I've become deeply obsessed with Obsidian, the most dreamy note-taking meets knowledge base forever storage app I've ever had the pleasure to encounter (and as a longtime compulsive note-taker and Evernote information hoarder/digital packrat, I do not say that lightly!). As a companion to this I've fallen in love with the entire Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) and Second Brain movements, which feel like a breath of fresh air in this brave new world of being constantly pelted and overwhelmed by the onslaught of information and disinformation.
It feels like a universe where tools and philosophies around code and content are converging -- down to the fact that my Obsidian UI and my Atom UI appear remarkably the same. Both applications offer almost endless customization functionality and extensive libraries of packages and plugins (here's a GitHub List of my favorite Obsidian plugins so far). For people who crave the ability to get under the hood and truly, fully own their data and their workflow experience, it's just a tall glass of water.
This PKM ecosystem is reminding me of the early days of the web, for those of us who were drawn in by the idea of democratizing information and making technological creativity accessible to as many people as possible. Much like it feels elsewhere in culture and politics, it turns out not everyone agrees with this mission and fundamental philosophy of openness. I didn't really expect that outcome -- perhaps I was naïve. That makes this "new to me" (re)discovery of communities of praxis around self-determination in the digital sphere a powerful return to Original Face.
Here's to the digital dreamers!
[CAVEAT: There's also a danger in getting too attached to the PKM ideology itself. There's a Goldilocks Zone that some self-described note-taking gurus may have wandered out of...]
- Zettelkasten -- A note-taking method designed for maximum clarity of thought and frictionless writing and knowledge-gathering workflow
- Zettelkasten vs. PARA
- Nicole van der Hoeven YouTube channel -- she is the best instructor I've found to help get oriented with Obsidian
- Doing One Thing Well
- Atom is dead, long live Atom!