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Apps similar to Xtiles and Milanote?

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Posted by Ken
Jun 20, 2022 at 01:18 AM

 

It seems that my need for a notebook has graduated from something simple like Zoho Notebooks, to something more like what Xtiles offers.  I find that I am having to research too many items or issues for my brain to recall whatever information I have learned and often seem to be starting from scratch when I need to resume my research on any one item.  I like the approach that Xtiles uses with blocks, subpages and tabs as it allows me to move around links, video or information as I work my way through what I have found and may want to categorize or group items.  I am not familiar with Milanote, but from what I can tell, it offers a somewhat similar ability to move around data.  Are there any other programs that allow me to easily move and group information similar to the way Xtiles does.  Most of the issues I research will be discrete, so it is almost like I am creating a space for each topic.  I am primarily working on a Windows PC, but multi-platform products are always welcome.

Thanks,

—Ken

 


Posted by Stephen Zeoli
Jun 20, 2022 at 04:43 PM

 

Hi, Ken,

Walling has cards (which they call bricks) and allow you to move them around on their boards (which they call walls). I am not sure that you can nest walls, but you can use tabs and set up sections on a wall). For something a little more free-form than xtiles, you might look into Scrintal or Heptabase, which use the card metaphor and allow you to create boards. In Scrintal you can link to other boards (mimicking nesting).

My problem with xtiles is that you can’t open up a card… that is focus on it… which makes long-form writing a bit cramped. Milanote is excellent, but it isn’t really a database. But you can put a lot of different types of information into a board. It is a little like an online Curio… only a little like, though.

Scrintal is still in beta and there is a waiting list, and Heptabase costs $70 to get into their beta, though there is a money-back period… which I took advantage of at one point.

I wrote about Walling, xtiles, Heptabase and Scrintal on Medium:

https://stephenjzeoli.medium.com/card-based-whiteboard-pkms-5608dfe4a771

Steve


Ken wrote:
It seems that my need for a notebook has graduated from something simple
>like Zoho Notebooks, to something more like what Xtiles offers.  I find
>that I am having to research too many items or issues for my brain to
>recall whatever information I have learned and often seem to be starting
>from scratch when I need to resume my research on any one item.  I like
>the approach that Xtiles uses with blocks, subpages and tabs as it
>allows me to move around links, video or information as I work my way
>through what I have found and may want to categorize or group items.  I
>am not familiar with Milanote, but from what I can tell, it offers a
>somewhat similar ability to move around data.  Are there any other
>programs that allow me to easily move and group information similar to
>the way Xtiles does.  Most of the issues I research will be discrete, so
>it is almost like I am creating a space for each topic.  I am primarily
>working on a Windows PC, but multi-platform products are always welcome.
> >Thanks,
> >—Ken

 


Posted by Ken
Jun 21, 2022 at 05:08 AM

 

Stephen Zeoli wrote:
Hi, Ken,
> >Walling has cards (which they call bricks) and allow you to move them
>around on their boards (which they call walls). I am not sure that you
>can nest walls, but you can use tabs and set up sections on a wall). For
>something a little more free-form than xtiles, you might look into
>Scrintal or Heptabase, which use the card metaphor and allow you to
>create boards. In Scrintal you can link to other boards (mimicking
>nesting).
> >My problem with xtiles is that you can’t open up a card… that is focus
>on it… which makes long-form writing a bit cramped. Milanote is
>excellent, but it isn’t really a database. But you can put a lot of
>different types of information into a board. It is a little like an
>online Curio… only a little like, though.
> >Scrintal is still in beta and there is a waiting list, and Heptabase
>costs $70 to get into their beta, though there is a money-back period…
>which I took advantage of at one point.
> >I wrote about Walling, xtiles, Heptabase and Scrintal on Medium:
> >https://stephenjzeoli.medium.com/card-based-whiteboard-pkms-5608dfe4a771
> >Steve

Hi Steve,

Thanks for the link to your article.  It was a useful read, and is helping me better understand both the concept behind these types of apps and how they can meet some of my needs.  I do not believe that I will give up Clickup for my task management, as I really like how it can be set up as to how I think, but it is clearly not the program for what I had tried to use Zoho Notebooks for.  Reading your article and watching a bunch of YT reviews of Walling and Milanote (and xTiles) has helped me to better understand why these drag-n-drop type boards are better for things like research and planning.  They have come a ways since I used Trello to plan a trip in 2019, and for the better.

I now have free accounts at xTiles, Walling and Milanote and will try to run all three through one project I am working on to see which one seems better suited to my needs.  I can easily see how an app like this could be very handy.  I seem to be researching more issues in all parts of my life and finding more data than my brain can both absorb and retain.  Now, the big question is if I can successfully incorporate one of them into my life.

Thanks,

—Ken

 


Posted by Ken
Jun 21, 2022 at 11:44 PM

 

I decided to strike while the iron was hot and spent a bit of time today with the three apps.  We are needing to replace an appliance that is space-challenged and I have been looking for several weeks to see what can fit into the same space as well as available without a several month wait.  I thought I could keep track of all the data in my head and in a few Clickup notes, but the various options under consideration became too numerous.  Not the most exciting project, but still a good example of what I would use the program(s) for.  First up, I hate to say but xTiles is really in early stages of development and it shows in numerous ways.  The lack of help files and commands in the program show that it has bones, but not a lot of meat.  I think that if they can continue to develop the program and flush it out that it could be a viable alternative in this class.  But I cannot see paying to use this program at this time.  I do wish them luck.

With regards to Walling and Milanote, they seem to be similar enough in features (that I am interested in), but different enough in layout to give pause.  Both took page links and created an embedded item, something I appreciate and something that xTiles initially did, but would not today.  They both offer good organizational containers like folders or columns that can keep a space or spaces well organized as things evolve.  I like how Milanote has boards and sub-boards and how they are handled, especially in conjunction with columns (which are actually a container of information for purposes of organization).  Very slick.  Walling has sections, which I was not initially drawn to, but am starting to change my mind.  This allows collapsing of sections which can make a full “wall” a bit easier to manage.  It does feel a bit like programs like Todoist and Asana with the horizontal sections, but they are practical and work well enough.

I have not tried the exporting or sharing features yet, but both at least offer options with PDF being available in both programs.  I am looking forward to playing around a bit more and seeing what features I really start to like or dislike.  Regarding price, I find that Milanote is a bit on the pricier side at $10/mo. USD vs. Walling’s $5/mo. USD for annual plans.  Subscriptions are starting to add up for me, so while I am willing to pay for a useful program, there are limits to what I would like to spend.  Would be curious if anybody has had any issues or gripes with either program that I might want to be aware of.  But in any event, these are a big step up form Zoho’s notebook for me.

—Ken

 


Posted by bigspud
Jun 22, 2022 at 08:23 AM

 

taggle.so
might be up your alley,
decent detail, unlike napkin, relationships like heptabase, a wall environment foremost… and it’s super new..

 


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