Evernote’s Web Clipper isn’t new, especially if you’re an avid user of Evernote. But if you haven’t heard, or perhaps didn’t like the Evernote clipper in the past, this is the right time to look into it again, as they’ve completely redone its look and added new features that make it better.
Sometimes “upgrades” aren’t really upgrades, and instead just add bloat to an application or extension, but that’s not the case with the upgrades Evernote made to their Web Clipper recently. To put it simply, it’s magnificent. Also, before this big upgrade, they also made a smaller, but very significant improvement, allowing you to clip emails right from Gmail, which you’re still able to do in this new version.
The Upgraded Interface
The old Web Clipper interface (above) wasn’t bad at all, but one flaw was how it interacted with the web page – it just didn’t seem very cohesive. You may not have even thought anything of it back then. However once you try the new Web Clipper, you will quickly realize how much better the Web Clipper works on the page.
As you can see, the clipper now fills the entire length of the page, but only a small portion of the screen. This allows you to navigate through the article and annotate it, which is an amazing new feature. You can also see in the screenshot above that the clipped article area is much cleaner and easy to customize with “+” and “-” buttons.
When clipping the actual article, there haven’t been any new features added, but the ease of doing so may very well be considered a feature in itself. The Web Clipper was already fairly easy to use – you already have the ability to modify the title, choose a specific notebook and add tags, but now the overall interface makes the process simpler. The ease of finding a notebook has been enhanced by listing them in a tree-style list.
However, what seems to have been removed is the ability to add notes to the clipped article. You can still do this, though, by clicking “Open In Evernote” after the article is clipped, and add your text there.
Clearly’s “Simplified Article View” Has Been Integrated
Are you familiar with Clearly? It’s Evernote’s solution to simplified reading online, which clears the distractions of page themes and ads. Clearly also has the option to clip and save articles, but only in a simplified view, so it alone doesn’t suffice as a Web Clipper. And nor does the Web Clipper, with the newly integrated Simplified Article View, fully replace Clearly. However, it’s nice that there is now a way to clip an article in simplified view, without having to use Clearly, which is especially nice for those who prefer a different distraction-free reading tool than Clearly, like Readability or MagicScroll. Also, if you want to minimize the number of extensions you use and don’t need all of the “extras” that Clearly has, the Web Clipper menu can collapse, providing a clean area for distraction-free reading.
Bookmark Saving Now Includes An Article Preview
The Web Clipper has always had the function to bookmark an article, otherwise known as only saving the link. However, the bookmarking feature now includes an article preview, which helps to give you a little more information than what the title does when looking through saved links in Evernote.
You Can Now Highlight The Articles You Clip
The ability to highlight sections of an article is a much needed feature when it comes to clipping articles. If you’re familiar at all with Diigo’s Web Toolbar, you know that they have handy annotation tools. The Evernote Web Clipper isn’t focused solely as a research tool, so that could be why it hasn’t implemented as many annotating features for the article views yet. However, the highlighter is a great start and certainly very helpful when it comes to remembering various aspects of an article.
Save Web Page As A Screenshot And Annotate It
Now when you click the Web Clipper button, a screenshot is automatically saved. This was a smart way to implement the feature since clipping a screenshot should be done in as few steps as possible, and Evernote does it in one.
In addition to clipping an article as a screenshot, Evernote has also integrated Skitch, a screenshot and annotation app for Mac and Windows, into the Web Clipper. Unfortunately, the annotation features, aside from highlighting, only work for screenshots at this time, but it’s a start.
As you can see in the image above, you have the ability to add arrows, text, stamps, and a free-draw marker. You can also add rectangles, round-edge rectangles, circles, and straight lines, which can be found by clicking the “shape tool”, which is by default an arrow.
In addition to annotations, you can also pixelate text, and crop the image.
Stay “On Top” Of Stuff With The New Reminders Feature
Reminders aren’t entirely new to Evernote – in May they updated Evernote with reminders. However, it took until September for the feature to be included into the new Evernote 5 for Windows. And now it’s in the Web Clipper as well.
Pan Through Article When Browser Window Is Resized
If you use your browser in a resized mode a lot (not in full screen), this is a useful feature for you. When an article is clipped in a full screen mode prior to resizing the browser, you might find the clipped article to be larger than the browser window. So to navigate through it, simply hold down Ctrl while clicking to pan through the article left and right, and up and down.
Share What You Clip
It’s always nice to combine multiple tasks into one, so if you have the urge to share something you also clipped, you can now do it directly from the Web Clipper interface. Once you click the Share button, the URL is automatically copied to the keyboard. The source link is also displayed, but you can also switch to the Evernote link and use that as well. There are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and email share buttons.
All in all, the new Evernote Web Clipper brought forth some much needed and exciting changes. It definitely will improve the Evernote user experience and research workflow that Evernote is used for. Have you tried the new Web Clipper update yet? If you use the Web Clipper at all, you should have been prompted to update it. With that done, what do you think of the changes? Was there a feature that you were hoping to have been included in the update which didn’t? Do you prefer the new interface or the old one? Let us know your thoughts and opinions in the comments!