3/18/2013

Awesome Note +Google Drive


Source: http://sebastian.laxell.fi/files/awesome_note-300x300.jpg


Many of us organize our entire existence around our smartphones. I’m no exception. I depend on that little iPhone for my work and personal life. The phone, though is only as good as the apps I use. Recently, I’ve started using Awesome Note and I have to say it lives up to it’s name.

This is a note-taking, to-do and calendar app all wrapped into one. While it doesn’t do everything I want, Awesome Note is probably the best overall productivity app I’ve found. As a calendar, it can read/write your iPhone’s calendar and Reminders. The to-do function is alright. As you’d expect, you can add a due date, tell it to repeat and mark the status as in progress, pending or waiting. You can also change the relative importance of a task by marking it with 0 to 5 stars. Not fantastic but not bad, either.

As befits the app’s name, it creates fantastic notes that can be modified in dozens of ways. You can add checkboxes, dates and pictures. You can choose from plenty of backgrounds and fonts as well. Add a title and tag to each note and they become easily searchable.

The notes stay well organized in folders which can be be assigned a unique color and icon. Arranging the folders is as simple as dragging and dropping and adding spaces to separate the folders into groups. This app allows for an almost infinite range of customization, which is a double edged sword. You can adjust this app to work in exactly the way you need it to. On the other hand, you might also get caught up in tweaking the app so much that it cuts into your productivity.

Awesome Note syncs with either Evernote or Google Drive. The advantage of using Evernote is that it can read the text on any picture, making search a breeze. On the other hand, you have a data upload limit on the free plan. In other words, if you plan on syncing your Awesome Note on a regular basis, you should have a paid account with Evernote. On the other hand, Google Drive is free. Sync everything. Don’t pay a dime. There are two downsides that you should be aware of, though. First, Google doesn’t read the text on pictures the way Evernote does. The other issue is really a matter of preference. Google reads your stuff. All of it. It’s not that you have a funny looking bald man reading through everything. Computers analyze your emails and documents to find patterns that they can use to feed you personalized ads. I’m OK with that. I don’t pay attention to ads anyway. If privacy is a big issue for you, you’ll want to get an account with Evernote instead.

The other reason Drive is the clear choice for me is that you have a simple way to edit your notes online. To be clear, notes in Awesome Note can only become documents in Drive. Of course, it works the other way, too. Documents you make in Drive become notes. However, you won’t be able to sync Presentations, Spreadsheets, Drawings or anything else to Awesome Note.

There it is. Awesome Note in combination with Google Drive can create a fantastic system of productivity.