Why it’s often worth revisiting apps’ settings pages to find new or forgotten about features – thanks @evernote

I can’t count the number of time I have gone back to an application’s settings after a period of time and found new or hidden features, or even some you have forgotten about.  I would hope that the creators of those applications would use all the usual forms of communication to pound those features into my head – Blog, Email, Twitter, Facebook, et al and all of them, but that’s no guarantee that their message cuts through the noise to get heard.  As for forgetting, well there are simply too many services out there for me to keep every last one and its feature subset in my head (there might be a need for an app for that).

The reason I bring it up is that it just happened to me again with Evernote.  After reading a piece in Lifehacker about how Evernote now accepts incoming emails with preset tags and notebooks selected via # and @ symbols – which I’d also forgotten about – I checked out the settings page and found a wonderful-for-me feature of applying new “recognition languages” to your new notes and most awesomely, to your existing library.   I chose French+English as my option and will now wait the several days to see what happens – it starts within 48 hours but will then take some time based on the size and nature of your library.

For those who don’t know, language recognition in the Evernote world means that it goes through all of your uploaded images and PDFs and extracts searchable words from the images and does OCR on the PDFs.  Pretty great stuff.  I take pictures or send scans to Evernote of business cards, wine labels, cheese labels, receipts, and so on.

The other tangential takeaway for me was that yet again I am finding that there’s too much noise out there and nowhere near enough signal, enough such that despite my best efforts I simply cannot get all the information I need or require.