Update: (added video chapter titles & links) There is More Under the Hood than You May Know

Not withstanding my recent lament about a few limitations of Apple’s default apps., I’m still surprised by how powerful they are.

A case in point is Apple Notes. I just stumbled upon this video and was surprised to learn about several advanced features in Apple Notes that I had either forgotten about or never knew about.

Here is an excellent, fast paced, comprehensive video from the Paperless Movement showcasing the advanced features of Apple Notes.

I bet you learn something you didn’t know. :slightly_smiling_face: I did and I use Apple Notes every day.

Below I added the chapter topics and links from the video. Sorry for the poor formatting.

00:00 Intro 00:50 CREATING & FORMATTING NOTES 00:57 How to single tap access your notes 01:44 Sharing websites with Apple Notes 02:23 How to use Quick Notes in Apple Notes 03:02 Use Siri to create new Notes in Apple Notes 03:30 Create Note via Icon and Control Center 04:04 Create Checklists in Apple Notes 04:38 Gestures inside Apple Notes 04:51 Creating Tables in Apple Notes 05:15 Sharing Youtube videos in Apple Notes 05:52 Watch full Apple Notes Course 06:01 HANDWRITTEN NOTE-TAKING IN APPLE NOTES 06:17 How to convert handwriting to text in Apple Notes 06:39 Translate handwritten text in Apple Notes 06:59 Drawing Shapes in Apple Notes 07:43 How to insert space in Apple Notes 07:54 Why Dark Mode is great in Apple Notes 08:17 DOCUMENT SCANNING & MEDIA FILES IN APPLE NOTES 08:27 How to Scan Handwritten Paper Notes into Apple Notes 09:12 How to search handwritten documents in Apple Notes 09:50 How to share documents from Apple Notes 10:01 Using Live Text on videos in Apple Notes 10:52 How to annotate scanned documents in Apple Notes 11:15 Adding sketches to your Macbook using an iPad 11:39 Adding photos to your Macbook using an iPhone 11:57 How to add Voice Memos to Apple Notes 12:27 Drag & Drop files into Apple Notes 12:45 NOTES ORGANIZATION, SEARCH & SHARE 12:48 How to create Hashtags in Apple Notes with Apple Pencil 13:35 Folder and Note organization in Apple Notes 15:31 View ALL Attachments added to Apple Notes 15:54 How to use Smart Folders in Apple Notes 18:16 How to only show notes with unticked Checklist items in Apple Notes 19:39 How to use Apple Notes as your Single Source of Truth 20:36 Using Spotlight to search your Apple Notes 20:49 How to use Apple Notes Widgets 21:42 Is Apple Notes really the best note-taking app 22:24 Find & Replace in Apple Notes 23:27 Final words about Apple Note


The best part of Apple Notes is the Pencil integration. Nothing else does it as well.

I am definitely going to change the tap to unlock to open Notes to a daily note. That is neat and I did not know about that.


Speaking of myself, I think since I’ve been around the block a few times, my tendency is to think that things are still difficult, and to sometimes tend to do things the hard way. This may also be associated with being a “power user,” where, instead of seeking out and learning that there’s a new button, we jump into (keyboard maestro, shortcuts, the command line, et al.) and hack up a solution.

Thanks for this post. Notes is becoming my default “quick notes when in the Apple ecosystem” app.

I’m using Apple Notes for all of my notes – including all of my professional work meetings and project notes. The only exception are my research atomic notes, those remain in Obsidian. There are more robust note taking apps, but Apple Notes does the essentials, and then some, well and its deep integration in the Apple ecosystem makes it highly efficient and intuitive.

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Also just reminded myself that Notes, et al. are accessible on the web from, e.g., my Linux machine.
(although at the moment, Notes is crashing)

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I found this video helpful. The trick with the Youtube video was cool as is the scanning and live text. I just switched back to Apple Notes since I didn’t feel like renewing my Craft subscription. This video also makes me feel better about that decision. I tried Obsidian and while I liked being able to use standalone markdown files for typed notes, handwritten notes were a pain.

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In principle I also like the idea of using single markdown files but I find that the inherent and inevitable friction to be less efficient than other options. And, most applications have enough export options that I’m not worried about my ability to retrieve the information for use in another application if needed. I admit that earlier on I was concerned about this issue after reading a lot of threads on this forum and other sources but I’ve changed my mind. I’m not saying that “future proofing” is not a legitimate concern, it is, but I think in many cases it can be an overblown concern.