Among all of the tools Apple has provided as default apps on its iOS and macOS platforms, Notes is one of the most liked. While the note-taking space is wildly competitive, there is something about the Notes app that makes it a must-use for all macOS owners. Whether you want to create a to-do list, write down some random thoughts or upload an attachment, the Notes app is more than capable. Read on to learn some tips and tricks to mastering macOS notes app.
Starting a New Note
1. Launch the Notes app from your Dock or from the application menu inside Finder.
2. Click on the “New Note” button located on the top row of the app. The icon looks like a square with a pencil sticking out. Alternatively, you can go to “File -> New Note.”
3. Write your note. All notes save as you write, so there are no additional steps required to save your progress.
Edit a Note
1. In the Notes app, click on any note in the notes list or double-click a note in the gallery.
2. Once you are in the note text, place your mouse cursor anywhere you want to edit or click where you want to add text. Proceed with any changes.
Make a Checklist
1. On a new Note, click on the “Checklist” button, which looks like a circle with a checkmark in the middle.
2. Write in your first item.
3. Press the Enter key on your keyboard and a new checklist item will appear.
4. Continue until you have added all your items.
Format Your Notes
1. Launch the Notes app and add a new note.
2. Look to the toolbar and locate the icon that looks like “Aa.” Click on it to see a drop-down menu.
3. Inside this menu you have a variety of functions available including bulleted and numbered lists, title/heading/subheading text sizing and more.
4. Click on any of the format options you would like to use, and they will automatically be entered into the note.
5. In addition to this, you also have a “Format” option in the Mac menu bar. You will find the same set of options as the “Aa” button as well as options to change font size, the type of font, create a table, indent text and more.
Create a Folder
1. In the Notes app, you can create a folder in one of two ways.
2. At the bottom of the left side of the app, there is an option for “+ New Folder.” You can also go to “File -> New Folder.”
3. A folder will automatically appear with the option to name it. You can choose any name you want. If you want to rename the folder later, right-click on it and select “Rename folder.”
4. To move notes into the new folder, select them and drag them into the new folder.
Pin a Note
1. To pin a note so it appears at the very top of your Notes list, right-click on an individual note and select “Pin Note.”
2. Alternatively, you can also click “File -> Pin Note.” Once you a pin a note, it is pinned on all of your devices including iOS and iCloud.com.
Lock a Note
1. Prior to locking a Note, you have to establish a password. Make sure to write this password down somewhere, as there is no recovery option. However, there is a hint option to help you remember. You can change the password later if you go to “Notes -> Preferences” and click on “Change Password.”
2. Go to “Notes -> Preferences” and then click on “Set Password.”
3. With the password set, you can now lock notes. As is the case with the pinned notes, you can right-click on any note and lock it.
4. Note that you cannot lock any note that is shared among multiple people or has an attachment.
Add an Attachment to Notes
1. Launch the Notes app.
2. From the desktop: drag a file into a note.
3. From your Photos Library or anywhere photos are stored in Finder: drag any photo directly into a note. You can also click the Media button, select the photos you want to add to a note and then drag them into the note.
4. From other apps (Safari, Maps, Photos): click on the Share button (square with an arrow pointing out) and then choose Notes.
5. You can also select text and images by control-clicking and then choosing “Share -> Notes.”
6. To see all of the Notes with attachments, click on the Attachments button from the Notes toolbar. It looks like a square with a paper click sticking out of it. Your view will then change to any Notes with an attachment.
Import Text Files into Notes
1. Importing text files into the Notes app is a great way to combine all of your loose notes and documents into one central location. The app can import any file in TXT, RTF, RTFD, HDML or Evernote XML format.
2. In the Notes app, click on “File -> Import.”
3. Select the files you want to import. You have the option to “Preserve the folder structure on import” so notes stay properly organized.
4. Click import, and all of your imported notes will appear on the left side in a newly-created Imported Notes folder.
5. You can now rename the folder, move the imported files or add additional folders and organize the imported files to your liking.
Add Notes with Siri
1. On your Mac, say “Hey Siri, take a note.”
2. When Siri opens, dictate your Note, and then Siri will add it to your Notes app.
Add Notes to Reminders
1. Choose the Note you want to convert to a reminder.
2. Click on the Share button in the Notes toolbar. You can also click on “File -> Share.”
3. Pick which note you want to add to the Reminders app.
4. A pop-up window will appear allowing you to edit the name or the content as well as choose which Reminders list you’d like to add the note to.
5. Click on “Add” when you have finished editing, and the Note will appear in the Reminders app within a few seconds.
As is the case with Apple’s default apps like Reminders and Calendar, the macOS Notes app is an easy way to stay organized. The minimal learning curve makes it simple to dive in and get going to add notes, passwords, import files and more. Did you know you can also use it for scanning documents?
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