563 Matching Annotations
  1. Last 7 days
    1. Basic statistics regarding the TLL: - ancient Latin vocabulary words: ca. 55,000 words - 10,000,000 slips - ca. 6,500 boxes - ca. 1,500 slips per box - library 32,000 volumes - contributors: 375 scholars from 20 different countries - 12 Indo-European specalists - 8 Romance specialists - 100 proof-readers - ca. 44,000 words published - published content: 70% of the entire vocabulary - print run: 1,350 - Publisher: consortium of 35 academies from 27 countries on 5 continents

      Longest remaining words: - non / 37 boxes of ca 55,500 slips - qui, quae, quod / 65 boxes of ca. 96,000 slips - sum, esse, fui / 54.5 boxes of ca. 81,750 slips - ut / 35 boxes of ca 52,500 slips

      Note that some of these words have individual zettelkasten for themselves approaching the size of some of the largest personal collections we know about!

      [18:51]

    1. Based on the history and usage of horreum here in this first episode of the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae podcast, a project featuring a 10+ million slip zettelkasten at its core, I can't help but think that not only is the word ever so apropos for an introduction, but it does quite make an excellent word for translating the idea of card index in English or Zettelkasten from German into Latin.

      My horreum is a storehouse for my thoughts and ideas which nourishes my desire to discover and build upon my knowledge.

      This seems to be just the sort of thing that Jeremy Cherfas might appreciate on multiple levels.

      https://mcdn.podbean.com/mf/download/nxm28u/Horreum.mp3

    1. The advent of computer technology facilitated the assembly of the Demotic Dictionary, which unlike its older sister, the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary, could be organized electronically rather than on index cards.

      The Chicago Demotic Dictionary compiled by the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago was facilitated by computers compared with the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary which relied on index cards.

    1. Die schiere Menge sprengt die Möglichkeiten der Buchpublikation, die komplexe, vieldimensionale Struktur einer vernetzten Informationsbasis ist im Druck nicht nachzubilden, und schließlich fügt sich die Dynamik eines stetig wachsenden und auch stetig zu korrigierenden Materials nicht in den starren Rhythmus der Buchproduktion, in der jede erweiterte und korrigierte Neuauflage mit unübersehbarem Aufwand verbunden ist. Eine Buchpublikation könnte stets nur die Momentaufnahme einer solchen Datenbank, reduziert auf eine bestimmte Perspektive, bieten. Auch das kann hin und wieder sehr nützlich sein, aber dadurch wird das Problem der Publikation des Gesamtmaterials nicht gelöst.

      Google translation:

      The sheer quantity exceeds the possibilities of book publication, the complex, multidimensional structure of a networked information base cannot be reproduced in print, and finally the dynamic of a constantly growing and constantly correcting material does not fit into the rigid rhythm of book production, in which each expanded and corrected new edition is associated with an incalculable amount of effort. A book publication could only offer a snapshot of such a database, reduced to a specific perspective. This too can be very useful from time to time, but it does not solve the problem of publishing the entire material.


      While the writing criticism of "dumping out one's zettelkasten" into a paper, journal article, chapter, book, etc. has been reasonably frequent in the 20th century, often as a means of attempting to create a linear book-bound context in a local neighborhood of ideas, are there other more complex networks of ideas which we're not communicating because they don't neatly fit into linear narrative forms? Is it possible that there is a non-linear form(s) based on network theory in which more complex ideas ought to better be embedded for understanding?

      Some of Niklas Luhmann's writing may show some of this complexity and local or even regional circularity, but perhaps it's a necessary means of communication to get these ideas across as they can't be placed into linear forms.

      One can analogize this to Lie groups and algebras in which our reading and thinking experiences are limited only to local regions which appear on smaller scales to be Euclidean, when, in fact, looking at larger portions of the region become dramatically non-Euclidean. How are we to appropriately relate these more complex ideas?

      What are the second and third order effects of this phenomenon?

      An example of this sort of non-linear examination can be seen in attempting to translate the complexity inherent in the Wb (Wörterbuch der ägyptischen Sprache) into a simple, linear dictionary of the Egyptian language. While the simplicity can be handy on one level, the complexity of transforming the entirety of the complexity of the network of potential meanings is tremendously difficult.

    2. questions:

      • What were the exact sizes of the slips? Had they been standardized at the time?
    3. Die so angelegten Zettel wurden lithographisch jeweils 40mal kopiert. Sodann wurde für jedes auf dem Zettel verzeichnete ägyptische Wort eine solche Kopie herangezogen, das jeweilige Wort in der Textabschrift rot unterstrichen, und die Lautfolge des Wortes, wie man sie damals zu kennen glaubte, in der gebräuchlichen ägyptologischen Umschrift in der rechten oberen Ecke des Zettels notiert. Die so vorbereiteten Zettel wurden dann alphabetisch und unter Trennung der Homonyme nach Wörtern in eigens für das Wör terbuch angefertigte Zettelkästen einsortiert. Dabei wurden von vornherein bestimmte Sondergruppen, die für das Wörterbuch selbst nur von begrenztem Interesse waren, neben dem lexikalischen Hauptalphabet separat gestellt, so vor allem die Namen von Personen, Königen, Göttern und Orten. Aus diesen Nebenprodukten der Verzettelung entstand z.B. Hermann Rankes maßgebliches Lexikon der ägyptischen Personennamen.

      Once made, the initial note excerpts were copied 40 times using a lithography process. Then each word in the original slip was underlined in red on respective copies to be filed away alphabetically. At the top right corner of each slip was written down the phonetic sound of the rubricated word's Egyptian transcription. Within the collection certain special words were also separated for the names of people, kings, gods, and places to allow for additional study.


      Talk about a problem of multiple storage!!

    1. At present I am using index cards as to index the books (and documents saved on the computer).

      u/zleonska in discussing their paper notebook commonplace practice reports that finding their material within multiple notebooks isn't difficult but that, like W. Ross Ashby, they use index cards to index their commonplaces.

    1. Stroebe, Lilian L. “Die Stellung Des Mittelhochdeutschen Im College-Lehrplan.” Monatshefte Für Deutsche Sprache Und Pädagogik, 1924, 27–36. https://www.jstor.org/stable/44327729

      The place of Middle High German in the college curriculum<br /> Lilian L. Stroebe<br /> Monthly magazines for German language and pedagogy (1924), pp. 27-36

      ... of course to the reading material. Especially in the field of etymology it is easy to stimulate the pupils' independence. For years I have had each of my students create an etymological card dictionary with good success, and I see that at the end of the course they have this card box ...

    1. Wigent, William David, Burton David William Housel, and Edward Harry Gilman. Modern Filing and How to File: A Textbook on Office System. Rochester, N.Y.: Yawman & Erbe Mfg. Co., 1916. http://archive.org/details/modernfilingate02compgoog.

      Original .pdf converted with docdrop.org for OCR annotation on 2023-03-24.

      annotation target: urn:x-pdf:3c1f14d64c91cf4b513efa16df4ed90d

      Annotations: https://hypothes.is/users/chrisaldrich?q=url%3Aurn%3Ax-pdf%3A3c1f14d64c91cf4b513efa16df4ed90d

    1. Shaw-Walker. Flexowriter File-Desks. Accessed March 24, 2023. http://archive.org/details/TNM_Flexowriter_File-Desks_-_Shaw-Walker_20171021_0001.

      An interesting in-desk filing system for punched cards. Interesting I've not seen anything like this prior for a mini card index maintained in an office desk drawer.

      Perhaps such a system wouldn't have been as easily accessible for use on a daily basis versus potentially more portable small systems that could have been transferred from desk to desk (person to person).

    1. 9/8b2 "Multiple storage" als Notwendigkeit derSpeicherung von komplexen (komplex auszu-wertenden) Informationen.

      Seems like from a historical perspective hierarchical databases were more prevalent in the 1960s and relational databases didn't exist until the 1970s. (check references for this historically)

      Of course one must consider that within a card index or zettelkasten the ideas of both could have co-existed in essence even if they weren't named as such. Some of the business use cases as early as 1903 (earlier?) would have shown the idea of multiple storage and relational database usage. Beatrice Webb's usage of her notes in a database-like way may have indicated this as well.

    1. Die vermutlich zwischen 1952 und Anfang 1997 entstandenen Aufzeichnungen, mithilfe derer Luhmann die Ergebnisse seiner exzessiven und interdisziplinär breit angelegten Lektüre systematisch organisiert hat, dokumentieren die Theorieentwicklung auf eine einzigartige Weise, so dass man die Sammlung auch als eine intellektuelle Autobiographie verstehen kann.

      The researchers at the Niklas Luhmann-Archive studying Niklas Luhmann's Zettelkasten consider that "the collection can be understood as an intellectual autobiography" (translation mine) even though his slips were generally undated.

  2. Mar 2023
    1. I also “thread” index cards, particularly when they’re all associated with the same journal article or book chapter (or book). Note that I number my index cards “1/“, “2/“, until I know the total number of cards I will use. To store them, I collate them with a paper clip.
    1. How do you store and classify index cards? I usually have boxes that fit my index cards, and add a plastic tab with the reference in Author (Date) format. Other people use different classification systems (by keyword, by topic, by author). I just recommend that the process be consistent across.

      Pacheco-Vega stores his card with plastic tabs labeled by the references rather than by keyword or topic.

      He does recommend consistency in filing though.

    2. Hawk Sugano has shared his Pile of Index Cards (PoIC) method as well.

      Interesting to see a passing mention of Hawk Sugano's Pile of Index Cards here in a note taking context rather than a productivity one.

    3. I will share my processes to take notes using different methods. The very first method I use is the Index Cards Method.

      Professor Raul Pacheco-Vega calls his note taking process the "Index Cards Method" and only subtly differentiates it from Niklas Luhmann's zettelkasten method.

    1. Since Luhmann’s system of the slip box is well-known, Ahrens’ valuable contribution lies less in providing an innovative technique of note-taking and the organization of academic writing, but more in reflecting critically on the very nature of writing as a medium of knowledge generation.

      I think that by saying "Luhmann's system of the slip box is well-known", Stephanie Schiller is not talking about his specific box or his specific method, but the broader rhetorical method of the ars excerpendi and note taking in general. There isn't a whole lot of evidence to indicate that, except for a small segment of sociologists who may have know his work, that Luhmann's slip box was specifically well known at all up to the point of Ahrens' book.

    1. https://www.ebay.com/itm/155447667554

      This Catalog has a page with the various sizes of card catalog boxes available from Cole Steel in 1950s. The external sizes can be useful for placing the individual card sizes for some of these boxes on the secondary market.

      They also include approximate card capacities.

    1. Seen in a Hoskins business equipment advertisement in Business magazine (1903) for card index:

      YOUR BUSINESS AT YOUR FINGER ENDS

      Close to the phrase "at your finger tips". Would it have appeared before or after this?

      Business: The Magazine for Office, Store and Factory. Vol. 16. Business Man’s Publishing Company, 1903. https://www.google.com/books/edition/Business/QKaxezfHjL0C?hl=en&gbpv=0.

    1. General instructions for using a Memindex

      HOW IT IS USED <br /> Things to be done today, jot on face card. Things to be done tomorrow or next Friday, jot on card for that day. Things to keep before you until done, jot on opposite front card. A matter for January 10th jot on a short card put under the band till you return to your desk, then file next to card for January 10th when it will come out and refresh your memory.

      Things to be done when in New York or Chicago jot on card "N" or "C." The new address of Mr. Jones, under "J." Ideas on advertising jot on card tabbed "adv." Things for your clerk to do, on his card , etc., etc. Retire today's card tonight, carrying forward things not completed and put next card in the file in has proved that almost back of pocket case. The alphabet enables one to index all jottings for instant reference. This system is very comprehensive yet perfectly simple. You soon the learn to depend on it every hour of every day.

      Within the general instructions in a 1904 Memindex advertisement (next to an ad for "Genuine Edison Incandescent Lamps") we see the general ideas of indexing things into the future and carrying undone tasks forward, just as is done in the bullet journal method.

  3. books.googleusercontent.com books.googleusercontent.com
    1. mindex.THIS is the name Howard L. Wilson, of Rochester, N.Y.,hasgivenhisvestpocket cardsystem.Itisa

      Geyers Stationer. “Memindex Advertisement.” Geyer’s Stationer: Devoted to the Interests of the Stationery, Fancy Goods and Notion Trades, September 15, 1904. https://www.google.com/books/edition/Geyer_s_Stationer/L507AQAAMAAJ?hl=en&gbpv=0

      Howard L. Wilson of Rochester, NY named his vest pocket card index system the Memindex.

    1. Poem from the inside back cover of a 1913 Memindex Catalog:

      JUST JOT IT DOWN.

      If you’re going to meet a man<br /> Jot it down<br /> If you’ve got a little plan<br /> Jot it down<br /> If you never can remember<br /> Your requirements for September<br /> ’Till October or November<br /> Jot ’em down.

      If you’ve got a note to pay<br /> Jot it down<br /> If its due the first of May<br /> Jot it down<br /> If collections are so slow<br /> That to meet the note you know<br /> You must dun old Richard Roe<br /> Jot it down

      If you have a happy thought<br /> Jot it down<br /> If there’s something to be bought<br /> Jot it down<br /> Whether duty calls or pleasure<br /> If you’re busy or at leisure<br /> It will help you beyond measure<br /> Jot it down

      If there’re facts that you’d retain<br /> Jot ’em down<br /> If you’ve got to meet a train<br /> Jot it down<br /> If at work or only play<br /> If at home or far away<br /> In the night or in the day<br /> Jot it down

    2. c.1913 Wilson Memindex Desk Organzier Catalog Price List Booklet Rolodex Prequel

      In a 1913 catalog for the Wilson Memindex, the company suggested putting to do items and one's schedule on one side of the card and potentially keeping one's accounts or a diary on the reverse side.

    1. TheGlobeWernicke Vertical FilingCabinets aremadeformosteverysizeofcommercialpapermanufacturedandin-cludeBill,Letter,Cap,Report,Document,and Card Indexfiles.

      Noticing that while other filing companies have smaller half or quarter page ads in System, Globe-Wernicke Co. has a full page add for their filing cabinets.

    2. STANDARD INDEX CARD CO.

      Fascinating to see the 8 various types of hole punches different card index systems may have used on their index card filing cabinets.

      Advertisement from System, December 1906:

      CARD INDEX SYSTEM <br /> If you are using Card Systems, as manufacturers we are in a position to save money for you on these supplies. We make suggestions to anyone desiring to install labor-saving-money- making Card Systems.<br /> Cards supplied for all makes of cabinets.<br /> Write for prices and estimates.<br /> STANDARD INDEX CARD CO.,<br /> 707-09 Arch St., Phila., Pa.

    3. he Automatic File & Index Co.
    4. TheCalculagraph

      Beyond having people make direct copies of cards by hand or using carbon paper, The Calculagraph Company manufactured a copying machine for duplicating data.

      There is an accompanying picture (which I haven't copied here). Advertisement from 1906 System Magazine:

      The Calculagraph<br /> Makes individual records of actual<br /> working time on separate cards<br /> which may be used interchangeably<br /> for Cost Accounting, for Pay-rolls and<br /> for a number of other purposes with-<br /> out copying or transcribing a single<br /> figure, by simply assorting the cards<br /> and adding the records directly from<br /> their faces.<br /> A card containing all the work<br /> records of one man for a week may<br /> be useful for pay-roll purposes, but it<br /> is utterly worthless for learning the<br /> cost of products, until all the items<br /> have been copied or transcribed for<br /> classification.<br /> The Calculagraph requires a large<br /> number of cards in a factory employ-<br /> ing several hundred persons, but it<br /> Saves Clerical Labor. (In one<br /> factory it saves $150.00 per week).<br /> Cards Are Cheaper Than Labor<br /> The Calculagraph Makes No<br /> Clerical Errors.<br /> Let us send you our printed matter.<br /> CALCULAGRAPH COMPANY<br /> 1414 JEWELERS BUILDING, NEW YORK CITY

    5. ARDS CAN BE USEDINSOMEBRANCH OF YOUR BUSINESS

      INDEX CARDS CAN BE USED IN SOME BRANCH OF YOUR BUSINESS<br /> We have eight very useful forms. You can use one or more to good advantage and profit. Let us send you the Samples?<br /> UNITED STATES CARD INDEX CO.<br /> Office and Factory: 112 Liberty Street, NEW YORK<br /> Also send for our Priced Sample Set 'E' which includes all rulings, grades and weights of Index Cards and Guides.'

    6. Federal Steel FixtureCompany

      Federal Steel Fixture Company manufactured a variety of steel office furniture including desks, cabinets, lockers, filing cabinets, shelving, and card cabinets.

    7. TheSateliteCombinationCard IndexCabinetandTelephoneStand

      A fascinating combination of office furniture types in 1906!

      The Adjustable Table Company of Grand Rapids, Michigan manufactured a combination table for both telephones and index cards. It was designed as an accessory to be stood next to one's desk to accommodate a telephone at the beginning of the telephone era and also served as storage for one's card index.

      Given the broad business-based use of the card index at the time and the newness of the telephone, this piece of furniture likely was not designed as an early proto-rolodex, though it certainly could have been (and very well may have likely been) used as such in practice.


      I totally want one of these as a side table for my couch/reading chair for both storing index cards and as a temporary writing surface while reading!


      This could also be an early precursor to Twitter!

      Folks have certainly mentioned other incarnations: - annotations in books (person to self), - postcards (person to person), - the telegraph (person to person and possibly to others by personal communication or newspaper distribution)

      but this is the first version of short note user interface for both creation, storage, and distribution by means of electrical transmission (via telephone) with a bigger network (still person to person, but with potential for easy/cheap distribution to more than a single person)

    8. Memindex

      Let YOUR MIND GO FREE Do not tax your brain trying to re- member. Get the MEMINDEX HABIT and you can FORGET WITH IMPUNITY. An ideal reminder and handy system for keeping all memoranda where they will appear at the right time. Saves time, money, opportunity. A brain saver. No other device answers its purpose. A Great Help for Busy Men, Used and recommended by Bankers, Man- ufacturers, Salesmen, Lawyers, Doctors, Merchants, Insurance Men, Architects, Ed- ucators, Contractors, Railway Managers Engineers, Ministers, etc., all over the world. Order now and get ready to Begin the New Year Right. Rest of '06 free with each outfit. Express prepaid on receipt of price. Personal checks accepted

      Also a valuable card index for desk use. Dated cards from tray are carried in the handy pocket case, 2 to 4 weeks at a time. To-day's card always at the front. No leaves to turn. Helps you to PLAN YOUR WORK WORK YOUR PLAN ACCOMPLISH MORE You need it. Three years' sales show that most all business and professional men need it. GET IT NOW. WILSON MEMINDEX CO. 93 Mills St., Rochester, N. Y.

      Interesting that the use of the portmanteau memindex (as memory + index) for a card index being used to supplement one's memory. It can't go unnoticed that the Wilson Memindex Co. was manufacturing and selling these as early as 1906, several decades before Vannevar Bush's use of the word Memex which seems derivative and removes more of the traces of index from the root.

      Note the use of card sizes 2 3/4 x 4 1/2" and 3 x 5 1/2" for this system.

    9. AndMr.H. BeebeofChicago,using butonedrawer,says:"IthasmademekeepappointmentsandlayoutmyworktoincreasethethingsIcandoinaday."

      And Mr. H. Beebe of Chicago, using but one drawer, says: "It has made me keep appointments and lay out my work to increase the things I can do in a day. "

    10. W.K.Kellogg,President ofthe ToastedCornFlakeCompanyandalliedBattleCreekinterestsusing 640 drawers,says:"Ourbusiness involvesthehandling ofavastamountofdetail.Thedaily mailsometimescontainsthousandsofletters.IdonotknowhowallthesedetailscouldpossiblyhavebeenhandledwithoutShaw-WalkerSystems.

      In the December 1906 issue of System, a magazine which would eventually become Bloomberg Business Week), W. K. Kellogg, the President of the Toasted Corn Flake Company is quoted touting the invaluable nature of the Shaw-Walker filing system at a time when his company was using 640 drawers of their system.

    11. Also saves balf the time in filing correspondence , enabling one girlto do the work of two. This saving alone will quickly pay installationexpense.

      Example of sales touting productivity in a filing system.

      Note also the specific gendering of the clerk here in 1906.

    1. 1930s Wilson Memindex Co Index Card Organizer Pre Rolodex Ad Price List Brochure

      archived page: https://web.archive.org/web/20230310010450/https://www.ebay.com/itm/165910049390

      Includes price lists

      List of cards includes: - Dated tab cards for a year from any desired. - Blank tab cards for jottings arranged by subject. - These were sold in 1/2 or 1/3 cut formats - Pocket Alphabets for jottings arranged by letter. - Cash Account Cards [without tabs]. - Extra Record Cards for permanent memoranda. - Monthly Guides for quick reference to future dates. - Blank Guides for filing records by subject.. - Alphabet Guides for filing alphabetically.

      Memindex sales brochures recommended the 3 x 5" cards (which had apparently been standardized by 1930 compared to the 5 1/2" width from earlier versions around 1906) because they could be used with other 3 x 5" index card systems.

      In the 1930s Wilson Memindex Company sold more of their vest pocket sized 2 1/4 x 4 1/2" systems than 3 x 5" systems.

      Some of the difference between the vest sized and regular sized systems choice was based on the size of the particular user's handwriting. It was recommended that those with larger handwriting use the larger cards.

      By the 1930's at least the Memindex tag line "An Automatic Memory" was being used, which also gave an indication of the ubiquity of automatization of industrialized life.

      The Memindex has proved its success in more than one hundred kinds of business. Highly recommended by men in executive positions, merchants, manufacturers, managers, .... etc.

      Notice the gendering of users specifically as men here.

      Features: - Sunday cards were sold separately and by my reading were full length tabs rather than 1/6 tabs like the other six days of the week - Lids were custom fit to the bases and needed to be ordered together - The Memindex Jr. held 400 cards versus the larger 9 inch standard trays which had space for 800 cards and block (presumably a block to hold them up or at an angle when partially empty).

      The Memindex Jr., according to a price sheet in the 1930s, was used "extensively as an advertising gift".

      The Memindex system had cards available in bundles of 100 that were labeled with the heading "Things to Keep in Sight".

    1. How does a zettelkasten differ from a card index?A zettelkasten is a type of note-taking system that originated in Germany and is typically used for knowledge management and creative writing. While a card index is a similar system, there are some key differences between the two.Structure: A zettelkasten is a hierarchical system of notes, where each note is linked to other notes through a system of cross-referencing. This means that each note can be linked to multiple other notes in a non-linear way. A card index, on the other hand, is typically organized in a linear fashion, with each card representing a discrete piece of information.Contextual linking: In a zettelkasten, notes are linked to other notes based on their context and relevance, rather than by a predetermined system of organization. This allows for more creative and flexible connections between ideas, and can help to generate new insights and connections. A card index, on the other hand, is typically organized based on a pre-defined system of categories or tags.Purpose: While both systems can be used for a variety of purposes, a zettelkasten is often used specifically for knowledge management, research, and creative writing. It is designed to help users capture and organize their ideas, and to facilitate the development of new insights and connections. A card index, on the other hand, can be used for a wider range of purposes, including contact management, recipe organization, and more.Overall, a zettelkasten and a card index are both useful note-taking systems, but they differ in terms of structure, contextual linking, and purpose. A zettelkasten is typically more flexible and creative, while a card index is more structured and organized.

      https://sharegpt.com/c/0mrnsgg

      Not a half bad answer...

    1. Can I use a card index for note taking?Yes, you can certainly use a card index for note-taking. Card indexes have been a popular method of note-taking for many years and can be very effective. Here are a few tips to get you started:Choose the right size of card index: Card indexes come in various sizes, so choose one that is comfortable for you to handle and store.Use cards of the same size: Using cards of the same size ensures that they will fit into your index box or file and that they will be easy to handle.Choose a system for organizing your cards: You can organize your cards alphabetically, by subject, by date, or any other system that works for you.Use one card per idea or topic: To keep your notes organized and easy to find, use one card per idea or topic.Keep your notes brief and to the point: Use brief notes that summarize the key points of your topic. This will make it easier to review your notes and find the information you need.Review your notes regularly: Review your notes regularly to keep the information fresh in your mind and to make sure you haven't missed anything important.Overall, a card index can be a very effective method of note-taking, as long as you develop a system that works for you and use it consistently.

      https://shareg.pt/th2DNz0

      Q: Can I use a card index for note taking?

      Compare with: https://hypothes.is/a/HTqQPrksEe2XdQcSVvzXLQ

    1. Yes, you can definitely use a card index for note-taking. In fact, many people find card indexes to be a useful and convenient tool for organizing and storing notes. Here are some tips for using a card index for note-taking:Choose a system: Decide on a system for organizing your cards. You could organize them alphabetically, by topic, by date, or by any other method that works for you.Choose the size of cards: Choose the size of cards that works best for your needs. Common sizes include 3" x 5", 4" x 6", and 5" x 8".Use one card per idea: Write one idea or piece of information on each card. This will help keep your notes organized and easy to reference.Include keywords: Include keywords on each card to make it easier to find relevant information later.Use dividers: Use dividers to separate different topics or sections in your card index. This will help keep your notes organized and easy to navigate.Carry it with you: A card index is a portable tool, so you can take it with you wherever you go. This makes it easy to take notes on the go and to refer to your notes when you need them.Overall, a card index can be a useful and efficient tool for note-taking, especially if you prefer a physical, tangible way of organizing and storing information.

      Q: Can I use a card index for note taking?

      ChatGPT does a reasonable bit of advice on how one would use a card index for note taking.

    1. In short, in the absence of legal tender laws, the seller will not accept anything but money of certain value (good money), but the existence of legal tender laws will cause the buyer to offer only money with the lowest commodity value (bad money), as the creditor must accept such money at face value.

      During the coronavirus pandemic, many vendors facing inflation began to pass along the 3% (or more) credit card processing fees to their customers. Previously many credit card companies would penalize vendors for doing this (and possibly cut them off). This fee was considered "the cost of doing business".

      Some vendors prior to the pandemic would provide cash discounts on large orders because they could circumvent these fees.

      Does this affect (harm) inflation? Is it a form of Gresham's law at play here? What effect does this have on credit card companies? Are they so integral to the system that it doesn't affect them, but instead the customers using their legal tender?

    1. In der aktuellen Folge „research_tv“ der Universität Bielefeld erklären Professor Dr. André Kieserling, Johannes Schmidt und Martin Löning, wie sie sich der so genannten „intellektuellen Autobiographie“ Luhmanns annähern.

      Translation:

      In the current episode "research_tv" of Bielefeld University, Professor Dr. André Kieserling, Johannes Schmidt and Martin Löning how they approach Luhmann's so-called “intellectual autobiography”.

      !!

  4. Feb 2023
    1. What screenwriting books recommend note cards for drafting/outlining? Do any go beyond the general outlining advice?

      What is the overlap of this sort of writing practice with comedians who had a practice of writing jokes on index cards? (Ronald Reagan, Phyllis Diller, etc.?

    2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwKjuBvNi40

      Ben Rowland uses index cards to outline the plot of his screenplays. This is a common practice among screenwriters. Interestingly he only uses it for plot outlining and not for actual writing the way other writers like Vladimir Nabokov may have. Both Benjamin Rowland and Duston Lance Black use cards for outlining but not at the actual writing stage.

    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.

    2. NOW I SAY, "OKAY, THIS IS DONE." I READ IT. IT FEELS LIKE A MOVIE. AND I'M GONNA PUT IT IN THE BOX. AND I'M GONNA PUT IT IN THE BOX IN THIS ORDER, AND THIS IS THE ORDER THAT I'M GONNA WRITE IT IN IN MY FIRST DRAFT. OVER THE NEXT NUMBER OF WEEKS, I START WRITING. WHAT I'VE BEEN DOING, I'VE BEEN SEEING THE SCENES IN MY HEAD FOR SO LONG AT THIS POINT THAT IT'S ALMOST LIKE JUST REGURGITATION. LIKE, I'M JUST GETTING OUT. AND I CALL IT MY VOMIT DRAFT. #

      Dustin Lance Black's "vomit draft" is similar to Mozart's peeing his music out like a cow. His method is also similar to Victor Margolin who's gone over the material several times by the time he's finally writing out his draft.

    1. If you want one final piece of (unsolicited) advice: if you bulk-import those Kindle highlights, please do not try to create literature Zettels out of everything. I did it and I DO NOT RECOMMEND. It was just too much work to rehash stuff that I had already (kind of) assimilated. Reserve that energy to write permanent notes (you probably know much more than you give yourself credit for) and just use the search function (or [^^]) to search for relevant quotes or notes. Only key and new papers/chapters you could (and should, I think) take literature notes on. Keep it fun!

      Most veteran note takers will advise against importing old notes into a new digital space for the extra amount of administrative overhead and refactoring it can create.

      Often old notes may be: - well assimilated into your memory already - poorly sourced or require lots of work and refactoring to use or reuse them - become a time suck trying to make them "perfect"

      Better advice is potentially pull them into your system in a different spot so they're searchable and potentially linkable/usable as you need them. If this seems like excessive work, and it very well may be, then just pull in individual notes as you need or remember them.

      With any luck the old notes are easily searchable/findable in whichever old system they happen to be in, so they're still accessible.


      I'll note here the conflicting definitions of multiple storage in my tags to mean: - storing a single note under multiple subject headings or index terms - storing notes in various different (uncentralized locations), so having multiple different zettelkasten at home/office, storing some notes in social media locations, in various notebooks, etc. This means you have to search across multiple different interfaces to find the thing you're looking at.

      I should create a new term to distinguish these two, but for now they're reasonably different within their own contexts that it's not a big problem unless one or the other scales.

    2. I find it very tiring haha. As I said in another comment, processing a single chapter can take me a full day or two. However, I keep reminding myself that I would rather spend a day processing a chapter well, and have literature notes to serve me a lifetime (potentially, at least), rather than reading a chapter in two hours and not remember a single thing the next day. When I REALLY need a reminder of this, I just look at my "Backlog" folder which contains old "notes" that are now pretty much useless: I didn't use a reference manager consistently during my first two years of PhD so there are a lot of citations which are unreliable; I didn't really summarise texts, I only read them and highlighted; I didn't use the cloud for a long time, so I lost a lot of notes; and I didn't have Obsidian, so a lot of my notes are just contained within the context of the place I read them, rather than being connected. Seeing three years worth of useless materials, and knowing that I read a couple hundred of articles/chapters but I have nothing to show for it, that makes me more patient when writing my literature notes now. However I also find it very exciting that I can future-proof some of my notes. I feel like I'm working for my future self.

      A partial answer to note taking why.

    1. Reagan’s Note Card Treasures<br /> by John H. Fund <br /> at August 10, 2011, 12:00 AM<br /> (accessed:: 2023-02-23 12:25:06)

      archived copy: https://web.archive.org/web/20151017020314/http://spectator.org/articles/37399/reagans-note-card-treasures

    2. WHILE REAGAN was governor, I will never forget his taking time out of his schedule after a television taping to show me—a 15-year-old high school student—how he could instantly arrange his packs of anecdote-filled index cards into a speech tailor-made for almost any audience. I still use a variation of Reagan’s system to construct my own speeches.

      John H. Fund wrote that while he was a a 15-year old high school student, Reagan taught him how he arranged his index card-based notes to tailor-make a speech for almost any audience. In 2011, Fund said he still used a variation of Reagan's system for his own speeches.

    3. Indeed, Martin Anderson, Reagan’s former domestic policy adviser, says that Reagan’s system did wonders for his ability to give speeches. Reagan was able to approach a lectern with no sign anywhere of a prepared speech. Only those seated on the stage behind him could see his left hand drop into his suitcoat pocket and pull out a neat, small packet of cards and slip off the elastic band with his right hand as he set the cards down. And as for helping him in preparing the speech material, “his system was unrivaled,” Anderson remembers. “Before the speech Reagan would pore over the packs of cards, then pluck a few cards from one pack, a few from another, and combine them. In a matter of minutes, he would create an entirely new speech. The system was as flexible as a smooth gold chain.”
    1. Manfred Kuehn in Ronald Reagan's Notecards at 2015-01-25<br /> (accessed:: 2023-02-23 11:34:10)

      Kuehn felt that Ronald Regan's note taking "does not seem like a good system. In fact, it's hardly any system at all..."

    1. Lustig, Jason. “‘Mere Chips from His Workshop’: Gotthard Deutsch’s Monumental Card Index of Jewish History.” History of the Human Sciences, vol. 32, no. 3, July 2019, pp. 49–75. SAGE Journals, https://doi.org/10.1177/0952695119830900

      Cross reference preliminary notes from https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0952695119830900

      Finished reading 2023-02-21 13:04:00

      urn:x-pdf:6053dd751da0fa870cad9a71a28882ba

    2. As a graduate student, hemaintained a card index of his own. When Marcus’s friends wrote of his travels abroad,they declared that ‘When we think of that card index by now we shudder. What propor-tions it must have assumed’. 18

      Example of a student who saw/learned/new a zettelkasten note taking method from a teacher.

    3. Simultaneously, it showcases how little actually has changed with therise of digital platforms, where some scholars have sought to build software edifices toemulate card index systems or speak of ‘paper-based tangible interfaces’ for research(Do ̈ring and Beckhaus, 2007; Lu ̈decke, 2015).

      Döring, T. and Beckhaus, S. (2007) ‘The Card Box at Hand: Exploring the Potentials of a Paper-Based Tangible Interface for Education and Research in Art History’. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Tangible and Embedded Interaction, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, February 15-17, 2007. New York, ACM, pp. 87–90.

      Did they have a working system the way Ludeke did?

    4. Muchrecent scholarship on card indexes and factuality falls into one of two modes: first,scholars have excavated early modern indexes, catalogues, and the pursuit of ‘facts’to demonstrate information overload prior to the contemporary ‘information age’ as wellas the premodern attempts to counteract the firehose of books and other information(Blair, 2010; Krajewski, 2011; Mu ̈ ller-Wille and Scharf, 2009; Poovey, 1998;

      Zedelmaier, 1992). All the same, a range of figures have tracked and critiqued the trajectory of the ‘noble dream’ of historical and scientific ‘objectivity’ (Appleby, Hunt and Jacob, 1994: 241-70; Daston and Galison, 2007; Novick, 1988).

      Lustig categorizes scholarship on card indexes into two modes: understanding of information overload tools and the "trajectory of the 'noble dream' of historical and scientific 'objectivity'".

    5. Moreover, card indexes give further form to Bruno Latour’s meditations on writing: ifLatour described writing as a kind of ‘flattening’ of knowledge, then card indexes, likevertical files, represent information in three dimensions, making ideas simultaneouslyimmutable and highly mobile, and the smallness of ideas and ‘facts’ forced to fit onpaper slips allowed for reordering (Latour, 1986: 19-20).
    6. Card indexes were a tool to manage information overloadand enabled one to move and recombine letters, words and ideas – which led WalterBenjamin to describe the explosion of the book into its fundamental components,recorded on cards, so that they could be recombined (Benjamin, 2016[1986]: 43).
    7. Beyond the realm of historians, advocates called card indexes ‘the only portable,elastic, simple, orderly and self-indexing way of keeping records’, and the practice wascommon enough that Gustave Flaubert parodied the unending and ultimately futilepursuit of all knowledge in his 1881 satire Bouvard et Pe ́cuchet (Dickinson, 1894).
    8. Fred Morrow Flingwrote effusively of the ‘manifest advantages’ of the ‘card system of note taking’

      from<br /> Fling, F. M. (1920) The Writing of History: An Introduction to Historical Method. New Haven: Yale University Press.

    9. 20th-century enterprises like Herbert Field’s‘Concilium Bibliographicum’, a system of zoological research
    10. Deutsch’s close friendJoseph Stolz, writing of the Chicago rabbi Bernard Felsenthal (1822–1908) who hadpenned a history of that city’s Jews and was instrumental in the 1892 formation of theAmerican Jewish Historical Society, noted that Felsenthal ‘was not the systematic orga-nizer who worked with a stenographer and card-index’ (Stolz, 1922: 259).

      Great example of a historian implying the benefit of not only a card index, but of potentially how commonplace it was to not only have one, but to have stenographers or secretaries to help manage them.

      Link this to the reference in Heyde about historians and others who were pushed to employ stenographers or copyists to keep their card indexes in order.


      Given the cost of employing secretaries to manage our information, one of the affordances that computers might focus on as tools for thought is lowering the barrier for management and maintenance. If they can't make this easier/simpler, then what are they really doing beyond their shininess? Search is obviously important in this context.

      What was the reference to employing one person full time to manage every 11 or 12 filing cabinets' worth of documents? Perhaps Duguid in the paper piece?

    1. To cover my knowledge management process would distract you from what works for you. Your question needs more context to be actionable.TL;DR; Whichever knowledge management system gets you paid.I've got 13 notes with the term "knowledge management," 15 with "information gathering," and 7 with "strategic intelligence." Without finishing a MOC, here's off the top of my head:Have a purpose or reason for learning.Ask helpful questions that solve problems.Answer questions as stand-alone notes.Learn from primary sources. Even boring ones.Take notes for your intended audience.Serve a specific audience (get paid.)Write about what people care about.Become a subject matter expert in target areas.Deliver what you know as a service first.Build on your strengths. Knowledge is cheap.It's not a process. More like tips. If demand exists, I'll write a book on the topic in a few years. Might be a good podcast topic.“No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.” -- Samuel Johnson, The Life of Samuel JohnsonRemember, there is no shortage of knowledge. Managing information is like masturbation; it feels good but doesn't do much. Focus on making information drive goal achievement.

      Some useful and solid advice here.

    2. https://www.reddit.com/r/ObsidianMD/comments/zb4okr/map_of_18237_files_more_than_22_years_of_writing/

      u/jwhco has ~5,000 index cards and 18,237 files (presumably mostly note-based text files, though some mentioned are papers, articles, etc.) over the span of 22 years.

    1. we have preserved Eco’s handwritten index cardresearch system in all its detail, precisely because it is the soulof How to Write a Thesis.
    2. 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.

    1. “...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?

    2. 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.

    3. 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.

    1. Stettler, Lucia. “Geheime Gästekartei überlebt Hotelbrand – und birgt Zündstoff.” Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRF), April 8, 2021, sec. Kultur. https://www.srf.ch/kultur/gesellschaft-religion/brisanter-fund-geheime-gaestekartei-ueberlebt-hotelbrand-und-birgt-zuendstoff.

      <small><cite class='h-cite via'> <span class='p-author h-card'>ManuelRodriguez331</span> in Advantages of Analog note taking : Zettelkasten (<time class='dt-published'>02/07/2023 08:33:25</time>)</cite></small>

    2. Wie durch ein Wunder blieben vier Holzkisten mit hochbrisantem Inhalt verschont. Sie waren zum Zeitpunkt des Infernos in einem anderen Gebäude eingelagert. Sie enthielten 20'000 Gästekarten, die Concierges und Rezeptionisten zwischen 1920 und 1960 heimlich geführt hatten.

      srf.ch/kultur/gesellschaft-religion/brisanter-fund-geheime-gaestekartei-ueberlebt-hotelbrand-und-birgt-zuendstoff

      Google translate:

      four wooden boxes with highly explosive contents were spared. They were stored in a different building at the time of the inferno. They contained 20,000 guest cards that concierges and receptionists had kept secretly between 1920 and 1960.

      The Grandhotel Waldhaus burned down in 1989, but saved from the inferno were 20,000 guest cards with annotations about them that were compiled between 1920 and 1960.

    3. At the Grandhotel Waldhaus in Vulpera, Switzerland concierges and receptionists maintained a business-focused zettelkasten of cards. In addition to the typical business function these cards served denoting names, addresses, and rooms, the staff also made annotations commenting on the guests and their proclivities.

      The old Grandhotel Waldhaus in Vulpera attracted the noble and the rich from all over the world to the Lower Engadine. R GULER

      1:

      2:

      3:

      4:

      5:

      6:

    4. Die Klientel bewegte sich unter ihresgleichen und hatte keine Ahnung, dass der höfliche Concierge an der Rezeption heimlich seinem Ärger Luft machte – mittels giftiger Kommentare: «Ganz grober Kerl; treibt es arg mit den Weibern», «Grosser Protz à la Neureich», «Rappenspalter», «blöde Ziege» oder «Beisszange».

      Google translate:

      The clientele moved among their own kind and had no idea the polite concierge at the front desk was secretly venting his anger with venomous comments: 'Very rude fellow; does it badly with the women", "Big Protz à la Neureich", "Rappensplitter", "Stupid Goat" or "Tongs".

  5. Jan 2023
    1. This was not at all unusual during the 1970s. Many people and organizations that had to keep track of a large amount of data used primarily index cards to keep things organized.

      Manfred Kuehn indicates that keeping track of information on note cards was "not unusual during the 1970s".

    1. Browsing through Walten’s notes also helped Jagersma to get to know the pamphleteer better, even though he is been dead for three hundred years. “The Memoriaelen say a lot about him. I could read how Walten did his research, follow his fascinations, and see the ideas for pieces he was not able to work out anymore. In a way, these two notebooks are a kind of self-portrait.”
    2. In the process, her notes become very personal. “The more personal, the more valuable,” says Fraza. “The way in which you link your ideas is what makes your knowledge base unique.”
    1. He saw that her suitcase had shoved all his trays of slips over to one side of the pilot berth.They were for a book he was working on and one of the four long card-catalog-type trays wasby an edge where it could fall off. That's all he needed, he thought, about three thousand four-by-six slips of note pad paper all over the floor.He got up and adjusted the sliding rest inside each tray so that it was tight against the slipsand they couldn't fall out. Then he carefully pushed the trays back into a safer place in therear of the berth. Then he went back and sat down again.It would actually be easier to lose the boat than it would be to lose those slips. There wereabout eleven thousand of them. They'd grown out of almost four years of organizing andreorganizing and reorganizing so many times he'd become dizzy trying to fit them all together.He'd just about given up.

      Worry about dropping a tray of slips and needing to reorganize them.

    1. Around 1956: "My next task was to prepare my course. Since none of the textbooks known to me was satisfactory, I resorted to the maieutic method that Plato had attributed to Socrates. My lectures consisted essentially in questions that I distributed beforehand to the students, and an abstract of the research that they had prompted. I wrote each question on a 6 × 8 card. I had adopted this procedure a few years earlier for my own work, so I did not start from scratch. Eventually I filled several hundreds of such cards, classed them by subject, and placed them in boxes. When a box filled up, it was time to write an article or a book chapter. The boxes complemented my hanging-files cabinet, containing sketches of papers, some of them aborted, as well as some letters." (p. 129)

      This sounds somewhat similar to Mark Robertson's method of "live Roaming" (using Roam Research during his history classes) as a teaching tool on top of other prior methods.

      link to: Roland Barthes' card collection for teaching: https://hypothes.is/a/wELPGLhaEeywRnsyCfVmXQ

    1. Anybody using this approach to manage contacts? How?

      reply to IvanFerrero at https://forum.zettelkasten.de/discussion/1740/anybody-using-this-approach-to-manage-contacts-how#latest

      Many of the digital note taking tools that run off of text allow you to add metadata to your basic text files (as YAML headers, inline with a key:: value pair, or via #tags). Many of them have search functionality or use other programmatic means like query blocks, DataView, DataViewJS, etc. for doing queries on your files to get back lists, tables, charts, etc. of the data you're looking for.

      The DataView repository has some good examples of how this works with something like Obsidian. Fortunately if you're using simple text files you can usually put them into one or more platforms to get the data and affordances you want out of them individually.

      As an example, I have a script block in my daily note in Obsidian for birthdays in my notes that fall on today's date:

      ```dataview LIST birthday FROM "Lists/People" WHERE birthday.day = date(2023-01-18).day ```

      If I put the text birthday:: 1927-12-08 into a note about Niklas Luhmann, his name and birthday would appear in my daily note on his birthday. One can use similar functionality to create tables of books they read with titles, authors, ratings, dates read, etc. or a variety of other data input which parses through your plaintext files. Services like Obsidian, Logseq, et al. are getting better about allowing these types of programmatic searches for users without backgrounds in programming and various communities usually provide help for pre-made little snippets like the one above that one can cut and paste into their notes to get the outputs that they need. Another Obsidian based example that uses text files for tracking academic journal articles can be found at https://nataliekraneiss.com/your-academic-reading-list-in-obsidian/; I'm sure there are similar versions for other text-based platforms.

      In pre-digital times, for a manual version of a rolodex like this in paper, one could use different color cards as pseudo-tags (doctors are on yellow cards, family members on blue cards, friends on green cards, etc.) or adding edge notches or even tabs to represent different types of metadata. See for example the edge colored cards in Hawkexpress' Pile of Index Cards: https://www.flickr.com/photos/hawkexpress/albums/72157594200490122

    1. Judge Domino is a game in which players judge if toppling a line of dominoes will succeed or fail. Players take turns adding to the line, but to score points, you must make others think that the toppling will fail. Can you baffle other players' judgment?
    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. For some scholars, it is critical thatthis new Warburg obsessively kept tabs on antisemitic incidents on the Easternfront, scribbling down aphorisms and thoughts on scraps of paper and storingthem in Zettelkasten that are now searchable.

      Apparently Aby Warburg "obsessively kept" notes on antisemitic incidents on the Eastern front in his zettelkasten.


      This piece looks at Warburg's Jewish identity as supported or not by the contents of his zettelkasten, thus placing it in the use of zettelkasten or card index as autobiography.


      Might one's notes reflect who they were as a means of creating both their identity while alive as well as revealing it once they've passed on? Might the use of historical method provide its own historical method to be taken up on a meta basis after one's death?

    1. May 19, 2004 #1 Hello everyone here at the forum. I want to thank everyone here for all of the helpful and informative advice on GTD. I am a beginner in the field of GTD and wish to give back some of what I have received. What is posted below is not much of tips-and-tricks I found it very helpful in understanding GTD. The paragraphs posted below are from the book Lila, by Robert Pirsig. Some of you may have read the book and some may have not. It’s an outstanding read on philosophy. Robert Pirsig wrote his philosophy using what David Allen does, basically getting everything out of his head. I found Robert Pirsigs writing on it fascinating and it gave me a wider perspective in using GTD. I hope you all enjoy it, and by all means check out the book, Lila: An Inquiry Into Morals. Thanks everyone. arthur

      Arthur introduces the topic of Robert Pirsig and slips into the GTD conversation on 2004-05-19.

      Was this a precursor link to the Pile of Index Cards in 2006?

      Note that there doesn't seem to be any discussion of any of the methods with respect to direct knowledge management until the very end in which arthur returns almost four months later to describe a 4 x 6" card index with various topics he's using for filing away his knowledge on cards. He's essentially recreated the index card based commonplace book suggested by Robert Pirsig in Lila.

    1. After browsing through a variety of the cards in Gertrud Bauer's Zettelkasten Online it becomes obvious that the collection was created specifically as a paper-based database for search, retrieval, and research. The examples and data within it are much more narrowly circumscribed for a specific use than those of other researchers like Niklas Luhmann whose collection spanned a much broader variety of topics and areas of knowledge.

      This particular use case makes the database nature of zettelkasten more apparent than some others, particularly in modern (post-2013 zettelkasten of a more personal nature).

      I'm reminded here of the use case(s) described by Beatrice Webb in My Apprenticeship for scientific note taking, by which she more broadly meant database creation and use.

    1. Her work on borrowed function words was so far manifest in her Konkordanz der nichtflektierten griechischen Wörter im bohairischen Neuen Testament, Göttinger Orientforschungen VI/6, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz 1975, the tip of the iceberg as we know now.

      Gertrud Bauer used her zettelkasten on Coptic and Greek to write Konkordanz der nichtflektierten griechischen Wörter im bohairischen Neuen Testament, Göttinger Orientforschungen VI/6, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz 1975, a work on borrowed function words.

    1. Index card carrying case

      Try Kaitiaki or Rite in the Rain. If you search for "index card wallet" you'll likely find a variety of others, including some custom made versions on sites like Etsy. 3 x 5" are relatively common, but 4 x 6" are much harder to come by.

    1. Expansion is led by focus. By taking time to edit, carve up, and refactor our notes, we put focus on ideas. This starts the Great Wheel of Positive Feedback. All hail to the Great Wheel of Positive Feedback.

      How can we better thing of card indexes as positive feedback mechanisms? Will describes it as the "Great Wheel of Positive Feedback" which reminds me a bit of flywheels for storing energy for later use.

    1. Many of the topic cards served as the skeleton for Mediterranean Society and can be usedto study how Goitein constructed his magnum opus. To give just one example, in roll 26 wehave the index cards for Mediterranean Society, chap. 3, B, 1, “Friendship” and “InformalCooperation” (slides 375–99, drawer 24 [7D], 431–51), B, 2, “Partnership and Commenda”(slides 400–451, cards 452–83), and so forth.

      Cards from the topically arranged index cards in Goitein's sub-collection of 20,000 served as the skeleton of his magnum opus Mediterranean Society.

    2. Goitein’s index cards can be divided into two general types: those thatfocus on a specific topic (children, clothing, family, food, weather, etc.) andthose that serve as research tools for the study of the Geniza. 48
    3. It is, however, important to keep in mind that, reflecting the trajectory ofGoitein’s study of the Geniza, there are often two sets of cards for a givensubject, one general and one related to the India Book.44

      Goitein, “Involvement in Geniza Research,” 144.

      Goitein's cards are segmented into two sets: one for subjects and one related to the India Book.

    4. Until the development of new digital tools, Goitein’s index cards providedthe most extensive database for the study of the documentary Geniza.

      Goitein's index cards provided a database not only for his own work, but for those who studied documentary Geniza after him.

  6. Dec 2022
    1. I’m a screenwriter. One of the reasons I use Obsidian is the ability to hashtag. It sounds so simple, but being able to tag notes with #theme or #sceneideas helps create linkages between notes that would not otherwise be linked. My ZK literally tells me what the movie is really about.

      via u/The_Bee_Sneeze

      Example of someone using Obsidian with a zettelkasten focus to write screenplays.

      Thought the example appears in r/Zettelkasten, one must wonder at how Luhmann-esque such a practice really appears?

    1. For example I had a few notes on principles of modern cryptography that came in handy when I had to write a paper about a related topic for my studies. But these cases were rare at best, most of these notes were never looked at again.

      The one shining moment in the whole essay and they don't seem to realize where the benefit or use actually was. They finally had a reason to have taken notes and the ideas shone here. But they've written off the tools because they didn't understand when to use them.

      Hammers are cool, but unless you're a professional carpenter, you don't carry it around all the time and use it constantly to hammer things. The same is true of note taking as a tool. You might use it regularly if you're a writer or an academic perhaps, but for hourly use in your day-to-day? Almost definitely not.

    1. Goitein accumulated more than 27,000 index cards in his research work over the span of 35 years. (Approximately 2.1 cards per day.)

      His collection can broadly be broken up into two broad categories: 1. Approximately 20,000 cards are notes covering individual topics generally making of the form of a commonplace book using index cards rather than books or notebooks. 2. Over 7,000 cards which contain descriptions of a single fragment from the Cairo Geniza.

      A large number of cards in the commonplace book section were used in the production of his magnum opus, a six volume series about aspects of Jewish life in the Middle Ages, which were published as A Mediterranean Society: The Jewish communities of the Arab World as Portrayed in the Documents of the Cairo Geniza (1967–1993).

    2. https://genizalab.princeton.edu/resources/goiteins-index-cards

      <small><cite class='h-cite via'> <span class='p-author h-card'>u/Didactico</span> in Goitein's Index Cards : antinet (<time class='dt-published'>12/15/2022 23:12:33</time>)</cite></small>

    1. “I have a trick that I used in my studio, because I have these twenty-eight-hundred-odd pieces of unreleased music, and I have them all stored in iTunes,” Eno said during his talk at Red Bull. “When I’m cleaning up the studio, which I do quite often—and it’s quite a big studio—I just have it playing on random shuffle. And so, suddenly, I hear something and often I can’t even remember doing it. Or I have a very vague memory of it, because a lot of these pieces, they’re just something I started at half past eight one evening and then finished at quarter past ten, gave some kind of funny name to that doesn’t describe anything, and then completely forgot about, and then, years later, on the random shuffle, this thing comes up, and I think, Wow, I didn’t hear it when I was doing it. And I think that often happens—we don’t actually hear what we’re doing. . . . I often find pieces and I think, This is genius. Which me did that? Who was the me that did that?”

      Example of Brian Eno using ITunes as a digital music zettelkasten. He's got 2,800 pieces of unreleased music which he plays on random shuffle for serendipity, memory, and potential creativity. The experience seems to be a musical one which parallels Luhmann's ideas of serendipity and discovery with the ghost in the machine or the conversation partner he describes in his zettelkasten practice.

    2. Eno’s strategies don’t always appeal to the musicians he works with. In Geeta Dayal’s book about the album, also titled “Another Green World,” the bassist Percy Jones recalls, “There was this one time when he gave everybody a piece of paper, and he said write down 1 to 100 or something like that, and then he gave us notes to play against specific numbers.” Phil Collins, who played drums on the album, reacted to these instructions by throwing beer cans across the room. “I think we got up to about 24 and then we gave up and did something else,” Jones said.

      Example of Brian Eno using combinatorial creativity using cards to generate music.

      This sounds similar to a process used by Austin Kleon which I've noted before.

  7. www.sanduskycabinets.com www.sanduskycabinets.com
    1. http://www.sanduskycabinets.com/flipbook/?page=2

      According to Sandusky customer service, most of the Buddy Products line was discontinued in 2019 and remaining portions were sold to https://www.metalcabinetstore.com/ which may or may not have them.

    2. http://www.sanduskycabinets.com/flipbook/?page=2

      Page 2 of the Sandusky Lee / Sandusky Buddy catalog indicates that page 52 has File Card Storage Boxes, but the page doesn't exist in this version of the 2020 catalog.