I Always End Up Back At Roam

I have tried all the new fancy note-taking apps that are out there.

  • SuperNotes
  • Obsidian
  • Amplenote
  • Athens Research
  • Logseq
  • Noteplan
  • Workflowy
  • Craft

Yeah, I've really tried all the new ones. There were a few that I really liked like Craft and Workflowy. Obsidian is pretty good, but just not really my thing.

What I kept finding as I looked at all these apps was that there wasn't a single one that really had everything I was looking for. Each one of these had some sort of compromise. They each had their own strengths:

  • Supernotes is beautiful and has an awesome new notecard style that is really unique.
  • Obsidian is free and super powerful and has a great community.
  • Craft has the best iOS app of virtually any note-taking app.
  • Athens Research is a Roam clone that has a beautiful UI.
  • Etc.

They all were great, but none of them did everything I wanted. But there was one that does: Roam.

I originially pulled away from Roam because of the cost and the fact that they would not give any sort of hint of whether an iOS app was coming soon or not. So I went off and tried everything else.

Now I'm back to Roam.

It just has everything I need:

  • Daily Notes
  • Bi-directional linking with backlinks
  • Block references/translusion
  • Readwise integration
  • Outliner format
  • Custom CSS
  • Slash commands with YouTube embeds, Tweet embeds, sliders, and pomodoro timers.
  • Todo management

There wasn't any other app that accomplished all of that well enough for me. Obsidian was close, but it's not an outliner style and the block references feature was really awful. Obsidian is also still young and has some growing to do and, for me, it shows.

I finally realized that what I was looking for was Roam. So I tried hopping back on and seeing if I can get the web app to work well enough. I did. I changed the typeface and font size. I added some padding on the left so the toggle arrow was actually visible. It works now. It's not as good of a web app as something like SuperNotes or Oku, but it works. I can use it.

It also helps to do some custom CSS to make an app feel like your own. I added my 90's color palette.

The 90's are back!

No, Roam isn't perfect, but it has everything I want and I don't know why I kept denying that for so long. It seems to be somewhat trendy these days to hate on Roam, but it really is just one of the best all around apps out there. And now I'm back and taking more notes than I've taken in the last few months while searching for a replacement. It feels good.