Episode: 236 |
Will Bachman:


Will Bachman


Show Notes

I highly recommend Evernote – it is far more than a note-taking app.  You can also clip websites, save voice memos, store emails, and many more.

In this short episode I give some examples of how I use Evernote.

Sign up for your own Evernote account at www.evernote.com

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Will Bachman 00:01
Welcome to Unleashed the show that explores how to thrive as an independent professional. I’m your host Will Bachman. Today I’m going to discuss Evernote, which is a note taking app that I highly recommend calling Evernote. A note taking app really doesn’t do the tool justice. Since you can use it for a lot more than just taking notes, a better term might be your personal external information storage library. Before I dive in, I’ll say that there are some competitors to Evernote and you can find a list of those by typing into your favorite internet search engine, competitors to Evernote, popular one that I’ve heard some people use is Microsoft OneNote. And of course, Apple has Apple notes. I haven’t used those other tools, so I’m not going to discuss them, some of the competitors may be fantastic and meet your needs better. So shop around if you’re the type that loves to compare products. For my purposes, I like the fact that Evernote has been around and is well established and isn’t likely to disappear all of a sudden and have all my notes disappear with it. So let me describe what Evernote is. The tool has an online version where you can access with a browser, there’s a desktop version, you can download to your computer, and there’s an app for your phone or your tablet. When you have an Evernote account, all these different instances will sync with one another. So you can create a note on your phone and access it from the browser version or vice versa. You’re only your only account could be massive with the premium account, you can add up to 10 gigabytes per month. So on your phone and your tablet and your desktop version, you can choose which notes or which notebooks you want to store on your device for offline use, and the rest can be in the cloud. With the tool. The basic unit of storage in Evernote is called a note. I’ll discuss how to create a note and then I’ll discuss how you can organize notes. So there are several ways to create a note. First, you can just plain old, type a text note on any of your devices. That is the most basic possible note taking functionality you’d expect. Number two, you can clip any web page in this feature I find incredibly useful. When you clip a web page, you can choose to save the entire web page to your Evernote account, or just the article that you’re looking at on that page, or just a link to that web page. When you save the web page or the article to your Evernote account, you’ll have access to that information even if the website takes down that article or goes offline in the future. Because it’s actually all that information is stored in your account. If you are using your computer and use the Chrome browser, you can get the Evernote Chrome extension. And then when you’re on a web page that you just click that extension and the Web Clipper pops up asked me if you want to save the whole article simplified article the full page bookmark or screenshot. If you’re using an iPhone and on your on the Safari browser, you click the Share button on the bottom of Safari and then you click Evernote as the application to use. Obviously, first you need to download the Evernote app and sign in. Number three, you can forward an email to your Evernote account to a special private email address. If you’re paying for a premium account, and then that email will get stored as a note number four, you can take a picture from within the Evernote app, which then creates a note for that photo allows you to add text as well to store that photo number five, you can record audio from within the Evernote app. And I’m pretty sure there’s ways to get that transcribed automatically with AI. I haven’t tried that though. Number six, you can add a sketch from within the Evernote app on the iPhone or iPad. Number seven, you can upload a file to Evernote such as a Word doc or PDF. And number eight, you can also save video to Evernote. I haven’t done that and it would take up a fair bit of memory but it is possible. Okay, so we’ve created a note how do you organize notes within Evernote? There are two main ways you can create notebooks and then store the notes within one notebook. And this works pretty much like saving files within a folder on your computer. or number two, you can forget about notebooks and you can tag notes with one or more tags. And then you can just search for a given tag and see all the notes with that tag. And if you want the belt and suspenders approach, you can use both systems. My guess is that most people are either going to be notebook people or tag people. I am you might have guessed I am a notebook person, the more old school anything I started a new consulting project, I open a notebook for that project. And then if I’m doing any desk research on the computer, I find a useful website, I’ll save that web page to the notebook. This is particularly important for any page that I plan to use as a reference or source in my deliverable. The client asked where I got some quote or given data point, I want to be able to pull up that web page to find the original source and show it and if that page is now offline, or then there’s, there’s always a chance that it’s not available anymore. And so you want to be able to always save the information. Before I started using Evernote about a decade ago, I used to save the web page as a PDF and save it as a file. And that was a major pain, it’s way easier to use Evernote to just save the page. Whenever I have a work related phone call, I almost always will open Evernote on my usually on my iPad, which has a Bluetooth keyboard attached. And that way I take notes in Evernote on that call save that and then I will always be able to find those notes in the future on whatever device I’m on. Before I start using Evernote, I would typically take notes in a Word document and store those notes. But then it becomes a lot harder to go and save those as a file and search through them. So it’s much easier to use Evernote for that purpose. Evernote is also great when you’re doing research for some upcoming trip or other project. So when we took a trip to the Galapagos, for example, I created a notebook for the Galapagos and then saved a bunch of web pages for that trip. And that was really handy when we visited when we’re in the airplane and internet connectivity was was not available or for on the islands and there’s no internet connectivity, you have all that information, you can save it offline. also great for any project. If you’re doing some kind of home renovation project or any kind of project and you want to store a bunch of different web pages, I create a notebook. When I was in the Navy, I was always taught to carry a ballpoint pen and an index card or a small notebook. So I can write down any action items. And throughout all my years as a submarine officer, I did exactly that. I always carried a Navy issue, green memorandum book at all times, usually in my right front chest pocket, on my coveralls under way. And throughout my life, I’ve heard similar advice from artists, innovators, writers, to always carry a notebook to capture any ideas that come to you. When you get a smart idea, it always seems like there’s no way you could possibly Forget it. But then you get back to your desk and the idea is long gone. And you don’t remember the idea and you don’t even remember, you had the idea. Well, today I don’t carry an index card or a memo book. I use Evernote for that purpose. When I have an idea when I’m out and about if I’m out for a run and I something comes up for me, I’ll stop. And I’ll make a quick note in Evernote. I have one note called action items so that any action items that occurred to me I’ll add it to that note, just as an extra bullet point. I have another note as an example, that’s saved on all my devices called podcast ideas. And if I have an idea for this podcast episode, it goes there I have a list of several 100 podcast episode ideas. So I will work on slowly working my way through them. In fact, this episode here originated as a bullet point on that list. Other ideas, so I have a notebook for recipes. So if I see a recipe online and I want to cook that Someday, I’ll save it to that recipe notebook. I have a note for movies I want to watch. So if I read a review of a movie, that sounds good, I will clip that page. And I’ll save that page to the movie notebook. And then when it becomes Saturday night, we’re thinking about what movie to watch. Instead of randomly searching on Amazon or trying to think of one, I’ll turn to that list. There are some collaboration capabilities within Evernote but frankly, I don’t love Evernote for collaboration. You can share a note with someone, but I always find it a bit confusing and clumsy and a little wonky. If you want to collaborate on a document, I would recommend instead using Google Docs, the basic version of Evernote is free. And if you want to just check it out to see if you like the tool, you can start with that. It has decent functionality. The basic version only allows you to store 16 megabytes of new content each month. And it does have several other limitations. For example, you can only access your account from a maximum of two devices. If you tried to unlock it, I do suggest that you pay for Evernote premium which costs $8 a month. There’s also Evernote Business, which costs $15 per user per month. I haven’t felt the need to upgrade that level. I’m sure that I only use a small Have evernotes power. There’s blogs devoted to how to use Evernote. The Evernote blog plus other blogs is a good source of information how to use the tool. Evernote also has a podcast called taking note with more tips and there’s books on Evernote. So there’s a lot more aspects to the tool that that I haven’t used. So I hope this episode is helpful encourages you to check out Evernote. If you love some other note taking app I’d love to hear from you. You can email me at unleashed@umbrex.com and sign up with Evernote Just go to evernote.com and that link is in the show notes. Thanks for listening

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