Most useful and insightful thing I've taken out of Zettelkasten system is keep cards (or notes) as small as one thought. My system allows cards any size, so I overuse it. My notes often were big (over 5000 signs). Such notes hard to split, edit, shift and toss. This stuck me a lot. The effect is like a "commit bomb" if you know what I mean ;)

Zettelkasten now in trend. Look at it and think about my own system.

: s01e06

For the Journal in my I use little different format. It's datetimestamp with `@` at the begining of line. Like '@ 2018-04-06 01:49'. Also, I manually put moth- and year- timestamps (with two and three `@` respectively). And, like with structure, I use script for navigation map generation and folding for editing notes in Journal.

: s01e05

Go ahead with my system - until no one objects to read it :)

I use different markup for the Journal and for the Structure notes. Latter - simple atx-style markdown header (whith crunches at beginnig of line) and timestamp on next line. For browsing I use map-generating simple python-script (also avaliable bashscript-taste version), or simple switch to vim folding mode. Map convenient for browsing, folding - for reordering file.

: s01e04

My inspiration for my was "Life inside one big text file"[1] (AFAIK author abandon his system in favor of bunch of tiny text files under SVN version control). Later I understood that reopened system similar to Canon Cat of Jef Raskin[2]. And third was article about Proteus notebook by Thomas Erikson[3].


At early days of my there was only one all-in-one big file which was divided in two parts. Upper part was the Structure, the Lower part was the Journal - because this is naturally add notes one-by-one to end of file (like feed), and keep structured notes on top of file (like outline). As days goes by, a few global categories became sprouted and was splitted to separate files.

I use hybrid of and markup with some asciiart for my and bare links for web content. At the beginning it was self-writed mapping for open web urls from in , but later I discovered nice shortcut - `gx`, which did the same job. Also change some scripts for getting title of web-page for second line of url (may be seen in screenshot), but that is another story.

Live in since ~2007: 86M of text, 14487 structured notes, 13165 journal notes and this is only for main pim (mail, my books, work - separated bases).

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