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Moleskine Evernote Smart Notebook, Large, Squared, Black, Hard Cover (5 x 8.25) (Evernote Smart Notebooks) Diary – January 30, 2013
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Evernote is an excellent (free) application for web, desktop, and portable devices that allows you to create digital notebooks and sync them so you have them anywhere. I happen to be a pretty heavy user of the various incarnations of Evernote and love it, too!
So it seems to be a natural fit to have Evernote Moleskines. So, what are you getting and how do they fit in with your standard workflow?
I could be wrong, but I think the idea is to bridge physical notebook users into the digital realm. Many people love to take notes on paper. With mixed text and sketching, it's really difficult to duplicate the efficiency of taking notes on a laptop or portable device. There are times when you're mainly typing, and that is highly efficient, but there's just something about writing it down that is satisfying. But then you have a digital world, as well. How to get those notes into Evernote for safekeeping, tagging, and later retrieval? In this case, you simply take your note(s) and using Evernote's built-in page camera feature, snap a shot of the page. It then gets imported into Evernote and is synced across your devices.
What is different about these notebooks compared to a standard large hardback Moleskine squared notebook?
1. The cover is beautifully embossed with the Evernote logo and icons from the splash screen.
2. The elastic closure is green instead of black.
3. The squared grid is dotted instead of solid lines.
4. Included are 4 pages of stickers for marking up your notes. These can be used to help with tagging your notes.
It should be noted that you can use regular Moleskine notebooks in exactly the same way with the Evernote page camera to capture notes. So, while I think the green elastic and embossed cover make it worth it for me, you'll have to decide that on your own.
I would give it 5 stars if the dots used were lighter. The overall appearance of the grid carries the same weight as those of a standard moleskin squared notebook. However, because these are dotted lines instead of solid, it seems the dots are darker. Actually, there was some variation in dot darkness on some of the pages (maybe 20% are just a touch lighter). It's not distracting at all. I just would prefer them a bit lighter (or even to have a dot-square where only the corners are dotted like Leuchtturm).
I would like to point out that I take notes on many different types of notebooks and also own a Livescribe pen and plenty of smart journals and compared to that system where you need a smartpen and special paper (which are pricier) this is a good way to get your pages digitized as almost everyone has a smartphone and Evernote is free for the basic level.
The price seems on par with other specialty Moleskines and to me at least it's worth the price. If you don't use Evernote but know someone who does, it's a great gift (and comes with a code for 3 months of Evernote premium, even better).
-good quality paper and binding (hard cover).
-comes with three months of premium service.
-action stickers inside help organize notes and doodles.
-no blank page option, just lined or squared.
-might be a bit pricy for some.
-need Evernote application for digitizing pages.
Definitely recommended for those that are obsessive notetakers, or just casual doodlers.
I tried the large ruled and small squared formats, and I found that the squared paper was more dependable than lined for getting photos of the pages to be imported cleanly into Evernote on the first take. However, I found the small notebook too small for taking notes during meetings, seminars, etc. I sometimes cary a small one in the breast pocket of my sport coat in case I need to take a quick note, but for meetings I much prefer the larger notebooks.
My practice is to take notes on only one side of the paper, as I like the G5 0.5 mm pens, and the ink is somewhat visible on the other side of the paper (but NOT bleeding through). That said, perhaps I press too hard when I write. But one side works well because (a) it photographs into Evernote cleanly and (b) a notebook lasts about three months that way--and it's time for another three-month subscription to Premium, anyway. I will often use the back sides of pages that I've already photographed into Evernote to use them as to-do lists, scratch pads for quick notes or calculations, etc.