What is OneNote and why should I use it?

Over the next few days, I’m going to introduce you to OneNote. As the name suggests, it’s designed for note taking, but it’s actually quite helpful anytime you have lots of information to organize. And it’s great when used with Outlook – or sharing notebooks with others.

Remember how easy it was to take notes in college? You could write notes wherever you had empty space. Suddenly switching from written words to drawing diagrams or graphs was never a problem. And if you got bored, you could always doodle spacemen in the margins.

You can do all of that in OneNote. You can type freeform notes and insert graphics, screen shots, and the like. You can even doodle if you have a TabletPC or are really artistic with a mouse; though OneNote is super valuable even without a Tablet.

Unlike your college notebook, however, OneNote makes it easy to organize those notes. You can have several notebooks, divide them into sections, and have unlimited pages in each of those sections. You don’t have to give any thought to the organization as you’re taking notes. You can organize everything later by dragging and dropping.

You could have individual notebooks for work and pleasure. Within your work notebook, you could have sections for each of your projects, another section for brainstorming, and another for progress toward your performance goals.

What’s the first thing you do when you need to take notes during a meeting? Start a Word doc? That’s what most people I know do.  But there may be a better way – not that I don’t love Word; but OneNote is specifically designed to help you connect your meetings – which are in Outlook, to OneNote, without needing to go elsewhere.

More details to come!


Comments (9)

  1. Doug says:

    Your description is still quite vague.  Is OneNote free-standing or does it require Microsoft Office or an account on some Internet site?

    If meetings are not in Outlook but in OneNote, then how does it connect to anyone?

  2. harrison.c@shaw.ca says:

    Since I upgraded to2011 Imy printer won't work because onenote must run first.What is onenote -where do I find it on my computer,? I have not been able to print anything off the computer  which is really annoying as I thought upgrades were to make work easier not more difficult. Caro  Harrison.

  3. Bob Hyatt says:

    OK. I got some idea, but have not understood this program completely. How about giving us a comprehensive example of OneNote from starting it with a simple note to as far as it is necessary to understand its features and usefulness… You know what I mean?

  4. margie says:

    I agree with with Caro Harrison. I cannot print anything either. Soooo frustrating!

  5. Tishay says:

    Ladies, instead of jumping down Suzanne 100's throat. Try googling what you need. She was thoughtful enough to enlighten you on a few basic things and you guys complain how her information was "vague" Your "VAGUE" for your negative comment. Grow up and do your own research!

  6. Ed says:

    I agree that OneNote is a problem.  I need to print, not create some archived document.  As to the folks expressing concern, and Tishay's rude comments, we are seeking information; that is why we ended up here.  "Here", unfortunately is not helpful and neither is Tishay.  My sense is that s/he does not know how to help, either.

  7. Robert says:

    Onenote is just a mass of confusing roadblocks to your printer.

  8. Robert says:

    Onenote blocks access to my printer. That's about all it seems to do.

  9. Patty says:

    I do not like OneNote how can I get out of it, what I had before was okay.

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