Google Notebook is live.
I don’t know why, but when I was reading the preview sites about it, I thought it was going to be competition for del.icio.us. A social bookmarking-like site. Yahoo (and their new home page) need not worry. It’s not.
It’s more like Evernote or a simplified OneNote. A quick clip service. There are times that you want to bookmark a page or a site. There are other times that you don’t need the whole page, you just need those few paragraphs that tell you what you want to know. Or, you have to retain information from a site and you don’t trust that the same info will be there next time you return (such as the receipt when you purchase something). Evernote/OneNote are perfect applications for this. I’ve tried both, and settled on Evernote. Even better, it’s free.
Think of Evernote as one long roll of paper. When you want to jot something down, you just go to the end of the roll and add your note. The power is in the ease of getting information in to the application and the speedy searches to get info out. What good is saving information if you can’t get it back out later?
Google Notebook is a similar clipping service. There’s a handy Firefox extension to facilitate the clips. Highlight over the text you want to save, right-click and select “Note this” from the menu and it goes right there.
There’s a little mini notebook at the bottom of the browser to show the most recent clips.
Notebook’s biggest problem? YAWATTIST. Yet Another Web Application That Thinks I Started Today. There is no capability for importing data from any other application…stickies, word files, Evernote, OneNote, etc. etc.
Regardless, for 95% of my note-taking needs, I’m sticking with Evernote. I’m even hoping the long-promised upgrade to version 2 that will have Pocket PC sync will actually come in my lifetime.
- Evernote doesn’t rely on my Internet connection to work, so I can jot notes anywhere anytime. Even when on Amtrak.
- Evernote is light and fast and easy. The phone rings, I click Evernote to the front ready to take notes on the call. Habit.
- Evernote isn’t putting any of my personal information on the internet. Yes, Google Notebook has notes set as “private” by default. But no thanks anyway.
- Evernote works well from any application, not only my web browser. Copy/Paste from anywhere, and Evernote retains a link in the note to the original source.
- Evernote has templates for different style notes
- I often use Evernote to strip out formatting on Word/Outlook files before posting on website. Paste Special… to paste into Evernote as plain text.
The only use I can see for Google Notebook? If there’s something that I think I may have to access from another computer or when I’m away from home. As long as it’s not too personal, of course.