Zettelkasten work - literature-driven and problem-driven
- In the past, scientists have developed a number of impressive theories. In the case of Luhmann, we have a detailed picture of one of the crucial tools he used, this tool has been made very explicit to a degree that anyone can use it, and this tool is largely uncoupled from the individual knowledge and the cognitive skills of its users. For other scientific breakthroughs, some of them perhaps even more impressive than Luhmann's theories, we seem to know little about what methods led to these breakthroughs.
- I wonder what we could develop from this perspective - what, if any, explicit, transferable methods and tools can we extract from the works of physicists, philosophers or mathematicians? How can we combine these tools with practices from the ZK universe?
- As far as I know, most breakthrough ideas in science and elsewhere were made without the use of a ZK - so people have used other ways to create great ideas, and it would be foolish to narrow our view on ZK-based work only.
- To me, in most of the forum discussions we have a dominant focus on "literature-driven" ZK work - people read, write zettels, enrich them with their own thoughts and link them to other zettels. On the other hand I suspect that a huge part of people's crucial relevant work in life is "problem-driven". I'm convinced that many writers in this forum use their ZKs for this purpose, but postings about how to start thinking about a topic, how to formulate problems, how to ask questions, how to generate ideas, how to discard approaches in the ZK framework seem to me underrepresented, given their importance for creative work.
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