OneNote features coming in the next version are hot


It is no secret I am a huge fan of OneNote– I live in the program almost all day long.  It is an incredibly powerful note-taking and organization program but as with all programs there is always room for improvement.  Microsoft Product Manager Chris Pratley has blogged about some of the features that are going in the next version and let me tell you, I can’t wait.  Every one of the features he has mentioned are a result of user suggestions to his group and it really shows.  Take a look at these new features (and these are not all that will make it in there by release time):

Multiple notebooks.  Boy oh boy can I use this.  I can envision separate notebooks for my work projects, writing projects and podcasting work.  Bring it on!

Drag and drop.  Imagine dragging pages to different sections or notebooks, dragging sections, reordering notebooks, you get the picture.

Navigation pane. Similar to the one in Outlook 12 that makes it easy to jump from one place to another.  Just last night I was lamenting the lack of a favorites bar or something similar in the current version of OneNote.  This is it.

Print to OneNote printer driver.  Text is retained behind the printed page images so they are searchable.  This is just awesome.

Instant search.  Search in OneNote that is based on Windows Desktop search technology.

Audio or video files can be searched.  Not searched as in searching for a particular recording, that would be too easy.  This is searching to find a specific point in a recording based on fuzzy logic and converting search text to phonetics.

Scanned documents are searchable.  Any image, screen shot, scanned document, digital photo of a document picture of a receipt or business card is OCRed and made searchable.  The image is retained but the OCRed text is in the search index.  This pertains also to PDFs that are printed to OneNote.  Can you visualize snapping a photo with your camera of a business card you receive and having it searchable?

These are only the new features that Chris has blogged about so far so keep an eye on his blog for many more features to be disclosed.  I am so stoked!


Guy Kewney

You made Chris’s news far easier to understand, so thanks! ;) I’m particularly interested to see Microsoft starting to promote those Tablet features which OneNote needs, for ordinary desktop machines (see

I’ve mentioned this to Chris… but WIBNI podcasting was done through OneNote? I can’t tell you how often I’ve tried fast-forwarding through the boring bits of a podcast to hear just that bit which someone recommended, only to miss it, and have to sit through 40 minutes of irrelevant rubbish and techno music…

With OneNoteCasting, you’d have the podcast annotated and indexed. And when Office 12 and ON12 come, presumably searchable on the audio?

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