Apparently, there's a difference 🀯

I just learned and tried a system called zettelkasten πŸ—‚οΈ (or "note box"), designed to support knowledge building over note-taking.

I hadn't considered how taking notes in notebooks, margins, or digital documents πŸ“‘ promotes linear thinking (this, then this).

Linear thinking limits how often you revisit your knowledge and engage in lateral thinking or combine old with new knowledge in engaging ways (this, to this).

Popularized by German sociologist and prolific researcher Niklas Luhmann, zettelkasten is about putting away the notebook in favor of index cards πŸ—‚️, allowing you to cross-pollinate your ideas systematically.

The method involves taking three types of notes:

  1. fleeting - random ideas,
  2. literature - notes from what you read or heard and
  3. permanent - a synthesized idea or insight.

The key is to write each of these notes in your own words and ensure they are independent (not needing other resources or context) and concise (3-5 sentences).

I've started building my digital zettelkasten in Craft (something similar could be done in Notion or Obsidian), linked here if you're curious: 

Knowledge management systems

Click to see a page from my zettlekasten.

What do you think? Would you take (or have you taken) notes this way?