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Find out what's new with Notes in OS X El Capitan

Notes now supports checklists and a variety of media types. Plus it shares well with others.

Matt Elliott Contributor
Matt Elliott, a technology writer for more than a decade, is a PC tester and Mac user based in New Hampshire.
Matt Elliott
2 min read

Matt Elliott/CNET

The humble Notes app in OS X received an update with El Capitan, getting a toolbar along its top edge and welcoming more types of media files.

Let's start with my favorite new feature of Notes, which can be found in its new toolbar. The Checklist button will be met with open arms by anyone who gets through his or her week by checking things off lists. Highlight an unformatted list in a note, click the Checklist button and it transforms into a useful checklist. The other formatted list options -- dashed, numbered and bulleted -- are still available but buried in the Format menu under Font > Lists.

There's also a new Photo Browser button in the toolbar that lets you add pics and videos from the Photos and Photo Booth apps. The button opens a small window from which you can drag items to a note.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

The old Notes app let you add links and photos to notes, and the new Notes app expands on this functionality by letting you add videos, audio files, PDFs, map locations and more. Video and audio files play right from where they are embedded in your note. And to help you find these various media attachments in Notes, there is the new Attachment Browser. It separates your media files by Photo & Video, Sketches, Map Locations, Websites, Audio and Documents, so you can find something without needing to remember to which note it's attached.

It's also easier to add information from other apps to Notes because it is now listed on the Share sheet of Safari, Maps, Photos and more of Apple's apps. From Apple Maps, you can share the location of baseball field Fenway Park, say, to a note. And from Safari, you can add a Web page to a note, which will then open in your default browser.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

For more, get all you need to know about OS X El Capitan.