Tuesday, December 26, 2017

7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers

By  Joel Lee,

Programming is an activity prone to frustration and difficulty — even when done as a hobby. Creating a web, mobile, or desktop app is a big undertaking, and good note-taking skills are key to staying organized and not succumbing to stress, despair, and burnout.Programming Burnout: How to Regain Your Lost Motivation Programming Burnout: How to Regain Your Lost MotivationWriting all those lines of code can be draining physically and emotionally. All you need to get back up is the awareness that motivation can be regained.READ MORE
But most note-taking apps aren’t designed with programmers in mind, and they can be so frustrating to use that they drive you to give up on notes entirely. That’s why we’ve gone ahead and rounded up the best note-taking tools for coders. Check these out — you’ll love them!

1. Boostnote

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux
Boostnote is the prime example of a note-taking app for coders. It doesn’t have all the features of a modern note-taking app (e.g. it has Markdown formatting and folder-based organization but lacks customizable keyboard shortcuts) but does have what all programmers love:
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps boostnote
You can embed code blocks directly within normal notes, and you can create separate snippet-type notes that are specifically for collecting and grouping multiple code blocks in a single note. It also supports checkbox-based lists for task management.
The best part about Boostnote is that it’s free and open source. Combined with its features, Boostnote is perfect for students in programming courses.Open Source vs. Free Software: What's the Difference and Why Does It Matter? Open Source vs. Free Software: What's the Difference and Why Does It Matter?Many assume "open source" and "free software" mean the same thing but that's not true. It's in your best interest to know what the differences are.READ MORE

2. MedleyText

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux
MedleyText is very similar to Boostnote, with fewer features but a tighter focus on the features it does have: rich-text formatting, embedded code blocks within normal notes, and customizable keyboard shortcuts. It’s excellent for highly-productive coders with big projects.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps medleytext
When you embed formatted code directly into notes, the app will automatically highlight the syntax. Or you can manually select which syntax highlighting language to apply to any given block of code. It supports over 40 programming languages as of writing this article.
MedleyText is completely free without restrictions when taking local notes. A premium service called MedleyText+S is set to release in late 2017, allowing you to sync notes to cloud storage, access a web version of the app, and share notes with others.

3. Quiver

Platform: Mac
Quiver is yet another app like the two above: you can mix and match text (in both Markdown and LaTeX formats) with embedded code inside notes. However, Quiver has a dedicated code editor right inside the app that’s cleaner and more responsive than its competitors.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps quiver
As for syntax highlighting, this app supports over 120 programming languages. Cloud storage sync is available for Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud, and more. And because notes are stored as JSON, you can safely use version control to track changes. Shared notebooks even allow for collaboration between teammates on large projects.
So if Quiver is so great, why is it listed third? Because it’s only available on Mac. While the Mac operating system is a wonderful programming environment, most coders are still on either Windows or Linux. We consider this a huge negative mark.

4. OneNote

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Web
OneNote is arguably the best note-taking app period, but until recently it lacked syntax highlighting abilities, making it inappropriate for programmers. Fortunately, thanks to a free add-on released by a GitHub user, OneNote can now do syntax highlighting for code.Every Programmer Who Uses OneNote Needs This Add-On ASAP Every Programmer Who Uses OneNote Needs This Add-On ASAPIf you're a programmer tired of ugly code formatting in OneNote, you need to download this tool. It makes adding code to OneNote books a cinch and sets up in seconds.READ MORE
The add-on is admittedly a bit clunky, but it’s nice to know you can finally use OneNote for storing code notes. Since OneNote is one of the best ways to take notes as a student, this is particularly good news for students in programming and engineering curriculums.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers OneNote Highlight Programming Add On
OneNote is also great for collaborative projects due to note sharing. And best of all? It’s completely free and available on nearly every major platform, both desktop and mobile. (Except for Linux, sorry!)8 of the Best Free Collaborative Tools For Programmers 8 of the Best Free Collaborative Tools For ProgrammersIf you're a programmer and you aren't yet sharing or collaborating, you're behind the curve. Reap the benefits of collaboration with the right web apps.READ MORE

5. CherryTree

Platform: Windows
CherryTree is unlike most note-taking apps in that it’s more of a personal wiki. However, since pages can be nested under each other in a hierarchy, it’s more than good enough for taking notes. What makes it a wiki? You can insert links to any other page throughout the notebook.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps cherrytree
There are other apps like CherryTree, including wikidPad and Zim, but CherryTree supports a special page type specifically for code. Use regular notes for ideas and tasks, use the code notes for snippets. As far as the page hierarchy, both types work the exact same way.
CherryTree is very fast, making it one of the best lightweight note-taking apps.7 Lightweight OneNote and Evernote Alternatives 7 Lightweight OneNote and Evernote AlternativesThough we love them, both Evernote and OneNote can be slow and bloated. If you've been looking for an alternative, here are a few lightweight note-taking apps you should consider.READ MORE

6. Sublime Text

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux
As a programmer, you likely know about Sublime Text already. True, it’s a text editor and not a note-taking app, but it can certainly be used for taking notes: every note as a text file, and every code snippet in a separate language-appropriate file.
Sublime Text’s native features are excellent for increasing overall productivity, and the ability to split into multiple editor panes is indispensable. But for note-taking and organization, it can get even better with a few free plugins.11 Sublime Text Tips for Productivity and a Faster Workflow 11 Sublime Text Tips for Productivity and a Faster WorkflowSublime Text is a versatile text editor and a gold standard for many programmers. Our tips focus on efficient coding, but general users will appreciate the keyboard shortcuts.READ MORE
SideBarEnhancements is a must-install for every Sublime Text user. It adds a number of improvements to the sidebar, mostly in the menu when you right-click files. PlainTasksincorporates a task-style to-do list right inside the editor. And MarkdownEditing is nifty if you want your notes to be taken down in Markdown.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps sublime text
Sublime Text technically costs $70, but the free evaluation period never ends. As long as you can deal with an occasional pop-up that reminds you to purchase the full version, you can use Sublime Text for free indefinitely.

7. TickTick

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Web
TickTick is a to-do list app that’s pretty similar to other apps of its kind, but it has one subtle feature that makes it good for taking notes: every list item has a “description” field that’s basically an entire notepad.
7 Best Note-Taking Tools for Programmers coding note apps ticktick
As a programmer, you can use TickTick to track all of your tasks as individual list items and store whatever notes you need for each task. There’s no syntax highlighting or rich text formatting though, so it’s better for managing ideas than storing code snippets.
Plus, you get all the benefits of a full-blown to-do list app: folder organization, subtasks, recurring tasks, reminders, priorities, etc. TickTick has a free plan with a limited number of lists, and a paid plan for $28 per year.

Extra Tips for Becoming a Better Programmer

If all else fails, you can always stick notes right within your code as comments. It isn’t the best approach for abstract-level project management, and it requires clean coding habits, but it’s an option for low-level notes pertinent to certain snippets.10 Tips for Writing Cleaner & Better Code 10 Tips for Writing Cleaner & Better CodeWriting clean code looks easier than it actually is, but the benefits are worth it. Here's how you can start writing cleaner code today.READ MORE
Either way, keep going and keep improving. Programming is tough, so check out these tips for learning to code without stress. Furthermore, learn about how daily meditation can improve your code. And if you ever feel stuck, here are ways to overcome programmer’s block.
How do you take notes as a programmer? Did any of these stick out? Know of any others worth adding to the list? Share with us in the comments below!
Source: www.makeuseof.com

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