For Visual Thinkers: 2 Different Ways To Look At Your Evernote Notes

Saikat Basu 24-01-2014

Evernote is the closest (or at least, the most popular) digital relative of the old moleskin notebook. There’s just one slight hitch – Evernote organizes all the notes and notebooks in a flat, linear structure. Usually, it isn’t a problem at all if you are anything other than a visual thinker. Visual thinkers lean more towards free-flowing methods like sketchnoting How To Visualize Ideas, Information & Data Using Sketchnoting If you're a student or someone who takes notes a regular basis, you may be interested in a fun and even artistic movement called Sketchnoting. Sketchnoting is like notetaking, but it includes visual notes as... Read More and mindmaping 4 Great Web-Based Mindmapping Tools To Enhance Your Creativity Mindmaps are a wonderful resource for brainstorming, planning, and managing ideas in a way that increases your productivity and enhances your creativity. But what if you want to create a mindmap without pen or paper? Read More . Visual thinking helps to break down the complexity of information and gives you another angle to look at it from. When it comes to working with information, a more visual approach also helps to re-organize the structure of staid notes, and bridge the right-left brain to spark creativity.


The Evernote ecosystem gives you two choices to go visual with your notes and explore them in more interesting ways.


Evernote & Visual Thinking

Mohiomap is an interesting third-party application that helps you visualize your Evernote notes as a mindmap. You can navigate through the mindmap and interact with your notes as you would on Evernote. After signing into Mohiomap, authorize the app to connect to your Evernote account. Don’t worry, you can always cancel the authorization from Evernote. Mohiomap graphically represents your notebook’s structure with nodes (representing the individual notebooks) and links. Here are the useful features of the mindmap which allows you to intuitively get a bearing on your notes. You can…

  • “Pin” nodes in place and control the mindmap’s layout.
  • Filter out old topics by using the control to filter by age of note.
  • Zoom slider (or mouse) controls the layout. Zoom in and out of individual nodes.
  • Open each note in a preview panel, browser window, or launch the Evernote desktop application.
  • Isolate each node from the remaining nodes and see all the notes it contains. Each notebook and note is editable.
  • Search through notebooks using keyword based search through tags and also search through all joined notebooks.
  • Mohiomap also supports tagging. Notes without tags carry the date of their creation.

Using Mohiomap: Mohiomap is useful for getting an overview of related notes as they are difficult to find using the Evernote application. You can also use the search feature to quickly generate a mindmap with the keyword hits in your notes. The app itself needs a few finishing touches – there were a few instances when the navigation stuttered on Chrome. If the mindmap seems too crowded, you would do better to focus on individual nodes. It is a useful application if you like to get a complete bird’s eye view of all that you have dumped in Evernote.


Evernote & Visual Thinking


Index cards have long been used in many productivity systems. Just as cheap and useful as the humble notebook, the index card finds its way back to Evernote with CardDesk. CardDesk is a beta application that visually organizes your Evernote notes into index cards on a workspace called the Desktop. Just like any other Evernote app, you have to sign-in and allow CardDesk to access your Evernote account. CardDesk is fairly intuitive to use – from the left pane, you can drag and drop individual notes on the Desktop and visually organize them like index cards. Beyond that, you can…

  • The index cards can be resized and color coded.
  • Arrange notes neatly in tiles or stacks while moving them around.
  • Double click on any note in the left pane or on the Desktop to view it in Evernote.
  • Create multiple Desktops within the same session of CardDesk for multiple projects.
  • Click on the Evernote icon on each card to edit the note in a separate Evernote window.
  • Quickly create a new note from within CardDesk. It syncs automatically with the selected notebook.
  • The different ways to arrange notes allows related notes to be placed relative to each other.
  • The notes panel provides a search feature to quickly call up related notes.

Using CardDesk: Even though CardDesk is in beta, it is a handy tool for solo brainstorming around all the research notes you have collected. The advantages of index cards extend to Evernote – for instance, you can use it as a vision board or as a visual map for documenting a series of steps in a process.

You can catch some of the developments around this Evernote app on the Evernote Discussion threads.

There are many unique uses of Evernote Get Creative With Evernote: 10 Unique Uses You Haven't Thought Of Evernote is one of the ultimate tools in productivity, and with a wide variety of multiplatform apps, there's no limit to the way that you can use the service. We're big fans of Evernote here... Read More . While I wouldn’t advocate opening up any private information stored on your Evernote notebooks to third-party Evernote apps, these handy visual organizers can be put to productive use to manage the deluge of non-personal information we trust Evernote with.


If you are new to the note taking app, don’t forget the unofficial Evernote manual How to Use Evernote: The Unofficial Manual Learning how to use Evernote on your own takes a long time. This is why we've put together this guide to show you how to take full advantage of the most important Evernote features. Read More to start off. If you are an old hand, tell us your impressions about these two tools. Are you a visual thinker who likes a more non-linear approach to managing information?

Image Credit: AWa (Wikimedia Commons)


Explore more about: Evernote, Note-Taking Apps, Visualizations.

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  1. tp
    January 25, 2014 at 4:36 pm

    'While I wouldn’t advocate opening up any private information stored on your Evernote notebooks to third-party Evernote apps, ...'

    I imagine many people have notebooks in Evernote containing such information. It would be useful to be able to exclude access to such notebooks either on the Evernote or 3rd party app side. For me, Mohiomap is both interesting and useful, but I would need to cull my present Evernote and open another account ...

    • Saikat B
      January 25, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      True. Generally, my rule of thumb is to keep anything I don't want to share, out of online services. It makes handling third-party apps less worrisome :)

  2. Laurence D
    January 25, 2014 at 7:17 am

    many thanks for your useful informations

  3. Sv
    January 25, 2014 at 3:31 am

    WOW very cool. Thanks for Mohio. It looks really interesting as an Evernote user!

    • Saikat B
      January 25, 2014 at 11:41 am

      Hope you find it useful.