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I'm looking for a software for note taking. Like most such applications it should have the option of creating note pages which have titles, can include pictures, tables etc. It should be easy to use, it doesn't have to look beautiful. That is standard in most apps, like Evernote, Google Keep, etc.

However what I'm missing, I also want to have the option to crosslink from one note page to another. This to my knowledge is only supported by MS OneNote. However it is still limited, as the link texts do not change if the title of the linked page changes. Also it is tiresome as I have to manually ensure the link exists on both pages, otherwise I might jump to a page and can't go back simply. A page should list/state/include all incoming links in addition to outgoing links.

The software should run on Windows and MacOS.

How I use it: You probably don't have to read this to answer the question, but it might be nice to know for some. I want to take notes in our RPG story games. I wish to have note pages for cities, groups, characters etc. A characters page then has links to the group that they belong to or the city where we met them. Then the city page should reflect those linked characters to be able to tell who lives in that city, thus the list of incoming links is needed. Furthermore the title of a character page can often change, for example when we learn their real name instead of just their position or learn they used a fake name so far etc. Then the reference on the city page has to update too.

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The first tool that comes to mind is Obsidian. Have you already check it out? It might fit all your needs. The way you can link notes is like no other app I've seen before and it's also available for macOS, Windows, and more.

Hope this helps.

Obsidian

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  • That looks very good. It even mentions unlinked references to a page, it shows in a graph view, it can be synced, even might exist for Android and iOS in the future. Also I really love how easy it is to mention another page, just type [[ and it autocompletes. Little critic point is that it uses markdown, so I don't have a wysiwyg editor. Adding pictures works surprisingly good. But specifically tables seem difficult. However with the plugin system maybe there is a solution to that.
    – findusl
    Jun 25 at 10:42
  • Told you... it's a great app :) I guess because I'm a developer/geek, I don't have a problem living without WYSIWYG :) Tables ain't that difficult either, just a matter of getting used to it. Maybe this could help while getting used to markdown tables: tablesgenerator.com/markdown_tables Jun 25 at 19:43
  • The problem with tables is less creating them myself, more that I just want to copy them from somewhere else and insert them. OneNote can handle me copying tables from pdf, websites etc, but sadly Obsidian is unable to handle them as far as I can tell in the limited time I used it.
    – findusl
    Jun 25 at 19:46
  • Aah, I see. Obsidian indeed doesn't handle that out of the box. Not ideal, but as a workaround for tables, you could use these tools: 1. tabletomarkdown.com/convert-spreadsheet-to-markdown 2. convertcsv.com/csv-to-markdown.htm 3. typora.io For additional tips on Obsidian plugins, especially on tables, check out this link: curtismchale.ca/2021/01/04/obsidian-plugins-i-use Jun 26 at 1:47
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You might want to consider a wiki, Like mediawiki, but there are at least 100 alternative wiki's.

Its web based so it supports an OS with a browser.

You might want to poke around this wiki for example.

https://masseffect.fandom.com/wiki/Mass_Effect_Wiki

Note: Here https://masseffect.fandom.com/wiki/Tali%27Zorah_nar_Rayya

See how many links have been embedded in the page to every conceivable reference in the Mass Effect lore.

Also just because one wiki doesn't do want you want there are dozens of others.

Also super popular wiki's have plugins or extensions that add a ton of features to the base functionality.

You may need to add a table of content extension or similar to add links to various links to pages automatically.

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  • From what I can tell the Wiki does not list the other pages that link to the current page. Furthermore it seems a bit harder to edit than other note taking applications, which makes sense, because it is meant to look good and professional. But in game while taking notes I don't want to change between edit mode and viewing mode and so on.
    – findusl
    Jun 25 at 8:19
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As a workaround, you could assign a new, unique, custom tag (e.g. "ylink-recipes-pizza") to both of the notes you want to crosslink to, and then add an emoji/mini-icon, or some custom formatting to a text passage with an internal link. Thus you can remember yourself to check the tags of that note.

Click the tag, see a filtered list of two notes, go to linked note.

This way your crosslinked notes would be only two clicks away, instead of one click (the unsupported direct link)

(This workaround only works if your notetaking software supports tags.)

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