There are dozens of journaling apps – desktop, mobile and both – that will capture your thoughts, photos, videos, voice and location in a nice neat package. They all have their share of journaling goodness, but can they compete with the potential Evernote provides as a journaling tool? Let’s take a look.
- Evernote is available on just about every operating system and device known to man. And, it keeps your notes and notebooks synched to any and all computers and devices you are using. Get a new computer, phone, tablet or whatever and all you have to do is add the appropriate app, then log in with your Evernote account information and all your Evernote goodness is right there waiting for you.
- Since your primary notes collection is stored in “the cloud”, you always have an off-site backup. Evernote is unique in that many of its apps maintain local copies that are kept synchronized with the cloud copy. This not only means your information is protected, but also that you have access to it when you aren’t connected to the Internet.
- You can update your journal with just about anything from anywhere. You can write notes (using apps like Penultimate [iPad - $.99] – now part of the Evernote family), type notes, dictate notes, email notes and capture notes from the web. You can even send tweets to Evernote. With Skitch [iOS, Android and Mac - free], another Evernote app, you can take a photo or grab a screenshot and forward it to your Evernote account. The Evernote Hello app [iOS and Android - free] captures contact information. And, don’t forget Evernote Food [iOS and Android - free]!
- If you organize your personal journal as multiple notebooks arranged in a stack, you can then create notebooks just for special events like vacations, weddings or new arrivals. Tags are a free-form method of organizing and can be used to identify people, places, events or topics to quickly collect everything associated with one or more tags across multiple notebooks when needed.
- Notebooks can be shared with others – either just for viewing or you can allow them to add content too. You could share an event folder while still keeping your personal notes and notebooks private.
- Notebooks can be exported as HTML or Evernote XML format. The Evernote XML format is a great way to archive a notebook for later import into an Evernote profile. It could be imported back into your profile or sent to someone else’s. If you want something for others to read, the HTML version is the better choice.
- Everything is searchable in Evernote. That includes text in an image, although I have my doubts about my hen-scratchings. Even if Evernote can’t decipher it, including scans of cards and notes adds another dimension to your journal.
Evernote is an amazing tool for research, but it can be put to dozens of additional uses too. Journaling is just one of them. Try some experiments to see if it works with your journaling style. You may be pleasantly surprised.