It wasn't until I started blogging that I began to realise how difficult it must be for writers, journalists and researchers of any kind to keep a track of the endless notes, ideas and snippets of information you need to keep track of. Despite my best efforts I am terribly disorganised. If an idea occurs to me for a blog article or I see something that I like the look, unless I make a note of it or action it there and then, it is lost for ever. Napkins, texts, back of my hand, beer mats, notes on my phone and cigarette packets (other people's, I don't smoke) are among the varied media that have been used to store valuable information. It stands to reason of course that much of that information got lost.
But I think I have found the answer. For a few weeks now, I have been using Evernote. This simple but brilliant concept allows the user to capture information in a myriad of forms, annotate it, index it and retrieve it, anywhere Internet access is available. Photo's, text, web pages, even those scribbles on beer mats. With a number of clients to choose from, whatever platform you prefer, your notes are available to you.
As an example, let's say I see a sign in the street which is of interest to me. I can take a picture of it on my phone. I can then either browse to Evernote website to upload, or as I have a smartphone, I could use the Windows Mobile client that they provide. Another choice would be to simply email or MMS the picture to my account. Accessing that note later can be achieved by web, Windows client, Windows Mobile client or even a Mac client. Two free widgets also make capturing all or part of web page as simple as a lick.
I really can't recommend Evernote enough and I urge you to try it. So far the free account has been plenty for me, but there is a premium version which for a small charge increases the limits available to you. If I have not been clear, the video demo below may help.