I am really disappointed by the current state of org mode (or just note taking in general) on Android.

I really want a simple, dedicated app where I can:

  1. make a simple list or takes some notes
  2. have that be saved in some plain text format that can be edited in vim or emacs on my computer
  3. have that file be accessible in a way that Syncthing can pick it up
  4. Pick up changes made on the file system

Orgzly seems to want to do its own thing and fails at 3 and 4. orgro is read-only. Every other note-taking or list app I’ve seen just stores stuff in its own little database in its own format.

I hate to link to reddit, but this is a disheartening thread:

There’s an emacs port on f-droid, but when I tried to use it it’s not exactly a native app experience. Opening a file involves typing the full path to the file!

Show thread

I wanted to try , but their release method is “download an apk from our website” for some reason?

It is unclear why they aren’t on Fdroid or the play store:

Show thread

@pganssle @barth I have added local filesystem support to organice for Android. I am using it for groceries list. use syncthing to sync with computer. check lists on phone. using a capture template on phone + refiling on computer.

there is a link to my PR with apk . Please suport it's merge in organice main

I think direct downloads are fine for rapid (beta) development, but would say it's worth trying #logseq ... I sync with #syncthing to both #linux and windows systems with no issues.
It even has voice dictation...

@BinaryChaos I mean, the reason they don’t even have a stable candidate in the app store is that their permissions are too wide, and the reason that they aren’t in Fdroid is that they are using some sort of proprietary sync that for some reason they can’t just exclude from the Fdroid builds?

It does not inspire confidence.

@pganssle FYI, [this Android build]( might give you more pleasant expererience. Not official but apparently it's from a developer who's active on the emacs-devel mailing list (still, always be careful with apks, of course). I personally am happy with the Termux version; have been using Emacs and orgmode dn Termux actively ≈every day fer years.

@dimentium Yes, I looked into it:

From what I can tell, they aren’t in the App store because they would get rejected for having over-broad permissions.

They aren’t in F-droid because their syncing thing (which I don’t care about) is proprietary (I don’t know why they don’t supply a way to build it without that part).

The way to get it is to either download an APK from their website (no thanks) or add a custom repo to F-droid that basically downloads an APK from their website.

None of this gives me particularly high confidence in the quality and security of this app…

@pganssle @dimentium

You are not wrong, the Logseq team is incredibly good at self-sabotating and I couldn't get out of them anything but corporate-speaking replies...

@pganssle I haven't used Syncthing so I don't understand your difficulty with that, but I use orgzly with nextcloud sync and it's been working great for years

@ryanprior Interesting, when I tried earlier I thought it was trying to manage all the .org files itself (not importing stuff that already existed), but I think the actual issue is that it doesn’t recursively look into folders, and all my .org files are organized into folders.

The problem I have now is that orgzly seems to use a completely flat file structure, which is feeling a bit unmanageable to me, since I organize by folders.

Practically speaking I only really touch a few notebooks frequently, so maybe “sort by last modification” will work for now.


@pganssle Not suggesting you do that, but sharing my own story: I struggled with the same issue for a while, trying various solutions.

I've eventually settled on creating a task in todoist and adding notes in the comments. To be clear, this does not solve your problem as stated.

It solved the underlying problem *for me*, which is taking notes that I'll later consolidate on my computer. The task was implicitly "consolidate the notes".

I am using Orgzly for just what you describe. There are quite a few limitations as to what you can do with it (at least compared to an Emacs setup) and I find it a little cumbersome to use with many files (so no org-roam). However, syncing via Syncthing works just fine for me: changes on the computer are picked up in the app and vice versa. Only under certain circumstances could I run into merge conflicts but that hasn't happened in several months now.

What is the issue that you see?

@hanno Turns out I didn’t realize that it doesn’t import folders when you set up a local sync:

Looks like you can do syncing with it, I’m going to try it out and see how well it works.

@pganssle For a long time I ran Obsidian on the phone and synced with syncthing.

I was just doing it to get syncing to work on the free tier. Notes are saved as plain text markdown files, in normal folders.

It wasn't perfect, but if I was careful to close Obsidian on the phone before opening the file on the desktop problems were few.

I moved to Standard Notes subsequently for other reasons, but it might be worth giving a shot if you haven't.

@pganssle Though sorry, this is just for the general note taking. I don't know about org mode stuff.

Maybe Zettel Notes is for you? It uses markdown.

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