3 types of information: Ephemeral, working, and archived information
Found this paper (or rather, this is the draft I found as PDF) and think you might enjoy it, too.
- Bonnie Nardi, Ken Anderson, and Thomas Erickson (1995): Filing and Finding Computer Files, Springer. http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/summary?doi=10.1.1.188.512
It's a report from the mid-90s (probably 1995, part of the "Proceedings of the East-West HCI Conference" in Moscow) for Apple, interviewing 15 Macintosh users and classifying their behavior. The authors introduce:
- Ephemeral information: email, to-do lists, notes; with a short shelf-live/relevancy
- Working information: current projects, presentations, drafts; to be done in a couple of weeks/months
- Archived information: long-term storage of completed projects
The Zettelkasten contains both notes for current projects that you have good memory of, and notes from a long-term archival which you don't remember that well. The problem of locating archived information in the report is said to be memory loss: you don't remember where archived info is, or what exactly to expect, so retrieval is more error-prone. Interviewees could locate working information pretty well, though. (Remember, this is not a neutral observation but biased information about the users from the users.)
I liked the article for the 3 types it introduced, that's it To re-iterate what everybody says with regard to the Zettelkasten Method time and again: Long-term archival in the Zettelkasten should be optimized for retrieval. Info doesn't help if it isn't retrieved. Linking and structuring and tagging help to make the results appear in the future. That's when "surprise finds" happen, that is when related things appear without you having to remember them.
Author at Zettelkasten.de • http://christiantietze.de/
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