Microsoft finally decided to make this application available to a wider audience!
OneNote has been around for years but generally found its way into the student package of the Office suite.
This is because OneNote is quite simply, a note taking application so it was felt students would make better use of it.
However it has plenty functionality that is of use in the work place.
Those notes could be for a meeting, while doing research for a customer proposal or just making a list of things to do.
OneNote stores all of it's information with a notebook.
Inside a notebook we can have pages, sections and section groups.
Pages hold the content while sections and section groups are used to help organise that content.
I could have a notebook called "Work Notes".
Inside that notebook I could have section groups called "Service Delivery" and "Products".
Within the "Products" section group I could have sections called "New Products", "Existing Products".
Inside the "Existing Products" section I could have pages called "Prices", "Sales Notes".
So you may thinking "So what? Can't I do the same thing in Word with documents and folders.
Yes you could. But because OneNote is geared towards note taking it has lots of functionality for making note taking quick and easy.
Some examples include,
If you have an image that contains text OneNote tries to make sense of that text so that you can search for it.
Imagine you were at a conference and met Tom Anderson, he could be an important contact that could bring you lots of work. Tom ran out of business cards and didn't want to give away his last one so you could take a picture of it with your mobile phone (store it in OneNote mobile!) and insert into your notes back at the office. OneNote would then index that card and next time you searched your notes OneNote would display his business card!
You can even do the same with audio! Use your phone to do an ad-hoc interview and insert it into your notes. OneNote can then index it for you so it shows up in search results!
OneNote allows you to quickly grab information without having to go to the hassle of cutting and pasting.
If you're in Internet Explorer there is an option called "Send to OneNote". Clicking on this will send the current page to OneNote and place it your current notebook!
What if you don't use Internet Explorer or have another application you want to grab information from?
No problem. OneNote installs the OneNote Printer Driver - you just print your document in the same way you print a hard copy and it'll create an image and place it into your notebook! Again character recognition will index the content.
You can also "dock" OneNote next to your currently open program. OneNote just displays the writing surface allowing you to drag and drop and quickly store notes without having to flick between applications.
OneNote doesn't restrict you to how you enter content. Just click and type (or if you have a touch enabled device you can write!)
You can drag content around so it's organised exactly how you want it and there are a drawing tools that allow you to make quick edits. We've all drawn a big circle around an important meeting note
OneNote also allows us to do quick calculations on the fly.
If you type in a sum, use the equals symbol at the end and press the space bar the answer is filled in for you.
You can also tag information so it's easier to find. There are built-in tags and you can create your own.
These tags can then easily be found using the search functionality.
Clicking on the icon takes you straight to the relevant page
Integration and Sharing
OneNote can also link into your Outlook data. A set of notes can be converted into a task which is entered into Outlook as part of your regular To-Do list.
You can also work with other collagues on notes by sharing them over a network. This allows many people to contribute to a set of notes (great for research projects!)
The latest version of the product can harness the power of the Internet. Notes can be stored in a shared location and accessed from anywhere OneNote is installed. Additionally Office Web Apps also has OneNote capability meaning notes can be quickly read and updated from any PC with an Internet browser!
This is just a very small set of the powerful functionality OneNote provides. Seeing it in action really allows you to understand how much more productive and organised the application can make you.
If you'd like a demonstration of OneNote please get in touch.
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