"Rich" notes in DevonThink

This is not a bug or feature-request or even an observation, more of a brainstorming (or, an faq).

I have been using DT for about 6 years now and it’s a solid part of my life.

From time to time I feel the stupid impulse to tell someone else about it and get them to try it out.

The biggest obstacle I see people having is trying to add a “rich note” and then realizing this is not the kind of flow that the tool supports, and then just not using it any more.

To explain further: it’s possible in Evernote, or DayOne, or Bear, or most other such cloud-based tools, to create a note with text, images, even embeds mixed in.

Now I know one of the selling points, for me at least, is having control of my data with DT and not having it hosted as a black box.

Still, I was wondering what a good “canned response” might be for this situation.

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DEVONthink is not Evernote, DayOne or Bear. To expect or wish it to be misses the forest for the trees.

What about RTF(D) documents? They’re fully supported by the new editor of DEVONthink To Go 3.5.x too. In the end DEVONthink uses standard file formats, not proprietary ones and therefore it’s no problem to easily to im/export stuff (whereas especially cloud-based apps don’t want you to migrate to another app).


My Evernote notes imported to Devonthink in Formatted Note format;
basically text (html) with embedded images

This continues to be my preferred format
Devonthink provides an integrated wysiwyg editor,
or I use an external text editor and edit the html directly


Interesting. What happened to me is that DEVONthink 3 changed my workflow to a great extent as I think any ingenious app with this kind of power would be expected to do. I no longer jam stuff into one can so to speak. If one is heavily committed to an ‘everything in my single notes’ approach one might wonder if one needs DEVONthink 3 ?

I use bookmarks for some things, plain text, usually in Markdown, or rich text notes. One has the ANNOTATIONS function too and frankly one can get a lot of stuff into FINDER COMMENTS on the inspector. I don’t, in my own workflow, use those much. I did try it and it worked well for linking images, charts and data to some notes. I recently deleted a bunch of annotations which I wasn’t really using as it happens. The icon remains in the name bar though!

Oddly for reasons I can’t explain DEVONthink 3 has facilitated a revival for me of using pen and paper and notebooks, I am a very lateral thinker maybe? One can develop on this app ones own customized workflows. For example I use Inbox as a kind of cork board, with a whole bunch of transient and ephemeral images, bookmarks and so on.
Having everything stuffed into a single doc never worked well for me and my advice to beginners on DEVONthink 3 would be to revise one’s workflows in line with its real and well thought out powers. There is a learning curve with this and that is I think something that is just a fact of life. I am sure the developers wish there wasn’t and the balancing act they have to take must be grinding.