There are some great note taking applications available these days. I want to call out two that I've used within the last year.

I look for key features in a note taking application. Without these, it isn't worth using.

  • Supports Markdown syntax
  • Has Markdown preview
  • Allows grouping notes together
  • Supports checklists
  • Supports code entry with syntax highlighting
  • Works on Windows and Linux
  • Has a zero cost tier
  • Can Store notes locally
  • Ability to search notes

If you are interested in these applications, check out the full list of features on each one's website.

I don't really need collaboration features since it is basically just me. I may sometimes share a not with my wife, but that's about the extent of it.

Here some additional things about each application that I liked that may not be touted on their website.

Boostnote

Boostnote groups notes together nicely.

For checklists in a note, Boostnote displays a percentage complete bar across the top of the note. Very nice for seeing your progress at a glance.

boostnote

Boostnote supports adding formulas in LaTeX.

Joplin

Joplin uses a synchronization feature that I like. It integrates with NextCloud which is a huge bonus for me.

There is also an android version which makes it very easy to synch up a shopping list. I find I use this more than I expected.

There is a portable version that runs from a USB stick. There is also a terminal version which I haven't tried out yet, but looks interesting.

In addition to having checklists in a note, the note itself can be a to-do note. Cool idea.

Joplin stores it's data in a sqlite database file. That's opens up some possibilities for managing or tweaking your notes with python or some other tool.

joplin

It also supports writing formulas in LaTeX

$f(x) =\frac{d}{dx} \int_a^x f(t) \ dt$

Conclusion

Both of these note taking applications are very good. They have lots of tweaks that allow you to get just the look and feel you want.

Right now I'm consolidated on Joplin because of the NextCloud synchronization, the Android version, and the portable version.