Done with cloud software! Evernote edition

I sit here frustrated, no more like pissed. I am so tired of software companies “improving” their software only to remove core features. I am tired of my workflow being at their mercy.

I don’t use Evernote in a “critical” manner… mainly for snippets of text, recipes, and other things I want to save for possible future use. Well they made this big deal about a shared code platform improvement blah blah… released a new version for MacOS that is all shiny. Haven’t used it in a while but today I go to clip so text from an email to evernote. Highlight the text and my OSX service “send to evernote” doesn’t work. Downloaded the little PopClip app to see if that would work…nope.

Turns out sometime in the last month or so they have completely removed support for OSX sharing sheets and scripting. Reading their community forums lots of people are upset it seems and the only solution is to install a legacy version which we all know won’t work forever. Another user said it appears they are using “Electron” as their app platform which doesn’t support those features so its likely they never will. Evernote has to realize the primary usage for their product is to import things from other places right? How this company can continue to make the dumbest decisions is beyond me.

Does anyone have any solution to copy some text in an app (in particular Mail.app) keeping the formatting and adding it to the new Evernote? I have not been able to find anything.

Moreover I am seriously looking into a new solution and leaning to the side of something I host myself. Perhaps on a DigitalOcean or Linode VM or I think my synology has a notes app. I am tired of feeling held hostage by these companies when they remove features and force my workflow useless.

end rant.

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If you are not using it in a critical manner, you could use any of the following.

  • Apple Notes
  • Drafts
  • Synology Notes

There are of course more “note” apps, these are the 3 that I use for snippets.

If you want something like long-term archival storage. I left Evernote about 3 years ago roughly and switched to DevonThink

Other options that have been popping up instead of DevonThink have been

Craft
Obsidian
Roam
Notion

I haven’t dabbled in these yet, so I don’t know how their platform functions.

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Thanks for the suggestions. When I said critical I mean it’s not data that prevents me from doing my job but it’s data I’d like to have saved and sync’d. I rarely type new data into my notes apps. It’s always copied, clipped etc from other places.

Is anyone’s web clipper as good is Evernote’s?

No. EN’s clipper kept me using the app longer than I normally would have. EagleFiler’s clipper does a good job of capturing webpages which it imports as a .webarchive. But it’s not a feature I often use.

If you are planning on moving away from EN, save yourself a lot of headaches and use their Legacy Desktop software. It’s more like the traditional version and the only way you will be able to export more than 50 notes at one time.

That is a definite no.

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Roam isn’t ready for prime time for this sort of use and is very expensive at $15 a month.

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The Bear clipper does the job for me. It’s not the same as the Evernote clipper, but for saving articles (that’s what I us it for) it’s pretty good.

From Evernote to DEVONthink 3 years ago! :+1:

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While I agree with everyone else who says “no”, I also find that DEVONthink 3 Pro’s clipper is more than adequate. You can also activate Reading Mode in Safari and then print to PDF (or send the PDF directly to DEVONthink or some other place.)

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I use the OneNote clipper and it works well

Such a bummer what’s happened to Evernote. I have 14,000 notes going back to 12/2006. Haven’t mustered the energy to move, but I am probably going with Notes.app and will narrow the array of stuff I save. The Electron app is garbage.

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Evernote really had something until they started taking external investment, then they lost their focus. I ask you: Evernote socks.

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Yep. They bloated it up with nonsense in pursuit of growth that had nothing to do with the “remember everything” concept. Now, the latest version stripped almost everything away. Above all, I just don’t trust the product anymore.

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“Have you tried Work chat?”

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I agree and am not happy with the new client versions of Evernote. The loss of features and for me the performance on the Mac sucks. I do have hope. As an ardent user of Evernote, I am optimistic that it too will follow the very common improvement arc when codebases merge. There are plenty of examples, but for a closer example look at Apple’s products of photos, pages, numbers, etc. When the iOS and Mac versions merged we lost a lot of functionality on the Mac. The web was full of proclamations that the platform was dead and people would never use the products again. For the most part I think they are vastly improved than the previous versions in part because the apps on both platforms look and feel similar.

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Standard stuff, but worth thinking about…

Self-hosting doesn’t necessarily solve the problems you’re describing. In theory it solves the “interface changing” problems, but all software gets old and has to be updated. Unless you’re the person who writes that software (which I don’t recommend!), that means you’re ultimately at the mercy of developer decisions.

Data longevity and portability all revolves around file formats and access to the data.

If you’re locking your data into a format (which you always are - even “plain text” is a format), worth considering:

  • How much value do I get in return for the lock-in?
  • How much work will it be to get this data out?
  • What’s the risk that this data will become inaccessible?

I put things in Numbers because the calculations Numbers can do are more valuable to me than data portability for that data. And if Numbers were going away, I have a reasonable belief that I’d be able to use old software and get my data out for the foreseeable future.

For things like notes and such, I use DEVONthink. DT uses a variety of formats that are all reasonably portable. .webarchive is proprietary but it’s (at least currently) widely supported. Plaintext is optimal for quick notes. Markdown still needs to be parsed, but it’s human-readable without parsing - so the risk of having lost data is very, very minimal.

You wouldn’t need DT, strictly speaking. All of those file formats could just be tossed in a collection of folders, and you could easily put automation in place to dump web pages to those formats. Clippings are obviously more challenging, which is where a good tool comes in.

Personally, unless I had a highly mobile workflow, I wouldn’t do something self-hosted as it requires Internet access. If your server has an uptime issue, or DO has an outage, or if your provider has a challenge of some sort, you lose the ability to make a note in your system.

I’d stick with highly-supported file formats in a local structure of some sort. And if you invest in an app, do it with the above considerations in mind. :slight_smile:

Best of luck!

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webarchive, far as I know, is Apple’s technology and i understand they are soon to withdraw support or whatever words they use.

Most of my stuff in DEVONthink that originates on internet web sites is PDF. Stuff I work with is whatever format I want as nothing in DEVONthink precludes you using any tool you want to work with the files. They provide built-in tools which you may or may not like compared to you prefer, so use what you prefer.

Any idea where you heard that? I’m willing to believe it’s true, but I can’t find a reference anywhere. When I say “widely supported”, I’ve seen apps other than Safari on Mac that support it - but that may hinge on OS-level support.

If it did “go away”, it feels like an open enough format that a third-party app could come along and create a viewer - although I absolutely agree that a PDF is probably the better option if Apple might plan to abandon their file format.

Only place I probably would have heard it is on the DEVONthink forum. Might want to go there and ask.

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See Apple deprecates WebArchives - what does this mean for DEVONthink? - #4 by BLUEFROG - DEVONthink - DEVONtechnologies Community as a starter. Might be more. All I known. There you’ll find references to Apple’s statements.