Zettelkasten Usage: Analog or Digital

The last weeks I have been pushing on my Zettelkasten project. I am inspired by Niklas Luhmanns system of an analog thinking system.

Luhmann Zettelkasten Archive

90.000 documents and 50 years of usage is quite a number.
To look at it in a archived digital form see https://niklas-luhmann-archiv.de/

But as my thoughts run, this will be an **analog / offline approach for me. ** Meaning a real wooden box and real slips of paper. I am sure that there will be some digital mix-ins over time but at the time being I am not convinced that the digital transformation will be as easy as some claim. And it might even kill the core benefits of the concept.

Or to put it even more bluntly:
a Zettelkasten (box of slips of paper) is not a Zettelkasten without Zettlel (slips of paper)

With this post I want to ask you (the community) if you have any thoughts on that or have material or examples of another highly productive user of a Zettelkasten.

Feel free to post replies here or contact me via direct message.

1 Like

Check out Roam Research, if that is what you’re asking. Or, I probably misunderstood your question.

My zettelkasten is digital and based on Drafts. I call it zettelkasten though the technique is quite different (the lack of slips is not the only difference) because the aim and process are the same.

Instead of analog zettels, I have digital ones (each one is a draft), respecting the zettelkasten principles, incl. unicity of zettelkasten (for life and work purposes), atomicity and autonomy of notes, and links everywhere.

The notes are linked together and connected to outside documents (links to web sites or Apple Notes with scanned paper documents for instance ; or references to books and articles).

The Drafts app and its multiple actions allow to search notes with keywords and navigate easily between drafts and also to refered documents. And notes are created nearly as fast as the thinking process.

I chose the Drafts app for these reasons, and also because it perfectly integrates with my diary system (which also is linked to zettelkasten notes). One app and multiple uses for one common tool : text !

2 Likes

Oh and by the way ! This thread is added to my zettelkasten because it’s of interest to me :wink:

In one click in Safari thanks to a customized shortcut, I’ve just added the following link, with my usual format, into a draft that references the one dedicated to the zettelkasten topic:

I am not asking for tools: I know of roaming research, notion and obsidian.

All great tools and all good concepts for digital 2nd Brains.

I am looking for people and information using the Zettelkasten either digital or (even better) analog.

Thanks for sharing.