It's tough to be wowed by a notes app at this point. From Evernote to Drafts, we've tested them all, and surely you have already developed a system that you're comfortable with. But when three of the industry heavyweights form a sort of developer super-group, it's pretty hard to ignore the fruits of their labor. The brainchild of Dave Wiskus, Brent Simmons and John Gruber, Vesper – named for the specialized martini ordered by James Bond in Ian Fleming's first 007 book – is not just another notes app for your iPhone. With a minimal interface and few features, it aims to change your approach to mobile note taking by stripping away the clutter and focusing on finding your thoughts quickly and effortlessly.
When Drafts for iPad hit the App Store just over a year ago, it immediately turned heads for its minimal workspace and lengthy series of actions that turned a simple note-taker into a powerful and versatile text editor. A year later, the file-less file system is no longer a novel concept, and a crop of recent utilities have given Drafts a run for its money, offering tighter Dropbox integration and quicker navigation. With the new version 3.0 release, Drafts (also available on iPhone) looks to put a bit more space between it and its competitors.
Our iPhones can do so much right out of the box. With the exception of a few games that we can't live without, most of our favorite apps are merely better versions of the stock apps that come installed with iOS: Fantastical, Tempo, Clear, Camera+, etc. CaptureAudio is no exception, serving as an upgrade for one of the least-popular iOS apps, Voice Memos. It wouldn't be too hard to improve upon Apple's barebones sound recorder, but CaptureAudio's fantastic interface and versatile indexing features make the built-in option look downright useless.
With Evernote 5.0, it feels like the note-taking service that spans web, desktop, and mobile has come of age — on the Mac, at least. The redesigned user interface and the dozens of genuinely useful new features all build on a solid base to deliver a much better note-taking experience.
One of the more successful services in the “freemium” category, Evernote has thrived since its 2007 debut, managing to keep up with almost every new mobile or desktop platform launched ever since. Most recently, the company reinvented its popular iOS and Mac apps with the lofty goal of accessing notes in as little as two taps. But has anything been left behind in the transition?
Today, Apple released the second update for their most popular cat, Mountain Lion. OS X 10.8.2 isn’t just any ol' ordinary update, though, it adds some new features that bring more value to the OS, including Facebook integration, the ability to share your todo lists in the Reminders app, and the ability to send and receive iMessages through your iPhone number. We’ll show you how to use all of these great new features.
I have all kinds of notebook apps on my iPad. Some are brilliant handwriting emulators, while others are slick and skeuomorphic with carefully crafted UIs; some do a few things really well, and others do a bunch of things solidly enough. But I certainly didn't think I needed another one. Scrapnote has made a strong case for sticking around, though. It might look plain -- launching the app simply presents a library of staple-bound notebooks -- but its tools are powerful and versatile enough to handle most anything I threw at it.
Whenever I have a random thought while using my iPad, there are plenty of places to quickly jot it down. But if I have the makings of a real idea, I generally want to keep it somewhere safe so it can it germinate and someday reach its full potential. Concept understands that great ideas need room to grow. While it might seem like just another variation on the digital notebook, it's actually more of a skeuomorphic mind mapper, adorned with scraps of paper, sticky notes, and mini Polaroids that keep track of your thoughts (and your thoughts' thoughts).
Mountain Lion strolled onto the scene earlier this year, with a lot of interest but no showy unveiling. Apple gave the world a better glimpse at its newest big cat at the World Wide Developers Conference, reserving a good chunk of the June 10 keynote for more details about the next iteration of OS X, which dropped in July in the Mac App Store for just $19.99, the lowest price yet for an OS X upgrade.
With Mountain Lion, Apple has brought a bunch of useful iOS features over to the Mac, including AirPlay mirroring, Messages, Reminders, Twitter, and iCloud support throughout the OS. Join our Mac safari to see 80 Mountain Lion features that you may have missed since you clicked Install in the Mac App Store. Some will make you more productive, while others are just fun and make your life a bit easier. Not everyone will fall in love with all 80 of these features, but together they’ll give you a lot to sink your teeth into.
The iPad certainly does a first-rate job at organizing our photos, videos, and music, but it struggles when it comes to keeping our thoughts in order. Apple's Notes and Reminders tandem works in a pinch -- and there are more than a few top-notch notebook replacements in the App Store -- but serious brainstormers need more than just a place to jot down their ideas. Projectbook: Notes and To-Dos just might be that place. While it won't win any design awards, its understated interface puts the emphasis squarely where it belongs: your work.