It is hard to describe Notational Velocity without describing what it doesn’t do… It does not do styles. It does not store pictures or movies. It does not do fancy outlines, link to documents or address book contacts. It does not have a fancy interface or cool features. As a matter of fact, it does not do much at all… That is what makes it so great!
All Notational Velocity does is allow you to record and search text notes. That’s it. But it does this is such a simple way and has an interface so devoid of complexity that it is almost a little bit erie when you see how powerful it is in concept. Basically, It does this by using a single text field for both searching and creating your notes. I know this sounds strange but keep trying to follow. When you start to type, it starts live searching all of your notes and their contents. If you want to create a new note just hit “return” and it will start a new note with whatever you just typed as it’s title. I know, I know, I did not grok it at first but once you get used to it you will be blown away.
It is a cocoa application so it does support all of the stuff that other cocoa applications do such as spell checking, services, etc. It also saves on the fly (i.e. it saves as you enter) and stores everything with 128 bit encryption. Oh yeah, and it is freeware so it is worth the price to download it and give it a try. It might take a little getting used to at first but once you “drink the kool-aid” it will be hard to give up.