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The last update (
0.39) made links open on
click instead of ⌘click. This was part of our effort to make Nota feel more familiar, and while it works for wiki links, it made web links too hard to edit. To address this, this update restores the original design of web links (
click edits and ⌘click opens), and introduces a new design for wiki links that should better distinguish them from web links, and make them easier to work with.
- ⌘ + swipe left / right now toggles sidebars. Hold ⇧ as you swipe to toggle both sidebars at the same time.
- We removed
Labsfrom Preferences (⌘,). We still might introduce experimental features, but instead of
Labs, we'll add them to the existing preferences panes and menus, and mark them as "experimental". This should make them easier to discover and closer to the options they're related to.
- We polished the design of tabs, preferences, and dialogs.
- We fixed the heading indentation in right sidebar.
- As usual, we found ways to improve performance even further, making the app faster and more memory-efficient.
More familiar behavior for links and tabs.
Links and tabs now work more like in the browser —
click opens in the current tab, ⌘click opens in a new tab, and ⇧⌘click also opens in a new tab and makes it the active tab, and again like in the browser, you can swipe left and right to go back or forward.
You can now pin tabs — right-click on a tab and select
Pin or find the
Pin Tab command in the Command Palette (sh-cmd-p). Opening a link from a pinned tab opens it in a new tab, making pinned tabs feel more "stable". This is similar to how pinned tabs work in the browser, Safari.
Option to use filename as title. You can now configure Nota to use filenames as titles. This can be simpler than keeping H1s that match the filename, and it makes Nota more compatible with other apps.
Block search. Search (⌘o) now understands every block type (as opposed to just headings). It can show you results that are list items, quote blocks, code blocks, etc, and it'll mark them with an icon that corresponds to their block type. With this, search can now also show multiple results from the same note.
Lots of improvements under the hood. The main change in this update and the main reason it took so long. We migrated the whole codebase to a new tech stack, which should help us release more stable updates and do it faster.
- Thumbnails now don't flicker when you open a file, as they know their size beforehand.
- You can now change thumbnail size from the thumbnail context menu.
- The editor now respects the macOS option for "add full stop with double-space".
- You can now click on a footnote marker to navigate to the corresponding footnote.
- You can now toggle the file manager (the sidebar on the left) with ⌘\.
- Search now give more points to results that are on the same line.
- Search now understands diacritics — searching for
- Better auto-reloading for current note — useful when using another app along with Nota and editing the same note.
- UI refresh across the app.
The right sidebar shows information about the current note — things like text stats, headings, and mentions. You can toggle it from the subtle
< button at the top right or from the Command Palette / ⇧⌘p.
Better folding. We removed the ▼ buttons (that showed next to each foldable element) and made the element markers interactive. Ex: you can now click on a bullet of a list item (that has children) to fold. We also made the indent guides interactive, giving you another easy way to fold. We feel that this is a cleaner design that's just as easy (if not easier) to use and at the same time invisible when you don't need it.
Better daily notes.
We added a
Daily folder option in Workspace Preferences, letting you set any folder as your
daily folder, and the date format is now based on your system preferences (Language and Region → Preferred language).
- You can now paste URLs over selected words or phrases to create links.
- You can now use ⌘. (the shortcut for toggle task) to turn any line into a task (thanks @borekb).
- You can now toggle between
systemthemes from the Command Palette / ⇧⌘p.
- Search now includes image results.
- Emoji completions now include the new emoji from Emoji 13.0.
- CJK keyboards now support typing
[[to create a wiki link.
- Opening notes and switching tabs is now up to 2x faster.
Daily notes (experiment). Enabling daily notes adds Open Today Note / ⌘t and Open Tomorrow Note in the Command Palette / ⇧⌘p. It also adds daily notes to search results, making it easy to open any daily note (existing or not) by typing a date, ex: mar 15 for March 15h. You can enable daily notes from Preferences (⌘,) → Labs or from the Command Palette (⇧⌘p).
Folding for headings and lists (experiment).
Enabling folding adds a Toggle Folding (⌘') command to the Command Palette (⇧⌘p), and also adds fold buttons (
>) next to headings and list items with children (shows on hover). You can enable folding from Preferences (⌘,) → Labs or from the Command Palette (⇧⌘p).
New look and feel. We polished multiple parts of the UI. Sidebars now use fixed headers (replacing the "☰" stripes at the top), list items across the UI now show with icons, and lots other elements of the UI are now more polished and hopefully easier to use.
New app icon (again). Some users complained about the icon we introduced in 0.35 and to address this, we're updating the icon again, and we're basing the new icon on the familiar design from before 0.35. You can see some of the other options we considered here.
Link preview (experiment). When enabled, placing the text cursor in a wiki link shows a preview of the linked note in the bottom-right corner. You can enable link preview from Preferences (⌘,) → Labs or from the Command Palette (⇧⌘p).
Unlinked mentions. Go to Backlink is now called Go to Mention and it now also shows unlinked mentions (along with linked mentions, aka backlinks).
nota URL Scheme lets you use regular links to execute Nota commands. See URL Scheme to learn more.
Option to use tab characters for indentation. You can now select to indent using tab characters (along with spaces) — just go to Preferences (⌘p) → Workspace and set Indent with to tab.
- search and link completions now include notes that are linked but do not exist
- search now supports ⌘c to copy selected note (pasting a note in the editor creates a link to it)
- in image modals, you can now use the arrow keys to go to browse the images in the current note
- note preview (View → Toggle Preview / ⇧⌘r) now uses a dark theme for dark mode
- you can now check for updates with Nota → Check for Updates
- math now uses the latest KaTeX version
- red links are now in muted blue (instead of red)
- File → Quick Open is now Go → Search
- folder bar now lets you click on folder icons to expand / collapse folder
- renaming a folder that has a special role (ex: inbox) now updates workspace config make sure the folder keeps its role
- adding a line at the end of a block quote now makes the new line part of that block quote
This is a smaller update, which mostly fixes a few bugs that we introduced with
0.35, but we also managed to add a few things.
Basic templates. You can now change the default content of new notes — just add a note called _template to any folder, and Nota will use its content when creating a new note in that folder. See templates to learn more.
Sort by time created. You can now sort notes by time created (in addition to name and time modified). To change the sort mode of folder, right-click and find the Sort By submenu.
- Open Random Note command (available from the Command Palette)
- the editor now supports WebP images (see discussion)
- Quick Open (⌘p), is now also available from ⌘o and ⇧⌘f for better consistency with other apps
- Open Save Hook command (available from the Command Palette) that creates (if it doesn't exist) and opens the save hook for the current workspace in your default code editor
- better documentation about extensibility
- the current working directory (CWD) is now the workspace root
- you can now add
@debugto scripts to make them print (as toasts) what they do and what they write to the
Search 2.0. Quick Open (⌘p) can now find anything. You can find notes in just as few keystrokes as before, but now you can also find headings and paragraphs from your entire workspace. In addition, the selected result now opens in preview mode behind the dialog which lets you browse multiple notes without leaving the dialog.
Go to Folder dialog. You can now use ⇧⌘g to jump to any folder in your workspace in a few keystrokes. (The same shortcut also works in Finder and does the same thing there.)
Better performance. The app now uses a lot less memory, and the internal graph engine that we use for link-related tasks (ex: showing backlinks or auto-updating links on renaming notes) is now much more efficient.
Save hook 🔌 (extensibility). You can now extend Nota with save hooks, which let you run code when the app auto-saves notes. You can use this for things like: remove trailing spaces, commit to git, etc.
- piped links (
[[note|title]]) now show just the
- math expressions now support attribute blocks like
- the app now has a new icon
- you can now set shortcuts to custom commands (from Preferences).
- scripts (custom commands and hooks) no longer require
- scripts that fail now show error messages
- before running a custom command, we now make sure the current note is saved to make the latest content available to the script
- after running a custom command, we now reload the current note to apply any changes made by the script
Quicker way to create notes. ⌘n now opens a Find or Create dialog, which is a faster and more convenient way to create notes. Learn more about it in the Find or Create article in the documentation. The old way of creating notes (using drafts) is still available, but the shortcut for opening a draft is now ⇧⌘n (configurable from Preferences).
Support for inbox folder.
You can now set an inbox folder to make it even faster to create notes. With an inbox folder set, the Find or Create dialog (⌘n) would save new notes there (unless you press
tab and select a different folder).
Basic implementation for
Tags get highlighted and you get completion suggestions as you type them (based on the other tags in your workspace). You can also ⌘click (or ⌃↵) on a tag do a workspace search for that tag.
Smart lists. We improved smart lists a lot and moved it out of Labs (in Preferences) to enable it for all users. Smart lists now handle deleting lines (⇧⌘k) and indentation issues when pasting nested lists on empty lines or within other lists. The insert line commands, ⌘↵ and ⇧⌘↵, are now also aware of lists.
Better auto-rename. When auto-rename is enabled, Nota now updates the name of the note across the UI as you type (in the tab bar and the file manager), and now, the feature doesn't require that the title is the first line of the note, and would also recognize a title in YAML frontmatter. It also works the other way around — renaming of a note from the file bar updates its title.
Better wiki links. You can now the pipe link syntax (
[[note|title]]) to set custom titles to your wiki links. In addition, wiki links to notes that don't exist now now show in red (similar to Wikipedia, we call these red links).
Better visual mode. In visual mode (Show Markdown off), fenced code blocks now don't resize when engaged, and checkboxes (tasks) now show as interactive checkboxes.
Better image support. When you move the text cursor through inline images, the images now "capture" it, making in easier to select an image. With the image selected, you can now space to zoom in and out of it. In addition, you can now also click to select images.
- icons in some lists in the app (ex: the Quick Open dialog) now show simple icons in list items
- better design of preferences
- support for removing workspaces from the Switch Workspace... dialog — each workspace now has an
(x)button on it
- better performance in big workspaces
- new experiments: Use blue caret and Use turquoise for wiki links — enable them from Labs in Preferences
- better support for tab characters
- support for multiple selections in composition languages
Link and Fill Title.
You can now select
Link and Fill Title (⌥⌘k) to turn a URL into a link and ask Nota to fill the title based on the title of the webpage (at the URL).
Images in list items. You can now add images to list items (ex: paste images from clipboard), and the editor will show them as images (as opposed to markup). This can be super useful when you're outlining ideas and want to add related images as subitems. It won't work if the item contains text along with the images, but we're working on fixing that.
- Better support for documents that use CRLF (
\r\n) line endings — usually documents that were edited on Windows.
- Support for
![[image]]in Preview (⇧⌘r).
- Support for inline-math in Hide Markdown mode.
Hide Markdown, redesigned.
We moved the
WYSIWYG experiment from
Preferences) to the
View menu and we renamed it to
Hide Markdown. We also changed how it works quite a bit. This new design should feel more familiar and consistent with the default editor mode (that shows the Markdown characters). It hides the Markdown characters whenever it can to improve your reading experience and tries to do it in a way that keeps your writing experience clean and efficient.
Note: This is still an experimental feature (and we label it as such in the
View menu). It works, but it is not super polished and it might change significantly in the upcoming weeks.
We improved the matching algorithm that powers multiple parts of the app — from
Quick Open to the
emoji autocomplete. The result is better sorting (more relevant results) that show faster.
WYSIWYG mode (experiment).
WYSIWYG mode, the editor hides the Markdown syntax (ex: the
** around bold) and tries to show your text in a way that looks closer to published document.
This is not the first attempt at
WYSIWYG for Markdown, but it might be the first that doesn't auto-reveal the Markdown syntax when you edit, and while this approach introduces a lot of technical challenges, we feel that it's worth exploring as it might be able to produce a better writing experience without compromising the benefits of plain text.
This is an early stage experiment — expect lots of bugs and lots of changes (and improvements). To toggle it on and off, go to
Preferences (⌘,) →
Labs or press ⌥⌘w.
- Simpler app icon.
- Better startup performance.
- Editor now supports multiple images on the same line.
- Option to control the size of image previews in the editor — in
- Option to show extensions in the file manager — in the
- Context command in links —
- Context command in folder bar —
Nota now takes about
20% less time to start, and
Quick Open (⌘p) — about
50% less time to show results. These improvements are a part of a bigger effort to make Nota feel instant ⚡
Smart lists experiment.
Smart Lists enabled, list items are more aware of their context. When you move list items (using move line up/down or indent/outdent) their subitems move with them. You can enable
Smart Lists from
Preferences (⌘,) →
Context menu for image thumbnails.
On right-click on an image thumbnail (in the editor), Nota now shows a context menu with common commands like
Copy Image Path, and
Show it in Finder.
Pinch-to-zoom for image preview. When you double-click on an image thumbnail (in the editor), Nota shows an image preview that takes up the whole window, but sometimes the whole window is not big enough. For these cases, we added support for pinch-to-zoom in image previews.
Command that copies the current file path.
Nota now has a command called
Copy File Path that you can access from the
Command Palette (⇧⌘p) to copy the path of the current file.
Better support for tab characters. Documents that use tab characters now work better in Nota. The overall support for tab characters is still not great, but we're making progress.
Interactive checkboxes. Checking a checkbox in preview now also changes it to checked in the editor.
No external files in Quick Open.
Opening an external file (that does not belong to the current workspace) no longer adds it to the
Quick Open dialog (⌘p). This is based on the discussion at #60. Thanks, @amir.
More consistent paste behavior.
In our previous update, 0.27, we changed how paste works to make it more consistent with other apps. Since then we found a few bugs and some cases where this new paste behavior is not optimal and not consistent with other apps. For example, pasting a word from a heading inside of a paragraph would add
# (heading markers) in front of it. This update is our attempt to fix this.
🛠 Preferences GUI (Graphical User Interface). Select
Nota → Preferences or press ⌘, to see it. With the GUI, we hope that preferences would become easier to discover and use. It also gives us a chance to add descriptions to options that need it.
🌁 Image zoom. You can now double-click on images (in the editor) to zoom them. You can still cmd-click on images to open them in tabs.
🌁 Image dragging. You can now drag image thumbnails to change their position in the text. You can also drag them from the editor to other apps, ex: to Finder or a messenger app like Telegram.
✏️ Follow link tooltip. Hovering over a link (in the editor) now shows a tooltip that tells you to cmd-click to follow the link. We also made the tooltip clickable to makes it possible to follow links using just a mouse or a trackpad.
✏️ Paste now keeps formatting. Pasting a text that contains formatting now tries to recreate the formatting in Markdown (ex: italic words now paste with
_ around them). This is similar to how paste works in most writing apps. Paste without formatting is still available from
Edit → Paste Clean or ⇧⌘v (again, similar to most writing apps).
✏️ Command for "capitalize". Nota already had a command called "capitalize", but it was doing "title case". We renamed it to "title case" and added a new one for "capitalize".
✏️ Better "compact links". The "compact links" experiment, which you can enable from the
Labs tab in
Preferences, now waits a bit before expanding the URL, making it possible to move through links without expansions.
📁 Create file and create folder buttons. We added subtle
+ buttons in the file manager that make it easier to create files and folders using just a mouse or a trackpad.
📁 Parent folders now auto-expand. The file manager now makes sure that the folder of the current file is not collapsed. It expands the parent folder when necessary.
🏇 Better performance. Search and switching tabs is now significantly faster. The faster search algorithm also landed in Historie — a side project we've been experimenting with.
🕹 Smarter command palette. We added aliases (or alternative names) to commands in the command palette to make it easier to find them, ex: searching for
check task would now match
Better sorting in search result. Exact matches now weigh more than fuzzy matches, and matches in headings weigh more than both. In addition, full word matches now weigh more than partial word matches, ex: the search term
car would put
Better "compact links". The "compact links" experiment, which you can enable from Nota → Experiments, should now work much better overall.
Delete File command. You can now delete the active file from File → Delete, which you can also access from the Command Palette. This makes it possible to delete the current file without focusing the file manager.
Better support for CJK languages. Using CJK languages (Chinese, Japanese, and Korean) should now be a much better experience. We fixed a bug that caused the IME to show at the wrong position and another one that was displacing the text cursor. Any feedback from users who use CJK languages is very much welcome.
- markup shortcut for new task is now
— this is more consistent with other markup shortcuts, and it prevents conflicts with the markup for links
- editor now supports
==markup for highlights
- Format → Highlight now uses the
==markup instead of
::— it seems to be more common, and it also feels easier to read
- File → Move To... now doesn't put the moved file in rename mode
Create Actions. You can now create files from the Quick Open dialog. While in Quick Open (⌘p), type a filename that doesn't exist, and you'll see a result item that suggests to create the file for you. We call this result item a "create action", and we added similar create actions to the wiki-link auto-completion, the Save dialog (⌘s) and the Move To dialog (⇧⌘m).
We also fixed some bugs that affected edge cases in search and in the editor when the indent size option is set to
Backlinks. Notes (files) that have backlinks (other notes linking to them) now show with a subtle indication at the top (above the title) that shows the number of backlinks. You can click on this indication or press ⇧⌘b to see which notes link to the current note or jump to any one of them.
Easier to Read Search Results. Search results (Go → Search or ⇧⌘f) now show more context which should make it easier to see if a given match is what you are looking for.
Basic Extensibility. Experimental. We added a couple of simple ways to extend Nota. We call them "paste hook" and "custom commands". With "paste hook", you can "hook" into the paste event of Nota and modify pasted text, and with "custom commands", you can add commands to Nota and access them from the Command Palette (⇧⌘p). You can learn more about them in the docs for paste hook and custom commands.
UI Improvements. We polished the UI across the board: from the file manager, to the quick dialogs, to the welcome screen. The wiki-link completions dialog and the File → Switch Workspace dialog (⌃r) now show items on two lines — consistent with File → Quick Open (⌃p).
M1 Build. From now on, we'll ship an additional build for Macs with the new M1 chip. Nota is now super fast on M1 Macs.
Typing Performance. Big files, especially files that contain code blocks, are now much more responsive. Scrolling performance is also better.
Big Workspaces Performance. Extremely big workspaces can sometime slow down Nota for a while before it becomes smooth again. We made some improvements so people don't feel any lagging.
Completions for wiki-links now produce links that don't include parent folders (similar to how other apps work). Before:
[[docs/getting started]], now:
More Fonts. Preferences → Set Font... (⌥⌘f) now includes more fonts to choose from.
Round List Items. List items in file manager are now round for more consistent appearance with the latest macOS version, Big Sur.
Spellchecker. We rewrote most of the code for the spellchecker in Swift, and as a result, this is what you can expect:
- faster autocorrect — tip: to enable spelling autocorrect, select Edit → Spellchecker → Autocorrect Spelling
- consistent autocorrect behavior
- consistent spelling suggestions — tip: when the text cursor is over a misspelled word, press ⌃Space to see spelling suggestions
Search Workspace. Go → Search Workspace... ⇧⌘f should now feel significantly snappier.
Config Files. the workspace config which was in
.nota.ini is now in
.nota/config.ini — when you first launch the new version, the app will move it for you
Search Workspace. No more waiting when you hit ⇧⌘f — Search Workspace now opens almost instantly ⚡ and while it's thinking 🧠 shows you "in progress" indication to let you know that new results are on the way.
Editor. You can now ⌘-click to follow links to headings
[heading](#heading) (selects the linked heading).
Option to Start Files with Title. When enabled, new files will start with a
#·, ready for you to type a title (H1). This is a workspace preference. You can enable it from Preferences → Start Files with Title.
When creating files, type the title first and then save the file and Nota will suggest a filename based on the title.
Option to Auto-Rename Files to Title. If you like it when the titles of your files match their filenames, you'll find this option useful. When enabled, it'll detect it when you make a change to the title of the current file and auto-rename the filename to match the new title. This also is a workspace preference. You can enable it from Preferences → Rename to Title on Save.
This will not affect titles that were not in sync before you changed them. For example, if you have a filename
nota.md that has the title "Article about the writing app Nota", changing the title will not change the filename (because they didn't match before you changed the title).
Show File Extensions. The file manager in Nota will now show file extensions (just like a code editor would). Some of you requested this and we feel it's right. The editor in Nota tries to stay as close to the plain text (and not hide markup), it feels right that the file manager should stay as close to filenames (and not hide file extensions).