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Zendone up + Evernote

MarcinGTD's Avatar


27 Jul, 2011 07:51 AM

Zendone app is Evernote competition finalist http://www.evernote.com/about/etc/vote.php


Looks very promising. Anyone got a chance to try it?

  1. 1 Posted by klunke-dun on 27 Jul, 2011 09:55 AM

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    That looks really promising and I already use Evernote as a collection inbox and archive/reference. So the workflow the Zendone describes seems intuitive.

    Also a good idea for Nirvana folks to keep an eye on, and figure out how to integrate Evernote in Nirvana for project reference materials as well as integrating due dates into Google Calendar.

  2. 2 Posted by Proximo on 27 Jul, 2011 05:42 PM

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    Sounds very interesting. I also use Evernote to capture stuff on the fly and keep all my reference material.

    Nirvana needs to really consider Evernote integration at some level because other GTD services are already doing it. Evernote is very popular and powerful, which can make Nirvana even better.

    I will keep my eye on this one.

  3. 3 Posted by levi on 28 Jul, 2011 01:13 PM

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    I'm a developer and have played a bit with the Evernote API. It's very well put together, and they have a very good developer relations person who can help with integration, a developer forum, etc., so I hope this is considered seriously. Zendone seems to use Evernote as it's way of managing tasks themselves rather than just a repository for reference material (although that could be wrong since I'm only going off that short video). But just having Evernote accessible for longer and richer reference material, attachments, etc., would be nice.

  4. 4 Posted by Proximo on 28 Jul, 2011 06:08 PM

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    I think you are correct on how Zendone is going to use Evernote. Not sure if I like their concept because it's split into different applications to handle different parts of the GTD System. It could be implemented in a very creative way so we must wait and see.

    Evernote integration into an existing solid GTD app like Nirvana would be fantastic.

  5. 5 Posted by MarcinGTD on 09 Sep, 2011 01:36 PM

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    Zen Done is coming out of alpha and into the beta in 2-3 weeks.

    Interesing to watch. This could be a major player soon if you consider that Evernote has 12 milion users already (that is just crazy..) and they will be getting promotion straight in Evernote Trunk. That is some GOOD media exporsure 0_o

  6. 6 Posted by Proximo on 09 Sep, 2011 09:57 PM

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    I am very excited about it's potential. Evernote and Google Calendar are already part of my GTD system and having them all work together would be PERFECT.

  7. 7 Posted by AJS on 10 Sep, 2011 04:42 PM

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    Sounds like a very good concept but with no android version it's a none starter for me. Good to see the strides being made by task managers these days though. Others will up their game as well no doubt so it's all good.

  8. 8 Posted by MarcinGTD on 09 Oct, 2011 10:54 AM

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    Zendone is out of alpha and in beta. I got a chance to mess around with it and it is VERY solid app + developers are ultra responsive and very open to suggestions (and even implement them too!).

    I think Zen done will be a major player on the market in less than a year.
    The app has its rough corners, but the implementation of evernote is dreamy.

  9. 9 Posted by levi on 09 Oct, 2011 01:11 PM

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    @MarcinGTD, it looks like it's still closed beta, though. I have yet to get an invite despite signing of for one a couple of months ago. Did you just get one by email? Do you have any way to send invites? Thanks. Although Zendone looks nice from what I've seen, I think they only have an iOS mobile client, though, right? I assume they have plans for Android, but if not then that would be a major detractor for me...

  10. 10 Posted by Proximo on 09 Oct, 2011 02:31 PM

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    I sent for an invite a long time ago and still waiting for access. :-(

  11. 11 Posted by klunke-dun on 09 Oct, 2011 04:47 PM

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    I also played around with the Zendone beta, and this is very promising. Evernote integration is second-to-none. You only have one inbox for collecting everything, which is your Evernote default inbox. This means that you can use any 3rd party app that supports Evernote to collect to your GTD inbox, and then you can empty your inbox using the same workflow in Zendone.

    Google Calendar integration is great as well.

    The two key things missing are repeated tasks and iOS apps. Their website is impossible to use on iPhone/iPad. When this is fixed, they will have one of the best GTD implementations out there!

  12. 12 Posted by Mattias Johanss... on 09 Oct, 2011 08:25 PM

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    I asked @zendoneapp for an invite via Twitter, five minutes later they asked for my mail and then mailed me the invite. =)

  13. 13 Posted by klunke-dun on 09 Oct, 2011 09:16 PM

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    Mattias, what is your experience with Zendone?

  14. 14 Posted by Proximo on 10 Oct, 2011 01:32 AM

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    Zendone has not invited me yet. Don't they know who I think I am?


    Come to think of it. They probably read these forums and said. "We don't want that crazy Proximo on our beta run just yet, he is brutal." :-(

  15. 15 Posted by Alex on 10 Oct, 2011 01:39 AM

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    @Proximo. Ah! For what it's worth, I haven't gotten one either. But then I went ahead and read their blog and they are say that they "will launch a bigger invitations round, early next week." So, hopefully we'll get a shot at it in the next round!

  16. 16 Posted by Mattias Johanss... on 10 Oct, 2011 06:27 AM

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    Overall, I am positive, have long been waiting for a GTD system with a good Evernote integration.

  17. 17 Posted by Phil on 10 Oct, 2011 05:19 PM

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    I have been fortunate enough to get the beta invite last week. I did submit my email to them early on, but I also pinged them several times on Twitter and that is the medium through which they actually sent me the invite. So if you are interested in trying their service, they appear to be responsive to those with more frequent communication on Twitter. However, they also said that they'll be sending out a lot more invites early this week.

    My limited experience with the service has been mostly good. It is definitely a very polished beta with full-fledged Evernote and Google Calendar integration. The Evernote integration is for the most part really cool. However, one thing that I don't like about the Evernote integration is that it is currently implemented in such a way so that notes in Evernote are converted to become the actual tasks in Zendone. There is currently no way to create a task in Zendone and then associate an Evernote note with it as reference material (though they say this functionality is coming).

    Another thing to point out, is that the integration with Evernote is so tight, that once you convert an Evernote note to an action in Zendone, the name of the task in Zendone becomes the title of the note in Evernote. The problem with this as I see it is that all of your Evernote notes will end up having action-based titles (e.g., "Send an email to John" or "Buy bread"). I personally do not want my Evernote to be a repository of actions, but a repository of reference material (e.g., notes with titles: "Things to clarify with John" or "Grocery list"). However, I understand that this is just my personal preference, and I suspect that the service will be the perfect solution for many GTD users.

    One last thing is that the elements of their user interface (e.g., font size, row height) are quite large and the UI becomes a bit crowded on smaller screens like my 13" macbook. I've shared all of these points with the developers and they are very responsive.

    For now, I think I'll be sticking with Nirvana. But it is nice to be able to compare the two services. I sincerely hope that Nirvana one day implements Evernote integration in some capacity.

  18. 18 Posted by levi on 10 Oct, 2011 11:37 PM

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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Phil. I did know about the tight integration between Evernote and Zendone, and I suppose it has plusses and minuses. As far as finding your to-do's when just searching Evernote, have you actually tried this? I don't know if it's possible yet, but I thought there was a plan to provide some kind of field that would allow for filtering of such user-defined (non-Evernote-intrinsic) notes, but I could be imagining things!

  19. 19 Posted by Phil on 11 Oct, 2011 03:53 AM

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    Levi, I'm not totally sure what you're asking but I'll take a stab at an answer. The tasks created by zendone are also automatically created in evernote and can be found in Evernote via Evernote search. Evernote notes that are converted into tasks in zendone remain in Evernote and can also be found via search. Zendone also automatically creates tags in Evernote called "zendone-action" and "zendone-completed." Zendone tasks in Evernote are automatically tagged with these tags as you process and complete tasks in zendone. So tasks could also be found in Evernote by clicking on these tags.

    I hope that is clear.

  20. 20 Posted by levi on 11 Oct, 2011 11:51 AM

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    @Phil, thanks, yeah, that's what I was wondering - whether it did actually come up in searches or not - it was unclear from your first message if you'd actually tested it or just assumed that would happen. Thanks for clarifying. :)

  21. 21 Posted by candeshouse on 11 Oct, 2011 01:17 PM

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    So, I assume from this that notes that were already in Evernote (reference materials) are not tagged, or at least not associated to Zendone?

  22. 22 Posted by klunke-dun on 11 Oct, 2011 02:43 PM

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    Correct, the existing notes, tags and folders are untouched by Zendone.

  23. 23 Posted by Proximo on 11 Oct, 2011 08:11 PM

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    Thank for sharing Phil. I think I agree with you and would prefer having the notes integrated in Evernote, but manage the actual task title and creation in Zendone.

    Oh, well. I need to wait for an invite and play with it.

    For me, the integration of Evernote and Google Calendar is the most appealing part of it. I use both daily.

  24. 24 Posted by AJS on 11 Oct, 2011 08:25 PM

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    Just going off the video it seems to be a very well thought out implementation, using Evernote in a logical fashion to tie in with the inherent task management and Google Calendar. I think Nozbe has had the most logical implementation of those features until now. It just goes to show despite the plethora of task managers out there, there is still plenty of opportunity for the ones that get it right to cash in. Without an android app though I'll just keep an eye from the outside for now. Great concept though.

  25. 25 Posted by Geert on 16 Oct, 2011 07:40 PM

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    I received my invitation to the Zendone beta yesterday (they must be sending out their second round of invitations).

    Played around with it for about half an hour today. I have to say (as Dafyren and Phil did earlier) that it looks very promising.

    There's a good integration with Evernote (but I really miss the ability to add notes to a task from within the app itself). I didn't test the Google Calendar integration as I don't use GCal myself.

    The UI is good, but can be improved upon (it's a beta after all). Although the UI is different from Nirvana's (it has a a completely different, more graphical feel to it), the two apps have some design choices in common: in most cases, you are only shown the info that you really need to see, and in creating and processing tasks, mouse clicks are reduced to a minimum (in fact it has much better keyboard support than Nirvana). Although the look of Zendone is stylish, and very nicely done, at times I think it's a bit distracting. I prefer Nirvana's calmer, (and also beautiful) no-nonsense look.

    A few key things are still missing: recurrent tasks, mobile access, etc. but it looks as if they are working hard to improve and build upon the great foundation that they already have. I'm curious to see where they'll stand six months from now.

    In the mean time: Nirvana's still my favorite. :-)

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