How to Import Circus Ponies to Outline (and Beyond)

UPD: check out the latest of CircusPonies-to-Outline import.

Circus Ponies NoteBook was a great note-taking app for Mac. It had reputation, loyal users, and over-20-year-long history in business. Why would anyone consider import from Circus Ponies to another note-taking app?

The thing is that earlier this year Circus Ponies has announced that they would no longer continue to support the software and that Circus Ponies is shutting down.


While it’s always heartbreaking to see a fellow indie developer discontinue a great long-term project, we’d like to offer an alternative and welcome all Circus Ponies users to migrate their notes to Outline.

Check out the details on Circus Ponies import below…

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OS X El Capitan Tips And Tricks You Should Know

OS X El Capitan

El Capitan is the latest release of OS X that offers a number of new useful features and improvements that will make your Mac experience more enjoyable. Apple continues working on performance and stability of its operating system with every update, but there are also valuable and compelling new things aimed at expanding the abilities of OS X. So here is a list of tips and tricks you definitely should learn:
Split View mode

This mode lets you have two apps open at once in full screen mode. This is an irreplaceable feature when you take notes in Outline and would like to easily drag and drop content from Safari or other apps to your notes. Just click and hold the green full screen button for a couple of seconds and Split View will be activated. Then move Outline’s window to one side and, for example, Safari to another side. You can use the vertical line separating two apps to regulate how much space each of apps gets.

Split View mode
Hide the menu bar

El Capitan allows to automatically hide and show the menu bar so that users can get more screen space. To enable this option, open System Preferences dialog and go to General, then click the corresponding checkbox. After that, the menu bar will automatically disappear when not in use. If you want to bring it back, just put your cursor at the top of your Mac’s screen.

Find your cursor

This is a small, but useful feature, especially when you have many open windows and can’t locate your cursor. To find it, shake your mouse or swipe your finger back and forth on the trackpad. This turns cursor into a big arrow, so you won’t miss it anymore.

Delete files immediately

OS X El Capitan now makes it possible to delete files even faster than before. Choose a file you want to delete and hold down the Option key, the Delete option will immediately appear in the File menu. You can skip the File menu and use Option+Cmd+Delete shortcut either once a file is selected.

Two-factor authentication

New security method requires not only entering a 6-digit code, but also access to your device where you were logged in with your iCloud account before or trusted phone number to be able to get a code via text message or phone call. So even if someone has your password, it’s hard to hack into your account. You can enable this feature in System Preferences -> iCloud -> Account Details -> Security. After clicking on the button “Turn on Two-Factor Authentication” you will be prompted to set up trusted device or phone number. Note that this feature is available not for all users at the moment.

App Store password settings

Similar to iOS, there are new security options for in-app purchases and free downloads for the Mac App Store. You can make it harder or easier depending on your personal preference. To do that, head into System preferences, choose App Store, and customize your settings.

Devices using iCloud

If you forgot which devices use your iCloud account you can check this out in System Preferences -> iCloud -> Account Details -> Devices. You will see a list of devices signed in with your iCloud account. So if you don’t use one of them anymore, just remove this device from your account and be sure no one has access to your personal data.


8 Effective Ways to Take Notes with Outline

Tips how to take notes

Note-taking is not just a method to record some information, it’s one of the most useful skills in studying and everyday life. It helps to understand and memorize material more easily and avoid wasting time, focus on important details and express yourself in any form you like by sketch, scheme or mind map. It also allows to structure things in an easy-to-understand from and quickly remember them when required.

Most people can drag out information from their memory more easily if they were taken notes during a lecture, business meeting or when just keeping a diary.  A strong case for this practice is that taking notes incentives recollection and mental imagery of once heard and seen information.  Human’s memory is as good as the memory of a machine, and you just need to learn how to effectively remember details which are stored in your mind. Here are universal tips about how to take notes properly:

- If you are familiar with the subject of conversation or lecture, outline a preliminary plan and list of key questions, prepare a free space in your notebook. Try to prepare in advance as many things as you can, so you could significantly save your time before you start taking notes and tune in to the right wave-length.

- Do not try to write all that speaker says or re-write whole text from some source. Make a framework from notes which can be supplemented with minor information further. Just skip some space to allow you to fill in more details later.

- Use a separate notebook for each subject and don’t forget to structure information by dividing text on paragraphs and sub-paragraphs, using numbered and bulleted lists, tables, and titles. Notes organized in a logical way are always more convenient than straight text.

- Develop your own system of abbreviations. By using abbreviations, you will speed up your note-taking and cover a bigger amount of information. Save abbreviation expansion to be sure you will not forget their meanings.

- Paraphrase! It’s simpler to read and put information into memory in your own thoughts than somebody’s.

-  Review your notes after you finished writing them and add your comments, ideas and things-to-do while heard information is still fresh in your memory. Summarize and write what you think were the main points and what questions still remain opened.

- Use colors, outlines or tags to star key points, but be careful not to overdo your text with highlighting.

- Try all note-taking techniques from Cornell method to mind-mapping and charting to identify which one suits you better. Don’t be afraid to combine methods and experiment with your creativity.

Note-taking is an essential method that is commonly used in a daily life, studying, teaching and in many other professions. In all cases, these advices will help you to improve your note-taking skills and Outline app will become an ideal digital helper to collect, sort and structure notes and thereby make your life easier.


Advantages of Outline Over OneNote

outline for Mac and iPad

We have often been asked what is the primary advantage to using Outline versus MS OneNote? It’s a fair question, especially when you are looking for not only note-taking solution, but an ideal helper in everyday life. We have found even more than one benefit and prepared an interesting story entitled Outline vs. OneNote. Well, let’s find out the whole truth:

1) Outline’s interface is much clear-cut and user-friendly, and keeps a well-liked structure of the real paper book – notebooks, sections, groups of sections and pages to order notes as complex or simple as you like. This was checked by our users who tried both Outline and OneNote, so they are definitely able to draw fair conclusions.

2) In addition to OneDrive and SharePoint, Outline provides more synchronization options like Dropbox, Box, and iCloud Drive. It’s always better when you have a choice, isn’t it? People are so different and everyone wants to use that solution which is more suitable for their purposes.

3) Outline for Mac can store notebooks locally and iPad version allows to import or export notebooks using iTunes. Such way doesn’t require an internet connection, so you can work with your notebooks in any place, even where there is no internet, should it be airplane or territory outside the town.

4) When security of your information is on the first place, a passcode lock is at your disposal. iPad version allows to protect a whole app, not only sections. You will be offered to use a standard numeric password or Touch ID technology.

5) Unlike OneNote, Outline for Mac is integrated with the OS X platform more deeply. Outline supports such time-saving features as Services, Share Extensions and Print to Outline. You can import text and pictures from Safari or other apps to Outline via contextual menu and Share sheet; convert web pages or images to PDF and print them to Outline as printout or PDF attachment using standard Print dialog window. All these options are irreplaceable and extremely useful when you need to collect information in one place and in a few clicks.

6) Outline for iPad provides a full-fledged handwriting mode. It allows to write notes right in the special zoomed field which navigates through your text within one line. You may simply start the new one when you need, tapping the new-line button. You needn’t worry about the position of your written notes on the page, Outline will do that for you! All text you write in this field is reflected on a page in a smaller size.

7) “And what about price?” you may ask. Yes, OneNote is free, while Outline costs money. However, in this case you get more personalized product. We analyze requests from our users and release new versions with hot features and improvements every month, this allows us to bring fresh opportunities and sort well with the main trends. Our customer support is very responsive and always aims to help you with any questions or issues. Don’t you want to get most comfortable conditions and liberties? We are sure that the answer will be “yes”.

Now you have cleared up that Outline outperforms OneNote in many aspects. So why not test it yourself?


iconsOutline for iPad with Microsoft OneNote compatibility

Outline for iPad

Outline for Mac (with Microsoft OneNote compatibility)


Using Outline with iCloud Drive

iCloud Drive

Our users often asked when we were going to аdd synchronization with iCloud Drive. We also saw the great potential of adding this feature to make Outline better and more productive. And today we are glad to introduce a new and long-awaiting Outline version with support for iCloud Drive!

iCloud Drive has quickly filled its niche since Apple presented this platform in 2011 and now it’s a full-fledged alternative to the well-known cloud services. It can become the best cloud service for Mac and iPad owners, including comfortable drag and drop system, high speed of synchronization, deep integration with Apple devices and, of course, free starting storage. iCloud Drive is available for Windows users as well. You can explore detailed information from the original source on

Let’s look through the key features that outline – iCloud integration provides. There are various ways to import/export your notebooks – Finder, web browser-based access, special managing app for Windows and directly from Outline. If you choose Finder, you can move notebooks to the special folder associated with Outline or copy and paste them using Command-C and Command-V. In the first case you remove a notebook from the initial storage place, in the second case you just create a copy of your notebook. On Windows it works in the same way, you will just need to download iCloud for Windows and install it.

Using Outline with iCloud Drive

Web version – is a good way for quick or one-time access. For example, you work on a non-owned Mac or don’t have enough time to setup iCloud Drive, you can simply login to site and choose iCloud Drive option. After that, you will get access to Outline folder where you can upload new or download stored notebooks. By the way, if you have an iCloud mail account, you can delete or move emails from there to clear space in iCloud Drive.


iCloud web app

From the Outline app it works almost like other sync services – you can share or open notebooks and keep your notes synchronized if you work on several devices. Here are few tips how to increase your experience using Outline with iCloud:

- If you use Outline with OneNote on Windows, don’t edit the same file on different devices simultaneously to avoid creating conflict copies. It is better to close OneNote if you do not use it.

- iCloud Drive synchronization requires an internet connection. If signal is lost or weak, this may cause sync errors.- Sometimes it may take about a minute to apply any edits you have made in notebooks opened from iCloud, it depends on the size of your notebook and speed of the internet connection.

- Sometimes it may take about a minute to apply any edits you have made in notebooks opened from iCloud, it depends on the size of your notebook and speed of the internet connection.

However, every provider may serve a specific purpose: Dropbox will be an appropriate solution for those who need a simple sharing between different users and strict chronological sequence of changes in notebooks. Box is aimed at business and enterprise needs when everyone can get secure access to one project or other information. OneDrive will be an effective solution for Windows users who use Mac or iPad as well or work with both Outline and MS OneNote formats. And finally iCloud Drive brings the easiest way to synchronize notebooks between Apple devices due to solid integration with the native platform. It also allows to work with large-size notebooks, as synchronization process is uninterrupted even if Outline is closed.


Have a synced note-taking!

Outline Team.


Outline for Mac 3.3 Supports OS X PDF Services!


“Print to Outline” provides functionality of OS X PDF Services. It’s great way to save useful information – web pages, on-line tickets and orders, articles, PDF versions of magazines, Microsoft Word or Excel documents etc. to Outline and then organize, annotate and store them. Standard Print dialog has ability to convert and save such information as PDF file to different folders or apps, including Outline.

First, you need to proceed a few simple steps and install “Print to Outline” utility. The Full installation guide can be found here. Then go to the targeted page, file or app and press Command+P (or go to File -> Print), print dialog box will appear. Print dialog window allows you to set how many pages you want to print, so you can do the same in case of using “Print to Outline” feature. Very helpful thing if you need only several pages from a body of information. Click on dropdown PDF menu in the bottom right corner of Print window and you will see the list of all places where you can save your information, instead of printing.

print to outline

As you can see, this list depends on apps you have installed on your Mac and it can be managed manually at any time. Choose Edit menu and add Outline in appeared window, using “+” button. Now if you call print window in any application, clicking the PDF button will reveal options to save printable content in Outline as PDF attachment and printout in Inbox section of Unfiled notebook. If you want to convert it back to PDF, right-click on Page -> Export to PDF and then Export Printout.

Whether you simply browse the web or purposefully collect some data, you will always keep on hand this time-saving feature. Awesome thing, indeed!


See you,

Outline Team.