One online notetaker outshines the competition

Scott spanbauer By Scott Spanbauer

Whether you just need to do a little brainstorming or you’re creating a multimedia scrapbook, one free notebook service makes collecting and sharing ideas a snap.

Or keep things super-simple by recording your thoughts in plain text via two other useful Web apps.

When a sticky note just won’t cut it

Even though I’d been using computers since just after the dawn of time, I still relied on a Post-It note or the back of an envelope whenever I needed to jot down an appointment, a phone number, a shopping list, or an idea for a future column.

My paper habit left my desk awash in drying, discolored scraps containing the crucial threads of information that stitch my life together. One stiff breeze and my career was out the window — literally.

Since I switched to recording my day-to-day data on one of the Web’s free notetaking services, not only is my desk clear but my scribbled phone numbers, appointments, and to-do lists are available to me wherever and whenever there’s a Web connection.

There’s something to like about each of my three favorite online notetakers, though they couldn’t be more different. If you’re the graphical type, Zoho Notebook lets you create charts and other diagrams. You can collect images and audio and video clips for use in your scrapbook. Then share your creations with anyone via e-mail or publish them on a Web page.

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All Windows Secrets articles posted on 2008-05-15: