With the release of Notebooks 5 we also started Notebooks for Mac Public Beta. After four months of testing with more than 150 participants, we now invite all interested readers to download and try the Mac version. It will expire June 30, 2012. At that date we hope to have finalized version 1.0

The download package contains a read me file which should help you get started with NB/Mac. We will try to provide more documentation soon.

If you already use Dropbox to sync Notebooks you will have a jump start, because NB/Mac is set up to use Dropbox/Notebooks folder by default.

You are welcome to email your questions and comments or post them here.

Notebooks for Mac – Public Beta

30 thoughts on “Notebooks for Mac – Public Beta

  • May 10, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    I’m liking this! I’m using Dropbox so I have my iPhone, iPad, iMac and and Air in sync. Awesome.

    This looks so useful for CONTENT project management — a missing key for so long.

    I’m going to try the Scrivener sync. And indexing the files using DevonThink.

    This could be the Holy Grail of information management! 🙂

    One nit: My Typinator text expansions don’t work in the Mac version. They always produce ” a ” instead of the intended character string.

    Looking forward to this evolving!


    • May 24, 2012 at 10:12 am

      how do you use Scrivener sync and does it work syncing Notebooks?
      can you message me on twitter @joelafferty if you have any info?

  • May 10, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    I’m with the others who are stoked about this. Scrivener with DB sync works pretty well for really involved projects, but having NB to NB sync across iOS and Mac will really do some wonders for plenty of other things too.

    I saw in the FAQ a question about encryption. Let me cast my vote in favor of that too. Having encrypted text in both iOS and desktop NB really would reduce security concerns – while keeping everything quite portable and convenient.

    Oh – and I really like the newest iOS version of Notebooks! Fantastic!

  • May 12, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    With the updates and NB Mac Public Beta, your app has become my most used virtual tool daily, beating Google’s products! Anyway, thank you for all the hard work.

    Suggestion for the Mac/PC version: could you incorporate a Spell check function? I don’t know about Windows, but I remember that Mac & IOS allows that thanks to the Dictionary.

  • May 14, 2012 at 8:37 am

    Thank you for feedback, it is great to see that you like Notebooks/Mac!

    Due to the technology we use (we use the same code for the Mac and Win versions), some of the Mac OS’ built in features are not immediately available; that is why a spell checker is still missing, and that probably is why other plug ins don’t correctly work.

    As far as spell checking is concerned, we try to add that soon; other plug ins we need to investigate.

  • May 14, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Because you have not established feedback parameters for your Beta, I don’t know what constitutes current Limitations vs. Bugs…

    That said, here’s a report from the wild.

    Copy and Paste functions in basic text notes in the Mac version do not work.

    That seems like pretty basic functionality to me, so I would consider that a BUG.

    The promise of this product is wonderful. I do like being able to read PDFs natively. Even better: being able to SEARCH Pdfs! 😉



  • May 16, 2012 at 8:58 am

    Hi Alfons,

    Please make icons selectable. They are a visible (and intuitive) target for clicking.

    Right now, they sit there adding no value. If one clicks on an icon, the prior document, which may be deeply removed in the tree, remains selected (but there is no indication of this).



    • May 16, 2012 at 5:13 pm

      Yes, we need to change that. As you may have seen, clicking a task’s icon changes its state, which I think is intuitive, and we thought that clicking a document’s icon should not trigger a different function. In the meantime I believe that this slight inconsistency is easier to understand than a non-responsive icon 🙂

  • May 16, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    I use both Dropbox and Google Drive. I can connect to each separately as my starting folder. I thought I could create aliases of my local dropbox and Google Drive folders, put the aliases in one folder and point Notebooks to the main folder where the aliases are and be able to see both cloud drives through Notebooks. Unfortunately, that didn’t work; it appears Notebooks does not know what to do with aliases.

    • May 18, 2012 at 8:10 am

      Yes, you are correct, NB currently just ignores aliases… We’ll have a look at that. – You have an interesting setup, by the way!

  • May 19, 2012 at 2:30 pm

    I want you to password lock features.

  • May 24, 2012 at 9:53 am

    This is fantastic!
    I’m a recent mac convert – well, ok 5 years… but still in the honeymoon period – and one thing missing has been filled with your app.
    if the launch of the app is delayed, will you extend the beta? I’m getting dependent on it!!
    keep up the good work!

    • May 25, 2012 at 11:02 am

      Great to hear you like Notebooks!

      Yes, if the launch should be delayed, we will extend the beta. We want to keep our users “addicted” 😉

  • May 24, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    Thank you for the Mac NB version. I have always wanted a means of simplifying entry of longer NB notes and getting them onto the iPhone Notebooks app and a desktop companion app is just the thing.

    I just created a new book on the Mac and made three new notes in that book, but the new book and notes did not get synced through to the iPhone, using DropBox. Changes to existing notes or books on the Mac (ones that already existed on the iPhone) synced fine, as did changes made on the iPhone which synced fine to the Mac, but not the newly created book or its notes.

    To work around this, I dragged the new book into one of my other books in the DropBox folder on the mac. This caused it to sync and show up in that book on the iPhone and Mac apps. I then moved the new book to the highest level in the iPhone. This change synced back to the Mac.

    Is this a bug, or did I do something wrong, or not do something I should have?

    On another topic, I’ll be happier when the syncing goes through iCloud and I can stop using DropBox.

    Many thanks for a great app and the enhancement of having a desktop companion app.

    • May 25, 2012 at 11:06 am

      Hello Stephen,

      I think the reason why that book was not immediately synced is that you created it at the to level. Even with auto sync turned on, NB on the iPhone does not sync the top level; it is meant to give users a space to keep stuff they don’t immediately want to sync (after import from other apps, for example), but it turns out that this behavior is more irritating than useful. We will have to change that.

      iCloud is planned, for sure. We are currently implementing it on iOS (which is quite some work) and depending on our success, the Mac version should follow.

  • May 27, 2012 at 8:41 am

    This is just what I have been looking for, thank you so much.

    I have been using Notebooks since I bought my first iPad, now on 3rd generation, and throughout that time have used notebooks for taking meeting notes. These are sometimes very urgent and require almost immediate posting – the magic of notebooks has enable me to forward notes to delegates even before we leave the room!

    The Mac version of Notebooks is brilliant. Since getting an iMac in April I have been trying to synchronise my notes (on iPad, iPhone, and iMac) via drop box and/ or iCloud/ and/ or Exchange and/ or Toodledo – all without any elegance!

    You are true stars at Alfons I am looking forward to paying you for the public release version when it is available.

    With grateful thanks, Lawrence

  • May 30, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    I love notebooks for the MAC and am very much looking forward to the release. I wanted to ask about whether or not support would be provided to use this with text expander type tools such as WordService (from DevonThink) or from TextExpander for the MAC. Perhaps this works fine and I am doing something wrong. I have only tested out the WordService and wanted to check on whether or not this works with tools like TextExpander before I get them.

    Thank you for the beautiful product and for the support,
    Russ B

    • June 1, 2012 at 7:11 pm

      I picked up TextExpanders trial and it seems to work like a charm with Notebooks.

  • June 2, 2012 at 8:22 pm


    Notebooks is awesome. It’s given me a way to keep all those notes organized and in one place. I am definitely looking forward purchasing a copy as soon as it is out of beta.

    Couple of things I noted. One is language. In some cases the difference between things such as Process > Convert Original (iOS) and Copy HTML vs Copy as Combined HTML caused some initial confusion. Also noted that in Notebooks 5 you can edit the style sheet but this is not possible in the beta.

    • June 4, 2012 at 10:40 am

      You are right, we need to make sure that NB/Mac and the iOS versions use same terminology. Thank you for the hint!

  • June 2, 2012 at 8:43 pm


    Still loving NB5 and the fact that there is a Mac version.

    One issue that I’ve experienced is that NB for Mac won’t stay in its assigned desktop when shutting down and restarting my Mac. In my workflow, I have 3 desktops set up on my Mac. My first desktop includes most of my apps, my second desktop houses omni focus for my tasks, and my third desktop houses NB for Mac. That way, I can work in my first desktop and quickly use the 4 finger swipe gesture to move to #2 desktop to add a task or #3 to type a note.

    When I shut down my Mac, I leave some open apps in #1, omni focus in #2, and NB for Mac in #3. However, when I restart my machine, NB Mac moves from #3 to #1. This is a minor issue, but wanted to make you aware and perhaps it can be fixed before the official release.


    • June 4, 2012 at 10:39 am

      Hi Steve,

      there is a simple solution for this situation:

      – Right-click Notebooks’ Dock icon in the desktop space you use.
      – From the pop-up menu, select Options, then click “This Desktop” in the list of assignments.

      From now on, NB will always open in the selected space.

      • June 16, 2012 at 12:02 am

        Yes…worked fine. Thanks!

  • June 16, 2012 at 2:56 am

    Hi, any plans for a Windows version of Notebooks?

    Love it on my iPad & iPhone!

    – Bill

    • June 16, 2012 at 7:52 am

      Hi Bill,

      Our initial intention was to release the Mac and Windows versions simultaneously, but on Win we encountered a few issues that kept us from posting a first beta until now. I cannot promise, but we will try to have the first beta available before the end of this month. The functionality will be identical to the Mac version.


  • June 16, 2012 at 8:15 am

    Great news that a Windows.version is on the way. Please count me in for any beta testing.

  • June 21, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    I’ve been using NB on my iPad and iPhone for a long time and love the functionality and flexibility – absolutely wonderful. With the addition of NB for Mac, the whole suite has become even more robust and valuable.

    Really pleased with v1 beta and can’t wait for the official release. Congrats to you all for crafting an awesome set of tools!

  • June 22, 2012 at 12:30 am

    I love the Mac version. I have been using it for a few week now and pretty much have phased out other software I have been using. I really like how “identical” it is to the iPad version with the look and feel.

    The dropbox integration has been great.

    Thank you!

  • June 26, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Getting “fan-boy” out of the way; Notebooks is simply the best notes/journal/save-important-stuff application available for Mac/IOS! I’ve spent a small fortune in this category, so I have some insight! I’m very excited to have this functionality across all of the platforms I use.

    I’m wondering/hopeful if the final Mac 1.0 NB will allow sorting according to creation date. I keep my daily journal in NB, and would like to be able to view entries in those books chronologically (if possible) as I do on the iPad and iPhone. Many thanks!

    • June 27, 2012 at 12:46 pm

      Hi Bill,

      great to hear that you like the “Notebooks suite” 🙂

      I agree, the absence of sort options is a limitation in NB/Mac. Of course we will add these options, and I do hope they will be available in 1.0. However, we decided have another beta version before the final release…

Comments are closed.