Zettelkasten Forum

Keywords = data, tags = metadata?

I'm not quite sure whether or how I'll actually implement this or whether it will really make sense at all once I've thought it through and tried to apply it, but I'm thinking it might be useful to make a distinction between keywords (understood as part of a note's data/content) and tags (understood as metadata about the note itself as an "object"). Tags might be used, for example, to identify summary or table-of-contents notes, or notes that are the start of a Folgezettel sequence if you use those, or notes about the organizational principles of the Zettelkasten itself. (One thing I'm thinking of here is Pirsig's index card categories in Lila.) Any thoughts or experience?


  • I used a similar approach in the past. I did call it tags and metatags. After a couple of years only two types of metatags survived:

    1. ##Ü1 and ##Ü2 for structure notes (primary with no parent and secondary that branch from from another one)
    2. ##W for everything science related, ##S for everything sports and health related, ##K for everything art related and ##L for everything practical and living related.

    Other than that didn't survive the test of time for me.

    I think the test would be something like: Do you want/need a list of notes that are similar in their structure related properties?

    I am a Zettler

  • I'm experimenting with something similar. There are notes about outlining (#outline) and then there are notes that are outlines for texts (##outline). Similarly, I have #inbox notes and notes inside my ##inbox. This made sense to me at first, to go to the next "meta"-level by adding more #s. But @Sascha pointed out that this might not scale well when you do more knowledge work. I cannot remember exactly why, though.

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

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