I'll have to download this and give it a try, and compare it to my current workflow.
(I use org-roam on Emacs. I'm not sure if people are sick of org-mode and Emacs being mentioned on HN? I worry about becoming the stereotype of "how do you tell if someone is a Vegan (or uses Emacs)?" "Don't worry, they'll tell you". I don't want to derail any discussion though!)
For those of you wondering about Zettelkasten and knowledge management, I suggest you start by reading "How to Take Smart Notes" by Sönke Ahrens: https://takesmartnotes.com/ and https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/34507927-how-to-take-...
Systems like Zettelkasten are interesting to read about, but again, everyone's brain is different and for me a bunch of folder categories and one misc/daily folder is just as good.
On a purely personal level, any tooling or system more complex than what I already use is unnecessary.
I do use an app called Joplin because it can sync to some cloud services with End-to-End Encryption directly within the app, has a mobile app available for Android and iOS and because it includes some other features I find useful when I want to polish my notes and include some diagrams using MermaidJS.
<b> and <i> and the syntax of <table> are a lot easier for me to remember than some weird funky *'s and |'s. <img src=""> is also plain obvious, compared to some weird !@() BS that I can never remember.
Top it all off with a custom CSS file and I'm done.
My text editor, also VS Code, has extensions for Markdown live preview, to-do lists, and other conveniences - everything I need to manage the "knowledge database".
In the terminal, `find` and `grep` are perfect for searching notes. I have a few aliases defined for quickly adding new single-line notes, current date/time, paste a link and title, etc.
As a higher-level interface, I wrote a little React app / Node.js server that renders the Markdown files, with hot reload on changes. Not necessary, but I like having a "personal dashboard" of sorts, with calendar and whatever feature/widgets I want to add.
I also join the chorus, that we ought to welcome more exploration in the area of knowledge management. I love seeing new systems, open-source projects, applications, SaaS (though not as much) taking on this problem space.
Since the days of index cards, through Vannevar Bush's Memex, Ted Nelson's Xanadu, Englebart's mother of all demos, HyperCard.. In some ways I think the past decade took a step forward and a couple steps back. The personal computer, as an augmentation of the human intellect, has creative potential yet to be explored.
Edit: A recent one I found delightful is the Johnny Decimal System.
There's lots of work in progress on the site and the system, I just need to find more time. In the mean time, always happy to help. Contact details are on the site.
I recently learned about the Johnny Decimal System, while doing some "research" following links on Zettelkasten and other systems.
I found your system brilliant, how simple you kept it, with consistent, easy-to-remember rules. I like that it has no dependencies on service/platform or language, it's generic in the best sense of the term.
As I was reading, I immediately started creating a folder structure, and took notes (in area "00 System" :).
Interestingly, I felt that the system builds on how people already keep folders and notes in ad-hoc categories - and giving it a few organizational concepts to standardize the structure. Like, I have a big nested folder of notes spanning years, and migrating them to a newly started decimal system, it's giving all notes a canonical place, with a defined schema/model/taxonomy.
As I wrote in the parent comment, I have a few aliases for shell commands, like find by file/folder name, grep to search notes, a shortcut to add a note. I'm now thinking of adapting them to the decimal system, so I can, for example, list all categories in an area, or add note to a category. I live in the terminal (and code editor), so having such shortcuts, usually of 1~3 characters, makes note-taking a natural, effortless step. I like that you have a page for such workflows from the terminal:
For feedback, one thing comes to mind that could help beginners like me, would be examples on the site, like downloadable template(s) of common project organization. I had difficulty coming up with a sensible structure of categories - in fact, the "root" project where I'm moving my existing notes to, the foundation is still not stabilized, deciding where everything should go. It might help if there were some examples or ideas of categories, that could be copied and adapted.
I created a tool to automatically structure files into a directory tree based on file dates because of this: github.com/zikani03/groupby
It is really great to see more attention given to this space. That and personal relationship management tools (e.g. Monica)
I think the something missing in Notion is keyboard shortcuts and overall feeling that it does not feel fast enough. For example navigating to a page and then jumping between pages requires more steps than I am comfortable.
Very easy to write notes in VSCode and render them by native render.
I'd say the most valuable thing these tools provide is a way to link notes. That's the part that was missing from most of my attempts to build my own knowledge base, creating connections between the things I find and store in a way that's personal to how I think.
In the end, my ZK is nothing but a folder filled with md files that are all linked with each other in some way. It's synced to my phone and my tablets, so I always have them with me and I can always amend or work on them.
I find that folders/tags inevitably just run into the issue of notes not fitting into any particular schema. So often time I just use the search function, or use a particular note that consist mostly of only organized links. This way I can have multiple schema of organization even if they overlap. Or rather, overlap is a good thing. It means you have multiple ways to find a given subject.
E.g. our company implemented the use of Zettelkasten in a randomized trial and engineering efficiency improved by x% in the experimental group compared with y% in the control group.
It seems like much of the ecosystem is like some areas of the Linux ecosystem, where the goal is more to focus on getting the tools and process just so than on the impact the tooling has on actual productivity.
Research outcomes are almost impossible to measure in the first place (see debates about citation metrics).
Qualitative research would be somewhat useful, but there's issues with that approach too.
Maybe "developer ergonomics survey results" is one definition of the goal is just for people to feel more in command of their area of work.
What makes these kinds of notes work is the purpose they are written for, and the links. Two people can have the exact same notes, but link and tag them completely differently, because each of them will have different goals and purposes.
I was looking into writing a simple tool, preferably a bash script I can use cross-platform, which creates a new markdown file with named with today’s date and opens it with $EDITOR.
This way I can also hook it to other tools, such as alfred pr albert.
Basically a button in the interface. You click on it and it creates a markdown file with today's date (example: YYYY-MM-DD). If one already exists, it just uses that one. You can also have a template that will be used when a new note is generated.
What I mean by the next level is something like:
- when I pick up a new e-book, show me the chapters that have new ideas that I'm not familiar with yet, so I can skip the things I already know
- let me see how my ideas/opinions on a given topic were evolving through time, which encounters have influenced them
- let me publish a slice of personal knowledge base for others to explore, let me see what my friends published (better social media?)
I share this happiness...It often feels like so many people assume this is a solved sort of area; But i believe it is not.
It's very hard to come up with a good, simple mechanism that lets you look at notes from both of those perspectives and to mix those two levels (i.e. "show me the high importance notes organized by subject")
One associated challenge is that we don't really have a good way of knowing importance of information ahead of time, so an additional problem is to come up with good heuristics for estimating importance based on other factors.
My co-founder and I worked on our product in this space for two years before we released it, and we still have a huge list of features and ideas that we'd like to integrate.
The problem is that everyone's brains work differently / everyone has a different workflow, which is I think why we're seeing such an explosion of tools in the space. We've tried to address that with our app in a variety of ways, but it is very much an uphill battle.
The only markup I use are: links, lists, bold/underline/strikeout, embedded images?
What am I missing?
EDIT: Oh, and just this last week, I found it couldn't understand that I wanted to use "set up" as a verb, instead of "setup", the noun. Constant underlining when underlining was neither necessary nor desired. Apparently when I told Docs a month ago to avoid critiquing my grammar (via its Settings), it took my mandate as merely an ephemeral suggestion.
As for autocorrect - you can turn that off in Tools->Spelling and Grammar.
You can get used to it, but I prefer more snappy experience.
1. If we have time to enter something into a knowledge base of any kind - then we have time to just jot it on a piece of paper.
2. If we dont have time (or think it is important at that moment) then what solves the problem for us is not a knowledge base, but search.
You see the thing about Google and Facebook etc, is that if they were collecting all this information about me, and it was treated like medical information about me it would be far more useful to me (and far less useful to Advertisers).
I want a web browser that remembers every single page I have visited (#) and then lets me search them. Then someone could write a spaced reminder thingy for me - spent more than 5 minutes on a web page did he - he will want to refresh that page in 2 weeks and then 4 months.
Yes, knowledge bases are excellent for clearly defined study efforts - like y'know, university, but for the rest of life, explicit note taking is a cost that we need some activation energy barrier for.
Put it this way, once upon a time I had a study book for a new programming language, and i took notes of interesting examples on a ring binder. But the last time I learnt a new language I just relied on Google finding me the relevant StackOverflow pages - my cost/benefit line had changed.
(And notes just got dumped into a text file.)
(#) Ok maybe not those pages
There are problems with search: you have to know to search for something, and you have to know how to search for it. In some cases this is an issue, in some it isn't. I have had many times over the years where I reviewed my notes and reminded myself of things I had completely forgotten. Search is useless in that case.
But in any event, there's no conflict between a knowledge base and search. They are different things and you can search a knowledge base.
There is a kind of generation gap here I think.
I have 3 devices at arms reach while writing this, but it would take me 5 min to find a working pen and a blank piece of paper.
If I used it pen and paper more it would be closer to me now, but it would be the same wherever I go. Then I’d need to capture that paper or bring it with me until it has no value anymore, which is a PITA.
Our current society is tending to a paperless state, writing stuff on paper is just not fast, natural or reliable act anymore.
It's just a different way of organizing one's life. I spend enough time in front of the computer, sitting at the kitchen table to jot down notes or sketch out a project idea works better for me than trying to try the latest XYZ digital notebook app.
quick update, found it: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=23668507
Great point. I often see people sharing strategies for organizing notes but I rarely see people discussing how they get stuff down in the first place. And there's a lot of improvement we can make here.
I wanted to add more modularity to my jot-downs so that it would be easier to organize them later, one small step at a time. I found that I can get this modularity by writing my notes as if I'm texting myself.
(Working on a tool  that has this sms-style interface with keyboard shortcuts for purging my notes and organizing. would love your feedback).
I then have derived categories from the main stream of thoughts. If the thought is a task, I further process these into categories. I have recurring tasks and events that I handle on a "Time" page that is effectively a calendar, and I have one-off tasks that go into a Kanban style backlog.
What I really got from Zettlekasten is that trying to establish your system upfront is a mistake. Things inevitably leak through your categories and then you lose faith in your system. By just having a running stream of thoughts and then relating them after the fact and deriving categories afterward, you get the benefits of organization without a lot of its failure modes.
Do you create a new raw text file for each note? How long does it typically take you to do the organizing process?
> trying to establish your system upfront is a mistake. Things inevitably leak through your categories and then you lose faith in your system.
I don't know if it's a mistake. I think you need to embrace the fact that your current system won't be perfect, and you'll need to adjust as you go. It doesn't mean you shouldn't start with something.
The organization process is wholly dependent on how much I come up with in a day/week. I mostly read for fun now, so I don't have to rigorously organize lecture notes or anything like that for later use. On the other hand I'm pretty rigorous with how I process tasks. As a ballpark figure I'd say 30-60 minutes per week, or 5-10 minutes per night.
To your latter point, I think that's fair. The main idea is to be flexible and recognize when you need new categories or whatever (and when you can dump unhelpful ones).
> I do create a new text file each time, although it's sort of arbitrary what I group.
It's great that you do what works for you without obsessing. Too often people chase after a rigid/"perfect" system and that's just not realistic.
In my experience, the more modular you can go (without it stopping your flow), the better. Because it'll be easier in that organize step.
I've found that by thinking about my raw notes as a chat with myself, I'm able to increase the modularity without hurting my flow.
Did you check out WorldBrain's Memex <http://worldbrain.io/> browser extension yet?
I couldn't agree more with your second point. Search is probably even more important than taking notes in the first place. I find myself searching through my notes multiple times a day, even if it's something you can find at Google at the same speed. But my notes are mine, meaning I know what I can't remember or in which form I need some piece of information. Sometimes, I write a long article about something and other times some bullet points are good enough. When I share my notes on a team/organization I try to make sure the context is clear. It's a bit like code: it's read by an order of magnitude more often than written/changed.
We built Emvi  to make note taking more collaborative and with focus on searchability and ease of use. I hope I can write more about this topic on our blog. In case you have ideas on how to solve these cultural problems, please let me know.
I’ve begun building a knowledge base that is built around a Google-search interface but with closed-world assumptions, such that it can only answer questions and provide results that I should know myself.
In this sense it’s another take on “second brain” tools, but to me it’s potentially a novel angle, using search with closed-world restrictions (ie. much fewer documents, personally stored and indexed) and a question-answering focused interface.
Most other tools focus on the authoring side of things, but I want something that will superpower my memory.
It’s all closed source until I get it going well, but I’ve set up http://rememex.org.
My own system (which is an entirely physical one) is designed around this principle; each step is designed to make me engage with my own recorded thoughts in a different way:
- Every note gets written on an A5 sheet of cardstock, with a unique slug written in large print at the top of the card. The bottom ~(1/3) of the card is reserved for cross-references.
- After writing a note, I look through the file box of existing notes for 2-3 related ones; these become the initial cross-references and are notated on both cards.
- The new card gets photocopied, and the original placed in the file box, ordered alphabetically by the slug/title.
- The copy gets turned into a flashcard by blacking out the title and put in a Leitner box (a physical spaced-repetition system)
OpenSource powaaaaa! :)
> Also overtime that graph grows too big to be visually easy to see patterns etc.
That is kind of the point with Zettelkasten (the method on top of which Obsidian and RoamResearch is built up on.). You have a huge repo where you see connections you didn't before.
The key for me is a) plain text files I can manage myself i.e. no database or mandatory custom sync; b) markdown.
Apps will come and go. You might decide to switch platforms and maybe a new editor will come along sometime. This means you want a format that can be opened by anything (plain text) but with lightweight markup that the editor can parse to make it look nice, but you can also parse with your eyes and get a reasonable sense of the document structure (markdown).
Then it's all about search. There's no point making notes if you can't find them. This is where something more than Markdown - that allows you to link notes - is handy. It's what is appearing more and more in the likes of Roam, Obsidian, etc.
I ultimately chose iA Writer on macOS because it is lightweight and really nicely designed, plus has good native support for Markdown. I sync using OneDrive but you can use anything because they're all individual files. iA Writer is also native, and I find most Electron apps to be slow and/or buggy. There are exceptions e.g. VS Code, but I prefer native where possible.
The most recent incarnation (v3) fits your two criteria well and its plugin system is very versatile. Sadly cross platform supports only came with version 3 and that means saying goodbye to the small Windows native downloads, but it's not an Electron monstrosity.
Just a long time fan and always feel a bit disappointed that it never comes up in these kind of discussions :)
(And in a pinch, away from my own machine, StackEdit is great.)
Yes, it's NW.js instead of Electron, but that's still an almost 100MB framework (and the >50MB sounds directory doesn't help much either). It's also closed source, though the documentation is hosted at GitHub: https://github.com/writemonkey/wm3/wiki/Documentation .
The sounds are from the zen/focus software trend days, when you have minimal distractions from the interface and background noise loops built in.
Just strange stuff like that.
I ended up switching to Bear for notes.
I use iA Writer for writing longer form stuff like documentation and where I need to work with files directly. It's a great app.
To sync, I use a git repository (you can set a watchpoint on macos and linux to any directory to invoke a command on changes, so I just invoke git and commit).
I've tried hacking my way around this but to no avail. It's gotten to the point that I've finally started seriously looking and testing alternatives. Nothing has come close to replicating the feature set and UI workflow.
(I do realize that I'm an odd niche use case where I use all 3 platforms regularly (Linux, Apple, Windows) and it why it's been difficult to find a suitable replacement.)
My use case - I want to add images to the text and then export it in some kind of everyday format like html and send it to my friends. I sent it to my friend one of such but he was not able to see any images.
Add Magit and you're good to go:
Emacs is a quirky beast, but these two packages alone make it worth the effort to learn.
Wait until you start reading news ... oh wait, elfeed ... never mind.
Well, you get the point ;-)
Just don't install a kernel - emacs already comes with an OS :P
I swear all these other folks trying tool x, y, z are only doing so because they haven't found org. It's a bit cryptic to get started but totally worth the effort.
So I switched to Zettlr and never looked back.
Would they have allowed the personal one-time bought license to use in professional working, I would have sticked.
The personal license is no longer a subscription (if it was ever, I don't really remember), but the commercial license still is, even for non-Enterprise.
Yes, it's totally vendor locked in and I do hate that. And no syntax highlighting for code is annoying. Lack of markdown is a pain. And it's bug-ridden and closed source.
But I've been using it for my work daily journal and knowledge capture for a few years now, and it's so fluid and easy to jot down or scribble a quick note and find it later that it's hard for me to imagine going back to a basic Markdown editor. It's the closest thing I've found to a searchable paper lab notebook.
And btw I'm a hardcore Emacs user for the last 40 years. Org mode is great, but for me, OneNote kills it in expressiveness and fluidity of idea capture and recall.
If someone makes a Markdown editor that supports pen/tablet ink drawing and multiple text blocks on a page, I'd be interested.
Also, pages in OneNote are allowed to have 2 levels of indent. More than that you can organize with traditional folder structures. The difference is that a less indented "parent" page can still have content; a folder does not contain content on its own.
I would strongly recommend OneTastic as it adds quite a few missing features from stock OneNote (crop image, calendar view, etc.)
For Zettelkasten (and research more generally) Stroll  is a flavour of TiddlyWiki that has many of the features you'd like, including (most crucially for me) backlinks.
Edit: the reason I brought up TiddlyWiki here is because I tried Zettlr and while I see how some people would like it, I certainly didn't.
I switched to monthly journals rather than daily as with daily there were just too many small tiddlers. I think you need a lot of discipline to categorize every thought you get in a nice hierarchy, and that takes time. I've started using the "Excise" command for that in TW, that lets you pick some existing text and move it to another tiddler, maybe adding a link (here the backlinks would help, so I might upgrade to Stroll, if possible)
Is there a tutorial you used to help your set up?
I would recommend reading How To Take Smart Notes and really internalizing the information there, I started off way too fast and ended up with too many tiny notes. It takes practice but its definitely worth it.
It hits the sweet spot for me:
- Plain Markdown files stored in git; exactly what I am used to for code.
- Editor is VisualStudioCode, which I always have open, and can configure however I like.
- No vendor lock-in.
I really don't get why I can't just point to any Git repo for syncing purposes.
Not only that but I can’t see anything to stop you setting it up in a more typical cloud file syncing service (e.g. Dropbox) directory and having everything happen effortlessly in the background?
I can make pretty much the same argument for say, vim or emacs, and say that plain markdown + fugitive/magit hits the sweet spot.
I am just trying to understand where's the vendor lock-in thing coming into the picture here.
Maybe you can share a bit about how you organize your written down knowledge?
I use metadata sections in the header of each document to organize and configure it.
The documents themselves are structured differently depending on their topic. My journal document is a long running single document with timestamps. Other documents are structured in paragraphs, others are simply bulleted lists. Of course, everything is linked by tags, which are the core organizational mechanism.
I've found that rigid organizational structures don't lead to better outcomes. It's best to let the structure develop naturally through tagging.
So... this looks like something that could be really great! But there's a lot of friction still to having it get out of the way and let me be organized.
I was really surprised when I discovered it, as I've been looking for the "perfect" note-taking system for a while and VNote was never mentioned. It checks all my boxes: in-place preview of markdown, is open source, automatically copies images to your notes directory, has ability to add file attachments, is customizable with different themes, is programmer-friendly (has VIM-mode), and it's native (no Electron!) And it looks great with the dark theme. It doesn't lock you in to its software as in the end, it's just markdown files and media files.
It doesn't have Zettelkasten support, but it does do tagging and its search capabilities are comprehensive (includes regex search.)
I am not affiliated with the project -- just a happy user :)
* tables (2 or 3 columns depending on type, often using sort by column 1 or column 1+2 to keep relevant information grouped);
* preset formatting for different styles (snippets, commands);
* navigation using ToC (on a sideway navigation pane which is always visible);
* auto-generating anki flashcards from the content with no modifications;
* inserting external media;
I've used different methods to keep a single synchronized copy depending on work tech restrictions, i.e. nfs over ssh, sshfs, vpn via vm. Nowadays working from home I just keep everything locally.
What are the selling points to drop all that and move to something else?
* bold words, indicating you should recall info within;
* command explanations from tables, indicating you must think of the correct command;
* other text prepended a specific word of style;
it's really up to you to make rules. Once a split is done, dump the parsed html into txt and load from anki and you get 1 anki file per directory, with cards split by heading, but grouped by file name, i.e. https://imgur.com/a/NgBzI15
Would it be correct to say that most of these tools are identical to Wiki software with one exception: the ability to see "what linked to this"?
What makes Roam Research different is "block addressing", i.e. you can get a reference to a single paragraph and use it in other docs (either referencing it or embedding it).
(and of course a nice UX for editing)
Side: I've read books and articles in an attempt to understand what sets it apart from other techniques.
I know Niklas Luhmann used it to write tons of books and articles, while others claim to have been able to use it as a "second brain".
But I'm still having trouble understanding how to deploy the Zettelkasten technique effectively -- a lot has been written about the technique, but not much has been written about actual use cases where someone has used it to accomplish something useful, which they couldn't have as easily or at all without Zettelkasten. Due to the lack of examples, I'm trying understand by analogy, by comparing Zettelkästen to something familiar like Wikis.
It would be correct to say that a personal Wiki is a modern way to implement a Zettelkasten system . Zettelkasten (Slip-Box is the literal translation from the German) is a paper-and-pen system where personal notes are written on index cards and stored in a box (like the library card catalogs of yesteryear). The trick to building the knowledge graph is giving each card a unique identifier and having a convention for referencing other cards.
Apple Notes and other similar products are simply missing the ability make links to other notes.
Zim doesn't use Markdown as it's native or input syntax, but can copy text as md if you so wish.
Honestly one of the most underrated, understated tools I've ever come across, and one I would hate to have to live without.
- when I type towards the end of a document, the page jumps out of focus, very annoying. The rest I can kind of live with.
- I'm not loving there's no G Drive sync
- the local disk sync are not original MD files plus a temp file but a bunch of files.
- I can't resize the mid partition in order to see more original md
- Can't type on right view panel
- panels not sync'd horizontally at the line we are at (this may not be possible)
I am interested in using Joplin exclusively and use both apps currently. The Standard Notes development team is nice but refactors happen too frequently and estimates are rarely (never) produced, even though the product is paid Open Source.
I then bought a 5 year plan of Standard notes which is not as user friendly as Joplin (in my opinion) but has some cool features (like the spreadsheet extension which is awesome). However, as mentioned, without being able to just paste images it's more or less useless for preparing blog posts or something like that. You need to use "fileSafe" I guess but for this you need Dropbox etc.. Other features missing in Standard Notes are simple drag & drop of folders and context menu...
Synchronization in Joplin concerned me too. E2EE is non-trivial to setup and Joplin will upload decrypted files if E2EE is misconfigured on a device. Encryption appears to be an afterthought in Joplin.
Standard Notes looks snazzy but too many features fail to work. I cannot get paste to work consistently on my mobile devices, and you're right - the editors are a an absolute mess. File Safe is only supported in unsupported editors and the supported editors lack basic features. FYI, the spreadsheet editor unsupported and exporting sheet data is...difficult.
I do not recommend Standard Notes anymore. Thanks for pointing out a need for external backups in Joplin though!
If I didn't care about sync, I would use org-roam or some Vim plugin, personally.
First of all, congratulations on shipping a decent, polished Android app! These increasingly seem to be a rarity these days.
Regarding the subscription model, the monthly price quickly adds up, especially for users outside the US. For example, one of the most common apps in my country offers a pro subscription for a yearly price of $3, compared to a minimum of $24 ($2 * 12) in GitJournal (and this would be on top of whatever I'm paying for my desktop note-keeping app...). I would suggest that you review the pricing for low income countries (especially since the regionalized "go pro" slider UI seems glitchy, eg. I can't reselect the default price, can't select values to the right). A lower yearly subscription or a single purchase option would go a long way towards convincing me to upgrade.
I think not including ads was an excellent choice and I probably wouldn't have continued using the app with them. I was going to suggest hiding the locked pro features to make them less annoying, but upon review it's not that bad.
I'll keep using the app and leave a review on the store later when I gather more thoughts.
Thanks a lot for the feedback. Could you let me know what Country you are in? I've changed the pricing of the Indian market as I understand it better, I'll be happy to dramatically reduce the pricing for other countries where the US/EU pricing does not work.
Maybe a yearly or 3 years subscription?
Looks cumbersome to set up for iOS, tho: https://www.reddit.com/r/Syncthing/comments/ese82l/ios_users...
It visualizes the graph and calculates some stats. I find it useful to track the growth of my Zettelkasten, but also to find notes and components that are unconnected to the rest of the graph.
I built it to scratch my own itch, but I'm always happy to get feedback.
Underneath, the data structure would remain straightforward Markdown. So the data wouldn't be stored as separate blocks; the moving would act similarly to Sublime Text's "Swap Line Up/Down".
Is that different from your "block mover" idea? I mean, if I select the paragrap I want to move and use it it sounds similar, thought it'd happen one line at a time, and I understand you'd mean to move it "whole blocks" at a time.
But probably a plugin can be made to achieve that behavior.
It works well with paragraphs and headings because they fit on one line (so 1 line = 1 block), but I'd like to be able to move whole multiline blocks, like lists, code blocks, and paragraphs that have line breaks.
Also, for the empty lines that separate blocks, I need to move them as well (or select them as part of the block).
But yes, the current feature is very close to what I'd like.
The other part of my tweet though (about being able to move between 2 columns or files) is trickier.
"dap" deletes the entire paragraph my cursor is in, then I type "/" to search for where I want to move it to, and paste.
And this also works for sentences, and lines, and words. And more.
In every file type I edit.
(Emacs with Evil is a better vim than vim, in a lot of ways. )
I just looked at the apps I currently have open and it appears that I have the following running: VSCode, Docker, Slack, Notion, WhatsApp, Discord, Riot, Chrome (70+ Tabs), Skype, and Figma.
I wondered if my Macbook could tolerate another electron app being installed or if I can open another one without grinding my Macbook to a halt. But again I don't think such apps can even scale with other apps running in the background.
- No title bar makes using the window harder than it needs to be.
- Huge symbols I have to hover over to see what they do + a hamburger menu. A traditional menu would be easier to use for me at least.
- Speaking of hover, whats with the weird, animated back-button for folders that when it appears overlaps other elements?
- Font sizes. Really, they seem to big even for me as a visually impaired person
- General non-nativeness. That Options dialog as a website modal is just weird and jumps around when switching categories.
I don't mean to be to negative here, maybe I am just getting old, but this really seems not to be my cup of tea, though apart from the UI, I really like the idea and the use of pandoc/latex, YAML Frontmatter, saving as just files etc.
If this had a more traditional UI and would use less ressources it would come pretty close to a note taking app I often thought about but was to lazy to try my hand at myself.
My scheme does not offer me a nice GUI, but I prefer to see simple text anyway, and I like how vimwiki lets me navigate through my cross-linked notes without my fingers leaving the home keys. Markdown permits images, etc., and if I want to see them I can just open a terminal to a subdirectory and use pandoc.
I don't see a way in vimwiki to get a "what links to this page" item, which I imagine an application like zettlr would offer, but it be easy to write a python script to do that, and to add a a line to my crontab file to update things every so often.
The good thing about my setup is that the markdown format is not tied to any particular application. That's important, if you want your database of notes to last for a long time.
Though I'd just be happy with something like nv (+ Simple Note + Dropbox) which is actively developed (Simple Note just for the iOS).
The major differentiator is that content is based around notecards rather than documents/files, and there are multiple ways to structure these cards.
The most powerful way to organize things is with multi-parent nesting, where you put cards inside of other cards, and each card can have any number of parents. You can share these cards with others, and they can add their own parents to it that don't interfere with yours, allowing you to have shared cards that exist within entirely different hierarchies that are unique to each individual user.
That's a feature that I think is unique in the space, but we also have the links/backlinks and tags that you will see elsewhere (though tagging is similarly powerful in that shared cards can have tags that are public vs tags that are private to the user).
You can check it out here:
But these things can only ever remain idle curiosities to me when they're closed source. We're talking about a knowledge graph that only really flexes itself with years of dedicated entry, roaming and combing through its interlinks for that electric flash of idea-sex.
Why should I commit to a company's knowledge box when I can't trust your team's bus factor? You're one human being, any number of calamities could befall you -- I have to assume Supernotes isn't wired to an open-source dead man's switch.
You're also an engine of capital beholden to its single truth: print more money at all costs. We've already seen apps like Roam jack up their price. Is there a ceiling you can guarantee me?
In the meantime, we already have the ability to export all your cards as markdown, and are currently trying to find ways to export your actual data graph in a format that could possibly be used elsewhere. Obviously the hard part with this is that, as I mentioned, our structuring options are somewhat unique, so there isn't really a way to export it in a way that could be readily consumed by other tools.
For the last point, this would be solved by federation / self-hosting. But again, in the meantime, we want to get closer to this goal by offering a lifetime subscription (which is cheaper than Roam's offer which lasts 5 years).
- The app locks itself to the browser's light/dark mode setting, with no way to change it. This is a huge pain for people like me who prefer a dark UI but light page content.
- "where you put cards inside of other cards" - how to do this was totally unintuitive until random clicking around revealed that the edit button turned into a plus button, and under that was "add parent" (but not "add child"). The total lack of drag-and-drop functionality with the card focus seems really weird.
- The site advertises the ability to share cards, but the UI gives me zero idea how to do that, and the site seems to imply I can only share with logged-in users, which eliminates most of the reason I'd want to be easily share things in the first place.
- You can actually change this in the user menu. Default is set to your system settings, but you can choose either light or dark as well. Plan to introduce different themes for light vs. dark in the near future as well.
- Drag-and-drop is coming in the next update (due to be released in a week or so).
- More sharing features methods are coming soon!
Now that I went looking for this, I saw it - but before that, I just thought it was weird menu decoration. It should just be an actual menu item with a label (and preferably some kind of text selection rather than ambiguous icons).
> More sharing features methods are coming soon!
But I don't even know how to share anything in the first place. That's part of the problem.
I found notes on the iphone to be excellent, but the content appears to be locked up inside of apple's swamp. The pdf exports were horrid.
Still waiting for something to best VSC. What do people working with a combination of code and Latex use?
Additionally I started taking notes on Left https://100r.co/site/left.html
When I solve a problem I want to have an open source format and viewer(s) for whatever problem domain it's in. So for things like software, that's easy, it's just text. For things like electrical schematics and physics calculations, it's not so easy.
So then I go down the path of how do I get X to show Y? Like how do I get github to show me a gerber plot from kicad? That's what's really keeping me from using tools like this, native format viewers for the tools we're using.
I have seen a lot of buzz around Roam (which is interesting given how outright terrible the initial user experience and conversion funnel is - I did not have the patience and unsub'd immediately..)
I ended up buying https://zettelkasten.de/the-archive/
Super straightforward Zettelkasten system, and most importantly utilizing plain txt and not some weird proprietary format.
It doesn't follow any system preferences, even replacing the standard minimize/maximize/close buttons (seriously, why?). Some of the stuff should definitely be a plugin instead of a core feature. Don't need a pomodoro timer / readability feature? Tough luck, you can't even remove it from the interface, let alone remove it completely.
There's also no plugin support, so you can't extend the features in any way.
I'm using Obsidian instead. A little rough around the edges, but it doesn't have these issues.
For now I ended up with Mark Text (https://marktext.app/), which is open source, cross platform, works nicely and the migration time was zero (folder with .md files ftw).
If you want to be able to sue, then yes go with a hosted solution with a written contract.
But if the priority is to not have your data stolen, handing your data over to a third party is a non-starter.
1. A folder of markdown and org files
2. Emacs, gEdit
3. A notebook
I get the urge to 'optimize' this sort of thing, but the results seem to be nothing more than visual presentation tweaks.
For me, that’s the key to discoverability and categorization.
― Frank Herbert, Dune
(Really though, it's stable enough for daily use)