When I Use a note-writing system, the ultimate goal is to write evergreens. Thus, the most important notes in my system go up a ladder to evolve into permanent notes. However, to maintain organization, several notes that don’t go up this ladder are also necessary. I divide my taxonomy of notes between notes that go up the ladder and those that don’t.
- Entries in my Diary. A diary should be used as an inbox where a single diary entry could be a source of several Fleeting notes.
- Fleeting notes (i.e., prompts and incomplete notes) in my writing inbox. These notes accumulate over time but are drained through a spaced repetition writing system. Well-developed fleeting notes leave the writing inbox as evergreens.
- evergreens. While these notes leave the writing inbox in better quality, they can still be developed further. There are different kinds of permanent notes:
- Stubs that don’t have a content of their own but gain meaning through backlinks. An example of this is the note Unfruitful. I actually gave a short description of the stub, but its meaning makes more sense because of the backlinks under it. It is a place to hold unfruitful writing prompts in my writing inbox that needs to be reviewed in a later date.
- Simple definitions for other people’s terms of art
- Under this category are also bridge notes, which are meant to connect the relationship between my own terms of art and the terminology of others (Create your own terms of art; Use bridge notes to connect your terms of art with existing ones).
- Notes with precise declarative or imperative phrases with strong claims, e.g., Use a note-writing system. If I have no strong claim, I frame these notes as questions, e.g. i want my audience to feel existential These atomic notes are the cream of the crop.
- Higher-level permanent notes
- Notes that abstract from multiple notes
- My own terms of art, e.g. talahardin
- Outline notes, e.g., zettelkasten
- Proper noun notes. These notes are not concept-oriented so they cannot be used to build permanent notes.
- literature notes. These notes are where I collect fleeting notes from what I read. After I convert these fleeting notes into permanent notes (how to convert literature notes to permanent notes) thus emptying them, they serve as nodes for backlinks to permanent notes. Literature notes are like outline notes of other people’s ideas. For example: How to Take Smart Notes - Ahrens
- Person notes (e.g., rem tanauan) or entity notes.
- Log notes. These notes contain ephemeral observations about a specific practice, system, or project over time. Unlike the Diary, which is sliced by date, log notes are sliced by a topic of interest, e.g., Nature journal.
- Write a note for each note type.
- Determine if you need to create your own terms of art for each note type.
- Information in Three types of notes in Zettelkasten might be redundant. Integrate the two notes.
Matuschak, A. (n.d.). Bridge notes narrowly relate two adjacent terms. Andyʼs Working Notes. Retrieved September 18, 2021, from https://notes.andymatuschak.org/z6eWsRsp4aWrQ8YbyYqsUNLg2g5ZXGcTy9Dpo
Matuschak, A. (n.d.). Taxonomy of note types. Andyʼs Working Notes. Retrieved September 18, 2021, from https://notes.andymatuschak.org/Taxonomy_of_note_types