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  • Back to physical books

    I've been a long-time user of Kindle and Audible, with a few physical books thrown in here and there in an attempt to determine my preference between physical or digital formats. I think the truth is that I like both, as each has its advantages. Digital is convenient. There is no doubt that the … read more

  • What I Use - PKM Tools - August 2023

    I find it beneficial to periodically review the tools I'm using. Reflecting on the current state and observing how things evolve has been insightful. These are the tools I'm using as of August 2023. My workflow is very simple. Readwise Reader I use Readwise Reader for nearly all of my consumption, … read more

  • Apps promise to boost our “Second Brain” with AI, smart links, and tricks, but I think our “First Brain” should rely less on external tools, except for practical reasons. The “Second Brain” is better suited for storing information we don’t need to remember. Apps should assist us, not lead us.

  • RIP: The External 🧠

    If you’re a photographer, take more pictures. If you’re a writer, produce more text. The tools will work themselves out.

    I still capture things for “reference” but less than before. I find my notes app today is more for writing documentation and other content. It’s for creating not archiving.

  • New isn’t better, and you’re not the exception 

    The biggest problem with changing tools is that it feels like progress. You suddenly feel like you’re getting something done, but you’re not. You’re merely shuffling deck chairs, but it feels like you’re making progress.

    Curtis talks about how switching tools can feel productive. I’ve indeed fallen into this trap (and am still falling).

    Focus on the system and not the tools. Track your problems and only switch tools after evaluating and making an informed decision.

  • Dev builds perfect note-taking system which only stores info about building note-taking systems

    After many months of building, Miriam started to use her system in full-power mode only to realize that the only information she researches, stores and references is all about building note-taking systems. Moreover, the system, though flexible and extendable, seems to be tuned to store that type of information only. Any other kind of data makes the system unstable and finicky.

    This was me a couple years ago. 😂

  • File over app

    File over app is a philosophy: if you want to create digital artifacts that last, they must be files you can control, in formats that are easy to retrieve and read. Use tools that give you this freedom.

    Another vote for using local files that you can control when it comes to your apps.

  • Rethinking my use of Apple Notes

    I’ve always struggled to commit to using Apple Notes as my main notes app because it is difficult to get notes out. While some apps and tools are available to help with bulk exporting from Apple Notes, it still feels like a lock in. The other reason is, while I think Apple notes is great for … read more

  • I’m playing around with Obsidian Publish again since they cut the price in half and pushed out a few updates. Your published notes can now have permalinks, which means the URL won’t change even if I reorganize my notes. This is a big deal for me!

  • Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte

    My notes on the book Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte. Overall, the book is solid. If you already have an organized digital system, you may pick up some tips from the book to help you think through your current setup. If you have no system, then this system is a great place to start, as it is … read more

  • Evernote now supports backlinks

    Evernote 10.51.7 has been updated with backlink support. This means you can easily add links to other notes, and the backlinks will show you which notes are linking to the current note. A previous update made adding links to other notes easier through a menu option (and keyboard shortcut). These … read more

  • A book review of Antinet Zettelkasten by Scott P. Scheper

    Finished reading: Antinet Zettelkasten by Scott P. Scheper, 📚 a book about how to create an analog Zettelkasten (slip box) that acts as a “communication partner” for thinking and creating. After seeing a couple of videos from Scott and keeping up with his website, I expected this book to be a deep … read more

  • Ghost in the Box

    This interesting essay explores the “Ghost in the Box” metaphor and how it applies to a Zettelkasten. The main idea (as I understand it) is that when you build a complex system of notes, they appear unfinished and confusing when others view them, but to you, they’re useful and full of insight. It is … read more

  • Bending Spoons purchased Evernote

    Evernote announced Bending Spoons, a developer of mobile apps had acquired them. Bending Spoons is known for (or not known for) its mobile apps, including, Splice, Remini, and 30 Day Fitness. Like many, my first thoughts were, “this doesn’t make sense. Evernote is doomed!”. However, Bending Spoons … read more

  • My struggles with writing

    Writing what’s on my mind is something I struggle with. I think the issue is not the writing itself; it’s the distractions and mind wandering. I have difficulty focusing for a long enough period to produce something worth reading. Even when I get on track and start writing something, I lose focus … read more

  • The true purpose of a Zettelkasten

    A Zettelkasten is a German word that translates to “slip box.” The term became used to describe a particular workflow that Niklas Luhmann used to publish about 50 books and 550 articles over his career. Many great articles are out there describing Niklas Luhmann’s Zettelkasten system. As well as a … read more