Goodnotes, Obsidian, and Devonthink

Just a quick note today on a nice indexing trick. I have now set up Goodnotes to backup to a Dropbox folder. I then can index that folder (or specific folders) in Devonthink. So, all my meeting notes are sitting awaiting for me in Devonthink (and are OCR’d thus searchable!). I also have set up a hazel rule to take my “Obsidian Notes” folder from Goodnotes, and copy it over to a folder in my icloud Obsidian folder. While it is not ocr’d, I find typing up those notes quite useful for my zettelkasten system. Anyways, thought others might benefit (or perhaps this is an obvious workflow?)


A trifecta! Very nice.

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“Obvious” doesn’t mean “not worth mentioning” :slight_smile:
Glad to hear of our inclusion in this!


Interesting combo!

What made you decide to use Goodnotes instead of capturing notes in Obsidian or DEVONthink? What’s your specific use case for each of these apps?

I was reading this about Obsidian and DEVONthink integration earlier today as I am currently rethinking my own notes and file integration.

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Well, I do capture notes in both Obsidian and Devonthink, but there are many times that I prefer to use the apple pencil to slow myself down, to doodle, etc. It is a different kind of note-taking process. In the past I have been hampered by working in GN, but then losing track of what I have there. But now things are waiting for me in the right place. For instance, if I am listening to one of my graduate students chat with me, I’d rather be jotting things down by hand. But since this Goodnotes file is sitting in my “students” folder, it will still end up in the right “students” group in Devonthink. Same thing with Obsidian - if I am reading a paper book, I’d prefer not to be typing at the same time - now the handwritten notes will be waiting in a “to be processed” folder in Obsidian almost immediately (as long as my main machine is running for Hazel to do its magic).

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Sorry, and as to your more specific question: I use Obsidian as my “zettelkasten” linked explicitly to my academic life as a scholar. Obsidian is where I develop research, grapple with literature, etc. What doesn’t go in there are personal notes, administrative stuff, etc. My Devonthink databases are my filing cabinets, with lots and lots of things. It is where I store and index my PDFs (I use Bookends for my academic literature), my keynote presentations, and the ephemera of everyday life. Yes, I also index my obsidian folder in a database there, as I have many other notes that I have yet to integrate into Obsidian, and because DT has that nice “see also” feature. (I also use Ryan Murphy’s Devonthink plugin in Obsidian, which is handy). Anyways, I find all three pieces of software complimentary but quite unique.


I’m also using GoodNotes to bsidian in my workflow. As has been reported elsewhere I will no longer use DEVONThink.

My use case for why Goodnotes not Obsidian directly is that I can handwrite on my iPad using the Apple Pencil faster than I can type and it’s less obtrusive when in a meeting. (Although I do have to admit that in the meetings with the sheep they really don’t care what I am using for notes, they are far more concerned with getting back to eating and sleeping.)

My workflow is notes in GoodNotes, text recognize and then a shortcut to send them directly to Obsidian for cleanup and eventual inclusion in my PKM system.


@Aroddick @OogieM Thanks for your updates.

Need to take re-install Goodnotes again when the iPad mini arrives and give it a good spin. Have been using OneNote mainly on my iPad Pro as it was the one thing syncing with a work machine (No Dropbox and iCloud allowed)

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Thank you very much for sharing this! This will help me much.

Best regards,

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:heart: :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks, was not aware of this option. Also works for Notability. Will save time transferring PDF version of notes into Devonthink.

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