Notepad in ArcMap

07-16-2013 04:06 PM
Status: Open
Labels (1)
New Contributor II

Add a Notepad under the Windows menu in ArcMap to record notes in or about the current project. It could be used to remind youself where you left off last time you were working on a project, what you have done in the project, what you need to do, how you did something or instructions for someone you are passing a project off to.
After a long weekend or vacation it is hard to remember where I left off so I currently add a text note from the Drawing toolbar in my Data view. Some examples of things I would record on the Notepad are:

* complex queries strings
* complex calcualtions strings
* complex definition queries
* notes about what you have done to a layer in a project
* notes about where you left off editing data in a project
* notes about what needs to be done to a layer or in the project
* instructions for someone to do in a project
* a python problem or workaround to figure out for a new tool you are creating

Allthough tiny in size - How about using the "Description" field on the "General" tab of the data frame?  I don't know how much text this can hold.
Metadata is supported for map documents. If the description box (which can hold quite a lot) doesn't meet your needs, you may want to consider using the metadata editor (right click the mxd in the catalog Window; pick Item Description).
I just wanted to post the exact same idea. Personally I would also rather have a seperate tool that lets me add some extra data like the ones suggested. Of course I can create a TXT file and put the wanted data in it. But something more professional would be great. I am imagining something that is implemented in the MXD file and allows some formatting of the text. Not as powerful as an office program but essential like Wordpad.

In other words, I would like to implement a wordpad document into the mxd project.

Referencing Notes Bar (Like in Power Point) in ArcMap‌ as this is very similar.


Saw this while searching for a way to buy an ESRI notebook after the UC.  This has been a wish of mine for a long time and came up with a clunky but effective work-around: I add a text box to the layout, off-map, and make any needed reminders in it.  Usually about some labeling hack or special legend formatting that I will have forgotten the next time the map needs updating.  It has worked well for me.


2022 update: one convenient, visible option for reminders, workflow info etc is to create a group layer in the TOC.
You can rename the layer with a short tag describing the info.  Or, if you already have group layers organizing your content, just add 'SEE METADATA' or something to the layer name.
Then put your notes in the metadata for that group layer.
To avoid clutter, I often overwrite existing feature classes when re-running an analysis, which sometimes make existing feature layers vanish and reappear in the TOC.  So I appreciate that info in group layers remains safe.