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Better-than-Word for Your Digital Notebook

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Last Modified: 2020-02-26
I use Word a LOT for collecting ideas, and then switch them over to PDF & use PDF X-Change Editor tools for extraction.

I usually start in Word because it is the most akin to what I grew up with - notes on paper, or even a typewriter.  

Seems like most of the tools in Word for getting ideas on to the screen are based on some reflection of those two analog methodologies, writing or typing.

However, I realize that LOTS of Word's functions are more about PRINTING a page, rather than reading it / reviewing it later.

So, if I create a "notebook" of ideas, after a while using Word to look through them is pretty challenging.

Is there any program you think is best for being a kind of "spiral notebook in the back pocket"?  Or, even a 3-ring binder?  Where, creating the notes, the platform is designed so that the created pages are more for READING, rather than a  than a weigh-station for printing.  

So that the pages can be READ, reviewed, even tabbed -  once an organization idea occurs.  Pages can snapped behind other pages, pages inserted later.  AND...that allows the TEXT to still be easily extracted / manipulated.

Looking for a program you've used in this same pursuit.  I'm guessing there are lots of programs that SAY they can do these things on the tin.  Are there any you have used that ACTUALLY achieve this?

Many thanks,

OT
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Rob HensonFinance Analyst
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Commented:
Look at Microsoft One Note.

Author

Commented:

Hi Rob,


How's been your experience with it?  I mean...does it work well?


Thanks!


OT

Finance Analyst
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Commented:
Personally, I've not used it much but I have seen note files of others that have used it and it appears to work really well.

The way I have seen it described is like a scrapbook where you can add snippets of information with the advantage of being digital so it can be moved around and shared. In addition info can be categorised.

As far as I remember you can collate info into a hierarchy as follows:

Groups
   Within each group Sections (like tabs of a workbook);
   Within each section you can then have multiple pages which can be dragged around, pages are free form (like a PowerPoint slide)and can show text and/or graphics.

I have seen it used for publishing Desktop Instructions

A One Note file for a particular team and shared from a central location to the whole team
A group would be for a particular role within the team
A section for the various tasks within that role
A page for different elements of the task or different systems used within that task.
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Commented:
Like @Rob Henson, I've occasionally used One Note for this sort of thing too — but it never really caught on for me to start using it regularly. Maybe my publishing background probably biases me to tools that are more structured!

But Rob's description makes me think I should take another look: my use for One Note has so far just been to collect disparate content that I can then later pull into a Word document to get it ready for publishing in some form. The way content in One Note can be readily moved around and organized makes me suspect that its design was intended for touch devices. Reorganizing works well with a mouse; not so much with a keyboard.

Author

Commented:

Thanks! :)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))!

Rob HensonFinance Analyst
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Commented:
Happy to help!