I have been an Evernote user for some time now and have just renewed my premium subscription to the service in the last month or so. I have a couple friends who had terrible experiences in the last month or two where they lost a lot of valuable information and documents through theft. I discovered that some of my friends are in the habit of using a paper diary (that still seems weird to me) and attach important documents and notes to their diaries as they go. As paper based systems go, that makes a lot of sense. The diary becomes your constant and invaluable reference point for what is happening in your life. The problem is that the diary is a single physical item and it can be lost, stolen or left behind when you need it.
This is where Evernote comes in. Evernote has been described as your external brain. It is a bit like a digital version of that diary my friends use, except better. There are different ways you can use Evernote. I have the desktop application installed on my laptop and I keep it open all the time. I am constantly adding stuff to it. I have Evernote on my phone (great applications for the iPhone and Android phones) and I add notes to it all the time. I may type up a quick text note and upload it or take a photo of something I want to remember and send to my Evernote account. I also have access to all my notes (at least where I have synchronized notebooks – all my notebooks are for this reason) on the Evernote site. These videos below introduce the Mac and Windows applications and describe some great ways you can use Evernote:
The best thing about Evernote, aside from what it does, is that it is free. If you are a heavy user you can subscribe to a premium service but most people can do just fine with the free version for their day to day stuff. I know this post sounds like an Evernote ad. It isn’t really and I’m not getting any benefit aside from the satisfaction of evangelising a tool I rely on heavily and love. If my friends had been using Evernote they probably wouldn’t have skipped a beat when their physical diaries disappeared because everything would be in Evernote anyway. Maybe next time …