Could Google Drive Be An Evernote Alternative?

Could Google Drive Be An Evernote Alternative? | 40Tech

So let’s talk. There’s been a lot of conversation around the web — and on this site — about possible alternatives for Evernote. Springpad was the goto app for many, though the most recent update has pulled them further away from that comparison, and drawn the ire of many users in the process. If you look at Springpad, though, as well as several other apps that offer services that are considered comparable to Evernote (Shelfster, Thinkery, OneNote and Catch, for example), you can define a general criteria for a note taking application that I think — no matter how odd it may sound — could also be met by Google’s latest cloud offering and the new face of Google Docs: Google Drive.

Stick with me. I’d love to have a conversation with you all about this.

 

First: What is Google Drive?

Google Drive is the latest cloud drive offering to hit the web jungle. It came out just this past week and has already been cited as a direct threat to Dropbox, Skydrive, Box, and all the rest. On the flip-side, it’s also received the standard Ahhhhh, Their Stealing My Private Information!!!!! treatment by the web media, as well — in this case, somewhat unfairly (more below).

Google Drive Features

Once you start using drive, you can say goodbye to the docs.google.com url. Your docs shall forever become a part of Google Drive. You’ll still be able to revert to the old Google Docs interface, for a limited time, but the default new dashboard is where you will start, and eventually end up.

Google Drive | New Google Docs Dashboard | 40Tech

 

YouTube Preview Image

 

Here’s the feature-set, in a nutshell:

Storage is low cost and in abundance. And it can take crazy large files, and allows you to view files most other services don’t. Sync with your computers and mobile devices (iOS coming soon) in the same manner as Dropbox.

  • 5GB of free storage space — and Gmail goes up to 10GB
  • Additional space starting at $2.49/month for 25GB, $4.99 for 100GB — all the way up to 16TB (these also up your Gmail to 25GB)
  • Google Docs don’t count against your storage
  • 10GB filesize limit per file
  • Upload up to 30 types of files –this includes Photoshop, Illustrator, movies, photos and more, as well as viewing of those files (graphic designers, rejoice! — and yes, this means movie and music playback, too)
  • Add and manage files from your desktop environment
  • Google Docs files (.gdoc, .gsheet, etc.) are actually shortcuts to their respective web editors, so don’t take up additional hard drive space on your PC
  • Offline viewing (offline editing is in the works, too)

Sharing, sharing, sharing! Collaborate! Individual files, folders, or your entire Drive…

  • Add a person, go public, or share a link — you can even give people without Google accounts editing capability
  • Send Drive links in Gmail to make sure everyone always has the updated version — no attachment worries
  • Or send Drive files as attachments, or even in the body of the email (classic Google Docs features)
  • Share photos and videos right from Google+
  • Easily view and manage files and folder shared with you
  • Collaborate on any type of file — comment and chat on any of your files, in real time
  • 30 days of revision history

Google Drive Sharing Settings | 40Tech

Search — including including OCR and Google Goggles

  • Filter by keyword, file type, file owner, and more
  • Search text in scanned documents
  • Find a photo using the search bar — Goggles can recognise objects in your images

Third-party apps. There are already several available on the Chrome Web Store, many of them free or freemium services. These apps will plug right in to your Google Drive allowing you to do all kinds of fun things. Some examples:

  • HelloFax lets you send free faxes right from Google Drive — it also has signature signing capability, as do a couple of other Google Drive apps like DocuSign
  • Pixlr and Aviary for Google Drive let you edit uploaded photos
  • SlideRocket can be set up to be your default presentation app
  • Revisu lets you share designs for feedback and track version history
  • Lots more available and lots more coming via Google Drive > Settings > Manage apps > Get more apps

Third Party Google Drive Apps | 40Tech

Any of you starting to see why I couldn’t help but compare it to Evernote? More on that, below.

What About My Privacy?

Google Drive’s privacy policy and terms of use came under fire almost the moment it launched. I have this picture in my mind of writers hearing about the launch and rubbing their hands together with glee as they consider all the readers they will be able to draw in with negative Google headlines. Don’t get me wrong, I still think Google may be the sweet face of Evil, and many of the concerns were and are valid — they’re just out of context.

Google’s Terms of Service states:

“You retain ownership of any intellectual property rights that you hold in that content. In short, what belongs to you stays yours.”

This is a good thing. But here’s where the confusion comes in:

“…you give Google (and those we work with) a worldwide license to use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works (such as those resulting from translations, adaptations or other changes we make so that your content works better with our Services), communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute such content. The rights you grant in this license are for the limited purpose of operating, promoting, and improving our Services, and to develop new ones.”

At first glance, this is freaky — but the reality is that this is used so that Google can integrate Drive with its other services — for you, of course — and to provide the other functions of the service, such as OCR and image recognition. Of course, this also means they can use the content to better provide you with more accurate advertising, but this is something they do with their services already.

Bear in mind that they can also be compelled to give up your information to government bodies or law enforcement agencies if required to by law. This is a standard thing that applies to every online service that houses its servers in the United States.

All of these things can be found in similar fashion in the Dropbox terms of service — and even the Evernote terms of service, though some may find Google to be a bit more ambiguous. Personally, I find the Amazon Cloud Drive terms of service much more frightening.

What does this all mean? Only this: Google’s scary privacy points are, in this instance, not so different than any other online drive’s terms of service. Does this mean there aren’t potentially frightening possibilities; that it’s all really candy and roses? No. Not unless you consider that the candy and roses could be laced with Rohypnol, that is. But these privacy issues are simply the risk you take when you put your files and personal information online. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be concerned, just that you need to make the same decision, no matter what cloud service you use.

 

Next: Google Docs vs Evernote

Evernote Google Drive
Sync between devices (including mobile) Yes
Offline viewing Yes
Offline editing Not Yet
Collaboration Yes
Sharing Yes
Keyboard shortcuts for quick launch With tweaks (custom shortcuts)
Rich text editing Yes
Easy organization by notebooks and tags Yes, but with folders (no more tags)
Powerful search Yes
OCR Yes
Add attachments Yes
Search within attachments Yes
Third party integrations Yes, with more on the way
Add content by email Not at the moment
Web clipping Only manual copy and paste works at the moment
Low cost Yes
Upgradeable storage Yes

 

NOTE: You can create desktop shortcuts to open new Google Docs files, and then add custom hotkeys to those shortcuts to easily open new “notes”. The same urls used for the shortcuts can be used to create a dropdown in your browser’s bookmarks bar, although one bookmark, loaded in the browser sidebar is a great option for Firefox. The URLs you need are in this Google Document: http://bit.ly/IIiHAo. I’ve also added the shortcuts I decided to use, while testing. If there’s interest, I’ll do a full how-to on this.

New Google Document Shortcut with Keyboard Shortcut | 40Tech

NOTE: You can also add Google Drive to the Windows Send To context menu by typing %APPDATA%/Microsoft/Windows/SendTo to a Windows Explorer window – press enter. Then open another Explorer window, create a shortcut of your Google Drive, then drag it to the Send To folder you just opened. Now, when you right click on a file, you will be able to send it right to your Google Drive (this is based on the Windows 7 OS and also works for Skydrive and Dropbox).

 

Where Google Drive Wins

Google Drive allows you access to a full office suite, from full document and spreadsheet creation to presentations. It will also allow you to handle files more easily, as well as have real-time, collaborative conversations within the files/notes themselves. For people who want to have a powerful suite that they can leverage in nearly the same way as Evernote, then Google Drive could be a very good option. The same goes for people who don’t like the new Springpad, but find that Evernote just isn’t enough for them.

 

Where Google Drive Lacks

The lack of speedy clipping is an issue for me. This can be overcome with some simple copy and paste, or with extensions like Send to Google Docs (turns a whole web page into a PDF and sends it to Google Docs), and will likely no longer be an issue once some enterprising person or business creates an app for just that, but for the moment it is a bit of an annoyance. Not a deal breaker, though.

Web Clip of 40Tech Article to Google Drive by Shortcut, Then Copy Paste | 40Tech

The other thing is that it is just not as straightforward as Evernote. The workarounds I put together make it easier to get going, but I find that the keyboard shortcuts I created sometimes fail until I remake them in the shortcut’s properties. And as I’ve mentioned in posts before, Evernote is really good at the simple things it does: taking and organizing notes. Once you add all the extra power and options of Google Drive, then you run into the potential of it becoming unwieldy, unless you manage it really well.

 

So there it is, my curiosity and thought process laid out before you. Your turn now! I want to know what you think – feasibility, practicality of application, pure ridiculousness, et al. Let’s chat about it and see what we can come up with as a group!

Bobby Travis

Bobby isn't 40-something, but is a strong supporter of the Grown-up Geek kind. He's a loving husband and father first, but is also a freelance writer, productivity nut, operatically trained singer, and (not-so) closet geek. Check out his random thoughts, wackiness, and Instagram pics on Tumblr, Twitter, or Google+-- or just head over to bobby-travis.com.

56 Comments:

  1. does google drive/docs support using a pen?

  2. Really nice article and a useful conclusion.

    I’ve been thinking of switching all my notes from Evernote to Google Docs/Drive. But as you stated, web clipping legency and ease-of-use of Evernote is something Google Docs/Drive doesn’t have.

    So I guess I will change my note taking habits and separate them into 2: Google Docs/Drive for more complex documents and Evernote for just clipping web pages and quick-notes.

    • Thanks Onur. :)

      It will be interesting to see what sort of improvements come in the next bit — and what third party apps. The clipping problem may disappear relatively quickly.

  3. I use Evernote for all BUT my documents – and only because my mind doesn’t work with tags – even after three years, I just can’t get them to work for me like I want. I need files, thank you very much Dropbox/Google Docs. (Although, gDocs can be confusing to navigate.)

    I MIGHT consider a switch only if Drive can clip my emails and sites. Oh, and Evernote is too SIMPLE to use to abandon completely. I like the mouse, not the keyboard, and it appears to be a complicated mess to get shortcuts to work in Drive.

    Sounds like Drive has a ways to go, but it has to start somewhere. I’m in “wait and see” mode.

    Question: does Drive convert all clips to gDocs or PDFs, or does it preserve them in original form, i.e. Microsoft Word, like Evernote does?

    • Creating shortcuts is pretty straightforward, once you figure what the urls are. You can even use a shortcut of your browser’s executable to have new documents open in a new window, if you want. I’m considering doing a tutorial post on it, but one of the blue notes in the article (near the bottom) contains a link to a shared Google doc that has the urls you need.

      When you drag a file in, it should keep its regular format. That could change if you have your Drive set to convert files to docs formats. You can even have it set to pull the text out of pdfs — but i don’t know how accurate that is, as i haven’t tried it.

  4. As a graphic designer, one thing I use Evernote for is as a database for visual research that I find online or in magazines. So the ability to tag (and use multiple tags for a given item) is the best part. So if I find something compelling online or in an e-mag, I can dump it into Evernote and tag it for color, type, layout, whatever. Then easily search later if I’m looking for interesting uses of color (etc.)

    I suppose with Google Drive, I could just add the descriptors to the document itself, but the nice thing about tags is that it helps me to be consistent. I can see what tags I’ve set up.

    • Tagging is a great Evernote feature, for certain. I’ve put them to serious use in my own implementation, and would like to see them added to Google Drive for both search and additional organization filters.

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Google Docs used to have labels? I don’t see that function in my Drive. Since labels are just tags, that functionality would fix the tagging issue right up.

  5. Bobby, thanks for this article. It’s very well written and comprehensive. Impressive, considering how new Google Drive is!

  6. Here’s my take, I like to use:

    SPRINGPAD for simple general notes that I plan on sharing with others (usually not work related).

    EVERNOTE for serious note taking for myself(often for work).

    GOOGLEDRIVE/DOCS for specific office documents I want to save and sometimes to share (work and play).

    DROPBOX for using custom portable software and their related files. I really like the old application Keynote to organize scripts and coding.

  7. I’m not sure if labels are gone in Google Drive, but you can just add things to multiple folders and it works the same as labels. The file will appear in multiple folders at the same time.

    To do this from the opened file you just click the folder icon next the file name at the top, hold the control button and select all the folders you want the file in.

    Hope this helps!

    • Thanks Jimmy! I’ll try that — have you noticed if you can do it with non-docs files and if it screws with your storage space? And how does it look in the Windows folder?

      • I know that in the Windows folder it just shows up in as many folders as you put it in. I’m not sure about non-docs files or storage space though.

  8. Mmmm.. don’t think is a good alternative.

    The Evernote desktop app is not comparable with the “Windows explorer” like Drive app.

    Creating notes is much faster in Enote app than in Drive web app or desktop app. The search works much better (on my tests) in Evernote…

    Would like to have a good alternative but i think at the moment i dont have any.

  9. Johnny McClung

    I was using Google Docs and a service called Insync which syncs Google Docs to your hard drive, converting them into MS Office files in the process. When Drive was introduced, I was excited because I was having compatibility issues and hoped Google could maybe do better. I dropped Drive when I saw that it synced native Google Docs to my hard drive. I’m taking online College classes and must have MS Office files to submit my homework. If Google would offer this conversion, I’d try it out again, but I’m not holding my breath.

  10. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this site. I am hoping the same high-grade site post from you in the upcoming as well.

  11. Tried to use it on my android phone and each note took ages to load. For me speed is important when I’m mobile so at the moment it’s not much use as something to jot down a quick note. So it won’t be replacing Springpad or Evernote any time soon.

    It will probably replace Dropbox if anything., especially as it gets more polish which I expect it will as the roll-out continues.

    • I’ve heard it can be a bit slow on Android — didn’t have that problem on my wife’s phone, but my tests were limited. I’m curious to see how they handle the iOS app when it finally appears.

  12. Nice Article.

    I used to be a big user of OneNote and also have tried Evernote/Springpad as alternatives.

    I switched entirely to Google Docs about a year ago and now that Google Drive has arrived the suite is almost perfect for me.

    My biggest issue with GDocs is that cut and paste of images does not work reliably otherwise web and screen clips would be easy with ‘Google Screen Capture’ (for Chrome users anyway).

    Although labels are now called folders it is still possible to have multiple labels/folders per doc – just control click the names in the organize screen (this is a little fiddly I admit). I find that Google search can usually find what I am looking for without me needing to organize things anyway.

    I also find the android app too slow so revert to Catch for note taking when mobile. I expect this issue to go away with next handset upgrade.

    Re college documents required to be in MSword. You will never get reliable conversion back and forth – it is a minefield. You can use Google Drive to sync your MS Docs between all the machines that you use. You require MSWord on all the clients (and Google Drive Client) but you get the benefits of sync and 30 day revision history. This is what I used when at college (after many horrible attempts at conversion between linux/various cloud suites/MSWord)

  13. It may be that Google drive is slower on older Android OS phones. Mine is an HTC Desire HD running froyo 2.3 which isn’t exactly cutting edge. I’ll be upgrading in a few months so if creating and accessing new documents is smooth enough on whatever the latest OS is at the time I’ll be making it my go-to note solution like a shot. I prefer all my toys to play together so with most of my stuff being Google it will fit in nicely.

  14. I’m at this interesting site today because I am searching for a way to alphabetize and otherwise sort lists that I have in Evernote. I have copied Evernotes and pasted them into Word or online at http://sortmylist.com/ to modify the Evernotes.
    Gnotes has a feature that worked somewhat but if made into a checklist it would automatically move anything that was checked to the bottom of the pile. If I could turn off that action I might have had what I needed.
    Does anyone have a suggestion:
    -Is there a way to sort in a note?
    -is there a way to turn on/off all check boxes so the note can be moved to a sortable program without the checkboxes disrupting formatting?
    Thanks

  15. I’m definitely using Google Drive for some functions I previously used Evernote for, but I see drive as more of a dropbox / mozy / sugarsync killer.

    For $20 a month, I’ve upgraded to 400GB, which allows me to back up basically my entire hard drive (at least, all files I’d be upset if I lost). It functions and syncs just like dropbox between my work and home computers, but the web interface is much much better.

    In fact, I find myself using the web interface more than windows explorer these days since it’s quicker. Go to drive.google.com, hit the “/” key to search, start typing the name of the file, and boom, I have it open within seconds. The fact that I can view and edit most file types without needing to download them is an added bonus. Now I see where Google is moving with their Chromebooks and Chromium OS — it’s coming to the point where 90% of users will be able to do everything they want within a web browser, regardless of which computer they’re logged in from.

    For me, Evernote still has its place as a note-taking app, but I’ve never really used it for much else anyway. Google Drive is a whole other animal.

  16. I see a place for both. I use Google Drive for documents–Word, Spreadsheets, Power points, etc.

    I use Evernote for pretty much everything else.

    I’m a grad student so Google Drive is good for school projects, group projects, backing up papers in progress so they don’t get lost. However, I find evernote more fun and simple for everything else.

    • I agree with you, William: Google Drive is better for documents and other files, whereas Evernote is great with online content.

      But is there a service that will allow you to save both online and offline content and to share folders with someone else who can modify them?

      Right now, the only service I can see if Evernote Premium.

      Does anyone know of any free services that would do this?

  17. I think Oregon nailed it with what each of the services is good at.
    I am one of the disgruntled SpringPad update users, Its fine that they changed to a Pinterest type model but I am amazed how the UI moved back so much after the April 3.0 update.

  18. Great article. I was starting to think I was only in the world you sees potential in Google Drive to replace all my other tools. I was a heavy user of MS OneNote and switched to Evernote a few years ago for webclippings and notes. I use Evernote in conjuction to with SugarSync (like Dropbox) for file storage. But I believe Google Docs can replace both these tools and I plan on converting this wknd. Here are my pro & cons and workarounds for the cons.
    Pros:
    1. Editing – Google Drive has much better editing than Evernote. For years I have been waiting for Evernote to add highlighting, which is poorly achieved thru Stich integration. I missed that from OneNote. But now I can add webclipping articles as Google Drive document and highlight text (slect text, change background to desired color). Also, love how i do not have to download documnets to edit like i do in SugarSync/Dropbox, etc.
    2. I use Gmail, Google Voice, Google Calender, and have android tablets and phones. Love this integration and 1 less website I have to log into.
    3. Folder hierarchy – i hate tags! i’m sorry but it is not for me. For me, hiercharchial system trees are more logical for data organization.
    ….more, but just wanted to mention those.

    Cons:
    1. quick webclipping like Evernote – i think I may have found a quick solution which has not been mention. I have a addon in Gmail that lets me upload emails in gmail straight to Google Drive. So if use IE or Firefox you can use “send page by email in browser (Chrome does not option – i have looked extensively). Thus with a few clicks of mouse you can have any webpage in Google Drive:
    a. click “send page by email” – IE or FF
    b. once in gmail, click “create document in Google drive.”
    c. tada….webclippling is in GD. And because it creates a GD document you highlight text, edit, etc. Something i could never do with Evernote.
    3. Send Page to Google Drive addon – works great for webpages that do not require a login, but does not work on ones that do. I am constantly archiving articles from forums I belong to. The above method remedies this, but this addon still has its uses for general web browsing.
    4. Add content by email – this was great feature of Evernote. Simply email any page or anything to Evernote email address and there it was. Great when I was using PC’s where I did not/could not install Evernote web clipper. Also, gave me a way on tablet and and mobile to send webpages to Evernote since there is no Evernote webclipper for mobile browser. Well, actually there Dolphin browser/Evernote addon but that only sends webpage as a link which is also what really all add content by email does. It does not send the actual web clipping but just a link. I hated that. Hopefully, GD implements this and actually saves the page and not just the link.

  19. Update:

    1. CleanPrint Addon for Chrome – sends webpages in your choice of format (.pdf or google doc) straight to Google Drive. Perfect replacment for Evernote Web Clipper.

  20. I don’t know why everyone is so bent on finding the next evernote replacement..? Evernote is such a great product, and it’s free for most users – why not just use it and say thank you?

    I used OneNote for a few years, but the search functionality was awful. (I still miss some of ON’s features, though).

    I have been migrating from MS Office to Google Docs over the last few years, and now that I’m doing more and more work on portable devices I’m glad that I did.

    But Evernote is the backbone of everything I do. There’s room for improvement, yes. But it’s light weight, fast, easy, powerful, syncs without issue… Good luck hacking and building work-arounds trying to make something else do what this already does..

  21. I don’t know if anyone else has touched on this and a solution to it. When you upload a doc in Drive that is already there, why does it add a new duplicate and not overwrite the existing doc?

    Thanks

  22. Where google drive really fall with this comparison? the TAGs.

    It’s really not the same using folders.
    Is implicit you can associate multiple tags to notes.
    Imagine you have a huge note, with multimedia content inside, to be associated to three tags (e.g. “Coding”; “Android”;”How-To’s”). Are you rreally going to copy the same doc into three folders?!

    Where Evernote really falls: system requirements. is toooo slow on mobile, c’mon is just a note manager, not google earth ;)

  23. SO I have just started with the idea to put all my business paper work and files in the cloud so I can access anywhere.

    I am a beginner with the cloud world. Went to a seminar and the speaker was talking about evernote and how he used to use dropbox along with evernote and now he changed dropbox to box and he said that he next thing will be Google Drive that will replace his box.

    I am so confused! I signed up for Evernote and started studying about it. I started to do a few thing, but before transferring all my business docs to evernote I need to know which one actually is best.

    Why would i need dropbox, or box or google drive along with Evernote? Couldn’t evernote already save all my documents?

    I know that evernote is not good for saving video and music, but I don’t use that for work anyways….

    In you opinion. If you use already use evernote why would you need google drive? Besides the clipping and tagging issues with google drive why would I need another thing that does what evernote does?

    I need more straight forward answers?

    • Hi! I hear you: the amount of options out there are overwhelming, at times — especially when there is no one service that truly does everything you want it to.

      The main reason someone might want to use Google Drive alongside Evernote is to use each service to their strengths — Evernote for notes and clippings, Google Drive for the general space to store anything and the full office suite for document creation.

      If you just need something to store and tag documents, especially to have some notes attached to them, geotagging, and access to them on practically any device, then stick with Evernote. It’s a great way to keep an entire filing cabinet with awesome quick search capability right in your pocket.

      If your workflow is more suited to traditional office apps and computer file folder structure, and the ability to work with, create, and edit most office type docs directly, use Google Drive.

      Hope that helps!

  24. I like Evernote for casual random stuff, and general interest things.

    I like Google Drive for school/academics, things because you can sync that seamlessely with the folder structure on your windows desktop, and also if you’re doing school projects, Google is the best way to collaborate and share.

    I agree with those that said nothing does everything yet.

    I think once I’m out of school, I’ll end up doing Evernote for everything.

    I don’t know what will happen to workplaces, at THIS time, Microsoft has a monopoly, but their cloud (Skykdrive?) is behind others. Ipads are starting to appear in the work place so I wonder about iCloud.

    I do predict at some point in the future, business needs will force cross-platform compatibility.

    Lastly, I’m surprised Dropbox and Evernote haven’t been bought out by one of the bigger companies.

  25. I know this article is almost six months old, but it’s doing me some good right now.

    I’m back in a minimalist kick and part of this is streamlining my digital life. I have information in three places:

    1. Work laptop (Windows XP). I’m not allowed any cloud storage or syncing.
    2. Personal laptop (OS X). I have my Documents folder linked to my Google Drive folder.
    3. My Evernote account.

    I keep trying to think of ways to consolidate, but it gets fuzzy between Google Drive and Evernote. So I asked myself two questions.

    Why do I like Evernote over Google Drive?
    1. Geotagging of notes.
    2. Ability to combine multiple file types into a single note (e.g. a note can contain a Word document, PDF, and a spreadsheet).

    Why do I like Google Drive?
    1. For me it’s a 100% replacement of a desktop office suite, I have no office suite loaded at all on my Macbook.
    2. I like how it handles various file formats.

    For now I’ve decided geotagged information or collections of various types of information go into Evernote. Everything else into Google Drive. But it’s the simple stuff where I get stuck. Where should a simple text file with just a few lines of information go? I’m not consistent and find I too often loose files.

    I’m not looking for anyone here to solve my issues. :-) Just thinking out loud. Bobby, thanks for a great post!

  26. I was looking for an alternative to Evernote as it is limited in nesting folders on its service. You can only have two layers of folders, while in Google docs you can have enough for my needs.

    Web clipping is a serious issue for me though, I’ll have a look to see if there’s a third party thing available now.

  27. Currently I’m thinking about moving from Evernote to Google Drive for most of my notes, because I want to consolidate most of my Web-Services.. And I find myself using Evernote not as much as I once intended..

    The lack of tags is really bothersome, but I thought about an alternative way for Google Drive:
    Why not just create folders and think of them as tags? You can assign files/documents to more than one folder in GDrive (much like labels in GMail).. This way you could assign “tags” to your documents.
    How to select more than one folder:
    Select the file, hit more -> organize … and select the folders you want the file to be assigned to with holding CTRL and clicking the folders.

    And you could always create a “top folder” named “Tags” and all the “tags” are sub-folders of this one.. This way it won’t get messy.

  28. Love your site! Yes I know this is an “old” article but it’s still good food for thought. I hadn’t thought of using google docs as an Evernote altnernative but it’s something I will look into. I like the idea of not having to pay Google a premium fee, but I love Evernote’s UI. Decisions decisions!

  29. I don’t know if i’m the only person in the world having huge formatting bugs with Evernote, because nobody else seems to mention them.

    Some of them are:
    Before i use (un)ordered lists i must insert some returns, because sometimes i get stuck inside a list and i can’t insert a new line;
    Text inside (un)ordered lists apply random formatting (different font size and font family);
    If i select my whole text and change the font family or size, (un)ordered lists are unchanged and sometimes it even messes up font size on the whole text;
    If i insert an attachment in the middle of my note, it creates a huge amount of white space after the attachment and i’m unable to delete it;
    If i change the entire text’s font, random lines become big, others become small, only a few become the size i want;
    Space between lines is random;
    New paragraphs become so much bugged that sometimes the cursor becomes half-sized or even badly positioned (between the lines);
    And these are only some issues that i can remember right now.

    All i know is that writing my class notes in Evernote couldn’t be more painful. I spend more time trying to force it to format the text the way i want it than to actually take the notes.

    I got tired of it and now i’m changing to GD. Text formatting is flawless so far, so i take less than half the time to create my notes and i’m very happy with it.

    Oh, by the way, i’ve wrote a huge article on Springpad, it seemed pretty good for me, but one week later all i had left on that article were a couple of cropped lines from 2 or 3 paragraphs. I’ve made a huge mistake for not saving it somewhere else… Springpad lost every single bit of my trust.

    • I agree with everything you have noted. Drive is much easier to use vs. Evernote, especially when it comes to organizing.

  30. Somehow I keep coming back to this site when doing Google and Evernote searches. I’ve been spending too much time the past few weeks trying to figure out how I can integrate a calendar with Evernote without using third party services. I’ve given up and am going to try switching to Google for my notes. I already use docs, email, and calendar, and there is great integration with my Android. I love Evernote and think they have done a fine job, but they still refuse for whatever reason to integrate a calendar, even though calendars help you so you don’t have to remember events (isn’t Evernote all about not having to remember things?). With Google I can have my cake and eat it too, with the targeted ads of course. lol

  31. Evernote is definitely faster for adding items and it is much easier to view them without opening them like you have to in google drive.

    Another advantage is adding things on the iPad. I have not been able to find a way on the iPad to control which folder a new Google doc goes into using Google Drive.

  32. With all this tools suppose to make us more productive. However, the more tools you use, the less productive you will be. For me, i just dump everything in dropbox. I set up a gtd style folder.

    1. Inbox – everything goes in here.
    2. Someday – something i want to read or review later on.
    3. Projects – on going projects
    4. References – supporting documents

    That’s the entire system. Then i use Omnifocus for my GTD task, Mirror all the folder with Omnifocus, you get one tough GTD system.

  33. I use Google Drive already for my schoolnotes. I actually find it much easier to use than Evernote becuase I can micromanage my folders. Evernote lets you stack the notebooks, but I find Drive to be more intuitive for my needs, and I prefer the use of folders rather than tags. Instead of relying on tags I can just search within my Drive.

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