Evernote has released an update to their iOS and Mac platforms today that gives the app the ability to add reminders to notes. As others have mentioned, this does not make Evernote a todo-list app replacement, but it does show that they are headed in this direction. As time goes on, it seems that Evernote is content to focus on task management related features, while allowing other apps to build out key functionality.
If Evernote wants to live up to it’s vision of being an external brain, it must improve the ability to organize information and make serendipitous connections. Oftentimes, people are able to come up with breakthrough innovations by seeing a common problem through a different light. For example, when Larry Page and Sergey Brin were developing the first search algorithms for Google, they noticed that scholarly articles which were cited most often by other journals were usually the most useful and relevant. They made the association that pages on the web that have the most inbound links are also likely to be the most useful and relevant. This was able to happen because Larry and Sergey were able to make the connection between their academic work and their search algorithm. This type of associational thinking is so powerful that the design company IDEO has “Tech Boxes” full of random tools and gadgets, created for the sole purpose of helping people come up with creative ideas and accidental connections. By seeing things in a different light, our brains are able to simply make discoveries it would not have otherwise.
A feature that could help Evernote move in this direction is the ability to move more items around in an simple drag-n-drop fashion. Our brains seamlessly rewire themselves when they come in contact with new information, and an external brain should be able to easily do the same. However, as things stand now though, Evernote has decided to continue being an everything bucket rather than a true external brain. This is great news for Notable then because it’s exactly the kind of feature we plan to build.
[Official Article: http://blog.evernote.com/blog/2013/05/23/evernote-reminders-are-here-on-mac-ios-and-web-2/]