Milanote – cloud-based project management that’s something different

Milanote allows you to build a collection of nested white boards to manage all sorts of projects. I used one board to write this review.

I’m a sucker for apps that allow users to nest work spaces (see Mindscope for iOS). I recently came across one I hadn’t heard of before. Milanote is a cloud-based app for creating a hierarchy of white boards on which you can append notes, todo lists, links, images, documents and other objects.

The developers call Milanote “a tool for planning creative projects.” It has functions intended for work with colleagues, but I’ve been using it the past week as a solo act. I’ve found Milanote to be very intuitive and genuinely helpful.

While it has an approach that reminds me some of Notion, I find Milanote much easier to use (not to mention that the ability to get my work out of Milanote is way more advanced than Notion.)

In this review I am going to rely heavily on screen clippings, because I feel they convey the valuable features of Milanote better than I can explain them in words.

So let’s have a look.

You can add a variety of different objects to your boards in Milanote, and you can nest boards.

 

The column feature is especially clever. You can drag previously created items into a column object (see next screen capture for the result).

 

I dragged various items from the board into the column.

 

In this column detail view, you can see that I’ve also added a board portal and a web link.

 

Milanote has a number of board templates you can use. See the next screen capture for an example of one such template.

 

This is one of the pre-populated template boards you can select with Milanote. Notice the button in the upper right corner that allows you to clear the content and just leave the structure of the template. One of the thoughtful features of Milanote.

 

Another thoughtful feature of Milanote is the breadcrumb trail at the top of the screen.

Things I like about Milanote

  • Drill down to access various topics
  • Free form “boards,” similar to Curio or OneNote
  • Elegant design
  • Nice export options, and nice export execution
  • Adequate variety of objects that can be added to a board
  • The Mac App is very nice
  • Thoughtful touches like the breadcrumb trail at the top of the screen and the way pasting objects works — put into the unsorted area to be dragged to the proper location
  • Lightweight Markdown for formatting your words
  • Long form notes open as a mini word processor and allow for creating longer drafts

 

Turn a note into a long-form note and open it in a mini editor for composing longer notes.

Additions to Milanote I’d like to see

  • An overview view of your boards, like an outline
  • Calendar integration
  • Offline capability (in the works)
  • Table creation, spreadsheet (in the works)
  • A few more header levels
  • An iOS app (in the works)

The Bottom Line

I am very enthusiastic about Milanote. It feels like a natural way to plan and manage projects. It is no replacement for a full-on note manager like Evernote, certainly. And it has room for improvement. But the developers have demonstrated their commitment for continuing to refine Milanote and they have a roadmap of potential improvements based on user feedback (see here). I have no doubt that the app will continue to get better. In the meantime, it feels good enough for me to put it to genuine good use. I just upgraded to the Pro subscription.

P.S. Here is the Word file I exported from the board shown in the first screenshot at the top of this review (I edited the review after pasting it into WordPress, so the export doesn’t exactly match this post): Milanote Review export

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s