13 Matching Annotations
  1. Last 7 days
    1. If in 1908 itcontained 10,000 cards, by 1917 it had ballooned in size to 50,000 items, reaching60,000 in 1919 and nearly 70,000 at the time of Deutsch’s death in 1921 (Deutsch,1908b, 1917b; Brown, 1919: 69). It seems that Deutsch consistently produced 5,000cards per year (about 20 per workday) for the final 13 years of his life.

      Look up these references to confirm scope of numbers.

  2. Aug 2022
    1. “500 and 1000 cards” is a long way before perceiving some benefit. Maybe this is necessary because “mine is more textual and less visual than his [Michalsky’s]”. For me, benefit is visible after approx. 40 new notes, dropped on the canvas of my tool, rearranged and connected.

      Thanks for this additional piece of Data Matthias! I have a feeling that some of the benefit will also come down to the level of quality of the notes and how well interlinked they may be. Those doing massive dumps of raw, unelaborated, and unlinked data using services like Readwise into their collections will certainly take longer than those who have more refined ideas well linked. My number is presuming something closer to the former while something along the lines of a tenth of that (an order of magnitude) would seem to fall in line with my current working model. It would be nice to have a larger body of data to work with though.

      syndication link

    2. https://boffosocko.com/2022/07/03/55806862/

      https://hypothes.is/users/chrisaldrich<br /> Joined: January 18, 2012<br /> First annotation: 2018-11-29

      Annotations: 10,099 (public and private as of 2022-07-03)

      Date of publication: 2022-07-03<br /> Duration: 3 years, 6 months, 5 days or 1312 days<br /> Average of: ~10099/1,312 = 7.69 annotations per day

      compare: https://hypothes.is/a/26pRxBpQEe2VXK8kiyXtKQ

      I suspect that earlier years were more sparse with higher number of fleeting notes. The past year or two output and quality increased dramatically with more valuable literature notes and more actual near-permanent or actual permanent notes.

    1. https://web.hypothes.is/blog/100000-annotations/

      https://hypothes.is/users/heatherstaines<br /> Joined: November 11, 2016<br /> Annotations: 1,063 (public as of 2022-08-12)

      Date of publication: 2020-02-07<br /> Duration: 3 yr 3 mo or 1,183 days<br /> Average of: ~100,000/1,183 = 84.53 annotations per day

      These would be closer to the idea of fleeting notes per day and not a more zettelkasten-like permanent note. It does provide at least a magnitude of order level of measurement on practice however.

      Note that it's possible that as a part of the company she has multiple accounts including one with an earlier born by date which would tend to dilute the average.

      The publication is dated 2020-02-07 (which matches publication meta data) and somehow Heather makes an annotation on the post itself (dated 2020-02-02) saying she's already at 105,000 annotations. This could have given a smaller window on a few week's worth of annotations, except for the improbably mismatch in dates.

    1. How many cards (both analog and digital) have you created yet? .t3_wjzjaz._2FCtq-QzlfuN-SwVMUZMM3 { --postTitle-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postTitleLink-VisitedLinkColor: #9b9b9b; --postBodyLink-VisitedLinkColor: #989898; } question.71 votes2129.6%0=zero, I haven't started yet but I'm interested to learn4462.0%1..1000, some cards, I take it easy57.0%1k..10k, I like to imitate Roland Barthes with 12k cards11.4%10k..100k, my idol is Niklas Luhmann with 90k cards

      I'm curious who are the 6 that have been at this and honestly have over 10,000 cards? What timeframe did it take you to produce them? Roland Barthes worked for 37 years to produce his ~12,000.

    1. I'm working on my zettelkasten—creating literature notes and permanent notes—for 90 min a day from Monday to Friday but I struggle with my permanent note output. Namely, I manage to complete no more than 3-4 permanent notes per week. By complete I mean notes that are atomic (limited to 1 idea), autonomous (make sense on their own), connected (link to at least 3 other notes), and brief (no more than 300 words).That said, I have two questions:How many permanent notes do you complete per week on average?What are your tips to increase your output?

      reply to: https://www.reddit.com/r/Zettelkasten/comments/wjigq6/how_do_you_increase_your_permanent_note_output

      In addition to all the other good advice from others, it might be worth taking a look at others' production and output from a historical perspective. Luhmann working at his project full time managed to average about 6 cards a day.1 Roland Barthes who had a similar practice for 37 years averaged about 1.3 cards a day.2 Tiago Forte has self-reported that he makes two notes a day, though obviously his isn't the same sort of practice nor has he done it consistently for as long.3 As you request, it would be useful to have some better data about the output of people with long term, consistent use.

      Given even these few, but reasonably solid, data points at just 90 minutes a day, one might think you're maybe too "productive"! I suspect that unless one is an academic working at something consistently nearly full time, most are more likely to be in the 1-3 notes a day average output at best. On a per hour basis Luhmann was close to 0.75 cards while you're at 0.53 cards. Knowing this, perhaps the best advice is to slow down a bit and focus on quality over quantity. This combined with continued consistency will probably serve your enterprise much better in the long run than in focusing on card per hour or card per day productivity.

      Internal idea generation/creation productivity will naturally compound over time as your collection grows and you continue to work with it. This may be a better sort of productivity to focus on in the long term compared with short term raw inputs.

      Another useful tidbit that some neglect is the level of quality and diversity of the reading (or other) inputs you're using. The better the journal articles and books you're reading, the more value and insight you're likely to find and generate more quickly over time.

    1. Luhmann’s slip-box contains about 90,000 notes, which sounds like an incrediblylarge number. But it only means that he wrote six notes a day fromthe day he started to work with his slip-box until he died.

      Should check the dates of start and finish and do the direct math myself, but ostensibly Luhmann averaged six notes a day for the duration of keeping his zettelkasten.

    1. I also mentioned Zettelkasten many times in this post, but I don’t do that anymore—I just did a 1-month dry run and it felt tiring. Pen and paper just gives me the bare essentials. I can get straight to work and not worry if something is a literature note or a permanent note.

      What is it that was tiring about the practice? Did they do it properly, or was the focus placed on tremendous output driving the feeling of a need for commensurate tremendous input on a daily basis? Most lifetime productive users only made a few cards a day, but I get the feeling that many who start, think they should be creating 20 cards a day and that is definitely a road to burn out. This feeling is compounded by digital tools that make it easier to quickly capture ideas by quoting or cut and pasting, but which don't really facilitate the ownership of ideas (internalization) by the note taker. The work of writing helps to facilitate this. Apparently the framing of literature note vs. permanent note also was a hurdle in the collection of ideas moving toward the filtering down and refining of one's ideas. These naming ideas seem to be a general hurdle for many people, particularly if they're working without particular goals in mind.

      Only practicing zettelkasten for a month is certainly no way to build real insight or to truly begin developing anything useful. Even at two cards a day and a minimum of 500-1000 total cards to see some serendipity and creativity emerge, one would need to be practicing for just over a year to begin seeing interesting results.

  3. Jul 2022
    1. Over the course of his intellectual life, from about 1943 until hissudden death in 1980, Barthes built a card index consisting of morethan 12,250 note cards – the full extent of this collection was notknown until access to it was granted to the manuscript researchers ofthe Institut Mémoires de l’édition contemporaine (IMEC) inFrance (Krapp, 2006: 363).3

      Roland Barthes accumulated a card index of more than 12,250 note cards beginning in 1943 which were held after his death in 1980 at the Institut Mémoires de l’édition contemporaine (IMEC) in France.

      Barthes' dates 12 November 1915 – 26 March 1980 age 64

      He started his card index at roughly age 28 and at around the same time which he began producing written work. (Did he have any significant writing work or publications prior to this?)

      His card collection spanned about 37 years and at 12,250 cards means that was producing on average 0.907 cards per day. If we don't include weekends, then he produced 1.27 cards per day on average. Compare this with Ahrens' estimate of 6 cards a day for Niklas Luhmann.


      With this note I'm starting the use of a subject heading (in English) of "card index" as a generic collection of notes which are often kept in one or more boxes. This is to distinguish it from the more modern idea of zettelkasten in the Luhmann framing which also connotes a dense set of links between the cards themselves, though this may not have been the case historically. Card index is also specifically separate from 'index card' which is an individual instance of an item that might be found in a card index. At present, I'm unaware of a specific word in English which defines the broader note taking context or portions thereof relating to index cards in the same way that a zettelkasten implies. This may be the result of the broad use of index cards for so many varying uses in the early 20th century. For these other varying uses I'll try to differentiate them henceforth with the generic 'index card files' which might also be used to describe the containers in which cards might be found.

    1. I tried using Roam for about two weeks once. I used Roam and only Roam, diligently. After only two weeks, my knowledge graph was utterly unintelligible and distressing.

      While one can take a lot of notes in two weeks, even just six quality notes a day (Niklas Lumann's pace was six per day while Roland Barthes was closer to 1 and change per day) only provides about 84 cards or zettels. This isn't enough to make anything distressing or unintelligible. It's also incredibly far short of creating any useful links to create anything. He should have trimmed things down and continued for about 24 weeks to see any significant results. (Of course this also begs the question: what was his purpose in pursuing such a system in the first place?)

    1. The presenter in the video has 70 notes across 3 months which is drastically lower than what I have.

      Somewhere I think I read that Luhmann only added about 6 cards a day to his zettelkasten. (I suspect they averaged his 90K output over the span of years he said he used it....)

      My fleeting note output right now is potentially too much, and I certainly should be spending more time refining and building on my (note-based) thoughts.

      It's not how many thoughts one has, but their quality and even more importantly, what one does with them.

      https://www.reddit.com/r/Zettelkasten/comments/jho1em/i_found_a_gem/

    1. I have compiled, at latest reckoning, 35,669 posts - my version of a Zettelkasten.

      Stephen, to get a general grip on note taking practices, I've been collecting rough numbers of notes per day over spans of time from people. You mention 35,669 posts here. Over what span of time (years/days) does that currently represent?

  4. Jun 2022
    1. On average I capture just twonotes per day

      Tiago Forte self-reports that he captures two notes a day.


      Link to other's notes per day including Barthes, Luhmann, et al.