2020-02-24

Using Zettelkasten to draft our writings

Connected notes in a Zettelkasten can be used as a draft of unformed manuscripts. (The importance of connecting notes in a Zettelkasten)

The writing process starts when we create our notes using the physical routine of the Zettelkasten method. We’re proactively making drafts by connecting our notes, so instead of writing everything from scratch, we can collect related notes together and edit them to form a more coherent basis for a manuscript. In practice, we’re trying to find order in our notes, because from the Zettelkasten’s perspective, each note can relate to another one from any direction.

This whole workflow is the result of the Zettelkasten letting things naturally emerge.

2020-02-07

The natural progress of Zettelkasten

GTD and the Zettelkasten methods are bottom-up processes, which means we don’t start with setting a goal that we want to reach, but instead we work with the things that we have at the current moment. The Zettelkasten – similarly to the Natural Planning Model of GTD – naturally let your notes to form into a concrete thing. It is the complete opposite of the traditional view of research which starts by setting the final goal or state that we have to reach.

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2020-02-06

The physical process of Zettelkasten

The Zettelkasten method breaks down the thinking process into physical steps which can be acquired as habits.

Thinking – the ability to connect and understand things – becomes a physical routine.

These Here are the steps:

  1. Collecting and writing down ideas while I’m watching or reading something.
  2. Processing information by phrasing it in my own words, then adding the note to my Zettelkasten (one though thought is one card).
  3. Optional linking and connecting with existing notes in the Zettelkasten to create a network of information.

This routine is very similar to GTD, which is also the thinking process broken down to physical steps and habits.

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2020-02-05

Reusing my blog to be my Zettelkasten can be beneficial because I’m always planning to publish longer blog posts, but at the end, I just don’t do it. I don’t enjoy the process of writing long-form articles, because it forces me to think about the content from the reader’s point of view. It makes me nervous since it’s a very different state of mind, other than just writing for myself.

I write a lot of things every day and one of those things is my Zettelkasten. It contains short notes (Zettels) which I captured, processed, and organized. It has interesting content – for me at least – and I like the process of writing in it.

The idea to merge the essence of blogging with the process of keeping a Zettelkasten is very interesting, which should be explored more deeply. A WordPress blog as a tool for keeping a Zettelkasten fits very well because of the following reasons:

  • Zettelkasten should be searchable, this blog is searchable as well.
  • Zettels should be linked together. Since a blog is just a website, it’s made for making links.
  • I can easily tag my notes on a blog.
  • Each Zettel has a unique ID in the form of a public link, I don’t have to generate IDs manually.
  • Keeping a public Zettelkasten can be a concern, but I can mark some Zettels as private.

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Today, I constantly remind myself before publishing any article that I am publishing this on my blog (which means that I can publish anything I want), and that it doesn’t matter if people read it or not. I’ll just keep doing my thing, because I enjoy doing it.

2020-01-03

2019-05-13

Using Zettelkasten and Tinderbox to Document a Literature Review

This is very similar approach to my workflow for solving problems with DEVONthink and MindNode:

  1. I like to take walks when I have to think about something. I capture rough ideas with Drafts by writing down bullet points on my iPhone.
  2. Later, when I sit down and process these notes, I try to edit and rephrase a draft into a full-blown zettel, which is added to DEVONthink.
  3. I keep these ideas in DEVONthink for a couple of days to let my subconscious mind make connections and may came up with better solutions. I always add multiple follow-up zettels linked to the original one.
  4. Since these zettels and all the related reference material kept in the same group in DEVONthink, I can use Shortcuts on iOS to create a mindmap from it. The generated mindmap links back to each original zettel, so this makes a visualized version of my notes. It helps me to use the mindmap to create a plan and may came up with concrete next actions, that’ll be moved into OmniFocus at the end.