When comparing Gmail vs Obsidian md, the Slant community recommends Obsidian md for most people. In the question“What are the best personal Knowledge Base apps?” Obsidian md is ranked 1st while Gmail is ranked 30th. The most important reason people chose Obsidian md is:
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Best support for Gmail features
Since both the Gmail Android app and Gmail itself is made by Google, the app supports all features Gmail offers (like labeling/starring) and gets new features implemented early - usually as soon as they are announced.
Pro Incredibly fast, advanced & predictive search
Gmail brings much of the functionality and power of Google's search engine to the app's search. You can use operators such as label:, is:, OR, has: among others, define date ranges, limit search to specific groups and so on. And, you can do it all amazingly fast. The search will also try to predict what you're trying to search for before you've even finished your query and offer up those results.
Pro Google Drive integration
The app allows inserting files from Drive straight to email or uploading attachments to Drive before sending them out. It will also notify if the person you're sending the file can open the file or if you should change the sharing settings for that file beforehand. Finally, you can choose which one of your Google accounts you want visible in the app.
Pro Google Calendar integration
Pro Comes bundled with Android for free
Not only is the application free, it comes bundled with the Android OS by default so you don't even have to bother downloading it.
Pro Threaded conversations
Pro Safely automatically displays images
The app does not require a confirmation to show images as Google now hosts the images on their own servers making it safe. You can still disable the automatic displaying of images in the settings if you wish.
Pro Tabs to automatically organize your e-mail
Gmail offers the ability to automatically organize your mail into specific categories:
Each of the categories can be disabled and you can move your mail around from category to category or set your own rules which sender should be put in which category.
Pro Locally stored, not dependent on cloud
Pro Fast growing
It's becoming more powerful everyday, it seems like they add many functions within several days.
Pro Lightweight and very customizable
Pro Helps visualize personal knowledge in ways nothing else allows
Pro Fast development with regular releases
This allows you to link notes back and forth really easily.
Pro Markdown makes for flatter learning curve
Pro In-line tagging
Ability to tag-as-you-write and find each occurrence of a tag in the entire vault makes it very easy to organize and retrieve notes.
Pro Multiple Vaults
A Vault in Obsidian is like a database. Internal links and files are not shared across Vaults. Each Vault is opened with a separate instance of Obsidian. Each Vault can have its unique app settings and plug-ins. Useful if you have distinct/unrelated projects or "data spaces" requiring different workflows and data relations.
Pro Very easy to use and link notes, preserves the standard form of markdown
Linking notes is a game changing feature. Very easy to use and link notes. Their implementation of markdown doesn't deviate from the standard form of markdown and so the same files can be used by other markdown programs without any consequence.
Pro Infinite panes, split panes, lock panes
In Obsidian, pane = window = note = page
Obsidian allows you to open as many notes as you can fit concurrently in your screen. You can split a pane horizontally/vertically. You can lock/link panes so they scroll in sync, useful for and edit & preview modes.
Pro Cross-platform: works on Linux, MacOS, and Windows
There is no mobile app yet.
Pro Markdown rather than outline/blocks
Pro Functionality extensions with a growing number of plugins
Also open for anyone to develop their own extensions/plugins.
Pro Daily Notes with template
Daily Notes plug-in, when clicked, generates a new note with the current date. Great for journaling and reduces friction in your writing habit.
You can create a custom template for your Daily Note.
Pro Intuitive and easy to use with an excellent help system built-in
The app doesn't frustrate the user - the built-in help is excellent.
Pro Random note
A plugin that, when clicked, surfaces a random note from your vault.
Pro Slides for giving presentations from within Obsidian
Easily turn your notes into simple yet sleek powerpoint-style presentations by enabling the Slides plugin and adding the --- separator.
Pro Readable as it hides the [[ ]] around links when in Preview mode
This is a big difference, as having to read through long-form texts laden with [[links]] gives friction.
Pro Page previews on hover
When you hover on an internal [[link]], you get to preview the note without opening it on a new pane.
Page preview plugin must be enabled.
Pro Great onboarding experience
The onboarding consists of well-written help documentation (saved as a vault) served in small chunks and organized systematically so that you become familiar with all its features as well as get hands-on experience in real time.
Pro Multiple cursors
A feature unseen in other tools.
From the help doc, "This can be useful when modifying a lot of lines in the same way, for example putting - at the beginning of multiple lines to turn them into a list, or appending [[ to a series of links you’ve copied from elsewhere."
Pro Vim key bindings
Can switch on or off Vim key bindings in the editor settings.
Pro Can copy search results and paste as lists and/or links in a new or existing note
Pro Support for tags
Pro Community of developers building themes and plug-ins
Due to the tool being very developer-friendly, there are tons of cool developments being made to it by 3rd party devs.
Pro Not locked to a provider
No lock-in to a certain company - just markdown files on disk.
Con Sorting mail by Unread is unintuitive
Nearly every other mail app has a clear way to sort mail by Unread. In Gmail app you can do that only by typing “label:unread” in the search field.
Con Very limited HTML composing
Composing of HTML formatted mails is very limited. No inline images and only some basic text formatting options.
Con Focused mailbox
There should be a way to disable focus mailbox completely.
Con Too bright, no dark theme
Con Advertising has been added to the client
Con Too heavy
It should be lightweight.
Con Limited notification buttons
Con Changed theme and can't change it back!
Did it without permission and it looks terrible! Washed out look, solid white background with black lame fonts.
Con Search results are not good
Con No intrinsic p2p encryption option
Con No mobile app
Con No WYSISYG editor yet (like Typora)
But it's on the backlog, though.
Con No ability to add dates that link to a daily note, when that day/note may not yet exist.
Con Proprietary software lock-in
Creates dependence on the application with the promise that the content is yours but that cannot be entirely true without the application being free and open source software. You will end up altering the way you create the content to take advantage of Obsidian features and your processes will evolve for its workflows. This replicates the lock-in pain that people experience moving their highly personal information from one proprietary platform to the next when that initial platform stops serving them well, goes out of business, or becomes a bad actor.
Con No table editing yet
(Available as a plugin).
Con Still in beta
Con Pretty new software
At this moment there is a limited amount of resources / howto's available.
Con Needs to be polished
They still need time to fix some bugs.
Con Requires .md files
Can't read .txt or other plaintext file formats. Can't read asciidoc files.