More Note-Taking Goodness - Collate

Last time, I wrote about some of the really nice note-taking apps available nowadays. Since then, I’ve come across another great one I just had to tell you about: Collate.

It has just about everything I could want. I’ll let you read about all of its features on its web site, but some of the things I like most include:

  • It’s cross-platform, capable of running on Windows, MacOS, and Linux.
  • Your data is under your control. Your notes are stored on disk in files/directories containing the data. Since the file names are based on the title of the note, this can cause some differences in how the program operates on different platforms that have different sets of characters that can be used in file names. It hasn’t been a big bother though.
  • Your data is (mostly) human readable. No private or obscure format to unravel if you want to take your notes elsewhere.
  • The program presents a “traditional” three column layout. There is a column showing available notebooks (Collections), a second with card-like previews of note contents, and the largest area, devoted to editing or previewing notes.
  • The program accepts data in lots of formats including Markdown, Rich Text, scraped from the web, and an outline. It even lets you import notes exported from Evernote.

Are there things I’m not so fond of? Sure.

  • It isn’t open source. Bummer.
  • It’s an Electron-based program, so it drags in all the baggage of Chromium, nodejs, and Electron itself, resulting in a huge program (150+ MB). I don’t want to hear anything ever again about Java being bloated.

Still, I like it enough that I plunked down actual cash money for a license even before the 14 day free trial expired. I’ve been using it with files stored locally and across file sharing applications like Dropbox, Box, and NextCloud.

Eventually, we’ll see how it does under a load of thousands of notes imported from Evernote. But for now it’s doing fine.

Highly recommended.