Nottingham 5

Using Nottingham

Using Nottingham

Creating and Searching for Notes

Like Nottingham's inspiration Notational Velocity, the primary method of creating notes and finding existing ones is using the search field.

To create a new note, just type your new note's title and press return (↩).

As you're typing your note's title, Nottingham will search for notes that match what you've typed thus far.


If you ever need to make a new note right away and don't want to worry about thinking of a title first, you can press ^⌘N to instantly create a blank, untitled note.

Using Nottingham

Notes and Tasks

The philosophy behind this new version of Nottingham is that I've been keeping track of tasks for me and my coworkers as well as meeting notes in my, well, notes. I do this using my own special syntax for note taking. And I decided to rebuild Nottingham from a pure note taking app into a hybrid notes and task management app that lets you move between the two modes of work:

When you select a folder in the Library, you can switch to Tasks mode using the picker at the top of the window.

Nottingham will parse all of the notes in that folder for tasks and then let you sort, filter, and work with them in a dedicated task view.

While the task viewer is (for now) primarily meant for viewing your tasks and the note interface for editing them, you can do some basic edits on your tasks. For example, marking a task as complete or incomplete will update the underlying note on disk for your. In future releases, I plan on allowing editing of a task's due date, defer date, tags, etc.

Here's a quick video demonstrating how tasks can be filtered by status, by date, and the person they're assigned to.

For now, tasks are parsed using my own, odd shorthand for taking notes. Nottingham will eventually support more mainstream plain-text task syntaxes like Taskpaper and/or todo.txt.

But, for now, you can play with tasks using my own syntax.

Every task in your note lives on a separete line of tetx and must be assigned to someone (including yourself). Otherwise, that line in your note is ignored. To assign a task to someone, just write @name. For example:

This is a task that @tyler is assigned to

You can mark a task complete by beginning the line with an x or by including xxx anywhere on the line.

x This task for @liz has been completed
Another task for @harper is finished xxx
@tyler is lazy and still hasn't finished this one

A task can include tags using #tag #names.

Buy milk #errand
@tyler to call Mike #vacation

You can signify that a task is dropped or no longer being worked on by inserting --- anywhere on the line.

@tyler --- Write the great American novel

(Think of that syntax as striking-thru a line of text on paper.)

If a task includes a date formated like YYYY-MM-DD, that will be used as a due date.

If a task includes a date formated like +YYYY-MM-DD (with a + in front of the date), that will be used as a defer date.

Priority can be assigned to tasks with a ! character followed by a single letter or number such as !1 or !a. Currently, Nottingham places no empahsis or meaning on the letters or numbers you use. That's up to you to decide.

A task can be flagged with !#. (That's an exclamation mark followed by a single hash character.)

I have other syntax options avaiable for doing advanced things like recording time spent on a task and the estimated time to complete. Even assigned locations / geofences. But these features are in-flux and on-hold while I decide on how to support them alongside TaskPaper and/or todo.txt syntax.

Using Nottingham

Keyboard Navigation

Nottingham is meant to be primarily used with a keyboard. I've gone to great lengths to make (almost) every aspect of the app accessible quickly - without needing to reach for a mouse or trackpad.

You can navigate between the folders in your Library, your note list, and around the note editor with just a few keystrokes. You can also jump to folders, search for notes, and insert links to other notes easily, too.

Here's a demo video with my keystrokes highlighted. A summary of keyboard shortcuts will follow.

What might not be obvious in the video is that in addition to using "normal" keyboard shortcuts like ⌘J or ⌘K to move up and down, you can also use your keyboard's standard arrow keys to navigate around the UI. For example, → and ← can be used to move between the Library and Note list. And when at the top of the note list, ↑ will move to the search field.

And here's how to insert an in-app link to another note.



Shortcuts for editing tasks will be available soon.


Advanced Features

Advanced Features

Attaching Files to Notes

By default (and for now), all notes are in the .textbundle format, which means you can include arbitrary file attachments with each note.

I have a branch that supports displaying attached files inline in your note, but that's not ready for testing yet.

For now, you can drag and drop files from other apps and the Finder into the Attachments list in the Info panel and then preview them or export them when you need them again.

Advanced Features

Capturing Images from iOS

You can attach a photo directly from your iOS device's camera by clicking the Camera button at the top of the Attachments panel.

Related: You can also extract text from images you import.

Advanced Features

Scanning Text from iOS

In addition to capturing photos from iOS, Nottingham can import any text content it finds in those images.

After capturing the image from the phone and recognizing the embedded text, you'll have the option to preview the new text and accept or reject it or make edits.

Advanced Features

Rearranging Text Content

Nottingham has a special "Rearrange Text" mode that lets you quickly reorder your note's contents just by dragging - almost like a half-assed, simple outlining tool.

Advanced Features

Streaming Markdown Preview to

Brett Terpstra makes a wonderful Markdown previewing app called Marked. (In addition to the excellent nvUltra app.)

You can "stream" a preview of your current note to Marked using Nottingham. This lets you see a full-fidelity render of your Markdown content.

Known Bugs and Limitations

Nottingham's current focus is on taking notes using Markdown contained inside a .textbundle document. This format is open-source, documented, and future-proof.

Support for editing raw plain-text and Markdown files will happen later.

Main Interface


Note List

Note Editor



If you'd like to download an early release of Nottingham 5, feel free to reach out to