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Show HN: Everything I Know Wiki (nikitavoloboev.xyz)
434 points by nikivi on March 23, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 119 comments

I do a similar thing at https://blog.kowalczyk.info/ (under "My external brain"), e.g. section on programming: https://blog.kowalczyk.info/article/d61b4f94b10d4d808d3d238a...

I build a custom toolchain to generate it.

All the content is stored in Notion (which is the fastest way I found to write and edit content).

I wrote a Go program (https://github.com/kjk/blog) to convert that to html and deploy as a static site to Netlify, on their generous free plan.

I also generate the rest of the website (mostly blog) from content in Notion.

Since the code is open source, others can adopt it.

This is really cool. One of the reasons I don’t use Notion is I love how portable raw markdown is as a format and that I can use Sublime Text with Vim mode to edit everything (which is super fast unlike Notion).

I also built a few workflows to retrieve information to both edit and consume my wiki easier.


I've had great luck using notion to start developing a personal wiki, seems like we're going to see more of Notion -> JAMStack work in the near future.

Interesting! What is Notion?

Looks like it's this: https://www.notion.so/

It wasn't clear to me how the data was exported, but it seems the author built his own library: https://blog.kowalczyk.info/article/88aee8f43620471aa9dbcad2...

I just began looking into Notion as an alternative to OneNote.

It appears that you can also export the majority of your data as shown here: https://www.notion.so/Export-to-PDF-or-markdown-ebb66c27de32...

I enter my email in the "getting started" field, click "getting started" and then never received a sign-up email. Anyone else having trouble with this?

Just hate another subscription service.

Really cool project. How do you differentiate between things that have been too internalized/are too obvious and things that are worth writing down? i.e. you don't have a section for basic algebra, because I can only assume you know that pretty well.

In similar vein to this tweet (https://mobile.twitter.com/dan_abramov/status/10272457592326...) I mostly try to organize files by topic. Some topics I didn’t come across so have no notes/links to share. Other topics may be included inside other files.

Before starting this wiki, I already got some experience in organizing and visualizing knowledge in some way with the Learn Anything project.

> move files around until it feels right

Which I find true too, modulo obvious conventions like bin/ doc/ public/ etc.

Using a system of personal knowledge management (PKM) has been a huge boon for me. Just the act of jotting down all my ideas whenever I have them (Google Keep), then dedicating time to structuring/curating them into an organized format (Microsoft OneNote), and then being able to quickly access them in the future has helped my retention and creativity immensely. I just see patterns I never would have recorded or remembered otherwise. Sometimes it's a pain to dedicate a few hours every weekend to structuring all this information but I've found the long term benefit to far outweigh that cost.

Aren't you worried that google or Microsoft will deprecate your personal library? Google isn't exactly good at keeping non-gmail programs in good shape and my original MS One note files simply do not open anymore. Do you at least keep a plain text file somewhere?

It just seems like such a delicate choice of software to use for something like your personal knowledge. Certainly a wiki of some kind would be better?

I had a similar thought to this. I was shocked that he was willingly and publicly making proprietary software such a part of his life, and I thought of emacs org-mode, but maybe he doesn't like that sort of workflow. I've only barely used org myself, but I've seen a lot of thoughtbot talks and such that make me feel like bringing it up in case someone goes farther with it than I did.

Thanks to GDPR now everyone can export all their data.

Interesting. After reading Siver's writing on this topic[1], and your comment, this is really something to get into.

Every once and awhile I'll re-read something that I "should" have retained and internalised (by my own standards) but that hadn't sunk into my long term memory.

[1] https://sivers.org/dj

This reminds me of the project ran by scholar Avery Morrow, "Everything Shii Knows."[0] He was an early Wikipedia administrator and one of the founders of 4chan. It was really interesting.

Great work OP, personal wikis are very cool! I wish there were more of them :(

[0] http://shii.bibanon.org/shii.org/knows/Everything_Shii_Knows...

It reminds me of Shii's wiki, too. Shii's wiki is not only a personal knowledge base, but also a piece of important documentation of Internet cultural history.

Unlike the pre-2000 Usenet era, Internet culture today (e.g. those on 4chan) is no longer systematic documented, and for better or worse, it has a significant influence to the "cyberspace" as a whole. But when people started to realize the existence of something, it's already too late to understand it, original records have been all lost... And people started shouting, "what the hell is going on?"

Written documentation like Shii's wiki is the rare treasure of a time capsule, a snapshot of the time. At Shii's wiki, 2006 never ends.

I'm particularly interested in the history of online culture of obscure political movements (including those crazy conspicary theorists and nationalists). It'n not that I'm morally approving their actions, but to me, they seem to be a new type of social organization in the information age. From Shii's wiki, written by a intelligent person who's observing and thinking about these topics, you can see many indications in 2006 about the status of things and how it's connected to the present day.

For example...

* How the Web was Lost


This 2006 article describes the upcoming demise of Internet utopianism. The massive commercialization was transforming the Internet to just another TV, telephone, or a shopping mall. It also mentioned how giving everyone access to information can have the side-effect of disintegrating information authority and good writing, and causes the polarization of extremes in politics.

> Will we ever have another Thomas Paine standing in the street, telling us common sense that changes our lives? Those are rhetorical questions. The answer is no. There will be no more shots heard round the world, no more revelations shocking the whole nation at once. The Web is a difficult freight train to turn around, and it will likely destroy those lines of communication.

These topics/issues are NOT identified and explored by the Internet personalities/analysis/mass media until recently.

For example, this article Why isn't the internet more fun and weird? (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19038327) was only posted on HN, two months ago. And What the Hell Is Going On? Effects of Information Abundance. (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19413852) was only posted on HN, 7 days ago.

Another example about politics.

* Project for the New American Century (http://shii.bibanon.org/shii.org/knows/Project_for_the_New_A...), Ron Paul (http://shii.bibanon.org/shii.org/knows/Ron_Paul.html), and NAFTA (http://shii.bibanon.org/shii.org/knows/NAFTA.html).

Before Donald Trump gets popular in 2016 on the Internet, this trend can be traced back to (1) free trade and globalization, (2) September 11th, (3) hatred of neoconservatism online, which caused (4) many to support Pon Paul, (5) whose supporters were later disillusioned. Then the (6) Great Recession and (7) Obama occurred. It was a very complicated chain of events, which were all partially documented in Shii's wiki.

The bottom-line is, I think Shii must have gained some deep insights about everything by reading through the endless shitposts on 4chan. I wonder if Donald Trump never ran for the president, it may take another 10 years for the common people to realize these issues.

If you are involved in some online community, please consider to create your personal knowledge base. 20 years later, it may become the only historical records of something.


How does on go on to finding the next shii , telling us what will happen next with such accuracy and insight ?

I think you've missed my point. I'm not saying that Shii was a wizard, oracle or prophet, and we should find the next one to predict the future for us. When looking back, things are often pretty straightforward and clear, hindsight is always 20/20.

Instead, what I'm saying is that, he preserved an important segment of the history for us by creating his personal knowledge base, especially that, it was written by someone who was an Internet-native, worked extensively on Wikipedia at its early time, and credited as one influential figure who shaped early 4chan. So we can use the material from his knowledge base to gain some insights about some parts of the undocumented history.

And I think it's another advantage of an knowledge base - it can provide a good record of history from a personal perspective, more comprehensive than a blog or diary.

This is great and extremely interesting. I imagine me and you (and many others here on HN) fall in the spectrum were many of our interests converge so reading some of the things you wrote is in many ways a different take on my own interests and chances of finding something new of interest are quite high!

On the other side of the spectrum we got "Things I don't know as of 2018" [1]. I really appreciate when people share what they do and don't know.

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=18780065

Back when I was getting my degree and was reading & writing a lot I got really enamored with the idea having an extensive repository of everything I had read or learned or simply come across and found interesting.

There are all sorts of software packages designed to facilitate this, I used DevonThink for a fairly long time. However, it never turned out to be nearly as useful or fulfilling as I had imagined going in and truth be told I just couldn't maintain the self discipline that the curation requires.

So now I have this ginormous unused data store that I don't want to mess with but nevertheless still can't bring myself to delete.

> I also started making YouTube videos as I find the video format is often superior to just text and words.

No. A thousand times no.

I don't see transparency as necessarily a virtue to optimize over everything else, or even a terminal good in itself.

Consider: Would it be wise for a CIA agent to run an "Everything I know" site? No, because they could be targeted through the information they blindly broadcast. I know you're not in such a high-risk role yourself, but do you never want to be important in the future, e.g. a CEO, founder, or a high-ranking software engineer?

Knowledge is power, and sharing unnecessary information to strangers will allow them to abuse it and you.

I don’t share what I perceive to me truly sensitive data (passwords, contacts, notes on people, my Focus board with goals, todos etc

I only share information that I find there is no harm in sharing. If someone finds it of use, that’s awesome.

I wrote an article about this mindset shift at some point:


It’s important to strike a balance though. We all know engineers and sysadmins who think that their value lies in the exclusive information/knowledge they have or data sources they control. Working with hoarders like that is toxic.

Agree with this 100%! The one thing I always try to optimize for in life is ability to solve problems efficiently.

And in my mind this means empowering everyone else around me so they can build even more awesome tools and ideas.

Great work! I did something with a similar approach, although it's just kind of a knowledge base for myself build with Jekyll and a little search function, called "My Sysadmin Cheatsheet": https://docs.j7k6.org

Did it mainly for myself, because I was tired of having to google for the same problem more than once, but decided to make it public to kind of share my knowledge with others.

This is fantastic! I love the live search results feature.

I don't suppose you have your source available with a free license?

EDIT: wait, I see it: https://github.com/j7k6/docs.j7k6.org

Thanks! I'm actually thinking about releasing it as a standalone Jekyll theme some time.

I'm not familiar with Jekyll. How much work was it to get your site up and running besides the posts' content?

I'd love to be able to run the same kind of site you are - a series of markdown posts with a live search frontend. Did you use a specific tutorial to do that? Is there a Jekyll live-search plugin or whatever it uses?

Am I the only one here that thinks this is all a bit creepy? The technical bits I get, but the parts on general life advice, especially the chapter on “seduction” give me a very bleak image of the OP’s actual life.

I might be wrong, the OP might be the happiest person ever: I’m just picking up a lot of different signals from this project and the writing in it.

"Creepy" seems judgmental.

Many (most? all?) single, heterosexual men are somewhat preoccupied with how to be attractive to women (the reverse is also true). Is this news to you?

I also have a negative reaction to you speculating about how "bleak" his life is. I see this project as an attempt at absolute honesty. And if we're being honest, doesn't everyone's life contain a fair amount of bleakness? We all have insecurities. We all suffer tragedies. We're all wrong about various things. Your comment seems basically uncharitable.

I wouldn't attempt to be honest about "everything I know" publicly, on the internet. But I think a little charity is in order towards those who do make that attempt.

I really connected with your comment, and it mirrors my personal attitude. Particularly this part:

> I see this project as an attempt at absolute honesty. And if we're being honest, doesn't everyone's life contain a fair amount of bleakness? We all have insecurities. We all suffer tragedies. We're all wrong about various things.

It is difficult to be genuine in this world, at least for me. I am afraid of people's judgements, whether real or imagined. It takes a lot of courage on the part of the OP to put out this sort of work, opening themselves and their beliefs to the scrutiny of anyone who chooses to read it.

Yes, it's judgemental. This is a discussion forum and this is my view on it, this is how I "judge" it. But honestly, I'm all for weird & quirky.

However, my response to reading this post and the blog/wiki was very different than some of the more positive responses here. Ergo, the counter argument. I didn't get the positive weird/quirky feeling, rather the opposite.

Imagine a student has finished reading something they wrote in front of their creative writing class. Someone raises their hand and responds with "Wow that was creepy. Your life must be pretty bleak".

Of course you're entitled to those thoughts, but I think it's a good idea to couch them differently or at least to get into the reason why you had that reaction.

I can understand a negative reaction to a project like this. There's some amount of narcissism involved in writing down everything I know and then publishing it. There's also some amount of narcissism involved in writing anything at all and assuming that other people will be interested in it. There's also narcissism in me reacting negatively to your comment and then criticizing your post, as if I have something worthwhile that I want to transmit to you. Yeah, yeah: "All is vanity". But we want people to write things down and share them, right? We want people to communicate, say what they think, and risk being wrong or creepy, right?

My general thoughts are, when criticizing something something like this, err on the side of charity. Negative reactions are fine, but couch them and explain them.

I can understand the "ick" factor - putting this much of oneself online, without any contextual filter, embodies a level of intimacy unusual with strangers. I don't think it's weird to find it discomfiting seeing notes about machine learning side by side with relationship advice. It feels like a bit much from one guy.

But I think it's very unfair to say it paints a very bleak picture of his life. I jumped straight to the Seduction section after your comment, half-expecting some kind of PUA crap. But it's just filled with the kind of solid advice you get from your dad. Maintain eye contact. Don't slouch. Be honest and genuine. Compliment effort, not intrinsic beauty. Flirt with body language and small amounts of touch, but don't be aggressive. It's all pretty standard, solid stuff.

"Maintain eye contact."

Well, you naturally want to look a woman in the eyes if you are genuinely attracted to her, it's hard to resist.

If you need a manual on maintaining eye contact, you probably just want to have sex with somebody, if not with this woman, than with another one.

The creepy part is that this section in wiki teaches you to simulate feelings you don't actually have in order to get laid and this directly contradicts the earlier section about being genuine.

The bleak part is that if you need to simulate attraction to a woman you are missing something very good in your life.

> If you need a manual on maintaining eye contact, you probably just want to have sex with somebody, if not with this woman, than with another one.

Or your path through life didn't teach you prevailing mating rituals. That "it comes natural" narrative is bullshit. Sure, will be the case most of the time. But, you know, human experiences are on a wide spectrum, with many of them fucked up in some way or another. And thus a lot of people can greatly benefit from finding help to improve themselves and thus their mental health. I'd generally consider this a good thing. Especially on such an important topics as finding a significant other.

It's great you apparently naturally learned communication protocols regarding flirting / body language / etc. And yes, PUA stuff can quickly become toxic and not be to the benefit of all involved. But that doesn't seem to be the case here. And you implying everyone who isn't a natural or wants to get better must be "simulating feelings" is just... disappointing.

"just... disappointing"

I'd bet that is not how you really feel.

"The creepy part is that this section in wiki teaches you to simulate feelings you don't actually have in order to get laid and this directly contradicts the earlier section about being genuine.

The bleak part is that if you need to simulate attraction to a woman you are missing something very good in your life."

Did you read the same part as I?

" the most important thing in any kind of relationship is honesty. In regards to seduction it is being honest with your intentions."

And the part about eye contact is not about simulating feelings, it is about what to focus for (those who are insecure), if you want to to get in deeper contact.

> you naturally want to look a woman in the eyes if you are genuinely attracted to her, it's hard to resist.

How are you certain this is universally true? Seems like a pretty clear case of the typical minds fallacy. For people that don't 'naturally' maintain eye contact with women they are attracted to, 'simulating' that behavior does not imply that any feelings are being simulated.

You need only google the phrase "eye contact hard" to discover that what you say is not universally true.

But I think you're tapping into something deeper, something I was going to respond to in my original comment, but thought better of it because you [edit: they] hadn't actually made the argument at that point. Now you've flirted much more closely with it, so I will say it:

There is a modern suspicion of the entire concept of teaching men how to raise their sexual value. There is a sense that it involves "faking it" somehow, or that it represents an unhealthy obsession, or means the man is only interested in sex. But it's this taboo which permits the distasteful 'PUA' community to flourish - it pushes the practice of self-conscious improvement to the fringes, where taboos are disregarded. It's a dangerous state of affairs when a man's best hope at improving their lot is toxic misogyny. Far better if there's easy access to good, practical advice that works, alongside a healthy worldview.

It's notable that the taboo is only for men - we don't assume a woman "probably just wants to have sex", just because she puts on lipstick (the purpose of which is to simulate attraction!)

(It would be interesting to further explore the sexual politics behind this taboo, and why the corresponding one for women is so much weaker, despite male noises about "preferring girls who don't wear makeup", and in particular how such taboos are powerful weapons in the 'battle of the sexes' that improve the ability to distinguish fitness levels in the opposite sex - but it's a fairly hot can of worms that I'd rather just allude to than attempt to untangle here.)

You are confusing me with another person.

Putting on makeup doesn't create an illusion of having emotions one doesn't really feel.

I'm sorry, I had noticed you weren't the same person, but must have somehow forgot it while composing my comment.

Anyway. The precise function of makeup varies, but the specific case of lipstick is, as I already alluded to, designed to subconsciously simulate attraction through the mimicking of flushed lips. That's pretty much exactly the "illusion of having emotions one doesn't really feel" - and far more directly sexual than merely holding eye contact.

"Faking emotions one doesn't really feel" is not why calibrating one's approach to eye-contact can be beneficial - in fact, these two things have basically nothing to do with one another! If anything, it's helpful to be able to conceal one's emotions before mutual attraction has been clearly established, lest an excessively overt emotional state be reinterpreted as aggression. (You know how people tell you not to make eye contact towards an aggressive dog, because the dog would see that as a challenge for dominance? Well, the relevant social instincts are still fairly active, even in humans. And yes, they can lead to unwanted screwups when you're meeting someone, e.g. for dating!)

I’ve lived by a similar philosophy for most of my life — to always be my genuine self. If a woman doesn’t find that attractive, then it wasn’t meant to be.

Unfortunately, this has resulted in me never having had a relationship, despite being well into my 30s now.

I have close female friends who enjoy my company, so I know I’m not completely repulsive to women. I don’t think I come across as creepy or desperate (I don’t even particularly care about sex). I just never learned the necessary skills for starting a relationship. I wouldn’t know what the early stages even looked like.

The likely future for me, if I don’t change something, is that I never find a partner. I’m not lonely or anything, I’m just worried that I’m missing out on an important part of the human experience. And I’m not sure how to remedy the situation without learning to fake what appears to come naturally to everyone else.

I have no idea what is really happening but as a wild guess, couldn't "I don’t even particularly care about sex" be the reason?

> Well, you naturally want to look a woman in the eyes if you are genuinely attracted to her, it's hard to resist.

I'm not sure if you're being serious here. Do you really think there don't exist any shy guys at all anywhere that find it hard to talk to attractive women or look them in the eyes? Seriously?

Other bits on that wiki page don't give an impression of a particularly shy guy.

Yeah, no. None of this is enough to decide whether he's any good at talking to women. Plenty of guys are social, but find it hard to talk to attractive girls.

Not too hard.

"And I like to approach girls I find attractive in real life (where appropriate) by saying hey and asking for their name."

This sentiment really, really bothers me. Yes, in reality humans are all sorts of weird, creepy, flawed, not super happy or good looking.

If this is what you risk when sharing on the internet, then maybe highly curated social media and the anxiety that it brings had it right all along.

We need more of this. More weirdness, more real human beings. If you don't like something, move along. Also, you never are the only one.

Well, this is a discussion forum. The OP posted this wiki a couple of times to HN. You get positive comments, you get other, less positive or more critical ones.

The "if you don't like it, move along" argument is fine in general and I support it 100%, but in this case a bit strange as posting something to HN is mostly to get responses / views / arguments, not just gushing adoration.

> Well, this is a discussion forum.

Absolutely. While I do mind your opinion, I don't mind you giving your opinion.

> The "if you don't like it, move along" argument is fine in general

There is actually a lot of issues that I would have people take a firm stance against more often, instead of just letting it slide. This just happens to not be one of them.

Not all comments are the same. Comments that are thoughtfully articulated and about the ideas rather than an unexplained character judgement of the author, detract from the discussion.

It's still better to know that you are disliked than not. Even without explanation, it gives you an idea that something on that wiki page is off and it needs more research :)

Consider this a diary + blog. You'd get creeped out reading anyone's diary.

I don't think OP is creepy at all, everything in here is normal and very honest.

Maybe the seduction page would seem more relatable if it actually were diaristic, talking about some real life experiences rather than “theory.”

Anyone who attempts to blog every single thing in their life is opening themselves up to showing off the less-than-perfect aspects of themselves. And that is what this site amounts to - call it a wiki, call it a blog, call it whatever you like, it is someone who spends a decent amount of their life self-documenting it.

I'd be far more likely to call them out on their Minimalism topic, as they clearly are far to the extreme on how much time they focus on documenting their life, which is not a minimalist pursuit.

Still, it is a personal site for a fellow human being, and I've always maintained that if someone if self-aware enough to make specific decisions on who they want to be, and how they want to live, they deserve respect for that.

Almost everything I know/find interesting is on http://handlr.sapico.me

HTML is possible through a tag, but adding Links is just faster then writing it down. Managing it through hierarchical/multiple tags makes it even more easier.

There's a bookmarklet for the browser and I can share it on Android through Tasker and autoshare

Another digital commonplace book. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonplace_book

This is pretty comprehensive. How do you manage to capture learning across devices? For instance when I find some interesting link on my mobile, I read and save it to Pocket but I don't like typing on mobile so I don't capture the gist of it like I do on desktop. And now my Pocket items are so bloated that I have no idea how to organize.

If you're on iOS, I can't recommend working copy highly enough: https://workingcopyapp.com

It's an awesome git client (event git-lfs) with an editor + preview engine built in, it also provides everything iOS can offer regarding 3rd party app/scripting integrations.

I try to process everything on my macbook as I am much faster on it. So usually I send myself stuff to Telegram’s saved messages and process it later on mac.

I also use Ulysses on the phone in cases I need to make quick edits. More details here:


Very cool. My thoughts went to the series Buckminster Fuller did called “Everything I Know”. [1]

What inspired you to do this?

[1] https://www.bfi.org/about-fuller/resources/everything-i-know

I wrote about my inspiration of starting both Learn Anything and this wiki in 2017 as a journal entry in the wiki itself.


Also: Jerry’s Brain [1]. As far as linking ideas, TheBrain software is unmatched IMO. Cross-platform and well maintained too.

[1]: https://www.jerrysbrain.com

Beautiful project.

If I understand the author’s motivations, they are likely to have written and maintain this largely for their own use. I also keep a lot of notes about things I know and information I may want to refer back to, but, I don’t have my notes in a form that would be of much use to other people.


This is my friend's wiki which also deserves some attention I think.

I hope he has that information backed up locally. It scares me when people invest so much time and effort into contributing to a closed platform.

This is very cool. I am working on a similar project since past 2 weeks but also plan on providing the resources(at least those which I think worked very well for me) to readers. It is kind of a no-nonsense guide to learning anything. Very inspired by this. Thanks

Its interesting to see how people reinvent this conept continually. This is cool and certainly useful for slices of knowledge, but I think sadly technology is still not at a point where this would be universally feasible.

Links and text is lightweight and searchable but rather fragile (because of external dependencies) and incomplete. I use a filesystem for this purpose, but that would be still cubersome to effectively share - I wish we'de be at a point where hundreds of gigabytes/mixed form of media are easier and faster to sync and manage.

I created a github repository[1] for my personal knowledge base. There are other people doing this too[2]

[1] https://github.com/azappella/knowledge

[2] https://github.com/RichardLitt/meta-knowledge

This is a great project. I've been attempting to achieve a similar goal but just by writing articles on topics I'm interested in. Even if its a synthesis of other things I'm reading or studying. Essentially trying to boil a subject down and re-explain it in a compelling way to help cement the knowledge.

This looks very cool. I would like to see a combination of Learn Anything and this wiki, but driven by a timeline, so that nodes align with the date they were created at. And then in addition, it would be amazing to have an option to explore other people's knowledge graphs. Is there anything like that?

I simply use a github repository but instead of being "everything I know" is kind of "everything I'm (actively) learning and can't find (minimalistic compiled) elsewhere". I have less will to document stuff that I already know or stuff that is easy to find in a palatable form.


I like this a lot and I wonder if it could work for me too. Currently, I use the iOS Notes app as my thought archive but it's obviously not very organized. One thing I notice about this project is that there are a ton of categories. Having so many categories seems to be poor organization because you're likely to have thoughts that overlap categories. Perhaps tagging would be a better method of organization?

I personally struggle at times to grasp some concepts being a first generation immigrant does have some effects but it’s also the lack of a deeper level of communication. Seeing something like this spelled out in front of me with every single little point about a person’s life choices is actually a really interesting way of peeking into someone else’s mindset. So thanks for sharing.

Anyone else use a paper notebook and writing long form? I somehow feel that it helps with recall/refresh better than a lot of the wikis Ive tried out? A lot of the times, one look at the page brings backs a photographic memory of the context under which those notes were made. Type/electronic note taking doesn't seem to cut it for me.

I'm a huge fan of writing in a paper journal, for more important stuff, i.e. blog posts, video scripts, I'll use my Surface Pro + some OCR to get a rough draft converted.

Something about the physical action of writing makes me retain information better.

When they design a human like robot they should give it this wiki to learn how to be more human. Or is it the other way round?

I really like this idea. I may steal it.

Thanks for sharing.

What's the best way to get up and running with something like this that's really easy to maintain?

He actually uses Gitbook https://www.gitbook.com/

I’ve been doing the same too https://www.aizatto.com/why-gitbook

Thanks for sharing both, but especially the second link.

There you said: "Organizing a lot of pages is difficult, even if nested..."

Any chance you've done, or know of an article titled something like: "GitBook - If I Knew Then What I Know Now"?

The idea is ultra-intriguing. But before getting started it would certainly help to not make the same mistakes others have already made.


GitBook is nice and I would recommend that if you want something that works good for you out of the box. I personally write markdown files with typora and then publish that to my own notes setup, which is simply mkdocs and some tweaks.

I thought the fact that GitBooks has search is a nice and necessary touch. I'm going to have to revisit the static site / blog generators. It's prefer to publish to GL or GH, as well as (for that I have in mind) be able to accept PRs.

I just throw everything in to text files, .pngs or .pdfs in a synced folder and find stuff by searching. One day I will try to organize.

This is what I do but that "one day" never seems to come...

Same here. I pull references out all the time though.

I figure at some point some subjects can be turned in to articles. Good retirement hobby I imagine.

I got really inspired by it a few months ago and created my own repository. Thank you for the idea OP.

About 10 years ago I wrote wiki software called Pylowiki (Pylons/Python) which I still use occasionally to write notes that don't really fit in my personal blog.

Demo of it here: https://www.foxhop.net

I love this! I'm a big knowledge hoarder myself. My brain is mostly written down in workflowy. I hope the day I die I'll be able to give friends/family members this one bug massive doc for them to peruse.

I do something similar at http://www.rodrigofranco.com/ — all using Orgmode exports.

Some more interesting discussion on personal wikis and workflows:


Why are those called wikis? “personal wiki” sounds like “collaborative website but with only one user”.

Probably because the term "wiki" is now also used for any website being made using a wiki engine.

Curious: what do you do for a living?

I am a software engineer. But I am trying to branch to other areas too where I can create value like music or art.

And where do you live where rent is 450 euros a month?

Den Bosch in Netherlands

Niki's wiki, right?

I also did this on joelx.com. See my philosophy links at top.

first, just want to say this is pretty amazing!

I detect traces of Jordan Peterson. ;)

The more things you try and do, participate in, and understand, the shallower your knowledge will be of any one of those things.

Generally this is true, but I think you are being dismissive by throwing this truism at his note taking attempt. The point of keeping a personal wiki, is tonote the things that has come to his attention and not to forget it and to come back to it later. Writing things down gives it a concrete form. Sometime I even force myself to write down things that I read and that is a reasonable cure for my binge reading procrastination. Even if you think it as just a glorified bookmark manager, it is more useful than your browser's bookmark manager . Many people who do not maintain a wiki may not realise that knowledge is incrementally gained and by having a wiki (or any place really) to note these things makes the process transparent and recallable.

A vast superficial knowledge, along with a good memory, the ability of making meaningful connections between far away domains is a scarcely distributed skillset and a quite valuable one in today's Western world.

I'd like to believe this were true. Personally I've found it very difficult to find paid work that allows me to exercise even a fraction of my general knowledge. My best results so far have been with underfunded startups who are trying to do too much with too little - they need people who can tackle a different challenge every week, because they can't afford to hire specialists. But it's not a spectacular way to build a career.

Of course there are other kinds of value than monetary.

Note that a wider knowledge base can lead to a deeper understanding simply by having more possible connections between ideas. Our brains love connecting the dots.

Not true. So if you are a JS developer who knows React and Vue you could learn Angular (same kind of thing) or learn Haskell (different) or Systems programming (different), and I assert the latter two things would deepen your knowledge of JS more than learning the library because they allow you to see JS through another lens.

Yes, but on the other side there is a chance to gain knowledge on a higher level, because of comparing different things and finding the common patterns. But this only really works well when those things are similar enough to have common patterns.

And from experience I think it's true that at some point one should move from being a jack of all trades to become a master of some things. But as big as the world has become today, the road to this has become even longer. I think today it's not so unusual anymore to search some years or longer for your calling to master.

However wordly wisdom can help you gain better models to process reality through.


Knowing a little about a lot of things allows you to generalize over them and learn new things faster.

For example, if you have dabbled in C++, Java and Python you are better placed to learn a new language than if you have exclusively used one of them. Even if your knowledge of that goes way deeper.

is that a good thing or a bad thing?

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