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Paperwork: An open source Evernote alternative | Hacker News

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Tags: evernote web-clipper news.ycombinator.com
Clipped on: 2016-08-28

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Paperwork: An open source Evernote alternative (paperwork.rocks)
477 points by DieBuche 581 days ago | hide | past | web | 135 comments | favorite

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As other's have mentioned, the WebUI is a major no-no.

Evernote's strength lies in its Desktop application and very useful clipping service.

The fact that Evernote uses its own cloud storage instead of say an encrypted folder in Google Drive/Dropbox etc is a negative of the service. Sync is required but implemented in the most undesirable way in Evernote currently.

Paperwork is promising, but seems to have replicated the negative of Evernote, while foregoing the reason why people use Evernote in the first place.

So, if you want to Paperwork to take off:

1. Implement it as an offline Chrome App with Dropbox+Google Drive sync. 2. Implement a web clipping+screenshot extension.

> The fact that Evernote uses its own cloud storage instead of say an encrypted folder in Google Drive/Dropbox etc is a negative of the service.

I hate this trend towards supporting only one or another kind of proprietary service.[1] What is wrong with WebDAV? That way, you can use a cloud hosting provider, or self-host.

[1] I'm looking at you Scrivener.

And another proprietary service ("make it an offline Chrome app"). It's the web, why would I want to be locked to a single vendor?

It is the path of least resistance to get to a 'Desktop' experience. And please, what are the alternatives?

Firefox ? I'm sorry, but Firefox lost relevance a couple of years ago now. Firefox is ethically the best , but it sucks in implementation. Firefox is now the broccoli of the web, stale broccoli at that.

ActiveX is pretty cool, and gives you a "desktop" experience. You should look into it if you like letting one corporation lock you into their proprietary version of the web.

a desktop app built with node-webkit would be better than a browser-specific app

How? All you're proposing is replacing one dependency with another.

At least there it's not really any different than shipping a WPF application that's tied to Windows. It's a desktop application, people are used to desktop applications being vendor-specific. I don't like the idea of people getting used to web apps being vendor-specific though. That's not okay. We have a chance to make it right this time. If it runs on your desktop and is vendor-specific, that's a shame but that's expected. If it runs in a browser and is vendor-specific, that's setting a bad precedent that we worked for years to overcome with IE6.

Of course, that's just my personal philosophy. Everyone is different.

Lots of things are wrong with WebDAV, summed up as "many clients with different implementations/interpretations of the spec."

Related: Are there any decent WebDAV servers out there? I don't see any recent development being done on any.

Sure! SabreDAV 2.1 released in November 2014, IT Hit WebDAV Server 3.9.2098 released in December 2014.

And Box is using WebDav too: https://support.box.com/hc/en-us/articles/200519748-Does-Box...

I believe the idea was that the app would simply save data on a local drive that could then be synced with your favorite technology or service.

Paperwork doesn't use its own cloud storage. You can host it either locally or at your own server. No problem using encryption, VPN tunneling etc. here.

The fact that it's not a true cloud service could be seen as a downside. Your data is only stored at one server without failsave mechanisms. And you're responsible on your own regarding the data.

Paperwork doesn't use its own cloud storage. You can host it either locally or at your own server.

This will really limit the potential user base and really eventual growth and uptake of a service like this. When easily accessible "personal cloud" tools like Dropbox and Drive exist why not make them potential service mechanisms? On an open source service like this it seems you may want to have some sort of cloud abstraction service and let other contributors plug in separate cloud services.

Dropbox, Drive, iCloud, etc are not in any way 'personal clouds'. They are very much somebody else's cloud.

Proper personal clouds may be on the horizon when you don't have to become a sysadmin to run one. FWIW, I'm working towards this - http://nymote.org/blog/2013/introducing-nymote/

Many people (myself included) don't trust Drobox, so being able to handle my data myself is regarded as a plus.

(having Condoleezza Rice on the board is just _one_ obvious reason not to trust them)

That makes me think, has anyone tried to build a note taking app based on git? A tricky part for this kind of app is networking and synchronization of notes, and that's all taken care of by git. The "only" thing left would be to implement the mobile and desktop front ends.

I've done emacs org mode on git, and it works. I've thankfully never had to do a manual merge, I wonder what org mode thinks of git merge commentary inside the file. I imagine you'd have to drop out of org mode and into text mode to fix the merge.

I've also used a wiki as what amounts to little more than a note taking app, and it works. There are a couple wikis that can speak git as a backend store.

I can't begin to imagine why someone would build a note-taking app that wasn't build on a standard version control system such as mercurial or git.

Is there a rationale for paperwork not doing this? I'd like to hear it.

Magpie, which I think was on HN a few weeks back, is an attempt at precisely this.


I must have missed it a few weeks back, but thanks for mentioning this because it's just what I need!

You might like to take a look at Irmin [1], which seems like it would make it easier to get what you're after. It's also part of a larger stack that will make distributed programming a lot easier when it lands [2].

[1] http://openmirage.org/blog/introducing-irmin

[2] http://nymote.org/blog/2015/brewing-miso-to-serve-nymote/

Better yet -- CouchDB and PouchDB. You can use PouchDB for the browser side, CouchDB for the server, and Couchbase Mobile for the eventual mobile apps. Pros: offline and online; natural fit for document management; git-like revision and conflict management; simple to set up replication for backup. Cons: it's fallen out of favor; nobody seems to like writing the mapreduce code for searching and views.

PouchDB dev here. The map/reduce API is definitely a bit cumbersome, which is why we're replacing it: http://nolanlawson.github.io/pouchdb-find/ :)

Draft (http://draftin.com) is a great version-controlled writing app, though it's not what I would call note-taking. Interesting idea though!

Yes, me. :) I'm intermittently working on an Android app that syncs to Git. I'm using it for my notes, but it's still pretty rough to share widely.

Because you want autosave to the cloud, and autosave to git would be very weighty.

I think the better option would be APIs for desktop app(s), maybe with a stock basic functionality desktop app. Definitely not an "offline" app based on a particular web browser.

As a Firefox user I already dislike Gmail Inbox and WhatsApp (web) being Chrome only. The former has said "Chrome only for now" for quite long already.

It is actually a shame that it is based on PHP. If it was based on pure JS, there was hope to make a desktop version easily using node-webkit or something.

I have to agree. Evernote's Web Clipping feature is a feature that is very important to me. I would also really appreciate the ability to save my data (by default) some place other than Evernote's cloud.

Yeah, as NixNote user, I wouldn't mind switching away from Evernote as a back end. But a web-only UI is a blocker for me.

Is there an open source and self hosting cloud that apps like this can build on. I know Own Cloud exists but is it app-friendly. This requires a mysql db - yuck.

It does not require mysql db. sqlite works fine (at least for smaller systems).

They recommend mysql (especially for bigger systems), but not a requirement.


Donno how good it is but they have a cat mascot so thats a start.

That was a joke you mean downvoters.

HN doesn't like jokes. It's dry.

HN has that reputation, but it isn't entirely true.

Some of my highest-voted comments have been pure humor. A few examples, with parent comments included for context:

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8690893 (86 points, and 24 for the followup comment)

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6447007 (43 points)

Even this silly one-liner got 23 points:


That one won't make sense out of context, so here's the article it refers to:


My point in sharing these is to give some examples of kinds of humor that have gone over well here. Of course as they say, "Past performance is no guarantee of future results."

It's a good start, but I feel the UX could do with some refinement. Why is there no default notebook upon signup? Why isn't there a big fat "Add a note" button on the top of the list of notes? Why do I have to explicitly press save after editing a note? And why is is soe obscure icon of a floppy disk, instead of a button with the text "Save changes" on it? Etc.

All the functionality is there, but as I see it, an app like this is all about good UX and very little about the technical features.

> And why is is soe obscure icon of a floppy disk, instead of a button with the text "Save changes" on it?

If you've ever tried to use a computer in a foreign country, you'll realise why icons are an extremely good idea.

I agree the floppy disk symbol is dated though, as is having to save a file.

No. People make the mistake of thinking symbols are universal. They are not. Symbols are always interpreted in the context of the user's culture. A cross in the US might mean ambulance or hospital but it means something different in Turkey. Icons are not substitutes for internationalization. Floppy disk icon might not translate well in China given that it was dead by the time computers became common in China. It probably doesn't even translate well in the US with younger users.

It does autosave (although as you mention the UI is not very clear on this)

I also stumbled over this "feature":

I edited one note and pressed "library" instead of the floppy, since there appeared some text, that said, it was autosaved .... But when I got to the library, the note was in the same condition as before the edit.

So, according this test, "auto save" does not work (correctly) IMHO.

>Some last words

>The current development status is far from being worth called "version 1.0". However, if I could get you interested in this project and you feel like contributing, don't hesitate to ping me by e-mail...

You can fork the project and begin contributing...

Looks like a good start!

I played around with it a bit and it's still pretty far from being a true Evernote alternative.

A lot of the value in Evernote comes from its crazy powerful search and rich ecosystem. Both are currently still lacking in Paperwork.

As of yet, it does not search within PDF documents and it does use OCR to extract text from images, though both could be achieved with open source technologies such as Solr and Tesseract.

The lack of ecosystem (iOS/Android apps, desktop integration etc.) also makes sense, but the APIs are all there, so there is no stopping anyone from adding those.

I dream of a future where there is a standard rest interface for cloud file storage, that somebody will put an API in front of any non-compliant services, and that applications can talk to any datastore with minimal hacking.

This has been done before with, eg ODBC.

Here's some projects you should check out:

* RemoteStorage.js[1] (they plan on adding support for Dropbox, Drive, etc.)

* CloudRail[2] (nonfree source)

* CloudDock[3] (proxy service)

* byoFS.js[4] (encrypted cloud storage, I maintain this)

[1]: https://github.com/remotestorage/remotestorage.js

[2]: http://cloudrail.com/

[3]: http://clouddock.co/

[4]: https://github.com/diafygi/byoFS

You might want to try Unhosted and related projects.


Not what you're asking for, but a friend is working on something similar: https://www.seedrs.com/startups/combicloud

There are already open standards for cloud storage:

- Apache Libcloud/Deltacloud/jclouds




- remoteStorage


- WebDAV

Another open source Evernote/Onenote alternative is TagSpaces(tagspaces.org) It runs completely offline on Windows, Linux, Mac OSX and Android, and since recently it features a server edition, running on top of a ownCloud installation.

Tagspaces is nice. Works the same on Linux, Mac, and Android (probably Windows and iOS too, I haven't tried). I like that it doesn't try to tackle note taking and synchronization. You can use dropbox/spideroak/btsync/owncloud/whatever-you-lik for that.

For note taking I use the open sourced Notational Velocity [1] (actually I use nvAlt [2] which is a fork that has some extra features like Markdown support). My two favorite features are that it can store your notes as plain text files in a folder of your choice, plus there's syncing through Dropbox or Simplenote. Notational Velocity is a Mac app, but with Simplenote you get x-platform support.

[1] http://notational.net/

[2] http://brettterpstra.com/projects/nvalt/

Yeah, I love Simplenote sooo much. The official app got a lot better when Automattic took over, so I use that on Android, but NV on Mac and ResophNotes on Win7 are excellent.

Not good for rich text and images and web clippings and such, just great plain text syncing.

I love simplenote too, replaced my notepad.exe.

How is this different than Wallabag? (http://wallabag.org/) Wallabag is mature, has mobile apps, self hosted or on their servers and allows you to export stuff as PDF, epub or json.

I'm not seeing that they're claiming to be better than anything, just a, "self-hosted alternative to services like Evernote (R), Microsoft OneNote (R) or Google Keep (R)."

Are you a contributor to Wallabag?

I lost confidence in Wallabag when I encountered a bug with the long lasting session. Everytime I want to save a site, I click the plugin icon, have to login, reopen the site I want to save and click the icon again. The bug is several months old and the developers are unable to track it down. It's very worrisome when something as important as authentication isn't properly understood by the developers.

Wallabag doesn't appear to do note taking, just web clipping.

Nice! I've been using Evernote for a while now. I have a MacBook Pro I use for work, but I use Linux at home. After using both the web client (because that's my only option in Linux except Wine) and the native OS X client, it's clear that the Web Client is lacking.

I'm looking forward to an open source alternative.

Nice beginning!

I agree with everyone that the UX needs some clean-up (default notebook created automatically, large Add Note button, etc.), however, there is one functionality that Evernote removed a long time ago, and I'm still searching for an alternative, and this new app also doesn't support it.

The feature to create unlimited child notes. It used to be that you could have a tree structure with a parent note, then a few child notes, then a child of those child notes, etc., but last I checked, there's only one layer of depth. Only one child note can be created for each notebook and you can't set that child to be the parent of another note. I love all the other features, such as tagging, clipping, etc., but this was a killer feature that I haven't found anywhere else.

Do any of you know an alternative app that has this feature in a note-taking application?

Workflowy is basically a exactly this: a tree of nested items. It's more bullet-point style but works for quite well for me.


I'm desperately wanting this also. I found that you can have unlimited nested _tags_ but the UI just doesn't support tags as first class citizen and doesn't have convenient way to move notes between tags while showing hierarchy (for notebooks I'm doing Ctrl-Cmd-M all the time).

Huh, I had no idea Evernote used to do that. It's one feature I've really wished for.

They really seem to be trying hard to push away their current userbase and attract...something else.

I'm surprised to see that NeverNote hasn't been mentioned yet.


Isn't nnote just an note front end? This appears to be a service, not just a client.

I've been looking at a good document management/note-taking app, to use in legal work, and I've found it surprisingly difficult. My needs are simple: 1) Rich-text notetaking; 2) DOCX/PDF markup, ideally with annotation extraction; 3) indexing and search of DOCX/PDF with preview; 4) drag & drop desktop integration; 5) mac + pc. The cloud-only solutions are right-out. Evernote comes pretty close to hitting all the points, and the Skitch-derived PDF annotation summary is awesome, but the Mac/PC databases aren't compatible so they can't be put on a shared drive.

I am starting to think that those kind of features should be integrated with the OS. So many cloud style apps are just irrelevant because they sit in their own ecosystem that excludes how most businesses actually organise things (with files on shared drives). I should be able to annotate things with the same set of tools and have the OS intermediate.

I just created an account with fake data and it looks quite promising. Are there plans to recreate the function of the Evernote Webclipper?

I love Evernote. Since they are very slow and expensive, a real competitor would be great for them.

I think with open source user tools (as opposed to developer tools) you are better off directing your effort to projects which already exist.

That's not to say that you can't or shouldn't try to scratch an itch. It just seems that attempting to create an alternative to Evernote is a target which is unlikely to be successful as an open source project or as a commercial project. Evernote has a budget, a full time, full-stack development team and lots of mojo. You aren't going to create a better Evernote. Instead, you should aim to create a far more powerful tool to address the target which Evernote is shooting for. That's the only way a small, scrappy dev shop with a product lacking polish is going to rattle a much larger competitor. Sure, this is open source, but it still needs to be compelling enough to grab momentum.

If you feel you don't have an answer which is much better, then perhaps throw your weight behind an existing open source project which is already kicking ass in that space. For example, Org Mode is arguably far more powerful than Evernote. There are pros and cons of each, but part of your effort could be in addressing the weaknesses of Org Mode.

As a (beginning) org-mode user I'd say a few people will never use org-mode.

As a person who works or has worked for a few companies that would never accept sending company data out to note I say making a better product for them shouldn't be too hard as long as you can install it locally. ("old" OneNote 2010 is brilliant here, but the new one insist on logging into the cloud. Fortunately the old one is more than good enough for now although I have a few things I'd really love to see. )

Right, but OrgMode is not addressing the same problem. Personally I really need the cloud access and HTML formatting for my note software, and OrgMode is designed to be text-based and will not (ever) accept such feature requests.

I'm never going to use emacs - I don't like it. Org Mode is entirely irrelevant for me. This might be relevant for me.

Good stuff. This would be a nice project to have running on Sandstorm http://sandstorm.io

sandstorm looks really interesting! Does this provide a global authentication- / rights- / group-management api so all apps could share access rights and user credentials in one database (or ldap store)?

I don't know the current status but these are things that are core to sandstorm. I'd check their discussion board and maybe ask if you want a clear answer. They're a pretty serious bunch.

Another nice, open source and very simple note taking web app is http://laverna.cc/

> we are using IndexedDB and localStorage

Unless you hook it up to a cloud service, it's more or less dependent on your local browser storage which is easily lost.

"Synchronizes with cloud storage services (at this time only Dropbox and RemoteStorage are supported)"

Interesting, I am curious if this can be used by psychiatrist / psychologist who need to take patient notes. Notes need to shared between psychiatrist / psychologist / social worker. Typically a patient needs all three. Also the notes would need to be secure (hipaa) compliant. I wonder how much work would be needed to build a MVP using paperwork as a start.

My company iCouch has what you're talking about in the new version we're launching Feb 6. However, we are HIPAA as well as HITECH compliant. The HIPPA compliance is a bit with the code, but more in how your infrastructure is organized and your policies in place. One of our (almost) competitors TherapyNotes does almost exactly what you're describing. I say almost not to disparage but because notes are their core business, while for us, notes are just one feature of the platform.

If you want to chat more email me at brian at iCouch.me. I'd be glad to share some knowledge about the space if you want.

I kinda hoped for a satirical website which advertised the usage of pen and paper for taken notes. I'm disappointed now.

I ditched note after I lost my data twice. Sadly I have yet to find a solution which I feel would be an adequate replacement. Even Paperwork is far from it. Either the proposed alternative is even buggier than note, or it doesn't implement the full featureset I need.

I kind of feel that for me the pinnacle of Evernote was version 3. The lure of being able to dump any information into it and sort it later was basically what got me using it. I could launch the app, type in "Phil", and get Phils contact details from a business card I scanned in previously. I even used it a few times to save maps and a travel itineracy to my phone for conferences I attended. As the marketing put it, it was like a reliable "second brain". I don't think any of the alternatives I have tried have nailed this at all.

Yeah it lost my ideas notebook... very hard to trust it after that.

How did you lose your data twice?

I only lost my data once but that was enough. My note got stuck in a sync conflict (even visible in the logs).

Support told me to save my note before moving to another device ... I guess I was the first user to forget that. They never apologized for their bug and I was a paid user back then.

It "ate" some of my notes too a few times, hell if I know how. I'm never going back.

I would suggest to consider TiddlyWiki instead: It's open source, it is a super simple low-tech solution (it's just one self-contained file) and it comes with built-in encryption. You can additionally just put it in your Dropbox to have it automatically versioned and synchronized.

Another dissapointment. I want personal Wiki combined with calendar (something like Zim). It should run acrosss many devices offline. And synchronize using existing network infrastructure (Git or email). I will probably have to write it by myself :-)

I've actually abandoned note in favor of zim wiki for almost a year now, and have been quite happy. Admittedly, I don't use pdfs, deferring more to text and basic image-style notes. (So, my requirements are admittedly simpler.) Also I haven't synched across devices (yet!) but zim can be set up to simply save the content/notes within a directory that gets auto-synched by another app (such as owncloud, dropbox, etc.)...so I would recommend you try these features of zim wiki before writing something yourself. I think if you gain some direct experience with these features will either motivate you to adjust the zim code to your liking...Or, give you experience to know what direction and specific feature set you would like to code via your own, separate project. Either way its a win for you, and the open source community!

I synchronize Zim via Git plugin. I am happy with Zim, I just would like better UI, native android, and perhaps calendar and even email integration.

I did quick search, and it actually looks feasible. Libs are available, PyQT, text file for storage, sync and storage reliability provided by Git. I even picked up name 'Lookout' :-). Now I only need the right motivation, perhaps if akonadi or k9 mail piss me off again.

I think Zim is the best thing out there at the moment. Is it trivial to encrypt via the Git plugin?

Not really

I moved TO Evernote from Zim. I was using the same kind of setup you mention, a Zim directory saved in Google Drive, and synced via the official Google Drive client.

It worked ok, until my needs started going beyond simple text and images. There is a horrible issue that caused due to file locking after you make changes because the Google Drive client and Zim aren't really talking to each other at all. Every once in a while GDrive will attempt to sync exacly when you are editing the file and fail.

Evernote's clipping/reading functions of the browser extension finally won me over. Evernote also has much better UX+UI compared to Zim.

No offense, but another dissapointment because it doesn't do something unrelated to what it claims to do?

No offense. But title says "Evernote alternative". Where is android offline app, ocr...?

There's also Simplenote. I can recommend it. It's pretty cool, it's just plaintext, and it just works. I migrated to it after I got sick of the formatting in Evernote getting screwed up and sync issues causing data loss.

* You can't really compare a simple plaintext note taker to Evernote. * The Simplenote sync is very unreliable. I lost content numerous times. For plaintext notes I now use nvALT on OSX and Writeily Pro on Android with files being synced via Bittorrent Sync.

Simplenote is not open source.

But the API is entirely open, so you can use an open source client.

But for any meaningful kind of data freedom you have to own the server, not just the client.

The server is so simple it would be remarkably easy to reproduce based simply on the API spec.

Is there a way to do something meaningful with the demo without creating an account?

You don't have to use a real email to register (there is no verification), so just use anything@anything and you're good.

I would have liked if Paperwork (or any other note-taking app) had the option storing your notes in text files (plain or markdown). Then, the back up and syncing could be handled by Dropbox/Sugarsync/other.

I periodically check for good open source alternatives to Evernote.

Previously I found

https://github.com/grena/gruik Demo http://gruik.io/

https://github.com/shubik22/BetterNote Which clones the Evernote UI, demo http://www.betternote.us/

I'm not the author, but I believe he's welcoming any help on taking this further. There's a neatly organized list of things to do in the Github issues.[1]

See also his request for help on HN.[2]

[1] https://github.com/twostairs/paperwork/issues

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8942823

I am not familiar with Evernote and the other tools -- but when I try to test Paperwork, I got stuck:

How can I create a note? When I press "New note" simply nothing happens. I can take no notes, add no documents -- nothing. Just two big white areas that are plainly saying and doing nothing.

Ok, I found the problem: When I use "German" interface language, it does not work. With English interface language there comes a new dialog. Guess, this is a bug.

You should submit an issue on Github :)

I've been thinking about something like this for a long time! But mainly focused on security and privacy features! This one looks good as a starting point!

Also, for those who want to try it out, and don't want to register, I made an account:

username: test

pass: testtest

email: test@test.com

This is awesome, definitely a great start (as others have said). I'm currently working on a similar thing (in that it is open source and replaces some of the pay/ad-powered products that exist in that area) and appreciated seeing this.

Have you considered starting a small hosted service?

This looks very promising.

Could you please share the roadmap? When is the support for desktop clients planned?

When can note documents be migrated?

I think a very simple step that could be taken to improve adoption would be making it more obvious that you don't need an email to try the demo. I would mention it right on the demo "Signup" page.

Judging by some of the comments here, something that simple would likely get more people to try it.

How do you get past the signin page without using an email?

You can use a fake email account, such as shurcooL@shurcooL.com

The plethora of interesting alternatives mentioned in the comments looks like an indicator that instead of one more however well done attempt at solving the problem we actually need a set of well defined protocols and formats that allow for interoperable solutions that suit everyones needs.

Amazing! You should use the "Heroku Button" for a quickily implementation


Is there an open source version of the Evernote web clipper or something similar to Pocket? I would love that.

Why is an account needed for the demo??? That turned me off enough to give up. I am tired of having to create an account for everything and anything - and it makes managing passwords harder, or promotes using weaker passwords. I don't want to live in a world where each step I take on the internet requires a separate account/password!

I guess this doesn't bother me anymore. I've used Lastpass for the last 5 or 6 years. Not having strong, separate passwords for any site requiring an account, is so 2007...

My experience as well. Plus, my passwords became stronger. If I know I won't remember it anyway, why stop at 10-15 character passwords? I just crank it up to 40 characters of gibberish, and let LastPass do the remembering. I love it.

Just so you know the demo is wiped every 24 hours or so, and you don't have to confirm your email address. Just go try it out with Zibulon@Zibulon.com and give a "password" password and you're in!

It's a demo. Just make a fake account using a fake email address or use a temporary email service. Works fine.

It's a demo site dropped and rebuilt every night. Register with a mailinator email not to reveal your own.

Looks nice but who knows if it will be maintained five years from now?

Nobody can guarantee that, but it's open source so you can always do it yourself. I would be more worried about Evernote, Dropbox, Google Calender and other proprietary solutions, because if they decide to close the service, there's not much you can do about it.

"...web UI..." oh no. Not really an alternative then.

The website with its light gray text on white background is very hard to read. Consider joining the contrast rebellion http://contrastrebellion.com/

I really love it when an open source alternative born.

Will check this out!

Cool stuff.

Multiplatform is the difficult part.

Sweet. I've been using Evernote for a while now. I have a MacBook Pro I use for work, but I use Linux at home. After using both the web client (because that's my only option in Linux except Wine) and the native OS X client, it's clear that the Web Client is lacking. It seems Evernote has no interest in writing a native Linux app. This is the sole reason I haven't updated to Premium.

Edit: Nevermind, it's a PHP app :( I was looking forward to something I would actually want to contribute to. Not to be immature, but I can't f*cking stand PHP. Maybe coming up with some sort of open note protocol would be a good idea.

Very good initiative, thank you very much!

If you would like to switch to are more capable framework it would be much easier to add some collaborative features. I recommend strongly looking at the Python Pyramid framework or at Flask (or at Django, if you want more "rails that lead you") as soon as possible, so this could grow into something really powerful. Many java frameworks also have everything you will need.

Unfortunately there are still many frameworks used nowadays, that are missing very important things around groups, ACLs / RBAC and collaboration. I do not know why, but especially in the PHP world these things seem to be looked at as some "advanced science", with a few exceptions.

Not integrating these features from the very beginning into your product will determine the long term direction of your project without you even knowing about it. This is the dangerous result of using popular, but very limited and limiting frameworks that do not support your growth.

An experienced developer will of course identify these weak points of a framework immediately, unfortunately many people still waste a lot of time with these misleading trap-frameworks, just because they are cool today.

It is important to spot at the weaknesses of these half-assed "frameworks" and clearly tag them as dangerous for serious project work. Laravel is ok for a quick and dirty prototype that helps you to model your ideas, like a brainstorming session, but should not be used for a real project. And this modelling phase should be very short, quickly moving on to the more involved engineering process that takes all aspects of a modern web app into consideration.

Hopefully it is not too late for your project to switch - it will be a very good investment of time, I promise!

I think a lot of what you are saying is completely untrue. Laravel is a very capable framework for this kind of thing. PHP has come a long way since the days of PHP4, and Laravel/Symfony 2 are leading the way in that sense.

> Unfortunately there are still many frameworks used nowadays, that are missing very important things around groups, ACLs / RBAC and collaboration.

The framework doesn't give you everything, but there is a huge community out there for these kinds of things. For example, there is a package that plugs right into Laravel called Entrust: https://github.com/Zizaco/entrust.

> An experienced developer will of course identify these weak points of a framework immediately

What other weak points do you see in Laravel?

> Laravel is ok for a quick and dirty prototype that helps you to model your ideas, like a brainstorming session, but should not be used for a real project.

This seems like an extremely biased opinion again.

I am not trying to start a framework or language flamewar, but it just seems like you are more comfortable with Java or Python and as such you see those as being better. Objectively I think that is far from the truth.

It seems to me, that the project chose LAMP to make it easy for everyone slightly technical to host an instance on a shared web server.

I am the first to criticize PHP, but I would never argue, that it is only good for prototyping. Of course you can use it in production. Also I do not see why you could prototype anything beyond a contact form faster in PHP than in another language, i certainly can not.

Flask has in no way integrated RBAC, you have to use plugins for that. I do not know Laravel very well but Google told me, that there are authentication plugins to implement role-based access, too, just like you would expect from any web framework that anyone has heard of.

After looking at the code for a second it's quite comical that you're suggesting switching framework + language as a way to speed up development, since it would entail a complete rewrite which is almost always the worst thing you can do.

OPs code also looks clean and well documented so I see no reason to make such a recommendation other than PHPhobia.

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