I’ve been using Evernote for a little over a year. No, it’s not a new IDE or a text editor. It’s a note-taking  software alternative to Microsoft’s OneNote, and it’s free (as in “free beer“, but proprietary).

And no, Evernote isn’t a revolutionary new way to deal with software, it just makes a few routine things easier to do, like

  • I take tons of screenshots when I need to, either with Evernote’s screen clipper, or the old fashioned way and paste in to a note. Evernote does OCR on them so I can search for text in the screenshots. I don’t have to have an elaborate directory structure or think of descriptive filenames.
  • I put test code that I don’t think I want, but don’t want to delete. I put URL’s, test plans and other notes and give all the notes a single title, for example the Jira issue number. Search for the issue, and voilà, all my notes and screenshots are there.
  • Almost a moot point, but the notes can have checkboxes. Makes awesome TODO lists.
  • Did I say I love the search?
  • It’s in the cloud, so I can access it from anywhere.
  • And yeah, work is only part of life, so it’s a much nicer way to jot down quick thoughts, TODO, links much more conveniently than e-mailing it to myself. Notes can be tagged too, so I can track ideas, financial things, work and personal notes easily.

I just cannot imagine a life without a diff tool, but this comes pretty close too 🙂