Diigo vs. Google Notebook (& importer…)

Update:  GN Importer (Alpha)http://www.diigo.com/tools/import_google_notebook

Google just announced that it will gradually phase out Google Notebook and many people are looking for alternatives. Here is a brief side-by-side comparison of Google Notebook and Diigo:

  1. Google Notebook is very much similar to Diigo Lists. In Diigo Lists, you can organize, share and display specific collections of bookmarks. Once you add bookmarks to your list, you can easily re-arrange the collections by drag-and-drop, and add “section”. And you can publish a Diigo list as an HTML document.
  2. In Diigo, an item in a list is also saved separately as a bookmark (which can be tagged). So in this sense, Diigo integrates both Google Notebook and Google Bookmark.
  3. Diigo also has the important advantage that “clippings” are really “highlights” on the original web pages and will be shown as such when you re-visit the web pages, reminding you the exact context of the clippings.
  4. Another unique Diigo list feature: once you create a list, click the ” WebSlides” button, you can browse, play and annotate any list of URLs as a slide show! It’s great for content browsing, sharing, and creating unique presentations based on web content.Here is an example of a Diigo List, consisting of recent reviews of Diigo, and watch the Diigo List / WebSlides in action!
  5. Google Notebook is a bit more flexible in that an item does not have to be tied to a webpage. Diigo Lists will soon be upgraded to provide this flexibility and a lot more in the near future.

So, as you can see, Diigo is a lot more powerful than Google Notebook (in fact, Google Notebook and Bookmark combined), and should be an excellent alternative, especially for demanding users. For those who are new to Diigo, please check out the Diigo intro video to learn more.

We are working on a Google Notebook importer so you can move to Diigo with a few clicks very soon. Stay tuned!

26 thoughts on “Diigo vs. Google Notebook (& importer…)

  1. “Google Notebook is a bit more flexible in that an item does not have to be tied to a webpage. Diigo Lists will soon be upgraded to provide this flexibility and a lot more in the near future.”

    This is great news. I’d like to try Diigo with students, but need a feature where you can add a text note from print research to go along with the web clippings. Being able to have web and text items in one list would be great! Thanks.

  2. Matthew,

    Yes, we will be making our list a lot more flexible, along with other cool new features.

    Meanwhile, you can already add text as sticky note or general page comment on each webpage. Or even add text in the current “section” area. Give it a try.

    As an educator, you may also wish to check out our Educator Account upgrade: http://www.diigo.com/education if you haven’t done so.

  3. Thank you thank you thank you! It is not that I use Google notebook a lot, but it is that I have some work in there – was going to move to a Google Doc but that loses funcitonality.

    Thank you! I LOVE diigo but need to try out lists.

  4. I too use Diigo in education, and am wondering if Diigo’s new plans include the ability to highlight parts of pdf documents. I assume this comes down to the limitation of Adobe’s proprietary file format, but it’s a major stumbling block with use of the tool right now (unless it’s possible and I just don’t know how!)

  5. I too am excited about more flexibility/note taking ability. This is why I had used both Diigo and Notebook.I will say, Diigo has taken over almost every aspect of web capturing important to me. I use it expensively to organize film projects for Rabbit Bites.

    Question, where is “section area”?
    Any trick for copy/paste out of annotated/list material. Have had trouble with this.


  6. I’m too a Diigo user (janogarcia), but after comparing the major tools for online note taking (Diigo, Google Notebook, evernote, and a bunch of others) I favored Google Notebook against Diigo Lists.


    * Ability to clip images (like Evernote).
    * Easy Drag & Drop reordering.
    * Easy sectioning
    * Easy “free notes” (not attached to any webpages)
    * The browser extension interface: left sidebar showing the different Lists and its sectioning, below the tags.
    * The browser extension remains opened in the same absolute position even when switching between browser tabs. thus, i don’t need to invoke it on every tab.
    * Exporting abilities: google docs, html,…

    In a few words, the workflow was much more pleasant: simple, easy and fast. Which turns in high productivity.

    Please, Diigo team, study seriously the Google Notebook extension interface and worflow. Although it is not near as perfect (for example you can’t highlight the actual page, or take more than one block of content for each clip) is a great advantage over the current diigo interface.

    I really hope that Diigo takes advantage of this opportunity and improves the current List management, workflow, and browser integration. Targetting both the former Google Notebook users and the current Diigo ones, so we won’t need to complement Diigo with external tools.

  7. >>”Google Notebook is a bit more flexible in that an item does not have to be tied to a webpage.”

    Yes it’s true. In Notebook, we can add image or video contents. We can edit, format, add link,…

    In my opinion, Diigo is still too hard to use and user interface is definitevely not usefull.

    I hope Diigo will improve the service! Diigo is actually not bad, but it’s very diffuclt to invite students or friends because interface is not user friendly. On a public shared page, the content is not enough visible. See screenshot (http://img297.imageshack.us/img297/7373/screenshot00489iq4.png) to understand what I mean : Not clear, no images, too many unimportant informations… Excuse me but when you arrive on this page, you don’t understand anything.

    See the difference with a public google notebook : http://img212.imageshack.us/img212/1451/screenshot00490vz2.png . All is clear and understandable.

    Thank you for your future improvments!

  8. The feature that my students and I like best about Google Notebook is the ability to flip the contents into a word doc with a click of a button.

    Any chance that Diigo will offer this as well?

  9. Thanks for the feedback and suggestions!  Will soon make the GN importer available first.

    Even before the Google announcement,  lists, along with other areas & new apps, are already undergoing further development to allow more flexibility and make the UI even more intuitive. Will roll them out as ready.

    Note:  there is some simple “print as html” and several share options already.  More options in future releases

  10. There are 2 things I considered as the most important to a Note taking/web clipping software: first, the ability to structure the notes/clips, i know the trend now is tagging, but I like folders more, especially the cascaded sub folders, so the notes i took can be categorized as in library. Diigo has list, but it’s very hard to create a list (at least it’s not as easy as “create a new folder” or create a new notebook or sections in google notebook, and Diigo’s list doesn’t have sub list, which i see as a disadvantage. the second important one is the individual note which is not linked to a page, as others pointed out. And the ability to export it.


    I have uncovered a current problem where diigo bookmarks are saved but bookmarks are not returned in diigo search queries.

    Bottom line: Search results dont’ show everything they should. Diigo replied to my email indicating they are looking into the problem.

    If you’re a user of google bookmarks, you probably rely on it’s search function to help you find that “needle in a haystack.”

    I have a private bookmark that shows up in diigo bookmarks, but can not be found via any search within diigo.

    I originally created this bookmark it in diigo while attempting to learn how the service works. This bookmark won’t show up under a tag search, or even a search of the bookmark name itself. I spent a day trying to find out what I was doing wrong.

    Bottom line: It’s not me. It is a glitch.

    I sincerely doubt that I am alone with this problem. The thing is, that unless you are specifically looking for an item you know is there…. You will never know what is missing from a search.

    If you go to the diigo user forum and search for my name (Robert Tupper) you can find more info there.

    Until this is corrected, I don’t dare use diigo as a replacement for Google Notebooks. This is unfortunate because…

    Aside from this issue, diigo appears to be the best replacement I have found.

  12. Finally received help from diigo.

    Search is working (for past and present bookmarks in diigo)

    Turns out that diigo was in the process of updating hardware.

    Took 3 days to get a response from support. It showed up at the same time functionality was restored.

    I am very surprised that this was not mentioned by Diigo. Especially since they could have placed a public annotated bookmark on their search page indicating the issue was only temporary.

    Also, don’t expect to get your converted bookmarks back any time soon. I’ve been waiting for a week. That’s OK though, because the converting tool is only alpha, and currently each conversion process apparently requires diigo “hands on” intervention.

    I still think this is the answer for users leaving Google notebook.

  13. I use Google notebook a lot but Google Notebook is a bit more flexible in that an item does not have to be tied to a webpage.
    In my opinion, Diigo is still too hard to use and user interface is definitevely not usefull.

  14. This is great news. It seems very nice. Diigo is a lot more powerful than Google Notebook , and for demanding users. I am glad to be here.

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