Renee mentioned that she is using Evernote to create binders in order to digitize all her paper files. I'm not sure I want to go totally digital for my genealogy but the idea of organizing my computer files using Evernote appealed to me. I use Evernote daily for gathering and organizing recipes, for saving receipts for items I purchase online, etc. But I'd never thought of pulling in files from my hard drive and organizing them into Notebooks.
I should preface this by saying that my computer files are a mess. I'm terrible at organizing them! My thousands of family photos, scanned documents and saved images from genealogy documents found online are a hodge-podge. Some are in the Documents folder on my laptop. Some are in the Pictures folder on my laptop. Some are on my desktop computer, some are on my Western Digital MyBookLive, some are on one of 3 Western Digital Passports, and some are in the Cloud - and more than one cloud! I use Dropbox, Bitcasa and Google Drive so depending on my mood that day I might put the 1851 Census for Levi Peer in any one of those spots.
You can see the problem I have when trying to find something specific. I know it's in one of those spots and I know it will be in a sub-directory of my Genealogy directory, but where?? Sure I can search for what I want but it's not always easy to find, and it's certainly time-consuming.
Using Evernote I'm able to pull each file in to a binder (Notebook) that I've created. I can see at a glance what I've got on each ancestor and even better, I can click on the item in Evernote, choose to view it in Picassa or Preview or whatever program I want, and then I can easily move or copy it to the proper directory on my hard drive. Killing two birds with one stone! I am making it easier to see my saved files and am able to organize my hard drive at the same time.
|My Genealogy "Binders" on Evernote|
|Creating a Table of Contents for one "Binder"|
All I have to do is select all the notes in a binder. Evernote lays them all out for me in a pile and then I choose Create a Table of Contents and it's done. The TOC displays as a new note in that binder. Update: Apparently creating a TOC is only available for MAC users. Sorry to all you Windows users out there!
|Table of Contents for One Binder|
This is as far as I've gone in discovering how to set up and organize my genealogy files as virtual binders in Evernote but I am loving it! Once I have everything organized as I want, I'll decide what my next step is. I already shared one binder with a family member (easy to do from the Evernote program) and I'm going to check out my other options at some point.