Join David Rivers for an in-depth discussion in this video What is Evernote?, part of Up and Running with Evernote.
- Before we begin using Evernote and explore its many powerful features and functions, let's take a quick look at what Evernote actually is and what it can be used for. In a nutshell, Evernote is a digital notebook. It's a digital notebook that can capture, store and index just about any type of data you can think of, all while syncing to the web and across all of your devices, like Windows PCs, Mac computers, tablets and smartphones. This means the more you store in Evernote, the more powerful and useful it becomes.
And because Evernote is a digital notebook and not a paper one, you can store more than just what you might write, draw or paste into a paper notebook. Sure, you can write things in Evernote, but aside from text notes, you can add images like digital photos you already have or digital photos you take with your tablet or smartphone. You can record your voice and play it back whenever you need it. You can copy or clip something you see on a web page or in another document, and keep it in your notebook. And you can scan things into your notebook, too.
Of course, the real beauty of Evernote is you can have it with you wherever you go. With Evernote installed on your computer, you can have it running and waiting in the wings for your next command, but when you leave your computer, you can have it on your smartphone or tablet, and everything is synced up with your computer. But storing content in a digital notebook is only half the picture when it comes to Evernote. Getting at that content is equally important. Evernote lets you tag your content and organize it easily so you can find what you're looking for in a jiff.
And with powerful search functionality, you can find the smallest piece of information with lightning speed. Just imagine you had a photo taken with your smartphone and added it to your Evernote notebook. It's a photo of you on vacation, standing next to the welcome sign for the Grand Canyon National Park. Now, to find that photo in Evernote down the road, you just search for Grand Canyon, and thanks to OCR technology in Evernote, that's optical character recognition, Evernote finds and recognizes the text in your photo, and accesses that photo for you.
How cool is that? One last thing before we move on. There are some terms you should be familiar with before we start using Evernote, such as the components that make up Evernote. For example, you'll have notes, a single item stored in Evernote. Now, this could be a PDF, an image, a piece of text that you've typed in, and audio or video file, a screen capture or any combination thereof. We'll also have notebooks, which is basically a named container used for storing notes in a logical way.
You might have a notebook called Wish List or Project ABC, for example. At the time of this recording, each Evernote account can have up to 250 notebooks. Then we have something called a stack, which is a named container for notebooks. This allows an additional three levels of organization of your notes and notebooks. You could have your business stack that contains a project stack that contains all your project notebooks in one place for each instance. Keep in mind a notebook stack containing 10 notebooks counts as 11 notebooks against your limit of 250.
There's something called a tag, which is a descriptive piece of text applied to a note that can be used to identify it later or group several notes by topic. Each note may have multiple tags or none at all. Then there's something called a clipping, which is the act of capturing content from a source, like a web page or another application on your desktop or even a mobile device, and adding it to Evernote. You'll need to understand synchronization or syncing, Evernote's function of keeping an up-to-date copy of your entire Evernote database, aside from the parts you tell Evernote to leave alone, somewhere in the Cloud or on the Internet.
Now, this happens at timed intervals that you can configure. And then there are attributes, which are bits of data about each of your notes, also known as metadata. The day it was created, how it was added, what types of media it contains and so on. Each and every note has these, though some have more than others. So now that we have a pretty good understanding of what Evernote is, how are we going to use it? It's time to consider some practical uses for this powerful app, and that's coming up next.
- Creating a new notebook
- Creating and formatting text notes
- Adding screenshots to a note
- Creating a multimedia note
- Clipping web content to a note
- Creating notes from emails
- Sorting, filtering, and finding notes
- Sharing notes
- Protecting content with encryption