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00 Writing Notes.jpgSo you’ve come up with the million dollar idea when you took a shower one morning. You entertained your imagination with a scenario about cashing out on it and living the life of the rich and famous. Then you finished showering, continued your life with the 9 to 5 routine and totally forgot about that chance to be successful until one day you saw somebody on TV getting rich using that very idea!

What should you do about it? Find a lawyer and prepare to sue that “idea thief”? Actually, there’s nothing you can do but continue on with your life. You can’t copyright ideas and it’s very possible that there are several people among millions of others who came up with exactly the same idea.


Aside from taking actions, the first difference between success and failure is the act of taking notes of those ideas.

Anytime, Anywhere, Any Forms

Ideas pop-up unpredictably anytime and anywhere, and most of the time, they are only doing a one time visit. If you are determined to be successful, you’d better always be prepared to catch those ideas or they will gone forever.

The most basic way to do it is to bring pen and paper everywhere. Some people even go further and prepare paper notes on their bedside to write down their dreams. But in this technological era, I personally think that this quick note taking business should be done using gadgets that we use.

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We need a note-taking application which can be accessed using any gadget, and all the notes that we take should be automatically synchronized between gadgets.

Here are 5 alternatives to synchronize multi-platform quick notes:

The Many Faces Of Evernote

01 Evernote logo.jpgLet’s start with the most viable solution. We’ve discussed Evernote so many times that I don’t think another introduction is necessary. This note taking service comes for almost every possible gadget – Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Windows Mobile, etc.

The good: available under almost every platform and gadget, with dedicated applications built specifically for that platform.

The bad: the free option is a little bit limited (although it’s good enough for most users).

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Combination Of Dropbox & Any Word Processor

02 Dropbox logo.jpgThis combo also needs no further detailed explanation. Just put any notes in the Dropbox folder and you can access it from anywhere.

The good: available under any platform which can access Dropbox, flexible, can use any note taking app.

The bad: doesn’t have a specific note taking application.

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Zotero Two Easy Ways To Synchronize Zotero Data Two Easy Ways To Synchronize Zotero Data Read More & The Synchronization Feature

03 Zotero logo.jpg

Zotero is the favorite of Firefox user researchers. It’s a very capable data gathering tool, with the ability to take and synchronize notes across the platforms.

03b Zotero - App.jpg

The good: available under any platform that can run Firefox.

The bad: cannot work outside of Firefox.

SimpleNote Environment

04 Simplenote logo.jpgSimpleNote started as an iPhone app with its own synchronization center. Then several note taking Mac apps – like JustNotes Four Free Quick Note Taking Apps For The Mac Four Free Quick Note Taking Apps For The Mac Read More and Notational Velocity – began supporting it and opened up the possibilities of synchronizing notes easily between Macs, iPod Touches and iPhones.

Simplenote is available for free (ad supported) for all iPhone / iPod Touch / iPad owners. But if you don’t have those iGadgets, the service is also available via web access (require one time small payment).

04 JustNote - Simplenote login.jpg

The good: Supported by many dedicated and great note taking apps.

The bad: Non-Mac users can only access it via web interface (for now). Note: similar app for Windows: PicoNote.

NoteSync & Google Docs

05 NoteSync logo.jpg

There’s a new player on the field. NoteSync is an AIR application that can run under Windows, Mac and Linux. The best thing about this app is that it syncs with your Google Docs, so you can pick up where your Google Docs left off.

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The good: simple, multi-platform dedicated desktop quick note-taking app.

The bad:  Nothing so far.

Honorable Mention: Any browser & Note Taking Web Service

There are quite a few free web note-taking services out there – something like Springpad – so it’s a little bit difficult to discuss them all. Basically anybody with access to the web could use the service – regardless of the platform. The good: accessible from everywhere.The bad: browser dependent, and not so quick.

There you go, 5 (plus 1) methods that you can use to have synchronized multi-platform quick note-taking. If you have your own killer apps or combinations of services, please share them using the comments below.

Image credit: wickenden, Apple

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