448 Matching Annotations
  1. May 2024
    1. rather than being born into a culture and almost becoming a victim of it one could choose ones culture or cultures and integrate one’s perception of them into one’s own creativity. both in time and in space one could travel around our world absorbing the best that different cultures and epochs have to offer us and making this, if appropriate, our own voice. i came to see music as one language with countless different dialects when viewed both internationally and inter-temporally any of which could be incorporated into one’s own self-expression if the subject matter of what one wished to express so necessitated it. (‘preface’ to ‘six baroque suites’, 2006)
  2. Apr 2024
    1. the one thing I can't teach is taste, and the one predictor I have of the people who will never develop it are

      for - quote - taste - who can't develop it - perfectionists - key insight - finding our own unique voice - adjacency - creativity - learning from others - synthesis

      quote - taste - who can't develop it - (see below)

      • the one thing I can't teach is taste,
        • and the one predictor I have of the people who will never develop it are
          • the ones who are perfectionists.
      • Because they're filtering their-- perfectionists that filter their perfection through the feedback of others.

      comment - We we are overly dependent on others - it becomes difficult to develop our own - taste or - style - To develop our own unique taste is a balancing act - we are influenced by others by digesting the work of others - but then we must synthesize our own unique expression out of that - A useful metaphor is tuning a string - too loose and it can't work - neither if it is too tight - it snaps

      adjacency - between - creativity - learning from others - synthesis - adjacency statement - our creativity depends on a balance of - learning from others - synthesizing what we've learned into something uniquely ours

    2. for - podcast channel, youtube channel - Andrew Huberman - neuroscience - theme - science-based tools for everyday life - interview with - music producer Rick Ruben - podcast title - How to access your creativity

      summary - Although Rick Ruben's field is music production, he shares his perspective on creativity

    1. Wood was quoted in this period as stating, "All the good ideas I've ever had came to me while I was milking a cow."[1]

      source: Fineman, Mia (June 8, 2005). "The Most Famous Farm Couple in the World: Why American Gothic still fascinates". Slate. http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/art/2005/06/the_most_famous_farm_couple_in_the_world.html

    1. “I have youth spies, people that report to me and I give them poppers for good information. But mostly I’m still interested in life. I don’t think it was better when I was young. I think the kids that are 15 and getting into trouble are having as much fun as I did. So I’m still curious. I don’t have fear of flying. I have fear of not flying. Always thinking that tomorrow is going to be better than yesterday.”

      It may require having something like "youth spies" to keep up with the more interesting parts of contemporary culture, and these can be used for expanding one's combinatorial creativity horizon.

    1. Great Books tend to arise in the presence of great audiences. by [[Naomi Kanakia]]

      Kanakia looks at what may have made 19th C. Russian literature great. This has potential pieces to say about how other cultures had higher than usual rates of creativity in art, literature, etc.

      What commonalities did these sorts of societies have? Were they all similar or were there broad ranges of multiple factors which genetically created these sorts of great outputs?

      Could it have been just statistical anomaly?

    1. History of the United States (1834)

      this example of an autocomplete of 1834 tagging is a spectacular and phenomenally useful example of combinatorial creativity with respect to poverty and historical research... of course, following it along with some useful outcome(s) would add additional power, but even the small suggestion here is spectacular.


  3. Mar 2024
    1. Mistakes are part of creativity.
    2. A subversion takes place in whichstreamlining the process or increasing production supplants the ultimate goal, with eachperson or group thinking they’re doing the right thing—when, in fact, they have strayed offcourse. When efficiency or consistency of workflow are not balanced by other equally strongcountervailing forces, the result is that new ideas—our ugly babies—aren’t afforded theattention and protection they need to shine and mature.
    3. Likewise, we “trusted the process,” but the process didn’t save Toy Story 2 either. “Trust theProcess” had morphed into “Assume that the Process Will Fix Things for Us.” It gave ussolace, which we felt we needed. But it also coaxed us into letting down our guard and, in theend, made us passive. Even worse, it made us sloppy.

      Compare "trust the process" as a guiding principle with "let go and let God" which has a much more random and chaotic potential set of outcomes.

    4. Catmull, Ed, and Amy Wallace. Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration. 1st ed. New York: Random House, 2014.

      Annotation link: urn:x-pdf:30663863383637656631613936313361656266663266383336636530383636623965393736396531323237383235353363353236653830623034366132373130

      alternate annotation link

  4. Feb 2024
    1. If you're into music producers and creativity, Brian Eno and his collaborator Peter Schmidt created and sold a custom "zettelkasten" called "Oblique Strategies" which Eno frequently used in the recording studio during live sessions when he hit creative walls. There are various digital versions of his card set online for playing around with in your own creative work.

      Thanks for this mini-review. I've had Rubin in my reading pile for a while, specifically to see what he says with respect to the idea of combinatorial creativity. Perhaps it's time to bump him up the list?

      syndication link

    1. had a general suspicion of words used by poets, as expressed in a letterwritten in 1901 discussing the use of voidee-cup, a cup of wine with spicestaken before retiring to rest or at the departure of guests, in a poem by DanteGabriel Rossetti. Murray did not know the meaning of the word:

      correctly and the notes could easily be spotted as counterfeit, but that only went so far.

  5. Jan 2024
    1. creativity is what reality is made of 00:45:47 and it's not a substance it's a process and i

      for - quote - Whitehead - quote -creativity

      quote - Creativity is what reality is made of and it's not a substance, it's a process

    1. ( 1) The rearranging of the file, as I have already said, isone way. One simply dumps out heretofore disconnectedfolders, mixing up their contents, and then re-sorts themmany times. How often and how extensively one does thiswill of course vary with different problems and the devel-opment of their solutions. But in general the mechanics ofit are as simple as that.

      The first part of "sociological imagination" for Mills is what I term combinatorial creativity. In his instance, at varying intervals he dumps out disconnected ideas, files and resorts them to find interesting potential solutions.

  6. Dec 2023
    1. Das Bemerkenswerte an dieser Aussage ist, dass sie klar zum Ausdruck bringt, was wir in system-theoretischen Begriffen als Produktion von Komplexität durch Selektion bezeichnen könnten. DerGrundgedanke ist, dass der Zettelkasten, wenn er richtig eingerichtet ist, in der Lage sein muss, vielmehr Komplexität zu erzeugen, als in den Zettelkasten eingeführt worden ist. Das ist eben der Fall,wenn seine Innenstruktur, wie Luhmann (1992a, S. 66) es formuliert hat, „selbständige kombinatori-sche Leistungen“ ermöglicht, so dass das, was der Zettelkasten bei jeder Abfrage mitzuteilen hat, im-mer viel mehr ist, als der Benutzer selbst im Kopf hatte.

      machine translation:

      The remarkable thing about this statement is that it clearly expresses what we might call, in systems theory terms, the production of complexity by selection. The basic idea is that the Zettelkasten, when set up correctly, must be able to generate much more complexity than was introduced into the Zettelkasten. This is precisely the case if its internal structure, as Luhmann (1992a, p. 66) put it, enables “independent combinatorial performances”, so that what the Zettelkasten has to communicate with each query is always much more than that user himself had in mind.

      Perhaps a usable quote to support my own theory, but certainly nothing new to me.

      Perhaps some interesting overlap with Ashby's law of requisite variety here? Perhaps an inverse version for creating variety and complexity?

    2. Dieser Aspekt war den gebildeten Menschen der frühen Neuzeit nicht entgangen. Am Ende des 18.Jahrhunderts hatte Christoph Meiners (1791, S. 91) darauf hingewiesen, dass „selbst die Vereinigungvon so vielen Factis und Gedanken, als man in vollständigen Excerpten zusammengebracht hat, eineMenge von Combinationen und Aussichten [veranläßt], die man sonst niemals gemacht oder erhaltenhätte“.

      Machine translation:

      This aspect was not lost on the educated people of the early modern period. At the end of the 18th century, Christoph Meiners (1791, p. 91) had pointed out that “even the union of as many facts and ideas as have been brought together in complete excerpts [causes] a multitude of combinations and prospects that otherwise never made or received would have".

      Find the Meiners reference and look more closely at his version of combinatorial creativity with respect to excerpts.

      See: Meiners, Christoph. 1791. Anweisungen für Jünglinge zum eigenen Arbeiten besonders zum Lesen, Excerpiren, und Schreiben. Hannover: In der Helwingschen Hofbuchhandlung.

    3. In der Maschine hingegen ist die Ordnung des Wissens in alphabetisch geordneten Einträgen auf-gelöst. Das heißt, es gibt keine Hierarchie und keine besondere Struktur außer der der völlig konventi-onellen alphabetischen Ordnung. Der entscheidende Effekt dieser Auflösung besteht darin, dass diekombinatorischen Möglichkeiten dramatisch steigen und das Wissen auf unvorhersehbare Weise aufsich selbst reagieren kann.

      Machine translation:

      In the machine, however, the order of knowledge is broken down into alphabetically ordered entries. That is, there is no hierarchy and no particular structure other than that of the completely conventional alphabetical order. The crucial effect of this dissolution is that combinatorial possibilities increase dramatically and knowledge can react on itself in unpredictable ways.

      Cevolini suggests that by removing knowledge from traditional rhetorical geographical commonplaces new combinations of knowledge were more likely to occur. There was no hierarchy other than conventional alphabetical order.

      I would suggest that he's on the wrong track as these combinations both then and now could certainly have been done by moving the excerpts around via slips or even looking things up while flipping pages. He also seems to be unaware of Llull's mnemonic techniques which specifically seemed to be designed to increase combinatorial creativity.

  7. Nov 2023
    1. The ‘size’ of facts served a dream of information recombination, and was served bythe card form. Other advocates of Zettelkasten like Johann Jacob Moser (1701–1785)remarked that fairly small facts meant the mass of information was broken down to itsindividual components and thus could be constantly reshuffled in a ‘game of cards’(Krajewski, 2011: 53-5).

      suggestion of recombination of individual notes using cards to create something new

      (have I remarked on this in krajewski?) ᔥ Johann Jacob Moser commented on the ability to breakdown bodies of information into smaller pieces that might be reshuffled into new configurations as one might in a 'game of cards'.

    1. I could understand why people poured their lives into craft: there is nothing quite like watching someone enjoy a thing you’ve made.

      key point - the connection through creativity. Relate to arts & storytelling

  8. Oct 2023
    1. In Re: to folgezettel or not? in an unlogged chat:

      Zettelkasten (slips) or not (commonplaces, notebooks, paper, files, other), you're going to have a variety of related ideas which you'll juxtapose, especially if you're regularly writing. Those who practice folgezettel are putting in some of the work/heavy lifting from the start versus those who don't and are leaving the work until some later point closer to composition. Folgezettel also helps to encourage the emergence of ideas, but requires work to do so. This doesn't mean that this emergence or new ideas may not arrive without Folgezettel and/or Zettelkasten, but one needs to have some process or affordances which help to foster them. Victor Margolin's process put more of his work on the back end in comparison to Luhmann, but his version obviously works all the same. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kxyy0THLfuI

    1. Wenn Sie nun einen Aufsatz zu schreiben beginnen, wie setzen Siedann Ihren Zettelkasten in Funktion?Da mache ich mir zunächst einen Plan für das, was ich schreibenwill, und hole dann aus dem Zettelkasten das heraus, was ich ge-brauchen kann.Im Gegensatz zu einem Baumeister, der ausschließlich vorgefer-tigte Teile zusammenmontiert, muß ein Wissenschaftler doch auchneue Ideen haben, die nicht bereits in den einzelnen Teilen enthal-ten sind. Solche Ideen kommen ja nicht aus einem Zettelkasten?Doch. Ich habe zum Beispiel eine große Menge von Zetteln zumBegriff "funktionale Differenzierung", ich habe ebenfalls eine Reihevon Notizen über "selbstreferentielle Systeme", und ich habe einengroßen Komplex von Notizen über "Binarität". Im Augenblick sitzeich an einem Vortrag über ökologische Probleme in modernenGesellschaften, und meine Arbeit besteht darin, Zettel aus den skiz-zierten drei begrifflichen Bereichen zu sichten und so zu kombinie-ren, daß ich etwas Substantielles zu diesem Thema sagen kann. Dieneuen Ideen ergeben sich dann aus den verschiedenen Kombina-tionsmöglichkeiten der Zettel zu den einzelnen Begriffen. Ohne dieZettel, also allein durch Nachdenken, würde ich auf solche Ideennicht kommen. Natürlich ist mein Kopf erforderlich, um die Einfällezu notieren, aber er kann nicht allein dafür verantwortlich gemachtwerden. Insofern arbeite ich wie ein Computer, der ja auch in demSinne kreativ sein kann, daß er durch die Kombination eingegebe-ner Daten neue Ergebnisse produziert, die so nicht voraussehbar

      waren. Diese Technik, so glaube ich, erklärt auch, warum ich überhaupt nicht linear denke und beim Bücherschreiben Mühe habe, die richtige Kapitelfolge zu finden, weil eigentlich ja jedes Kapitel in jedem anderen Kapitel wieder vorkommen müßte

      Niklas Luhmann's process for writing from his box

      Machine translation:

      Q: When you start writing an essay, how do you put your note box to work?

      I first make a plan for what I want to write and then take out what I can use from the note box.

      Q: In contrast to a builder who only assembles prefabricated parts, a scientist must also have new ideas that are not already contained in the individual parts. Ideas like these don't come from a note box?

      But. For example, I have a large set of notes on the term "functional differentiation", I also have a set of notes on "self-referential systems", and I have a large set of notes on "binarity". At the moment I am giving a lecture on ecological problems in modern societies, and my work consists of sifting through pieces of paper from the three conceptual areas outlined and combining them so that I can say something substantive on this topic. The new ideas then arise from the different possible combinations of the pieces of paper for the individual terms. Without the notes, just by thinking about it, I wouldn't come up with ideas like that. Of course my mind is required to record the ideas, but it cannot be held solely responsible for them. In this respect, I work like a computer, which can also be creative in the sense that by combining input data it produces new results that could not have been predicted. I think this technique also explains why I don't think linearly at all and why I have trouble finding the right sequence of chapters when writing books, because every chapter should actually appear in every other chapter.

    1. Lynch, David. Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity. New York, NY: Tarcher Perigee, 2006.

      annotation URL: urn:x-pdf:7d3165882b27dc69918cc2de97baab96

    2. Just bychanging something, the desire often gets fulfilled.
    3. It’s interesting to seehow these unrelated things live together. And it gets your mindworking. How do these things relate when they seem so far apart? Itconjures up a third thing that almost unifies those first two. It’s astruggle to see how this unity in the midst of diversity could go towork.The ocean is the unity and these things float on it.
    4. If you don’t have a setup, there are many times when you get theinspiration, the idea, but you have no tools, no place to put ittogether. And the idea just sits there and festers. Over time, it will goaway. You didn’t fulfill it—and that’s just a heartache.
    5. New ideas can come along during the process, too. And a film isn’tfinished until it’s finished, so you’re always on guard. Sometimesthose happy accidents occur. They may even be the last pieces ofthe puzzle that allow it all to come together. And you feel so thankful:How in the world did this happen?
    6. When we were shooting the pilot for Twin Peaks, we had a setdresser named Frank Silva. Frank was never destined to be in TwinPeaks, never in a million years.

      Because Frank Silva was a proverbial slip in David Lynch's living zettelkasten process, he ended up appearing in Twin Peaks by way of the serendipity of Lynch's method of combinatorial creativity.

    7. But I’m always trying to gather what I call“firewood.” So I have piles of things I can go to and see if they’llwork.

      Similar to Eminem's "stacking ammo" or Gerald Weinberg's "fieldstone method", David Lynch gathers piles of "firewood" from which he can draw to fire his creativity.

      In various places in the book, Lynch uses the idea of drawing on piles of ideas and using his feedback to draw out creativity: his collaboration on music with Angelo Badalamenti in which he draws out ideas through conversation and having the prop man bring in various props with similar feedback. The music and props here are both forms of creative "firewood".

    1. I haven’t caughtthe next idea, either through a book or from theocean of ideas.
    2. YNCH: No. What happens is, when you getfragments, the whole is not revealed. It’s just thefragments. And then the fragments seem to want toarrange themselves. And a little bit further down theline you begin to see what is forming. And it’s asmuch a surprise to you as to anybody else.
    1. These storage media further increasedthe flexible use of Fontane’s archival items, because they allowed allkinds of differently sized material to be kept on loose sheets in unboundform. Receptacles filled with discrete textual objects, such as note closets( Zettelschrä nke ) and slip boxes (Zettelkasten), are advantageous storagemedia for compilers, for they invite the generative process of reshufflingsources and creating textual patchwork from new combinations. 56 Infact, Fontane used his paper sleeves like a large- format slip box. Inthem, he stored material for the Wanderungen, but also for novels,novellas, and autobiographical writings on individual sheets. 57 Theexample “Figur in einer Berliner Novelle” (“Character in a BerlinNovella”), a folio sheet from Fontane’s Nachlass, provides a glimpse ofhow he formatted his material and indicates how important he found itto keep it in slip-like form (Figure 3.2).
  9. Sep 2023
    1. Spending too much energy on analytically deciding whether the content is worth keeping takes away your energy for being creative. When you spend all your energy on that decision, you have less energy left for valuable steps like making connections, imagining possibilities, formulating theories, and creating new ideas.
    2. […] creativity is about connecting ideas together, especially ideas that don’t seem to be connected. — Tiago Forte
    3. Using a “Second Brain” for our thoughts allows our “First Brain” to focus on creativity rather than getting bogged down by remembering tasks.
    1. 12. Creativity and Pattern RecognitionTrigger Type: Creative triggerCreativity involves generating novel and original ideas or solutions. When you’re engaged in creative endeavors, you’re challenged to think outside the box, explore unconventional approaches, and break away from routine thought patterns. Pattern recognition refers to the ability to discern meaningful patterns or connections within information or experiences. It involves finding order and coherence in complexity and identifying recurring themes or elements. Pattern recognition is crucial in various activities, such as problem-solving, artistic expression, or learning new skills. Creativity and pattern recognition complement each other in the flow state, leading to a profound sense of engagement. Creative insights often emerge from recognizing patterns and making connections between seemingly unrelated elements.

      pattern recognition as discernment of patterns and connections between info (complementary to creativity)

      What about discerning patterns between your interests, combining them, and so forth? (combining first and twelfth flow trigger)

    1. Creating a "signpost user interface" can help to uncover directions to take in digital contexts as out of sight is out of mind. Having things sit in your way within one's note taking workflow can remind them to either link things, or move in particular directions for discovering new avenues of thought.

      Example: it would be interesting if Jerry's The Brain would have links directly to material in Flancian's Agora to remind him to search or find relevant material there. This could help with combinatorial creativity with inputs from others, though it needs to be narrow so as not to result in rabbit holes which draw away attention.

      Link to: https://hypothes.is/a/iQvo7l1zEe6dZ5_9d9rrVw

    1. the Bodhisattva vow can be seen as a method for control that is in alignment with, and informed by, the understanding that singular and enduring control agents do not actually exist. To see that, it is useful to consider what it might be like to have the freedom to control what thought one had next.
      • for: quote, quote - Michael Levin, quote - self as control agent, self - control agent, example, example - control agent - imperfection, spontaneous thought, spontaneous action, creativity - spontaneity
      • quote: Michael Levin

        • the Bodhisattva vow can be seen as a method for control that is in alignment with, and informed by, the understanding that singular and enduring control agents do not actually exist.
      • comment

        • adjacency between
          • nondual awareness
          • self-construct
          • self is illusion
          • singular, solid, enduring control agent
        • adjacency statement
          • nondual awareness is the deep insight that there is no solid, singular, enduring control agent.
          • creativity is unpredictable and spontaneous and would not be possible if there were perfect control
      • example - control agent - imperfection: start - the unpredictability of the realtime emergence of our next exact thought or action is a good example of this
      • example - control agent - imperfection: end

      • triggered insight: not only are thoughts and actions random, but dreams as well

        • I dreamt the night after this about something related to this paper (cannot remember what it is now!)
        • Obviously, I had no clue the idea in this paper would end up exactly as it did in next night's dream!
    1. Po is also an interjection, considered as an alternative to yes or no. Indicating that you need to know more before answering an expression of an idea or thought. Imagine it as a word that means: "I think I know what you mean, but can you say it in another way so I may more fully understand you".
    1. correlation to negative self-talk of 'other' external and negative self-talk of 'I' internal



    1. Since speed-reading has become a national fad, this new edition of How to Read a Book deals with the prob­lem and proposes variable-speed-reading as the solution, the aim being to read better, always better, but sometimes slower, sometimes faster.

      Framing of his book as a remedy to the speed reading fad in the 1970s...

      What did those books at the time indicate that their purpose was? Were they aimed at helping people consume more (hopefully with greater comprehension?) while there was a continuing glut of information overload building up in society?

      Which is better, more deep understanding of less or more surface understanding of more? How does combinatorial creativity effect the choice?

    1. My main purpose for using note-cards is to form lines of poetry into actual poems. Currently it's specifically erotic poetry that I'm writing, so it seems like there is a limited number of categories that I keep coming back to in regards to content: beauty, fashion, movement, relationship, etc, which I've put on the top of my index cards. This is based off of Ryan Holiday and Robert Greene's index card systems. I've also added subcategories: for example, beauty and myth, beauty and plant associations, etc. Going deeper, I might write B-P-F in the corner for Beauty-Plant-Flower, and then have BPF-1, 2, etc. If I organize these alphabetically with tabs, it seems like it would be easy to find the subject I'm looking for at a glance. One problem might be if I want to start making additional notes about which cards stand out for their structure: rhyme, alliteration, etc. Have various ideas for this.My questions are: what is the benefit of having an alphanumeric indexing system where you label subjects with 1, 2, 3, and then going deeper with 1a, 1a1, etc. when it seems like it would be harder to remember that science is #1 and philosophy is #2 vs. just putting science under S and philosophy under P? Is the Zettelkasten (alphanumeric) method better for creating a wide-ranging general knowledge database in a way I'm not realizing? Would there be any benefit for my narrower writing purpose? Any responses are appreciated.

      reply to u/DunesNSwoon at https://www.reddit.com/r/Zettelkasten/comments/16ad43u/zettelkasten_alphanumeric_method_vs_alphabetical/

      Allow me an iconoclastic view for this subreddit: Given what you've got and your creative use case, I'll recommend you do not do any numbering or ordering at all!

      Instead follow the path of philosopher Raymond Llull and create what is sometimes referred to as a Llullian memory wheel. Search for one of his diagrams from the 11th century. Then sift through your cards for interesting ones and place one of your cards at each of the many letters, numbers, words, images, or "things" on the wheels, which were designed to move around a central axis much like a child's cryptographic decoder wheel based on the Caesar cipher. Then move things about combinatorically until you find interesting patterns, rhymes, rhythms, etc. to compose the poetry you're after.

      Juxtaposing ideas in random (but structured) ways may help accelerate and amplify your creativity in ways you might not expect.

      They meant them to be used on a slower timescale, but Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt's Oblique Strategies are not too dissimilar in their effect. You might find them useful when you're creatively "stuck". As a poet you might also create a mini deck of cards with forms on them (sonnet, rhymed couplets, villanelle, limerick, etc.) to draw from at random and attempt to compose something to fit it. Odd constraints can often be helpful creative tools.

      • 20:47 Only creating out of flow a problem for people; “how often, or can we even, get there” (good market research)
      • 24:17 you can’t force the process of creativity (exactly, Wu Wei)
  10. Aug 2023
    1. Dan Koe seems to argue against a specialistic education based on the argument that it is nigh-impossible for a teenager to decide what they want (to be) for the rest of their lives. He also gives the argument that it results in a lack of creativity and underlying knowledge (that which connects the dots, instead of compartmentalization) which would result in abnormal performance.

      I can bypass the limitation of the first point by giving the counter-point that when one has an insane amount of metacognition, which can be trained, it does not matter if one changes path later; why? Because one can easily learn the new subject matter and skills.

      However, the second point is interesting and I think I agree with it. That said, I think there is a continuum, instead of only two points, between super-specialists and super-generalists. I myself enjoy specializing. And I believe a team of specialists (that can also work together) can accomplish much more than one (or even multiple) generalist.

    1. Imagine the younger generation studying great books andlearning the liberal arts. Imagine an adult population con-tinuing to turn to the same sources of strength, inspiration,and communication. We could talk to one another then. Weshould be even better specialists than we are today because wecould understand the history of our specialty and its relationto all the others. We would be better citizens and better men.We might turn out to be the nucleus of the world community.

      Is the cohesive nature of Hutchins and Adler's enterprise for the humanities and the Great Conversation, part of the kernel of the rise of interdisciplinarity seen in the early 2000s onward in academia (and possibly industry).

      Certainly large portions are the result of uber-specialization, particularly in spaces which have concatenated and have allowed people to specialize in multiple areas to create new combinatorial creative possibilities.

    1. we recorded the brain activity of people while they're watching the performance, over 10 performances of "O," which is iconic Cirque performance.
      • for: awe experiment
      • experimental results
        • awe upregulates
          • Default Mode Network (DMN) which controls interaction to multiple brain regions, increasing:
            • creative thinking
            • daydreaming
        • awe downregulates executive control
    1. In the documentary California Typewriter (Gravitas Pictures, 2016) musician John Mayer mentions that he's never lost a typed version of his notes, while digital versions of his work essentially remain out of sight and thus out of mind or else they risk digital erasure by means of either data loss, formatting changes, or other damage.

      Mayer also mentions that he loves typewriters for their ability to easily get out stream of consciousness thinking which is a mode of creativity he prefers for writing lyrics.

    1. N+7 algorithm used by the Oulipo writers. This algorithm replaces every noun—every person, place, or thing—in Hacking the Academy with the person, place, or thing—mostly things—that comes seven nouns later in the dictionary. The results of N+7 would seem absolutely nonsensical, if not for the disruptive juxtapositions, startling evocations, and unexpected revelations that ruthless application of the algorithm draws out from the original work. Consider the opening substitution of Hacking the Academy, sustained throughout the entire book: every instance of the word academy is literally an accident.

      How might one use quirky algorithms in interestingly destructive or even generative ways to combinatorially create new things?

  11. Jul 2023
    1. Both of these stories captures something we all understand on a deep intuitive level, but our creative egos sort of don’t really want to accept: And that is the idea that creativity is combinatorial, that nothing is entirely original, that everything builds on what came before, and that we create by taking existing pieces of inspiration, knowledge, skill and insight that we gather over the course of our lives and recombining them into incredible new creations.

      as scalable/building on previous knowledge

    1. a conver-sation that has gone on for twenty-five centuries, all dogmasand points of view appear.

      Does it really?!? When the conversation omits so many perspectives and points of view for lack of diversity, it's also going to be missing quite a lot that one may not anticipate either. It's also likely to go down some blind alleys that may not be as beneficial too.

  12. Jun 2023
    1. The author goes into the correlation between categorization (branching) and the use of the index and the focus on them respectively. He mentions he "learned" that branching would be more beneficial than the using of the index to make finding the cards easier.

      I strongly disagree with this focus. I agree with the "relational" principle of put the card between the one that has the closest proximital conceptual relation. The Zettelkasten's power relies in serendipitous creativity (or creativity/insight by chance), this is facilitated highly by the use of connectivity between cards, where each card as you go down the "hierarchy" of "branches" will be more unrelated to the original topic. (See also Luhmann's paper Communication with Zettelkasten, Manfred Kuehn Translation and Johannes F.K. Schmidt's article on Zettelkasten within Forgetting Machines, as well as his video presentation about Zettelkasten). In short, the friction of searching for cards by following trains of thought through connectivity boosters insight by chance and therefore facilitates the power of the system.

      This is also, I believe, why Bob Doto argues to let categories emerge after the creation of notes/streams of thought instead of making the names for the "branches" up front.

      I believe Luhmann himself also emphasized the use of the index by calling it a system of "query into the database," the index is the main navigational map for the Zettelkasten. If you have a question for your "communication partner" the index is the way to go. For example, if I wanted to know the impact of cognitive load theory within employee management as a CEO, I would go to my index and collect the entrances for both "branches" or terms, and then start reading these thought streams... Afterward, I might synthesize and create a new branch somewhere, in one of the aforementioned categories, or an entire new one, where I put the results of this questioning.

      My own system of numbering and branching in this way is the following: A number signifies a note's position within a stream of thought. I branch off if, following the relational principle, a note adds unto a thought on a specific card, but not the stream specifically. This gets signified by a letter.

      So, 1a1, 1a2, 1a3, and 1a4 are all part of the same stream while 1a, 1b, and 1c would all be different "branches" stemming from the original card that would be 1 in this case. This can repeat infinitely, therefore facilitating what Luhmann calls "Infinite potential for inward growth" of the system. It's autopoietic and cybernetic. (See also: The Radical Luhmann by Hans-Georg Moeller).

      Something that can benefit the finding of notes once the system grows sufficiently large is the use of "structure" or "hub" cards where you put down a few key entrances to concepts related to this stream of thought or "branch" in remote sections of the Zettelkasten.

    1. The command to schools—the invective about education—was, perhaps as ever, Janus-like: the injunction was to teach more and getbetter results, but to get kids to be imaginative and creative at the same time.They had to learn the facts of science, but they shouldn’t have original thinkingsqueezed from them in the process. It was the formal versus progressivecontroversy in a nutshell.

      Can the zettelkasten method be a means of fixing/helping with this problem of facts versus creativity in a programmatic way?

    1. When I walk my mind is somehow mapping my physical location in the world to the content, down to the sentence. If I rewind an audio book I can fairly often remember where exactly I heard a particular sentence. The precise street corner or park trail I was on, to like a 10 feet precision. I do not otherwise have strong memory. WTF brain.Does anyone else have this experience? I guess this is a peak into how 'memory palaces' work and how people memorize huge volumes of information?

      This is similar to how I've been feeling lately. I cross a corner on the street and I can remember what podcast/audiobook I was listening to at that time and that too with proper context. It's weird, to say the least, and utterly fascinating.

  13. May 2023
    1. I like to imagine that Bob Ross lends his voice to point to the “happy accidents” that happen while working with Zettelkastens.

      Bob Ross' "happy accidents" tied to the idea of serendipity or the outcome of combinatorial creativity within a zettelkasten.

      Ross's version is related to experimentation and the idea of adjacent possible. Taking a current known and extending it to see what will happening and accepting the general outcome. This was one of the roots of his creative process.

    1. @Will Thanks for always keeping up with your regular threads and considerations.

      I've been keeping examples of people talking about the "magic of note taking" for a bit. I appreciate your perspectives on it. Personally I consider large portions of it to be bound up with the ideas of what Luhmann termed as "second memory", the use of ZK to supplement our memories, and the serendipity of combinatorial creativity. I've traced portions of it back to the practices of Raymond Llull in which he bound up old mnemonic techniques with combinatorial creativity which goes back to at least Seneca.

      A web search for "combinatorial creativity" may be useful, but there's a good attempt at what it entails here: https://fs.blog/seneca-on-combinatorial-creativity/

    2. The magic comes from the repetition of adding your thoughts to the notes you take and reviewing notes regularly.

      Will Simpson feels that the magic of note taking stems from "the repetition of adding your thoughts to the notes you take and reviewing notes regularly".

      I think it sems more from the serendipitous connections and resultant combinatorial creativity.

    1. Combinational creativity: the myth of originality

      Noticing that the title of this isn't original itself (or is it?) There's a similar post entitled "Combinatorial Creativity and the Myth of Originality" by Maria Popova at https://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/combinatorial-creativity-and-the-myth-of-originality-114843098/

      Perhaps the William Inge quote is incredibly apropos here: https://hypothes.is/a/Fvkz-i8rEe2hJYM4oINfpw

    1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dU7efgGEOgk

      I wish he'd gotten into more of the detail of the research and index card making here as that's where most of the work lies. He does show some of his process of laying out and organizing the cards into some sort of sections using 1/3 cut tabbed cards. This is where his system diverges wildly from Luhmann's. He's now got to go through all the cards and do some additional re-reading and organizational work to put them into some sort of order. Luhmann did this as he went linking ideas and organizing them up front. This upfront work makes the back side of laying things out and writing/editing so much easier. It likely also makes one more creative as one is regularly revisiting ideas, juxtaposing them, and potentially generating new ones along the way rather than waiting until the organization stage to have some of this new material "fall out".

    1. I get by when I work by accumulating notes—a bit about everything, ideas cap-tured on the fly, summaries of what I have read, references, quotations . . . Andwhen I want to start a project, I pull a packet of notes out of their pigeonhole anddeal them out like a deck of cards. This kind of operation, where chance plays arole, helps me revive my failing memory.16

      via: Didier Eribon, Conversations with Claude Lévi-Strauss (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991), vii–viii; Claude Lévi-Strauss, Structural Anthropology (New York: Basic Books, 1963), 129f.

    1. Even three or four words are often worth jotting down if they will evoke a thought, an idea or a mood. In the barren periods, one should browse through the notebooks. Some ideas may suddenly start to move. Two ideas may combine, perhaps because they were meant to combine in the first place. —Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction
    1. We can publish multi-modal work that covers both text and audio and video. This defence will probably only last another 6-12 months.

      Multi-modal output can for now still suggest there's a human at work, not a generative agent. But multi-modal output can soon if not already also be generated. This still seems to focus on the output being the thing authenticated to identify human making. output that is connected to other generated output. There's still no link to things outside the output, into the authors life e.g. Can one fake the human process towards output, which is not a one-off thing (me writing this in a certain way), but a continuous and evolving thing (me writing this in a certain way as part of a certain information process, connected to certain of my work processes etc.). Seen from processes multi-modal output isn't a different media format, it is also work results, projects created, agency in the physical world. In those processes all output is an intermediate result. Because of those evolving processes my [[Blogs als avatar 20030731084659]]. Vgl [[Kunst-artefact is (tussen)uitkomst proces 20140505070232]] There was this article about an artist I can't find back that saw all his outputs over time as intermediate and expression of one narrative. This https://www.flickr.com/photos/tonz/52849988531/in/datetaken/ comes to mind to. Provenance and entanglement as indicators of authenticity.

  14. Apr 2023
    1. The Medici effect is a concept that describes the way in which innovation arises from the intersection of different disciplines and ideas. The term was coined by author Frans Johansson in his book “The Medici Effect: What Elephants and Epidemics Can Teach Us About Innovation”. The Medici family of Renaissance-era Florence is used as an example of the way in which the intersection of different disciplines, such as art, science, and finance, led to a period of great innovation and cultural advancement. Similarly, Johansson argues that innovation today is more likely to occur when people from different backgrounds and disciplines come together to share ideas and collaborate. The Medici effect highlights the importance of diversity, curiosity, and creativity in driving innovation and problem-solving.

      Frans Johansson's "Medici effect" which describes innovation arriving from an admixture of diversity of people and their ideas sounds like a human-based mode of combinatorial creativity similar to that seen in the commonplace book/zettelkasten traditions. Instead of the communication occurring between a person and their notes or written work, the communication occurs between people.

      How is the information between these people crystalized? Some may be written, some may be in prototypes and final physical products, while some may simply be stored in the people themselves for sharing and re-sharing over time.

    1. Also I really want to see the someone using their zettlekasten for managing knowledge about stuff not zettlekasten related. Mine mainly revolves about artistic appretiation, creativity and art fundamentals. I've been wanting to make a video series about it, just havent find the time. Your videos serve much as inspiration and as example of how may I go about it.

      reply to Sara Martínez at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQPvrcksjUA&lc=UgzbdJ1cdxkjnN0DBOl4AaABAg

      Sara, here are some creative/art-related examples that might help:<br /> Dancer/Choreographer Twyla Tharp used a slightly modified slip box method that included much more than notes on cards for her dance-related work. She describes the process well in chapter 6 of her book "The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life".

      If you're into art and image-based work, Aby Warburg had a zettelkasten with images. Search for details on his "Mnemosyne Atlas" at The Warburg Institute at the School of Advanced Study University of London which has some material you may appreciate.

      Product designer khimtan has a visual zettelkasten practice you can find examples of on Reddit in the "Antinet" sub.

      A variety of comedians like Phyllis Diller, Joan Rivers, Bob Hope, and George Carlin had zettelkasten practices for their comedy work.

      Eminem has a fantastic, but tremendously simple zettelkasten for songwriting. Taylor Swift has a somewhat similar digital version which she has talked about using, though she doesn't use the word zettelkasten to describe it.

      syndication link

    1. Tharp, Twyla. The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life. Simon & Schuster, 2006. https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Creative-Habit/Twyla-Tharp/9780743235273.

      annotation target: urn:x-pdf:39643634366262353731363464363334626534646334316331613038363337663139633264363536643732653731376136643130653762343638306332343434



    1. Without variation on given ideas, there are no possibilities of scrutiny and selection of innovations. Therefore, the actual challenge becomes generating incidents with sufficiently high chances of selection.

      The value of a zettelkasten is as a tool to actively force combinatorial creativity—the goal is to create accidents or collisions of ideas which might have a high chance of being discovered and selected for.

    2. But if you think in evolutionary models, randomness has a prominent role. (9)9 Without it, nothing progresses anyhow.

      Nothing progresses without randomness.

      Think about this for a bit. True/untrue? Provable? Counterexamples?

    3. The Zettelkasten provides combinatorial possibilities that were never planned, never pre-meditated, or never designed in this way.
  15. Mar 2023
    1. “The hardest thing I’ve learned over the years is that I’m getting paid a lot of money to produce a movie, but sometimes the best thing to do is nothing,” he told The New York Times in 1992, when he was making “Hoffa.” “I don’t need to impose myself.”Nonetheless, he knew he played a vital role.“It’s the creative urge that makes me work,” he told American Film magazine for a 1988 article. “The pleasure is, to some extent, vicarious, but it’s no less creative for that. It is creating a world by bringing together creative financing with creative filmmakers. In a sense, producing can be compared to conceptual art.”
    1. In the fall of 2015, she assigned students to write chapter introductions and translate some texts into modern English.

      Perhaps of interest here, would not be a specific OER text, but an OER zettelkasten or card index that indexes a variety of potential public domain or open resources, articles, pieces, primary documents, or other short readings which could then be aggregated and tagged to allow for a teacher or student to create their own personalized OER text for a particular area of work.

      If done well, a professor might then pick and choose from a wide variety of resources to build their own reader to highlight or supplement the material they're teaching. This could allow a wider variety of thinking and interlinking of ideas. With such a regiment, teachers are less likely to become bored with their material and might help to actively create new ideas and research lines as they teach.

      Students could then be tasked with and guided to creating a level of cohesiveness to their readings as they progress rather than being served up a pre-prepared meal with a layer of preconceived notions and frameworks imposed upon the text by a single voice.

      This could encourage students to develop their own voices as well as to look at materials more critically as they proceed rather than being spoon fed calcified ideas.

    1. we create (knowledge) tools to measure how good we are, and avoid just feeling good (Collector's Fallacy).

      Collecting for collections' sake is a fools errand. Collecting to connect and create is where the magic happens.

    1. We create product not to show how good we are, but to measure how good we are.

      We create product not to show how good we are, but to measure how good we are.

      — Naval (@naval) February 19, 2023
      <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
  16. Feb 2023
    1. <small><cite class='h-cite via'> <span class='p-author h-card'>Billy Oppenheimer</span> in The Notecard System: Capture, Organize, and Use Everything You Read, Watch, and Listen To (<time class='dt-published'>11/03/2022 16:53:44</time>)</cite></small>

      Nothing stupendous here. Mostly notes on cards and then laid out to outline. Most of the writing sounds like it happens at the transfer stage rather than the card and outline stage.

      This process seems more akin to that of Victor Margolin than Vladimir Nabokov.

    1. )he most important result of the idea of the whole is the appearance of the concept of creativeness.
      • the most important result of the idea of the whole is creativity
    1. he research skills that Eco teaches areperhaps even more relevant today. Eco’s system demandscritical thinking, resourcefulness, creativity, attention todetail, and academic pride and humility; these are preciselythe skills that aid students overwhelmed by the ever-grow-ing demands made on their time and resources, and confusedby the seemingly endless torrents of information availableto them.

      In addition to "critical thinking, resourcefulness, creativity, attention to detail, and academic pride and humility", the ability to use a note card-based research system like Umberto Eco's is the key to overcoming information overload.

    2. He understood that the writing of a thesis forcedmany students outside of their cultural comfort zone, andthat if the shock was too sudden or strong, they would giveup.

      The writing of a thesis is a shock to many specifically because information overload has not only gotten worse, but because the underlying historical method of doing so has either been removed from the educational equation or so heavily watered down that students don't think to use it.

      When I think and write about "note taking" I'm doing it in a subtly different way and method than how it seems to be used in common parlance. Most seem to use it solely for information extraction and as a memory crutch which they may or may not revisit to memorize or use and then throw away. I do it for some of these reasons, but my practice goes far beyond this for generating new ideas, mixing up ideas creatively, and for writing. Note reuse seems to be the thing missing from the equation. It also coincidentally was the reason I quit taking notes in college.

    1. Und doch fand er darin nie das, was er eigentlich suchte, sondern etwas Neues, Überraschendes.

      google translate:

      And yet he never found what he was actually looking for, but something new and surprising.

      While you'll only find in your zettelkasten exactly what you placed there, you may be surprised to find more than you expected.

    1. Wordcraft Writers Workshop by Andy Coenen - PAIR, Daphne Ippolito - Brain Research Ann Yuan - PAIR, Sehmon Burnam - Magenta

      cross reference: ChatGPT

    2. LaMDA's safety features could also be limiting: Michelle Taransky found that "the software seemed very reluctant to generate people doing mean things". Models that generate toxic content are highly undesirable, but a literary world where no character is ever mean is unlikely to be interesting.
    3. If I were going to use an AI, I'd want to plugin and give massive priority to my commonplace book and personal notes followed by the materials I've read, watched, and listened to secondarily.

    4. How much of our creativity and authorial voice is based on our own experiences and material we've read, watched, listened to?

    5. Writers struggled with the fickle nature of the system. They often spent a great deal of time wading through Wordcraft's suggestions before finding anything interesting enough to be useful. Even when writers struck gold, it proved challenging to consistently reproduce the behavior. Not surprisingly, writers who had spent time studying the technical underpinnings of large language models or who had worked with them before were better able to get the tool to do what they wanted.

      Because one may need to spend an inordinate amount of time filtering through potentially bad suggestions of artificial intelligence, the time and energy spent keeping a commonplace book or zettelkasten may pay off magnificently in the long run.

    6. “[It's] an amazing tool for brainstorming or rubber-ducking. Its conversational quality is perfect to talk about plot, characters and worldbuilding.”- Nelly Garcia

      Presumably the use of rubber-ducking here is an indicator of Nelly Garcia's background with programming and prior AI tool use?

      The rubber duck as a writing partner?

    7. “...it can be very useful for coming up with ideas out of thin air, essentially. All you need is a little bit of seed text, maybe some notes on a story you've been thinking about or random bits of inspiration and you can hit a button that gives you nearly infinite story ideas.”- Eugenia Triantafyllou

      Eugenia Triantafyllou is talking about crutches for creativity and inspiration, but seems to miss the value of collecting interesting tidbits along the road of life that one can use later. Instead, the emphasis here becomes one of relying on an artificial intelligence doing it for you at the "hit of a button". If this is the case, then why not just let the artificial intelligence do all the work for you?

      This is the area where the cultural loss of mnemonics used in orality or even the simple commonplace book will make us easier prey for (over-)reliance on technology.

      Is serendipity really serendipity if it's programmed for you?

    8. language models are incredible "yes, and" machines, allowing writers to quickly explore seemingly unlimited variations on their ideas.
    9. Wordcraft shined the most as a brainstorming partner and source of inspiration. Writers found it particularly useful for coming up with novel ideas and elaborating on them. AI-powered creative tools seem particularly well suited to sparking creativity and addressing the dreaded writer's block.

      Just as using a text for writing generative annotations (having a conversation with a text) is a useful exercise for writers and thinkers, creative writers can stand to have similar textual creativity prompts.

      Compare Wordcraft affordances with tools like Nabokov's card index (zettelkasten) method, Twyla Tharp's boxes, MadLibs, cadavre exquis, et al.

      The key is to have some sort of creativity catalyst so that one isn't working in a vacuum or facing the dreaded blank page.

    10. In addition to specific operations such as rewriting, there are also controls for elaboration and continutation. The user can even ask Wordcraft to perform arbitrary tasks, such as "describe the gold earring" or "tell me why the dog was trying to climb the tree", a control we call freeform prompting. And, because sometimes knowing what to ask is the hardest part, the user can ask Wordcraft to generate these freeform prompts and then use them to generate text. We've also integrated a chatbot feature into the app to enable unstructured conversation about the story being written. This way, Wordcraft becomes both an editor and creative partner for the writer, opening up new and exciting creative workflows.

      The interface of Wordcraft sounds like some of that interface that note takers and thinkers in the tools for thought space would appreciate in their

      Rather than pairing it with artificial intelligence and prompts for specific writing tasks, one might pair tools for though interfaces with specific thinking tasks related to elaboration and continuation. Examples of these might be gleaned from lists like Project Zero's thinking routines: https://pz.harvard.edu/thinking-routines

    11. In addition to specific operations such as rewriting, there are also controls for elaboration and continutation. The user can even ask Wordcraft to perform arbitrary tasks, such as "describe the gold earring" or "tell me why the dog was trying to climb the tree", a control we call freeform prompting. And, because sometimes knowing what to ask is the hardest part, the user can ask Wordcraft to generate these freeform prompts and then use them to generate text. We've also integrated a chatbot feature into the app to enable unstructured conversation about the story being written. This way, Wordcraft becomes both an editor and creative partner for the writer, opening up new and exciting creative workflows.

      The sense of writing partner here is similar to that mentioned by Niklas Luhmann in Communicating with Slip Boxes: An Empirical Account (1981), though in his case his writing partner was a carefully constructed database archive of his past notes.

      see: Luhmann, Niklas. “Kommunikation mit Zettelkästen: Ein Erfahrungsbericht.” In Öffentliche Meinung und sozialer Wandel / Public Opinion and Social Change, edited by Horst Baier, Hans Mathias Kepplinger, and Kurt Reumann, 222–28. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, 1981. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-322-87749-9_19.<br /> translation at https://web.archive.org/web/20150825031821/http://scriptogr.am/kuehnm.

    12. For instance, if the user selects a phrase, a button to "Rewrite this phrase" is revealed along with a text input in which the user can describe how they would like the phrase to be rewritten. The user might type "to be funnier" or "to be more melancholy", and the Wordcraft application uses LaMDA and in-context learning to perform the task.
    13. We like to describe Wordcraft as a "magic text editor". It's a familiar web-based word processor, but under the hood it has a number of LaMDA-powered writing features that reveal themselves depending on the user's activity.

      The engineers behind Wordcraft refer to it "as a 'magic text editor'". This is a cop-out for many versus a more concrete description of what is actually happening under the hood of the machine.

      It's also similar, thought subtly different to the idea of the "magic of note taking" by which writers are taking about ideas of emergent creativity and combinatorial creativity which occur in that space.

    1. I have to report that the AI did not make a useful or pleasant writing partner. Even a state-of-the-art language model cannot presently “understand” what a fiction writer is trying to accomplish in an evolving draft. That’s not unreasonable; often, the writer doesn’t know exactly what they’re trying to accom­plish! Often, they are writing to find out.
    1. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incremental_reading

      Incremental reading is spaced parallel reading of multiple sources with note taking and spaced repetition.

      It's not far from how I read and take notes myself, though I place less emphasis on the spaced repetition piece as I tend to run across things naturally within my note collection anyway.

      One of the major potential benefits of incremental reading (not mentioned in the Wikipedia article; is it in Wozniak's work?) is the increase of combinatorial creativity created by mixing a variety of topics simultaneously.

      There is also likely a useful diffuse thinking effect happening between reading sessions.

  17. Jan 2023
    1. What are your goals for creating your zettelkasten? .t3_10mha0u._2FCtq-QzlfuN-SwVMUZMM3 { --postTitle-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postTitleLink-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postBodyLink-VisitedLinkColor: #989898; }
    1. Re"...what is it like? How does it manifest?"For me, the idea that my zettelkasten becomes an entity outside myself is most often (and most obviously) felt in two situations (tho there are probably others):When I'm importing new ideas and a connection arises that I hadn't thought of previouslyWhen following trains of thought and connections arise that I didn't overtly intend to makeIn the first instance, I come across ideas I had forgotten about, and although it's not the direction I assumed the new idea would go, it becomes an exciting and possibly more lucrative way to take it.In the second instance, where I might be tracing a thought line to develop an article, I might, for example, zoom in on the graph view in Obsidian and see an idea that, while not formally connected to the ones I'm following, happens to be in close proximity spatially, and so it triggers a new direction I might want to take the article. (You can see this happen IRL in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OUn2-h6oVc&)In both cases, my zk feels like it's offering me more than what I would have gotten had I not been communicating with it. There is a sense that I and it are working together. I import new ideas with a rough sense of how they should connect. It shows alternatives to my thinking on the matter.Obviously, in both cases, all the ideas are my own. So, the zk is not necessarily developing ideas for me. But, because of the way in which the ideas are handled—non-hierarchically, rhizomatic, cross-categorical, cross-theme, etc.—non-habituated connections come to light, connections that are less conditioned by my own conventional ways of thinking.

      A good description from Bob Doto.

    1. For a while, I forgot how fun it is to talk to users People seem to intuitively help you if you build something useful for them. And they come up with better ideas than you do.

      Peter Hagen, 2022-08-24 https://twitter.com/peterhagen_/status/1562535573134254080

      One can dramatically increase their potential combinatorial creativity not only by having their own ideas run into each other, for example in a commonplace book or card index/zettelkasten, but by putting them out into the world and allowing them to very actively interact with other people and their ideas.

      Reach, engagement and other factors may also help in the acceleration, but keep in mind that you also need to have the time and bandwidth to listen and often build context with those replies to be able to extract the ultimate real value out of those interactions.

    1. 个人学习可能取决于他人行为的主张突出了将学习环境视为一个涉及多个互动参与者的系统的重要性
    1. When I create a new note, I write and link it as usual. Then I call up a saved search in The Archive via shortcut. I then go through the notes of my favorites and see if the fresh note is usable for one of my favorites. In doing so, I make an effort to find a connection. This effort trains my divergent thinking.

      Sascha Fast juxtaposes his new notes with his own favorite problems to see if they have any connections with respect to improving on or solving them.

      This practice is somewhat similar to Marshall Kirkpatrick's conceptualization of triangle thinking, but rather than being randomly generated with respect to each other, the new things are always generated toward important questions he's actively working on or toward.

      This helps to increase the changes of forward progress in specific areas rather than undirected random progress.

    2. Richard Feynman was fond of giving the following advice on how to be a genius. You have to keep a dozen of your favorite problems constantly present in your mind, although by and large they will lie in a dormant state. Every time you hear or read a new trick or a new result, test it against each of your twelve problems to see whether it helps. Every once in a while there will be a hit, and people will say, “How did he do it? He must be a genius!”

      Gian-Carlo Rota (1997): Ten Lessons I Wish I Had Been Taught, Notices of the American Mathematical Society 1, 1997, Vol. 44, pp. 22-25.

    1. How do you maintain the interdisciplinarity of your zettlekasten? .t3_10f9tnk._2FCtq-QzlfuN-SwVMUZMM3 { --postTitle-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postTitleLink-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postBodyLink-VisitedLinkColor: #989898; }

      As humans we're good at separating things based on categories. The Dewey Decimal System systematically separates mathematics and history into disparate locations, but your zettelkasten shouldn't force this by overthinking categories. Perhaps the overlap of math and history is exactly the interdisciplinary topic you're working toward? If this is the case, just put cards into the slip box closest to their nearest related intellectual neighbor—and by this I mean nearest related to you, not to Melvil Dewey or anyone else. Over time, through growth and branching, ideas will fill in the interstitial spaces and neighboring ideas will slowly percolate and intermix. Your interests will slowly emerge into various bunches of cards in your box. Things you may have thought were important can separate away and end up on sparse branches while other areas flourish.

      If you make the (false) choice to separate math and history into different "sections" it will be much harder for them to grow and intertwine in an organic and truly disciplinary way. Universities have done this sort of separation for hundreds of years and as a result, their engineering faculty can be buildings or even entire campuses away from their medical faculty who now want to work together in new interdisciplinary ways. This creates a physical barrier to more efficient and productive innovation and creativity. It's your zettelkasten, so put those ideas right next to each other from the start so they can do the work of serendipity and surprise for you. Do not artificially separate your favorite ideas. Let them mix and mingle and see what comes out of them.

      If you feel the need to categorize and separate them in such a surgical fashion, then let your index be the place where this happens. This is what indices are for! Put the locations into the index to create the semantic separation. Math related material gets indexed under "M" and history under "H". Now those ideas can be mixed up in your box, but they're still findable. DO NOT USE OR CONSIDER YOUR NUMBERS AS TOPICAL HEADINGS!!! Don't make the fatal mistake of thinking this. The numbers are just that, numbers. They are there solely for you to be able to easily find the geographic location of individual cards quickly or perhaps recreate an order if you remove and mix a bunch for fun or (heaven forfend) accidentally tip your box out onto the floor. Each part has of the system has its job: the numbers allow you to find things where you expect them to be and the index does the work of tracking and separating topics if you need that.

      The broader zettelkasten, tools for thought, and creativity community does a terrible job of explaining the "why" portion of what is going on here with respect to Luhmann's set up. Your zettelkasten is a crucible of ideas placed in juxtaposition with each other. Traversing through them and allowing them to collide in interesting and random ways is part of what will create a pre-programmed serendipity, surprise, and combinatorial creativity for your ideas. They help you to become more fruitful, inventive, and creative.

      Broadly the same thing is happening with respect to the structure of commonplace books. There one needs to do more work of randomly reading through and revisiting portions to cause the work or serendipity and admixture, but the end results are roughly the same. With the zettelkasten, it's a bit easier for your favorite ideas to accumulate into one place (or neighborhood) for easier growth because you can move them around and juxtapose them as you add them rather than traversing from page 57 in one notebook to page 532 in another.

      If you use your numbers as topical or category headings you'll artificially create dreadful neighborhoods for your ideas to live in. You want a diversity of ideas mixing together to create new ideas. To get a sense of this visually, play the game Parable of the Polygons in which one categorizes and separates (or doesn't) triangles and squares. The game created by Vi Hart and Nicky Case based on the research of Thomas Schelling provides a solid example of the sort of statistical mechanics going on with ideas in your zettelkasten when they're categorized rigidly. If you rigidly categorize ideas and separate them, you'll drastically minimize the chance of creating the sort of useful serendipity of intermixed and innovative ideas.

      It's much harder to know what happens when you mix anthropology with complexity theory if they're in separate parts of your mental library, but if those are the things that get you going, then definitely put them right next to each other in your slip box. See what happens. If they're interesting and useful, they've got explicit numerical locators and are cross referenced in your index, so they're unlikely to get lost. Be experimental occasionally. Don't put that card on Henry David Thoreau in the section on writers, nature, or Concord, Massachusetts if those aren't interesting to you. Besides everyone has already done that. Instead put him next to your work on innovation and pencils because it's much easier to become a writer, philosopher, and intellectual when your family's successful pencil manufacturing business can pay for you to attend Harvard and your house is always full of writing instruments from a young age. Now you've got something interesting and creative. (And if you must, you can always link the card numerically to the other transcendentalists across the way.)

      In case they didn't hear it in the back, I'll shout it again: ACTIVELY WORK AGAINST YOUR NATURAL URGE TO USE YOUR ZETTELKASTEN NUMBERS AS TOPICAL HEADINGS!!!

    1. Jan. 22. To set down such choice experiences that my own writingsmay inspire me and at last I may make wholes of parts. Certainly it isa distinct profession to rescue from oblivion and to fix the sentimentsand thoughts which visit all men more or less generally, that thecontemplation of the unfinished picture may suggest its harmoniouscompletion. Associate reverently and as much as you can with yourloftiest thoughts. Each thought that is welcomed and recorded is anest egg, by the side of which more will be laid. Thoughts accidentallythrown together become a frame in which more may be developedand exhibited. Perhaps this is the main value of a habit of writing, ofkeeping a journal,—that so we remember our best hours and stimulateourselves. My thoughts are my company. They have a certainindividuality and separate existence, aye, personality. Having bychance recorded a few disconnected thoughts and then brought theminto juxtaposition, they suggest a whole new field in which it waspossible to labor and to think. Thought begat thought.


      Henry David Thoreau from 1852