Jan 162015


OutWiker (current version: 1.8.1) is a cross platform and freeware outliner or notes organizer. It supports plain text, HTML and wiki style notes with various markups.

Start with File—>New (Ctrl+N) and choose one of the aforementioned page types. Either manually or by using the wiki menu or keyboard shortcuts add formatting to your wiki page. The formatting and markup available include bold, italic, horizontal line, font size, preformatted text, code, bullet list, creation and last modified dates, equations (inside {$$}) and others. Wiki pages can be linked to each other as well using page:// – grab a page link by right clicking a page in the tree.

Pages can be tagged and all tags are visible and clickable on the lower left of the program Window.

Files can be attached to a note and an image preview or thumbnail can be inserted inline using Wiki—>Thumbnail (Ctrl+M). The attached files or images can be inserted in a wiki page with a user chosen width. Attached files can be executed or opened from the program using the play icon on the Attachments toolbar.

Pages can be moved and sorted within the tree. Pages can also be bookmarked for easy access when the tree gets larger. OutWiker supports global search of all text and tags and a search page type can be added to the tree to be used as a permanent place holder instead of using the menu or Ctrl+F every time.

The program’s preferences include an autosave setting, default text options and many other appearance settings. One can also set or change keyboard shortcuts for virtually all program features.

OutWiker has a selection of plugins to add features like ‘DataGraph’, ‘Diagrammer’, ‘Table of contents creation for wiki pages’ and ‘Export notes in HTML’. It is portable and available for Windows and Linux systems (ppa:outwiker-team/ppa) with python dependencies.

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Jan 132015


Elephant, currently in rapid development and at Release 7 as of this review, is an open source java based note taker or organizer with an old Evernote type interface. It is no install software and doesn’t use a database, all files are stored and organized in plain text and folders. The storage location is chosen at first launch.

The interface is divided into three panes where notes are parts of notebooks. A preview of notes belonging to the chosen Notebook is visible in the middle pane. The right pane is where the note editor is, it supports several common formatting options, markdown and inline images via drag and drop. PDFs can also be dragged and dropped with inline preview. Tagging and search as you type features make notes organization much more effective. It is also possible to search using Tags: tagname or notebook: notebookname to narrow the search to specific locations. There are keyboard shortcuts for every action such as New Note (Ctrl+N), Move to Notebook (Ctrl+M) and Edit Note Tags (Ctrl+Quote)

Being java based Elephant is available for Windows, OS X and Linux computers. There is more to come but Elephant promises to remain lightweight. The program’s window title is ‘Elephant Premium’ but the author is keen to say that “Premium is free, no ads of any kind”.

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Jan 072015


O2 calls itself a data organizer, it is designed like a file folder where Objects are created and each holds any kind of data.

After launching the program create a new database and then right click anywhere in the main section to create new Object. Each Object can be given a name and tagged. Tags can be created on the fly by typing them in the Tags input or add an existing one from the dropdown. Each Object can have fields associated with it for example to store names, account numbers and any other similar information. Additionally notes can be added to Objects as a form of descriptions.

Two Objects can have Relations to be connected, like if you want to group all your car repair data separate but dependant on each other. Ctrl and Click or highlight the Objects and right click to relate them together via New relation. When one Object is active (clicked on) the Relations tab displays its connection(s) to other Objects.

Click the Rules tab, right click to create a new rule and extend an Object’s fields. For example a password, a link, an email address, or an expiration date. Rules are basically extra attributes that can be added to an Object. Its implementation is not the most intuitive when it comes to every day use mainly because Rules stay visible when clicking on different Objects.

The program’s search can find data by Object name, date, tag or rule. The program is available as a portable download as well. O2 can export all data in XML, HTML or its own format.

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