The app functions as a menubar app and can be found with its icon in the top bar on your Mac’s screen. When you launch the app for the first time, you are presented with a welcome message within a pre written handy note, as seen below, which gives you a basic overview of what the app does and how it works.
Using the App:
There are several key features instrumental to Handy Note which will help you make the most of the app.
Creating a new note: You can create a new note by using the ⌘N hotkey on your keyboard or by going to the File menu on the top left corner of your menubar and clicking on 'New'. Do note that you can create an unlimited amount of sticky notes with Handy Note.
Editing features within a note: Click on the gear icon on the top left corner of any note you have open to control several key features, as seen below.
i) Window Opacity: This function lets you use a slider to adjust the transparency of your note. This is particularly useful for masking sensitive information on your screen.
ii) Color Theme: Use this menu to select from a preset range of seven themes that we have included within Handy Note. These themes will alter the visual appearance of your note and the font and color of the text within it. You can also manually create custom themes through the app’s Preferences menu, as addressed in the Preferences section below.
iii) Window Level: Choose between a normal window (which is not anchored to the top above other apps when you open an another app) or a floating window (which is always anchored above other apps and stays permanently on your screen)
iv) Preferences: This opens up the complete Preferences menu within the app, which we address in more detail in the Preferences section below.
v) Delete Note: If you hit delete note, you will be presented with the message seen below. You can therefore choose to save the contents of your note to any location you choose on your Mac, or simply delete without saving the contents of your note at all.
Full text formatting and image support: Handy Note supports full text formatting such as adding Bold, Italics, Underline and colour to your text. You can also add images to your notes.
IMPORTANT: Any text that is copied and pasted into Handy Note retains its original formatting, unless specified not to do so. If you want to paste as plain text in that instance, please click on the ‘Edit’ menu on the menubar on top of your Mac’s screen and select ‘Paste Plain Text’. All original formatting is no longer retained for the pasting of that text content. All subsequent text pasted will still retain its original formatting, unless it is pasted each time via the Edit > Paste Plain Text option.
Resizable windows: Drag your pointer to the bottom right corner of any open note and you can use the arrows that appear on your screen to resize that note, both horizontally and vertically.
Collapsible windows: Double click your mouse on the top most bar of any note to have it collapse. Once collapsed, the first line of text is unformatted and kept as a title for the collapsed note. You can also expand a collapsed note by double clicking on it.
Hash tagging within notes and finding tagged notes: You can tag notes using the # symbol. For example, #todo - this will allow you to easily find notes that contain specific tags via the app's search functionality. Hash tags can be searched for by clicking on the magnifying glass icon on the top left corner of any note, right next to the gear level icon. Once you click the magnifying glass, a window like the one seen below will appear, where you can search any phrase that you have tagged in any of your notes, and only those notes will appear as a result.
Word/Paragraph/Character count: Click on the top right corner of any open note to toggle between the number of words, the paragraph count and the total number of characters in that note. This is particularly useful for those essays and online applications with word/character limits!
To access the Preferences panel, click the gear level within a note and select Preferences or alternatively, select Preferences by right clicking the menubar icon for Handy Note and selecting Preferences from the drop down menu.
The Preferences menu lets you alter a host of features, as seen above.
- Toggle Tag Search with Hot Key: Use the default Ctrl + Shift + N to enable hash tagged note search when the app is running. (This saves you from having to open a note and click on the magnifying glass icon directly).
- Enable Keyboard Shortcut: Toggle this mode on/off to enable the search shortcut for the hot key keyboard search for tagged notes.
- Start at Login: Select this to have Handy Note launch whenever you boot up and log in to your Mac.
- Show Menu Bar Icon: Toggle this mode to show/hide the Handy Note icon on your Mac’s menubar.
- Show Dock Icon: Toggle this mode to show/hide the Handy Note icon on your Mac’s dock.
- Default Window Opacity: Use this slider to adjust, by default, the opacity of all new notes that you will subsequently create.
By default, we offer seven preset themes. You can toggle through the different themes and see how they appear on the ‘test note’ display within the Themes category. You can select any of them to be your default them by choosing the theme from the list and clicking on the ‘Make Default Theme’ button on the bottom of the Theme Preferences menu. These default themes are preset, as stated before, and hence are not customizable in appearance and cannot be deleted.
However, you have the option of creating and customizing your own themes by clicking on the ‘+’ button on the top of the list. Once you click the ‘+’ button, you can name your theme as you desire and edit the color schemes entirely by clicking on the color boxes corresponding to each theme option. You have the liberty to edit the Background Start/End Colors, the Text Color, the Link Color, the Text Cursor Color, as well as the font type, style and size.