There are times when you just need to quickly take a note, jotting down something you need to do or a thought that pops into your head that you don't want to forget. Sure, you could open up a text editor or even text yourself that forgettable notion. But when you're already working within an application that offers the power of adding easy note-taking features, why not take advantage of it?
Firefox is just that. With its powerful add-on system, you can include note-taking to the already long list of things Firefox do.
I've found five solid note-taking add-ons for you to try. Each offers the very basic feature of allowing you to take notes, while some offer just a little bit more to entice you into usage. Let's see which one suits your needs best.
QuickNote is a basic note-taking tool that offers but a few frills. Once it's installed, you can enjoy tabs, browser/email integration, and auto-save. You can open QuickNote as a floating window, a sidebar (Figure A), or within a tab.
QuickNote open as a sidebar.
Customization of QuickNote includes: Per-user note saving locations, font type, background color, custom CSS styles, auto-save on Xth character, and more. QuickNote has a single keyboard shortcut (Ctrl-F7) that you can customize to open QuickNote in its various forms (floating window, sidebar, or tab).
You can get to the QuickNote Settings (Figure B) through the Firefox Tools menu. QuickNote is free and does require a restart upon installation.
The QuickNote Settings window.
The UberNote toolbar is an extension that requires a service and that you sign up for a plan (which means you can access your notes from any supported browser).
The Basic (free) plan works well and offers unlimited note storage as well as: Tags, note editor, auto-save, text search, UberMail (submit notes via private email), UberMark (bookmarking applet), and UberClip (web clipping bookmarklet), mobile version, note sharing, attachments, backup notes, and more. The Premium service costs $8.00 (USD) per month and adds SSL security encryption, no advertisements, folders, larger attachments, and unlimited note revisions.
Once it's installed, you'll find a drop-down menu in your toolbar (Figure C), where you can access the various features of UberNote.
The UberNote drop-down in action.
To start working with UberNote, select Launch UberNote from the drop-down, and your Dashboard will open in a new tab (Figure D).
Your UberNote Dashboard is ready to serve.
UberNote is free and does require a restart upon installation.
3. Note Board
Note Board is another account-based application that opens inside a tab within Firefox. This app is less like an extension and more of a bookmark for a web page, but it's still effective. With Note Board, you can enjoy: Multiple boards (assign a specific category per board), move notes between boards, share notes, insert YouTube videos onto boards, add links and pictures, add drawings, format notes, and much more. Once you've signed into your account, you can then begin creating notes on your Note Board (Figure E).
Creating a note on a note board.
You can rename your boards by clicking the Board button and then clicking the edit icon for the board you want to rename (Figure F).
You can rename boards and add new boards.
You'll notice the free account does include advertisements. To get rid of the ads, you'll need to purchase a premium plan (single payment of $1.99 here).
QuickFox notes is a multi-tab note-taking extension for Firefox. This particular take on the note-taking add-on uses either an integrated bookmarking systems or sqlite database to store notes. With it, you can either store your notes locally or integrate them into a cloud-based storage solution. Once it's installed, a drop-down menu will appear in the toolbar (Figure G) where you can access QuickFox.
The QuickFox notes drop-down.
Click the drop-down and you can define where you want QuickFox to open (in a tab, new window, or application content). Click the QuickFox button, and the QuickFox floating window will appear (Figure H).
The QuickFox floating window.
From the QuickFox window, you can access the main settings of the tool. Click the settings drop-down, and you can set up your cloud storage (under Network) and much more.
QuickFox is free and requires a restart upon installation.
FloatNotes is one of the more interesting note-taking add-ons I've found. What this handy little extension does is allow you to take notes on web pages -- anywhere on the page. All you do is right-click where you want the note to be and then select Add Note. A small window will appear (Figure I) where you can add your note.
The FloatNote note window open for note taking.
If you close the page and then re-open the page... the note is still there! This makes it incredibly handy to take quick notes on a web site and be able to recall them later. Once a note has been taken, you can access the settings of that note by hovering over the note window (Figure J).
The note hover window gives you access to settings and more.
You can also pin a particular note to a page, a site, or even globally (to all sites).
FloatNote is free and does require a restart upon installation.
If you're looking for a handy way to take notes from within your web browser (and who isn't?), give one of these five note-taking applications a try. There's something for nearly everyone here, and one of these apps should have you efficiently taking notes either about the sites you work within or just random thoughts you need to be able to quickly recall.
What note-taking add-on do you prefer? Share your opinion in the discussion thread below.
Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website getjackd.net.