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Tag Journal ($2.99, universal) is another addition to the crowded market of mobile journals and notebooks, but a clean iOS 7 design and Markdown syntax make it an attractive option for new and existing digital notebook users.
The app provides a worthy alternative to the popular diary and journal app, Day One, and even manages to best some of the features in the cross-platform Evernote. Powerful tag management, iCloud support, location stamping and a photo gallery all make for a compelling package. Let’s take a look.
Your Markdown Journal
Tag Journal can be used for one or more purposes, such as keeping a travel journal, research notebook, or the standard personal diary. As with most alternatives, all entries are organized chronologically, and can be searched by date, tags, or keywords. Thankfully, you can also lock Tag Journal with a password – an often overlooked privacy measure.
In addition to text input—photos, a short video, a voice recording, and a GPS location can be attached to any journal entry. Up to five photos at a time can be imported simultaneously into an entry
While writing an entry you can use both Markdown syntax and highlighting (which can be disabled), a simplified and robust way of writing for the web. Fortunately, Tag Journal includes an extra row of options above the keyboard (in the iPad version) for applying character styles, quotes, and lists in addition to a preview of applied Markdown. And by the way, you can also use Markdown syntax to link one or more inline images into entries, as you do in webpages.
Tags, instead of folders, are used to manage and filter content, and all photos, videos, notes, and voice recordings are automatically placed into categories, in the sliding sidebar for quick access.
A Few Unique Features
Tag Journal includes a few features which are unique to apps of this kind, such as the ability to crop, edit, annotate, and add stickers to imported images using the built-in Avery image editing tools. This can save time on editing and even allows you to express a little creativity while writing your entry.
This also includes photo filter effects, photo frames, exposure adjustments, drawing and text tools, and even a quick meme creation template.
Individual journal entries, but not a collection of entries, can be exported to PDF, HTML, Facebook, and other supporting iOS apps, such as Evernote, Dropbox, and the PDF reader iAnnotate. Journal entries exported to Mail, Messages, or a printer also include their attached photos, but that’s not the case when exporting content in PDF format to other iOS apps (but linked inline images are included for PDFs).
Applied Markdown gives journal entries a clean, professional look without the need for a complex text editor. Tag Journal also includes built-in web browsing abilities, which allow you to quickly find and link to websites, removing the need to leave out the application and launch Safari.
Colorful & User Friendly
Tag Journal has a lot to offer, including password protection, for its affordable price. It’s a colorful, pleasing-to-use app, with versatile features for different types of users. There isn’t yet a Mac OS X, Windows or browser version, nor does it include direct web integration like the Narrato web publishing journal app, but Tag Journal is a serious contender in the field of iOS journal and notebook apps.
Download: Tag Journal ($2.99, universal)
Do you keep a diary? Let us know what you think of Tag Journal, and what your idea of a perfect journal app would be.