Issue: 8.3 (March/April 2010)
Author: Dave Mancuso
Article Description: No description available.
Article Length (in bytes): 3,774
Starting Page Number: 12
RBD Number: 8307
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IN BRIEF Product Evernote Manufacturer Evernote Corporation Price Free, Premium plan available Contact Info http://www.evernote.com/ Pros Cross-platform, OCR recognition of scanned documents, great way to clip all kinds of information and share it across machines and platforms Cons Takes some thought to understand and truly utilize its features Rating (1.0-5.0): 4.2
Evernote began as a clipping application for the Macintosh. It appeared as a beta product in February, 2008. The idea was that you could grab a snippet of anything that interested you, and Evernote would save it to an online database. Files, web pages, screen shots, digital photos, just about anything you can think of can be put into Evernote. This concept has expanded over the past two years, and forms the basis of the current Evernote application. It's a popular product; Evernote has now grown to over two million customers.
Since Evernote was originally a Macintosh application, its information was limited to sharing among Macs. Over time, a PC version was created and even an iPhone/iPod version. Now you can clip your information to your Evernote database on the Internet (in "the cloud") and access it from another platform at your convenience.
Evernote itself is an application; it's not web-browser based. You download the client on to your computer (or iPhone/iPod) and launch it. You'll need to create an account with Evernote, but it's a quick and simple process. Once you log into the client, you're ready to go. If you're new to Evernote, you're ready to begin clipping items of interest into your online database. If you've already been using the service, your client will find your information and have it ready for you.
The application is more than file storage. It will perform optical character recognition on your uploaded documents if need be (for instance, on scanned items or pictures of documents taken with your iPhone). Once this is done, then even your scanned images are searchable with Evernote's database engine. I took digital photos of documents I'd received in the mail, and they synced to Evernote easily. I was later able to search for terms like "revenue" in my Evernote database and the application located my document instantly. The fact that Evernote did this for a digital photo of a document was the death knell for my old scanner. With Evernote, it's no longer needed. Once my docs were in Evernote, I accessed them easily on my iPhone and my Windows PC. For someone who uses multiple machines at work and at home, Evernote certainly makes things convenient.
Evernote is a free product, but a premium version allows more uploads per month, collaboration, more search features, and other goodies. At $5 per month, the premium version isn't very expensive for those who want it. If you buy a year it's only $45, a discount of $15.
Evernote is one of those applications that takes a while to sink into your mind and your workflow. You need to understand it a bit and try out things before you'll be able to take advantage of it. If you like its concept, Evernote will be a winner for you.
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