Apple did what Apple tends to do every now and again and improves the built-in Notes app, the app that apparently everyone uses, that nobody wants to admit to using, bit got a major overhaul and some much needed Apple engineering love.
Notes was not my favorite note taking app. The saving grace for the little app that never quite measured up was that it seemed to sync well to other Apple devices with iCloud, all of which ran Notes. Otherwise, Notes used to be boring, hence the growing number of Notes-like apps. Notes since macOS El Capitan is more of a mini-word processor with plenty of useful features making it even more useful for those who don’t admit to using Notes much and for those who don’t mind the embarrassment.
Now, speaking of Notes and notes, here’s a notes app whose time has come and I can’t think of a single reason why it shouldn’t be incorporated into OS X Sherlock style. It’s called Ghostnote, a note app that attaches itself to other applications and documents on your Mac, yet easily accessible from a single location. It’s almost like Post-it Notes for the Mac except that instead of adding a note to the screen, a note can be added to folders, open documents, websites, even applications.
Ghostnote lets you attach notes to a growing number of popular Mac apps including iPhoto, Keynote, Numbers, Pages, iTunes, Preview, Safari, TextEdit, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Photoshop Creative Cloud apps, and many others.
The way Ghostnote works is simple, too. In whichever app you’re using at the time simply click the icon in the Menubar, create the note however you want, and Ghostnote remembers the app, the document, the folder, or wherever you took the note. The icon at the bottom of each note displays the app the note is attached to. All the notes for a specific app or folder are easily viewed, yet out of sight for anyone else snooping around your Mac.
Ghostnote itself is a bit of a lightweight mini-word processor with options to style text, set up lists and checkboxes; all the basic functions you want in a notes app including color (like Stickies). Ghostnote isn’t cheap, but it’s not expensive either (especially when considering other Mac notes apps) but it does more than OS X’s built-in Notes app. Plus, there’s a free try-before-you-buy option available. The only negative I’ve run into is an issue that does not occur often, but gets messy when it does. Change the name of a document after adding a Ghostnote note to it, and Ghostnote forgets where the document is.
Otherwise, this is one of those rather cool features that once you use it you get it. Apple won’t but it could put some GhostNote features into macOS and make Notes really useful.