Help me integrate bear + ulysses + nvalt?

Help me integrate bear + ulysses + nvalt?
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(Sasha) #1

Waddup y’all. First time poster here and I gotta say, I’m so glad this exists. Trying to get set up for a dope workflow of getting information from my brain into a searchable, taggable future-proof database that I can easily access when I work (I’m a TV and film writer, so often need to be grabbing for a character or scene idea from digital buckets I’ve amassed over the years.

Thanks in advance for helping out. Here’s my scoop –

I have almost all my notes on Bear (after importing from Evenote).Most have tags

Then I have a new batch of notes in Ulysses which I was trying out for the last month to see if I dug it (I did). **Most of these housed in a folder as seen below **

And yesterday I got nvALT. It’s awesome. Below is what i’d like to do and where I’m at with it…would love any and all suggestions for how to make this work and please let me know anything I’m not thinking about correctly / not thinking about at all. NooB to the productivity game y’all :slight_smile:

What I’d like to do:
Send notes to a master inbox via my phone and computer. Thinking of nvArt for this but open to other ideas.
Access all of my notes in Ulysses, ideally within a ‘group’ structure like what I’m starting to build in Ulysses.

Use Ulysses as a processing hub for all the info that comes in. I’ve tried both this and Bear and I think, overall, I’m more into Ulysses for longer term work. Anyone disagree?

Search for everything using nvArt thru most / all of my devices.

Why I’m stumped

  1. How do I get everything from Ulysses and Bear into a single folder on Dropbox?
  2. How do I export everything from Ulysses and Bear in the .txt format? And also, is that the best format?
  3. Can I get the tagging to play nice between the exports of the two things? And can I keep the ‘grouping’ thing or is that something that I’m ONLY able to access / create in Ulysses?

OK that’s all I got - thank you thank you thank you all for your help!


(Wilson Ng) #2

I know you can use an external folder in Ulysses

If you do a preview of a Ulysses sheet, you can tape on the App icon in the toolbar to choose an app to export to.

I use Ulysses because iCloud syncing appears instantaneously. It has tags and the Library is easy to work with. The Ulysses support site has a post about using Dropbox with Ulysses. It does note a few limitations of using Dropbox instead of iCloud syncing.

If I’m writing text and it has graphic images, I’d prefer to export to RTF. I usually preview in HTML and then use a Keyboard Maestro hotkey to

  • Select All
  • Copy
  • Go to TextEdit
  • Create new document in TextEdit
  • Paste
  • Save document

This lets me keep any graphic images I might have embedded in the Ulysses sheet.


I don’t use Bear so I’ll have to leave that to another person to describe that.


I think nvALT doesn’t really have an iOS equivalent so that killed it for me. Bear and Ulysses have both an iOS app and a Mac app. So I’d stick with those.

I vaguely remembering reading somewhere that Drafts 5 for Mac is coming out eventually. I can’t remember where I read that but my Google Fu seems to be off today. That would be something to look forward to if/when Drafts 5 for Mac comes out.


I’m biased. I decided to stick with Ulysses because I can use it on both iOS and Mac. I could imagine myself doing the same with Bear as well.

But nvAlt doesn’t get my vote because I don’t see an iOS app but Brett Terpstra seems to like 1Writer as an iOS equivalent. It’s his choice for nvAlt iOS equivalent app from 2015-2017.


I don’t know if it’s possible to preserve meta-data between exports. You’ll probably have to spend a three day weekend doing this. I know I did this before. Thankfully, I have Keyboard Maestro to help with repetitive actions.


(Joe Buhlig) #3

I think the core issue you’re going to face here is that nvALT uses file-based sync and Ulysses/Bear use CloudKit or a database sync. You can get around the issue using a DropBox folder like @wilsonng mentioned, but that won’t get you there with Bear since it uses a single database file to store everything. And last I knew, Bear doesn’t have a way to sync with anything other than iCloud.

That’s probably not the news you wanted to hear, though. :confused:


(Sasha) #4

Thanks @joebuhlig and @wilsonng - really appreciate it. Couple follow ups -

  1. To clarify, I am hoping to take all my notes from Bear and put them into Ulysses. Do you have recommendations for how to export everything out from Bear? Totally undrstand I may be in for a 3 day weekend of re-filing things.

  2. Will the Grouping structure of how I do things in Ulysses only be accessible within that app? Like none of that will move over to nvART right?

  3. Read you loud and clear re: nvART not having an iOS alt, but honestly I do most of my work on desktop / laptop and will be happy to use Drafts 5 or 1Writer to cover the gap. Which would you recommend?