Zettelkasten Forum

Ideas We're Grappling With March 16, 2023

edited March 17 in Your Current Projects

It's Thursday, and here we go again. I'm telling you what I'm working on to inspire you to tell me what you worked on. Seeing a few lurkers surface in the forums has been pan-supreme, and I hope they'll continue sharing, questioning, and teaching us.

This week I've been working on my writing skills. I have an essay in the style of an interview due in 20230320. It is well underway. The interview is done, the transcription is done, and the first cleanup is done. I've relaunched my writing workflow. It worked great for a few days, but then personal and family commitments evaporated writing time. I'm not giving up, though.

My seven day zettel production

Post edited by Will on

Will Simpson
I must keep doing my best even though I'm a failure. My peak cognition is behind me. One day soon I will read my last book, write my last note, eat my last meal, and kiss my sweetie for the last time.


  • @Will thanks for organizing this thread every week! It's been really helpful for getting back into the flow of ZK, and really interesting to see what everyone is working on.

    I was on vacation for a good chunk of the last week with my brother visiting for Spring Break. Coming back, I'm faced with two challenges which I'm trying to tackle with my ZK.

    First, I've been asked to co-lead a session in our lab's upcoming annual "group retreat." The point of the session is to brainstorm what big next steps would move the field forward, with an eye towards the sorts of research that our lab is equipped to do. However, the topic itself is outside of our usual wheelhouse, which is part of the point of the session--to think outside of our norm and look for ways to diversify our research. I have a little over a week to prepare.

    Second, I always find it challenging getting back in in flow of things after an extended break. I'm finding it doubly hard since my current projects are newer and less well developed. I also have a lot more projects that I'm juggling than I'm used to.

    To tackle both of these problems, I've starting working on some upper level notes to collect my thoughts and start collecting notes on each subject.

    For the group retreat session, I have a page with a "Brainstorming" tag. For now, it's just a scratch pad for throwing down stray thoughts and ideas, as well as collecting links to papers that I stumble across that seem particularly relevant or enlightening. I'm intending to start clarifying these thoughts over the course of the next week, eventually turning this into a structure note with links to notes I take while reading papers to prepare, as well as whatever notes I end up taking from our retreat.

    The "Project" structure notes that I'm starting to build are a lot more diverse. For some projects, what I have amounts to a list of questions I'm hoping to answer, as well as a couple preliminary notes and data that leads us to have those questions. For other projects, I have a few paragraphs of text describing the gap in our knowledge and justifying our hypothesis regarding that gap. In both of these cases, I have notes already in mind that will help to outline and clarify these projects which I'm intending to link to from these "Project" structure notes. For now, I'm satisfied just writing down what I already know and filling it out with links and references later.

  • I have been recording my dreams and nightmares in my ZK. In case anyone is interested, here are two of them.

    I was standing in one of the corridors of a hotel-like building with rooms furnished with a bed, a small desk and chair, and a lamp. A man in a jumpsuit was making a bed in one of the rooms I had been peering into. He stepped into the corridor to tell me that my room was ready.

    "Why am I here?"

    "You're here to die," the man said.

    "I see. Do you know what my condition is?"

    "I'm here to make the beds and clean up. Someone else will tell you."

    "The room is nice."

    I had aged and was now mentally diminished. I stood in the doorway, not knowing what to do.

    Another dream.

    I dreamed last night that I had a baby boy in my dresser drawer for several years. I hadn't noticed him–how could I have been so self-absorbed? He was wrapped in a blue blanket in the second drawer from the top on the left. I took him out, and he aged instantly. He was now nine years old and had developed an independent history, a distinctive personality, and friends waiting to play with him outside.

    He asked me who I was. "I'm your father." He accepted this without comment. His nose was unusually prominent and hawklike, with numerous protruding red nodules and a network of veins and arteries connecting them. Was his condition operable? I cursed my genetics: why couldn't I have an ordinary boy instead of a mutant?

    "I have hundreds of books on mathematics and physics here–do you like mathematics?" He knew them by heart. He used a word I didn't recognize–his vocabulary was more developed than mine. "I'm going to have to look up the meaning of that word." He looked away.

    My apartment became a house. My son's friends outside were affable, older, undemonstrative, and capable of violence–they had guns. He left to join them. I drove the house out of range of the guns onto the highway.

    GitHub. Erdős #2. CC BY-SA 4.0.

  • edited March 17

    This week has been busy, hectic and a lot of fun. I'm in Vienna for a conference, which means long, long days as it's attending the conference by day and doing the social thing at night. Zettling (is that a verb??) has suffered a bit, but today I had some time off and spent three hours in the Austrian National Library at the Hofburg writing a few notes. I finally managed to finish processing an introductory document on modelling energy systems into notes, which was on my todo-list for a while.

    So mainly technical notes this week, but very interesting since I now have notes connecting ideas from the energy system perspective connected to datamanagement in general, which has already yielded one nice idea to put into practice.

    The coming week will hopefully see a couple of new notes on the intersection between energy systems and data management.

    Notes created and/or updated this week (titles automatically translated from Dutch, the number in front of the title is the number of times the note is referenced in another note):

    • |16| Design phases of data
    • |08| Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |03| Data Security Reference Architecture
    • |03| Unified Modeling Language (UML)
    • |02| Specialisation in the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |01| Describing connectivity in the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |01| Describing assets in the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |01| Separating function and asset
    • |00| Standardizing the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |00| Identifying objects in the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |00| Flexibility in the Common Information Model (CIM)
    • |00| CIM Profile as a data product
  • I have for the first time in many months posted on my personal blog, which I have restarted from scratch in the last year. It was delightful to have the desire to write again. The post was (mostly) about the ethics of online, especially social media marketing and while it was a very personal story, it grew like mushroom out of the mycelium of my Zettelkasten. This was my first harvest and I found the process intriguing.

    Apart from that, I have grown my notes by some entries on sugar addiction and the similarity of sugar- and alcohol-induced hangovers. I’m currently working on processing some scientific articles on fructose by Robert Lustig, which are incredibly illuminating.

  • @Nori said:
    Apart from that, I have grown my notes by some entries on sugar addiction and the similarity of sugar- and alcohol-induced hangovers. I’m currently working on processing some scientific articles on fructose by Robert Lustig, which are incredibly illuminating.

    I'm reading "Entangled Life", and the fungus metaphor immediately makes me uneasy :) Fungi are so weird.

    Author at Zettelkasten.de • https://christiantietze.de/

  • edited March 20

    @ctietze said:

    I'm reading "Entangled Life," and the fungus metaphor immediately makes me uneasy :) Fungi are so weird.

    A mushroom walks into a bar.
    The bartender says, "get out! We don't serve your kind!"
    The mushroom says, "Why? I'm a fun guy."

    Update: I purchased "Entangled Life." It is very well-written and engaging.

    Post edited by ZettelDistraction on

    GitHub. Erdős #2. CC BY-SA 4.0.

  • @ctietze said:
    I'm reading "Entangled Life", and the fungus metaphor immediately makes me uneasy :) Fungi are so weird.

    Sorry for giving you the creeps 😆 I looked up Entangled Life and I’m adding it to my to-read list, sounds like my kind of book. So thank you for the indirect recommendation 😁

Sign In or Register to comment.