Lately I've been trying out a few new pieces of software to see how well they work. One is Twitter, and if you're really interested, you can follow me there. A few people do, though I'm not sure why. I follow a few people and might cut my list down at some point. I'm also not sure how much I like it.
The other is One Note, which is a part of Office 2007. When I first saw this a few versions ago, Brian Knight, my former SSC partner, was using it on his tablet PC. It seemed more geared for that form factor, so I hadn't really thought much of it. However at TechEd last week I watched Buck Woody use it and he told me just how valuable it's been for him, so I thought I'd give it a try and see what I think.
And I really like it.
I'm not really someone that likes to change tools that often. It's not that I'm against newer tools, but rather that I've made investments in not only tools, but time in learnign them and building around them and I don't get benefits if I change too often. I also like to have small, lightweight tools I can easily use. Word is cumbersome and causes me issues moving to HTML, so I've stuck with a text editor. Notepad is most of the way there for me (and it's on every machine, but it's not as smooth in HTML, so I've gone with Edit Plus, which has worked well and allows me to have mutliple documents open.
So it's rare I try something and see a chance it will improve things. One Note was one of those things with it's free structured formatting and right away I saw posibilities with it. I have a screen shot attached that shows the basic interface.
There are a few things I like about it, but one of the big things is how easy I can move my notebooks or tabs around. Each tab on the left side is a folder. I like things easily being organized like that. It makes life simple and allows me to easily be sure that things are backed up, but it also allows me to manage sizes of things. Right now Outlook is a pain because everything is in these large files.
The tabs across the top (Editorials, Editorial Polls, ToDo, Meetings, etc) are actually the .one files in the file system. By copying these to my laptop, they appear in my other One Note installation. The right side shows the actual documents. I started putting multiple editorials on one page, but decided to have separate pages, just like a notebook, and it's worked well
I've moved over most of my editorial stuff from a text editor, and this works well since my cut and paste seems to work well into the SSC system. I also have easily been able to move stuff from one machine to another, which is key. It's also a little easier to write in than the HTML text editor I've been using. There are a few things I haven't figured out, like flowing text around pictures, but so far this seems to be working well.