other notes in the same database.

Most importantly, I need whatever I use to replace Surfulater to store everything locally, on my computer, with the ability to create separate databases for different subjects, with no "save to the cloud" crap. Some of my databases contain sensitive info that I don't ever want stored "in the cloud" and don't want my daughter to have to try to figure out my login, if anything should ever happen to me. I also don't want anything that requires a paid subscription, for the same reason. Then there's the "Ma.gnolia" reason for my not trusting "the cloud", as well as the "Google Reader" reason.

Evernote isn't an option because it stores everything "in the cloud". The only use I have for Evernote is syncing my shopping list from my desktop to my phone.

I just need a feature rich replacement for the no longer supported Surfulater, that's stable, actively developed, doesn't crash when I paste in text, uses separate databases, supports the features I mentioned above, no subscriptions, and keeps my data out of the cloud. (the closer it is to being a clone of Surfulater, the better)

Does anyone know of anything that has what I need? (I really just want my Surfulater back. )

cranioscopical

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2019, 09:47 PM »
FWIW, I moved to RightNote (link here)

nickodemos

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2019, 11:11 PM »
FWIW, I moved to RightNote (link here)

Did you end up purchasing it or stay with the free version?

Downloaded and did a quick run through. It is time for some sleep so will look at it more tomorrow. Looks alot like treepad. Have you tried that and how does RightNote compare.

mwb1100

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2019, 12:49 AM »
I can no longer activate my Surfulater license and the developer hasn't been very helpful.

So Neville isn't resetting activations anymore?  That's bad news (and yet another lesson for all of us - me included -  about trusting server-based license activation).

I still use Surfulator, but I worry about getting stuck in the same situation that you're in.  Unfortunately, I haven't found anything that I've liked as a replacement - that might be because I haven't been looking very diligently.

What I have done is tried to put my new notes in a simple text file database that is organized using the file system (ie., directories).  The knowledge base is a git repository, so I can easily sync it between my machines, and I just use whatever search capability I have at hand (ie., xyplorer) to find things.

It's super klunky, and adding new information is much more difficult than Surfulator's capability for copying web pages.

The big disadvantages:

  - I don't get nice, easy replication of webpages, but often a copy/paste of the webpage text is good enough
  - I don't get a nice, easy to navigate listing (heirarchical or otherwiase). I could probably find something to help with this problem.
  - there's no real mobile access to my data

But I get these advantages:

  - I'll never be locked out of getting to my plain ascii data or updating it
  - I can use whatever cloud capability I want for syncing my data or making it available in the cloud (for example github or whatever git hosting service du jour replaces it)
  - I don't have to use the cloud if I don't want to

Unfortunately it's nowhere close to a feature rich replacement for Surfulator.  I still use Surfulator, and sometimes still add data to it.  But every time I do I also feel like I'm going to be sorry about that someday.  I wish SUL was still supported.


Jibz

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2019, 01:19 AM »
I am sorry to hear that app, I think this underlines the importance of having good export/import functionality so your data does not get locked in a proprietary format. I am a little surprised the Surfulater author apparently created a new app (Clibu) with no way to import from Surfulater?

For what it's worth, I moved from Evernote to CintaNotes, which is a lot more bare-bones, but works well for many of the type of notes I keep. Besides that I keep a development log in markdown in plain text files.

nevf

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2019, 03:12 AM »
Yep its me. I did try to update the activation but was unable to because eSellerate no longer had the users registration details. When that failed I created a new free license coupon which I sent. Unfortunately this didn't work because eSellerate seem to have been merged into another company (Sharit?) and their order system no longer works. Unfortunately this is out of my hands and there is nothing more I can do. In hindsight using a 3rd party to handle licensing was not the best of ideas.

So to say that I was not very helpful is pretty disappointing.

Surfulater does not have any Export capability, so it isn't possible to Import it into our new app Clibu.

I am quietly working on the next major version (rewrite) of Clibu. This stores all data locally, and will have offline support with synchronization to other devices should you wish to use that. It will also have local backups. For more information see the Clibu Blog which has links to early sample apps. The next sample release will have basic Note editing.

PS. Full disk image backups are a good idea and help greatly when disaster strikes.

To answer the original question: Clibu.
Neville Franks, Clibu a better way to collect, use, manage and share information across all devices.

Jibz

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2019, 04:38 AM »
Thanks for commenting :Thmbsup:.

Surfulater does not have any Export capability, so it isn't possible to Import it into our new app Clibu.

So, does Clibu have export functionality?

kfitting

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2019, 05:01 AM »
Dokuwiki hosted on a synology NAS... see https://zettelkasten.de for some really theoretical (but super interesting) discussion on taking notes.

cranioscopical

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2019, 07:49 AM »
FWIW, I moved to RightNote (link here)

Did you end up purchasing it or stay with the free version?
Purchased lifetime license.

Downloaded and did a quick run through. It is time for some sleep so will look at it more tomorrow. Looks alot like treepad. Have you tried that and how does RightNote compare.
I can't supply a useful answer to that. I tried a whole bunch but was under some time pressure and probably rejected some then that I might have accepted now.

wraith808

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2019, 09:03 AM »
I am sorry to hear that app, I think this underlines the importance of having good export/import functionality so your data does not get locked in a proprietary format. I am a little surprised the Surfulater author apparently created a new app (Clibu) with no way to import from Surfulater?

For what it's worth, I moved from Evernote to CintaNotes, which is a lot more bare-bones, but works well for many of the type of notes I keep. Besides that I keep a development log in markdown in plain text files.

CintaNotes was what I was going to suggest, but it doesn't keep rich format items, so I didn't.

I personally use Ema Personal Wiki, as it works across all of my devices (sync via dropbox), is OSS (so I can make any changes I want), and stores in plain text.  I forked the repo so that I always have the version that I want, irrespective of any changes that he makes.

I'm also trying Boostnote, but haven't gotten that deeply into it yet.  It's also OSS, but updated more regularly.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2019, 09:13 AM by wraith808 »

tomos

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2019, 10:55 AM »
InfoQube could be suitable. There's a portable version. Has recently gotten a hierarchical Tagging system:
http://infoqubeim.co...drupal5/?q=node/4328

Default view of entries is tree (they can include as much text as you want; can be formatted/highlighted) with doc pane for rtf / html content, images, pdf's etc.
Tom

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2019, 11:40 AM »
surfulator?  infoqube?  I feel like i traveled back in time 10 years.  ;D

Man...what a journey....
When i originally was doing all the note software stuff here, smartphones still weren't prime time yet.  Now, the smartphone has made me change everything.
i definitely moved to rightnote around 2010 for most of my notetaking purposes, and web capturing even also.  I migrated most of my evernote stuff into rightnote.  I had previously moved away from Surfulator.  I did also use Cintanotes for a while.

Eventually, I transitioned everything over to onenote.  i've been primarily on onenote since 2016.  I am concerned now that the latest onenote is now totally different, you cant use it without an account, and they ruined it by obliterating all the nice interface elements.  I also think they removed probably any poweruser feature and now its an app that can like 3 things instead of 20.  So I'm sticking with onenote 2016 for the time being.

Infoqube is another animal.  I dont really use it anymore, but I would for any kind of light database or excel-ish type things that needed more organization and calculations.  Infoqube is a nice, unique program...but i fear it will soon lose its audience entirely.

i remember way back when i really wanted that Zoot program to work.  Hey!  i just checked, zoot is still around and it looks actually interesting!
https://www.zootsoft...e.com/#/screenshots/

but onenote had the best overall experience.

someone here was talking about importing and exporting....
very important.  onenote is frustratingly bad at it.  you can import export single pages to pdf word, but as far as batch pages or doing a bunch all at once, it sucks.  and the whole backup restoring, anything around that is not great either.

rightnote probably is the best for importing and exporting.  the developer really tries to make users happy with that and has done incredible things that NO other notetaker developers would typically do.  like his evernote import...

superboyac

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2019, 12:20 PM »
oh yea  forgot the whole point here...
with smartphones, things just gotta be able to sync easily and be in both places at all times.  I cant really stomach any longer having a desktop application like rightnote without being able to pull up the same info on my phone.  and that goes for anything else.  which is why im on onenote for the most part.

I'm not thrilled with how the notetaking world has gone the past 10 years.  the smartphone influence is too strong, which is bad for people like me who are still windows desktop "powerusers".  we are still in the ridiculous infancy stage for smartphones.  like, instead of the phone features...what is the thing 99% of the people are concerned about with phones? cameras.  this is not good for people who care about apps, and productivity around that.  like, who really cares about the camera?  but if you are not a nerd who is trying to be super efficient and productive...then most likely you are getting an iphone because its a status symbol.  and then the only thing you are really going to use is the camera and chatting.  this is 90% of users.

so the smartphone has destroyed the windows desktop experience AND the phone experience.  in essence, all poweruser options on devices have been relegated to niche category.

I'll give more examples...
we need more buttons and input ability with phones if we are really going to go poweruser with it.  this is why i say we are still in infancy.  the phone is still the same goddam phone from 2008.  a big screen (oh lets get the bevels smaller...like 10 years of getting the bevels 2 mm smaller, big whoop), a volume rocker, power button, and 3 virtual buttons, or NO buttons on the screen.  swiping sucks because it is more work to swipt then to tap....already bad for powerusers...gestures suck.

whats the solution?  so easy.  first, put all sorts of controls along the sides of the p hone where the buttons are.  add like 3 more buttons that can be customized.  put in a scrollable clicky wheel like some of the audio players that can be used for scrolling or customized.

also dont need it to be so thin.  i dont care.  make it 1mm bigger.  all these phones have stupid camera bumps.  instead of a bump, make the camera flush with the back, and use the extra volume for larger batter, more buttons, a HEADPHONE JACK!!!  id rather have 1mm thicker phone with headphone jack...like its not that big a deal.

we've now had 10 years-ish with touchscreens, and touchscreens pale in comparison to mouse input.  10 years.  what do we need?  things like that Black Mirror episode where they had that handheld metal keyring thing that was basically a metal wheel they can scroll very easily with.  great idea.  well never get that...ive been asking for that for now TWO DECADES...even on windows desktop.  good luck finding a bluetooth controller with programmable buttons for windows or phones.

its all a clusterf--- of an industry trying to appease people taking pictures with a phone and chatting with friends.  thats the whole industry.  yesterday, the big features being bragged about with the new iphone....the GREEN COLOR??!!  who    gives   a     shit!!!    the slightly larger battery?  yay.

kfitting

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2019, 12:42 PM »
@SuperboyAC: had to chuckle reading your post! A couple quick thoughts:

First, I completely agree: If I cant access on my phone and desktop, a notes app is no use to me. That's why I use Dokuwiki, even thought it's a little tedious on the phone...

... which is the second thought: I completely agree about the phone rant. I feel like the smartphone is ruining creators. Not in the camera sense (as you mentioned), but the writers, the graphic designers, the etc... input is so tedious with a phone. And dont tell me to use voice recognition for text: there are any number of reasons why I cant/wont speak what I want to write at the time.

Although, benefit of the doubt, I see the desktop world going away as well. Power users are/were/will be a niche market. While computers were a niche, the niche made things for the niche. But now it's all about market. Which is how everything goes. I'm sure a car nut will read this and think we've done the same thing to cars by making everything electronic/proprietary, etc.

Anyway, good thoughts.

nevf

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2019, 04:33 PM »
Thanks for commenting :Thmbsup:.

Surfulater does not have any Export capability, so it isn't possible to Import it into our new app Clibu.

So, does Clibu have export functionality?

Not yet, but planned.
Neville Franks, Clibu a better way to collect, use, manage and share information across all devices.

nevf

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2019, 04:59 PM »
If you haven't tried Clibu yet, I'd welcome any feedback.

Clibu has the same functionality and UI across Smartphone, Tablet and Desktop adapting the UI to suit each device. All updates are synced to all devices in real time.

Clibu was my first Web application and borrowed quite a bit from Surfulater. However it lost some of the more desktop app capabilities which help speed up workflow, like lots of keyboard shortcuts and keyboard navigation. And the UI is a bit cumbersome.

I'm now rewriting Clibu from scratch with a heavier emphasis on usability, more powerful UI components such as the new Tree (blog)  (demo) a new and far better WYSIWYG editor with the ability to switch to using Markdown, both Tree Folders and Tags like Surfulater had, local database (with import/export), offline support with both real time sync and eventual updates when back on line and much more.

The next demo will include the new content editor, with basic functionality, new Home content, Archive and Trash collections along with various bug fixes.
Neville Franks, Clibu a better way to collect, use, manage and share information across all devices.

superboyac

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2019, 06:07 PM »
nevf, ill check it out at some point.  but i can no longer be switching around programs like before!!  ;D :(


superboyac

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2019, 06:26 PM »
@SuperboyAC: had to chuckle reading your post! A couple quick thoughts:

First, I completely agree: If I cant access on my phone and desktop, a notes app is no use to me. That's why I use Dokuwiki, even thought it's a little tedious on the phone...

... which is the second thought: I completely agree about the phone rant. I feel like the smartphone is ruining creators. Not in the camera sense (as you mentioned), but the writers, the graphic designers, the etc... input is so tedious with a phone. And dont tell me to use voice recognition for text: there are any number of reasons why I cant/wont speak what I want to write at the time.

Although, benefit of the doubt, I see the desktop world going away as well. Power users are/were/will be a niche market. While computers were a niche, the niche made things for the niche. But now it's all about market. Which is how everything goes. I'm sure a car nut will read this and think we've done the same thing to cars by making everything electronic/proprietary, etc.

Anyway, good thoughts.
the day windows stops offering an installable desktop OS and server will be a devastating day for me.

i do my best with android.  i try to keep input to a minimum.  i just want all my desktop stuff synced to it so i have all that info on me.  but i try to stay away from doing any entry with it.  i dont even like editing my calendar with it.  its all just an interface nightmare.  just think of it from the precision we are used to with the mouse on desktop.  that mouse pointer can select to darn near pixel-resolution without much of a problem.  like think about how easy it is to do the window diagonal resize.  on a phone, yea there are lots of pixels, but your input is your big fat finger.  and if your finger is a "pixel"  there are like 5x10 pixels essentially for input.  and the interface has to get around that.  all those touch-and-hold things.  the little magnification that comes up for selecting words. geezus.  shoot me already.  all the menus sliding in and out from various places, either slower or faster than you would like...

dont you love how they keep changing google maps interface every other day?  so fun.  they must be using all the data to perfect the interface lol.  such a detailed analysis wow.  it takes like 7 taps to actually start driving, right?  type in the place, tap, select from the list, tap, select the correct navigation style (walk, drive), tap, which will always be on the one you DONT want...select the route you want, tap, select drive NOW, tap...ok now we can drive...
oh but they did us a favor and added "Drive mode" with one tap you can, skip 3 of those taps...leaving you with two taps...but most of the time, you will have to go back to correct the original destination you tapped....so back to the 7 tap process....

oh, but maybe im such a poweruser, im nitpicking the google map app...its perfectly fine for most folk right?  ok how about simply VOLUME CONTROL??  so simple right?  volume up, volume down.  they even have a hardware button yay!  oh but its so smart....it knows when you want to control voice volume, or bluetooth volume, or alarm volume, or the other 10 hidden volumes...
volume button (volume dialog appears)
not the volume you want, tap expand
2 more appear, still not the one you want there
tap settings
tap sound
tap advanced
tap developer settings
do not distrub mode
oh i see...do not disturb...i get it, dont bother me with sounds, simple right?
nope.  do not disturb is for notifications appearing on the window, and it has certain pre-programmed conditions for sounds associated.  so simple, i totally get it. :mad:
tap do not disturb settings...
tap advanced do not disturb settings

nevf

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2019, 06:39 PM »
nevf, ill check it out at some point.  but i can no longer be switching around programs like before!!  ;D :(



@superboyac Just skip an episode of some mediocre tv show and put the time to better use.  ;)
Neville Franks, Clibu a better way to collect, use, manage and share information across all devices.

wraith808

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2019, 10:10 PM »
with smartphones, things just gotta be able to sync easily and be in both places at all times.  I cant really stomach any longer having a desktop application like rightnote without being able to pull up the same info on my phone.  and that goes for anything else. 

Totally agree.  One of the reasons behind my two choices.

wraith808

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2019, 10:14 PM »
If you haven't tried Clibu yet, I'd welcome any feedback.


Does it use the same sort of registration as Surfulater, i.e. dial home instead of just inputting a code?

Steven Avery

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #21 on: September 12, 2019, 09:18 AM »
Which of these programs can effectively post to the Net? (presumably by creating an HTML file).

Allowing that you may have to purchase a domain name and use your hosting platform.

superboyac

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2019, 10:34 AM »
Which of these programs can effectively post to the Net? (presumably by creating an HTML file).

Allowing that you may have to purchase a domain name and use your hosting platform.
i seem to remember one of the old school ones was good at this like TreedbNotes.  but im pretty sure rightnote can export to html.  onenote cannot directly, but you can export to word and then from word save as html.

superboyac

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #23 on: September 12, 2019, 10:35 AM »
@superboyac Just skip an episode of some mediocre tv show and put the time to better use.  ;)
ha good point.  ill sacrifice chernobyl for clibu!

nevf

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Re: What are people using these days, instead of Surfulater?
« Reply #24 on: September 12, 2019, 05:04 PM »
If you haven't tried Clibu yet, I'd welcome any feedback.


Does it use the same sort of registration as Surfulater, i.e. dial home instead of just inputting a code?

Clibu registration is entirely in the app, no third parties involved. It uses the database on the Clibu server.
Neville Franks, Clibu a better way to collect, use, manage and share information across all devices.