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ComputerMicrosoft OneNote Software Review
What is Microsoft OneNote? OneNote 2007 is a note taking and management program. It’s your traveling office, a digital notebook and an information backup center. It’s the new portable filing cabinet you have been searching for. OneNote is a flexible way of gathering information and notes that is easily accessible and searchable through the program. This program can be used to organize group tasks and projects.
If this review sounds gushing, it’s because OneNote 2007 has many good points but I’ll also illustrate the drawbacks and alternatives to using it a bit later on in the review.
My Personal Experience with OneNote
Did it bring me organization?
*(What's Evernote? Evernote is an online and desktop notetaking management system similar to OneNote).
Why couldn't I just use files and folders to store information?
I was travelling and for once I didn’t have a filing cabinet to stash away notes, memo’s and documents. I also had no way of carrying physical books, binders or documents because the airlines have such strict weight regulations for luggage. OneNote notebooks can be accessed, synced and stored on the web with Microsoft’s Live Mesh.
Who is this product for? The Un-organized; The already organized; project managers; the savvy business traveler and the lazy ( that's me).
Who is this product NOT for? If you are not working, don’t use Microsoft Office products and don’t have to balance work projects I would suggest opting for a free product like Evernote instead. You can still access and keep track of information, documents, pictures, PDF’s etc and the websites you love without the expense. Evernote is easy to navigate and has many of the same features and is only lacking in one aspect the way information is displayed.
Product Pros and Cons
What I liked about OneNote 2007
That’s what you’ll get with OneNote – but you’re probably shopping around for the best product for you.
Alternative Products depending on your system:
Let's Compare OneNote 2003, OneNote 2007 and Evernote.
What’s the difference? The changes won’t be noticeable unless you’ve used both products. Dragging content from websites into OneNote 2003, there is a lag long enough for you to grab a cup of coffee and do a load of laundry. OneNote 2007 the lag does not exist. In fact there is much more harmony between capturing information off the internet and storing than before.
Evernote wins this one. Evernote has an iPhone application that makes carrying your folders in your pocket – possible. Evernote has GPS positioning which allows you to mark notes with your location. This is useful for tagging your car in a parking lot. You can note products and prices by taking a picture of them and then comparing it to another store.
Evernote is far easier to sync online than OneNote. Any files I need to travel with and access from my phone instead of my laptop or desktop is copied into Evernote. Microsoft OneNote is just not there yet for absolute portability. Evernote’s website clipping is better by far than OneNote. The clip looks and operates just as it did on the website you grabbed it off of. Why does this matter? Well links are live and clickable not just lifeless in differentiable text. Once you’ve grabbed the clip you need never go back to the site. I conduct research over 100’s of websites per week – this feature is essential to my job function. Well it’s only become crucial now that I know I don’t need to store 1000’s of tagged bookmarks and favorites in my browsers anymore.
Evernote does not offer me true freedom to run all my work related projects. The note filing system is very one dimensional like a stack of note cards while OneNote resembles a binder with integrated sections and tags. This offers me the ability to create many, Many, MANY files and folders that are visible all at once, in an organized uncluttered navigation friendly format.
Microsoft OneNote has 3 options that work very well 1. paste a copy of the entire file (visible as an icon), 2. the actual file location (for remote logging in users), and 3. a print version of the file (here you are stuck with images of the files – you would need to have a digital tablet to make notes easily). With Print Version each page is individually displayed – this is annoying if you have to scroll hundreds of pages. Evernote’s approach to PDF’s is to display them like an eBook – you can click on the page itself to go to the next page, no scrolling. Great for transferring long documents or manuals that you need to read not just backup storage.
So was it worth it? I was skeptical as to the actual benefit I would receive from the newer version and so downloaded the trial version. After just one use I knew just how superior it's speed and transferring abilities were compared to OneNote 2003. The organizing structuring for notes compared to Evernote made me make the purchase. Remember I already had an Evernote premium account at this stage (which I will keep because OneNote can't be carried in my pocket the way Evernote can).
As technology progress’s we will need to update our note management systems too - it's unfortunate but after working at this level of organization I can't go back to my cluttered work life again. Save your money for as long as you can by taking advantage of the free trials and coupon codes available online for each product.
Note – I don’t feel this way about Microsoft Office word or excel, I’ll gladly use Word 2003 for the next decade or doomsday (whichever comes first) if my operating system will let me, it does exactly what I need while the 2007 version (which I have too) feels just like a redundant expense on my part.
• Ready to Purchase
Screenshots of Microsoft OneNote
2. Home Use