You must have started a new decade where you’ve heard about these concepts somewhere. Whether it’s product research, Twitter or just at work, Notion draws attention to the network as a brilliant new tool to improve performance in the city.
It is very likely that in the past two years people with a desire for organization and productivity have come to this application. From absolute beginners to veterans of the production software ecosystem, millions of people have adopted Notion.
The term is intended as an “all-in-one” workspace to meet the growing demand for additional tools. What does it mean? Essentially, they want to combine all your performance tools into a single application and the ultimate goal is to give you total freedom for your performance without the need for programming skills.
Other “all-in-one” workstations such as Coda, Taskade and Airtable are also looking for market share in this brand new space.
Evernote is another well-known and popular performance tool that has solved many of these problems over the years. In recent years it has taken advantage of its lack of dynamism as a result of progress in development. So Notion reminds me of Evernote from the beginning, how they are positioned in the market and ready for mass market appeal in 2020.
What is a term?
First, what is Notion?
You may have heard about it and been seduced by the well thought out “dashboards”, but what is Notion and what can it really do for my productivity?
Notion is a powerful tool that allows you to replace and combine tools like Evernote, Trello, Google Docs, Asana, Quip, Todoist and others into one application.
How do I do it? The concept uses databases to build a structure that meets your needs. So you want to create an editorial calendar for your team? Build it from the board’s database. Or maybe you want to see your habit of monitoring progress. In that case, try the table database.
The real magic of Notion is the unlimited use of the application, which offers many users a playground for creative expression with their own performance requirements.
A few weeks ago Matt Ragland explained the term perfectly in the “Sweet Setup” section, and we recommend you to read it too!
What is Evernote used for?
Evernote is generally used as the best archive tool. It’s a great way to store documents, useful notes, important files, project notes and even reminders.
A general example of the use of Evernote is the “second brain”, if you will, a concept developed by performance guru Thiago Forte. With this storage base, Evernote users have easy access to things on the go and can download things that are important to them and that they will never forget or lose.
Here are some of the most common applications of Evernote:
Scanning things in Evernote makes returning to Evernote extremely easy. With the built-in scanner function, you can only download documents from your phone’s camera, and the quality is excellent. This means you can download all your important files and save less paper.
Another advantage is that documents can be searched using Evernote’s powerful Text Recognition (OCR) function.
There is a high demand for the Web Clipper Evernote, which allows users to create clips for articles, PDFs and documents in the Chrome browser. A very popular feature among users is the Web Clipper, which allows them to take screenshots, make annotations and even organize them from within the browser.
This is one of the many features that people enjoy in Evernote.
Press clippings and web articles are very effective, but one thing people love is the ability to take notes forever. Anchor notes are what Steve Dotto calls mandatory for Evernote users because they can store everything from the size of your husband’s shirt to his neck and the serial numbers on the kettles. These useful anchor points can be stored in Evernote and are always available. So when you’re on the move, Evernote works for you like no other tool – the ultimate filing cabinet.
Overall, Evernote is loved by many. But if you were considering Notion, what would it look like?
What would it look like in Evernote?
With Notion, you can create pages that look just like the laptops in Evernote.
You can create anything from a recipe database to a photo gallery, or even a calendar of your team’s blog content – it’s up to you.
Here’s an easy way to start managing your notes as part of the concept:
Start with a blank page. This is where all the pages are created, a way to choose the format.
Choose Gallery from the database. If you choose Gallery, you get an ideal database for adding notes. Give the page a smiling face and a title to cheer it up.
Configure your properties. This is important for your notes when you add them. This allows you to add areas for tags and useful display settings.
Add your notes. After selecting your properties and settings, you can now add your notes. Here is one I use every week for my Project Workbench notes.
The notes in Notion are very attractive and tempting, but they have some drawbacks that you might want to know before you start using Notion right away. So be sure to read all the questions and answers below when considering switching to Notion.
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Useful questions and answers
Q1: I am currently using Evernote. Will the Notebook meet my needs?
Let’s define your current use of Evernote, how you will use it and if it will be translated into Notion with a few examples. This will create a good framework to determine if your needs match the capabilities of Notion.
Example 1: I am currently using Evernote to scan documents, maintain email logs and manage checklists with external clients.
In this case it is best to use Evernote. It is currently not possible to scan like Evernote, and there is no email forwarding. But Notion can help with project management, it works very well with databases that allow you to switch from whiteboard view to calendar view, which is excellent for planning checklists and creating client projects.
Example 2: I regularly take notes in podcasts, manage my weekly calendar and even read articles in clips via my web browser.
These are all things Notion does even better than Evernote. Although it doesn’t have a great web clip, it works well enough to film articles, and taking notes and publishing week calendars is child’s play.
Example 3: I love saving and managing PDF files that are important to my home and finances. I also like to write in-depth research articles that I comment on and then read.
Evernote is probably best suited for you. Continuing to “The Concept” will only disturb you. Notion’s PDF features are downloadable only and are not stored locally as in Evernote. Searching becomes even more difficult with the limited search function. The Web Clipper for Notion is also not Evernote compliant, as it can only store images and links, which limits you when you want to take a screenshot, make annotations, add tags for your searches, etc.
This is not to discourage the idea, but to ensure the feasibility of the conversion in terms of performance.
Q2: How would you use Notion in your daily life?
This will help you understand what the term means and why you will use it. You don’t want to use it for that, or just because it is the “application of the day”, you need a real case to use the tool.
Let’s see if the real case meets your needs and go further, by category.
Scenario 1: Storage and presentation of information
If you’re looking for a center for file creation and document management, Evernote can be even better. Currently you can download files (up to 5 MB free) and do not have special local storage space. All files are therefore uploaded to the AWS (Amazon web server) and are not available offline.
If you just use the file management tool, it’s good for ease of use, but as long as you introduce a better document search, local document management and maybe some editing/notation functions – with PDF – Evernote remains the best option.
Scenario 2: Task Manager
Planning and managing tasks within Notion is relatively easy, and if you compare it to Evernote, Notion wins. Databases, the main feature of Notion, allow you to manage, schedule, even change and coordinate tasks.
Although it lacks an integrated and natural experience with list tools such as Things, Notion still allows you to add tags and dates (as many as you like), view tasks in the calendar view, add checklists, filter tasks, and schedule the use of the whiteboard. In this scenario, the concept is the best tool to use.
Scenario 3: Comments
Things get complicated here because every tool makes a good shot. Evernote has a more traditional setup that allows you to add media, comment on images and still connect to your laptop.
Notion offers a richer experience that allows you to add databases for recording notes, and has more interactive features such as the ability to watch videos and integrate Google Maps and other files such as Google Drive (which Evernote can also do).
It depends on the type of notebook you use, but the flexible nature of Notion allows you to create more attractive notes.
For many, this will be the most important factor. Can you make good notes at Notion? The answer is yes. You can make more interactive and richer notes with Notion than with Evernote, but the question is what you need offline.
A few months ago I was traveling and I needed my itinerary. I was in a new country at customs and was asked: “Where exactly are you going to live? Luckily I kept it in Evernote because the offline version of Notion didn’t work. I was able to find out the address. So if you travel a lot or have other reasons why offline access is important to you, Evernote can still be your notebook.
Scenario 4: Coordination projects
Many people use Evernote to manage their projects. The benefits are numerous, including the fact that all your notes are in one notebook, and even for orders you can use Evernote to see your team’s dashboard.
But with Notion you can do a lot more and challenge people like Trello, Asana and even Mondayay.com, including managing projects in whiteboard view, connecting databases (relational databases), creating formulas and even managing database templates to reduce your workload.
Scenario 5: Exploration
If you are a student, researcher or scientist, Notion lacks a powerful web clipper if you place it next to Evernote. Evernote lets you create titles, links, tags, notes, and even screenshots; save and annotate PDF files; and much more, bringing it closer to classic notes. Even email messages can be saved in Evernote with just one click on the “Forward” button.
What’s missing is advanced search functionality, because with your own web clipper you can only capture articles and images from your iPhone/Android on the go.
Don’t lose your ideas and notes through multiple applications…
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