I’ve been using Evernote for some time for taking longer notes. I’m using this app on Android, MacBook and Linux. Evernote seems to have too many features, which distract me and I don’t really use most of them. A few of these features may be really helpful for some use cases, but not for mine. I need simpler & cleaner tool for taking basic personal notes, which is available on all operating systems. I’ve started searching for some alternatives. Below you can find my types worth checking.
Google Keep is nice and popular tool for Android. This is also a Chrome extension which behaves like a desktop app. It’s great for short and quick text notes, hand drawing notes, pictures and simple voice notes. It’s some kind of replacement or extension for physical yellow sticky notes. When I want to note something like one sentence or keyword quickly and I have only my phone with me, it’s perfect choice. It’s not so good for a longer notes. It doesn’t have dedicated desktop app.
Simplenote has desktop apps for all popular destkop and mobile operating systems: Windows, Linux, OSX, Android and iOS. Less features than Evernote app. It easily synchronizes across all devices and allows you to export notes into single *.zip file. It doesn’t have folders/categories, but it has tags, which may be helpful during organizing your stuff. This app is developed by Automattic, a company behind WordPress.
Boostnote is open-source and works on Linux, Windows and OSX. But it doesn’t have mobile and web application yet. This tool is good for collecting code snippets and markdown notes, what makes it great for software developers. User can attach any storage on your disk to this tool and fully control it. For example, you can add storage in your Dropbox account and synchronize it across devices. You can also attach it to your private Git repository and track changes in the notes. Boostnote is under development.