The Most Impressive Capacities Features
Original on Medium.com: The Most Impressive Capacities Features
It’s great for many reasons, some of which I touched upon in my previous post. This post goes a bit deeper into some of the app’s most impressive features.
Here’s a summary before we begin:
Adding blocks above and below where you’re working
I should not find it as hard as I do, but the + block button in Notion confuses me a surprising amount, as I have to think where to hover in order to insert a block where I actually want it. Hover over the block in Capacities, however, and two ‘+’ pop up, allowing you to insert a block above or below where you currently are without having to think about it. An impressive level of detail.
One thing that I’d like to see across all the apps I use is more colour as visual aids really help me. Capacities offers 18 highlight and text colours, which even beats Notion’s colour offer!
With no effort at all, Capacities shows you text stats for the whole page, and then you can select text and view how many words/sentences/characters are in the area you’ve highlighted. I write drafts for my masters work in Capacities, all of which has varying word count limits. Super useful to have this info available to me at a quick glance.
The right side-bar
In fact, the entire right sidebar is REALLY useful. Toggle it with a simple click or a text short cut and see a table of context, an index of links, text stats.
I find the table of contents particularly interesting. It takes the hierarchy into account so if I’ve used headings, which I tend to, it lets me see my structure at a glance and prompts me to review it if needed.
Notion offers this too, but you have to input it and then scroll to find it. This is yet another example of how Capacities just wants to help you out.
I feel like being able to export to markdown future-proofs my notes, and makes them fairly compatible with Logseq, which is the other app I spend a significant amount of time in. I say fairly compatible, obviously there are some barriers to total compatibility, as is the case with all apps, but the bones are there.
You can also export to Word, LaTeX and HTML. I love the flexibility here.
Spoiler alert: Objects (databases). Here are my favourite bits about them:
This is so good. If you want to see recently edited entries to that database, or untagged entries or your collections (see below), you can see all of this in your dashboard at a glance.
It’s a simple idea but you don’t need any queries to enact this which I haven’t seen in any other app. It’s also a nice visual way of looking at your work and reminding yourself to review some notes whenever it suits you.
Automatic Content Types
As mentioned in the previous blog post, you can create as many content types as you’d like, but some are inbuilt and are automatically created upon pasting an example of it into Capacities. Not having to think about this frees up time and brain space to work on the rest of your system.
This is the case for images, tweets, weblinks, PDFs, tags etc. You can also add notes beneath the image/tweet etc which is amazing.
You can email, tweet, telegram and Whatsapp yourself content to save into your Capacities space. I think this is really cool and great for those that use it as a capture tool- very easy to set up.
Beyond impressive (to me)
i#### Wall view
Of the four database views, the wall view is my favourite and the most innovative I think. In a nutshell, I love Capacities because of what it does with information visually, with little to no effort, and the wall view is the most obvious example of this.
It takes information at the page and block level and arranges it visually in front of you. Imagine this after months of work… Scrolling through your tags will be so enjoyable!
Search whole databases when linking
As a heavy Notion user, I have relations to and from most of my databases, which power my LifeOS. I love this functionality yet I don’t enjoy using them. They are clunky and slow. Filterable relations are high on Notion users’ wish-lists too, particularly given the size that some databases can get to, but it is still an unsolved problem.
Capacities has thought about this and given a great alternative. When you click in the relation box, you get a drop down menu, or you can open this pop out window to filter, sort, and multi-select the relations you want. This will be invaluable as the databases grow over years of usage and just makes the whole process of linking your thoughts better.
Everything has a date
I love the idea of having a summary of what I worked on in a day, but I could never achieve it because I failed to remember to put metadata in every note. Capacities, however, does it for me. It then sums up my day’s work in database form, with the amazing views, filtering and sorting that I’ve mentioned so many times. It even groups entries by content/database type for you. It’s perfect.
Capacities is genius and I love it more every day. It’s probably the little things with Capacities that make it so joyous to use day to day, but they’ve got the big things right too.