Zettelkasten Forum

Bunch of Explorations

Have a few projects going on simultaneously. Mainly I am trying to wrap my head around the different apps that you can implement Zettelkasten in. Traditionally I have used TiddlyWiki, which has been my favorite so far but I've made the mistaken of having some 5-10 different ones and treating each like a note collection storage unit.


  • Project 1: Zettelkasten^3 - I'm using in trying to develop general models around: how society works, how people work, deeper forces and patterns, and the future (using this to see how I like the app)
  • Project 2: TiddlyWiki - I'm trying to implement zettelkasten in a Tiddly Wiki. The focus is on developing skills to learn (hard and conceptual) and creating a personal philosophy. I'm using UUIDs for this. (using this to see how I like the app)
  • Project 3: TiddlyWiki Luhmann - Recreating part of Luhmann's zettelkasten in its own TiddlyWiki to better understand it and how it worked
  • Project 4: TiddlyWiki Zettelkasten - Frustrated around my earlier attempts at the Zettelkasten not going so well, so I started from scratch with trying to be really strict in my process
  • Project 5: Spiral Zettelkasten - this is developing an idea I have of spiral knowledge. At the center of the spiral is the definition of knowledge. Than as you spiral outwards you hit all the different branches of knowledge (formal sciences, physical sciences, life sciences) than the fields of study (anthropology, physics, mathematics, etc), than at the very edges of the spiral is advanced knowledge (recently published research).
  • Project 6: TiddlyWiki - The Knowledge Book: Big Ideas, Simply Explained - I love the big ideas series by DK, but wish they had one for knowledge. Where they do say 100-200 entries (each entry 1-2 pages long) that covers almost all the different fields of study in the various branches of science.
  • Project 7: Physical Slip-box - exactly what it sounds like, I felt that starting off with a small physical box (random entries) gave me a semi good feel for learning to create concise notes.
  • Project 8: Reference Wiki (TiddlyWiki) - I noticed in my earlier (mentioned in project 4) that my attempts at creating zettelkasten were getting a bit wild, where I felt they were getting too unruly and I was allowing too many junk notes into them. So I decided just to create a normal personal wiki that I can just collect stuff in. If I come across something I want to have a note on but don't want to add to the zettelkasten, I will add it here. This also allows me to feel better psychologically about being selective with my zettelkasten.
  • Project 9: Roam Research - have an account on Roam that I am occasionally playing with because I find how it is built fascinating, with the core Idea of collapsible cascading notes having come to me previous and I tried implementing in github wiki unsuccessfully. The proprietary online nature of it keeps me from really giving it a go.
  • Project 10: Zettlr - stumbled across zettlr today so giving it a try because I'm really curious about the markdown simple text approaches and seeing if this will work better than the other ones.

If anyone is interested I can post a comment under this later what I think of each of the app so far, and if anyone has any questions, shoot away!


  • Why would you separate into projects in Roam Research?
    Aren’t they “separated brains” instead of being connected maps? OR do they connect because they’re by the same user?

    From what I gather from reading/listening to things about the original creator - he would connect items from a single library that was separated by titles and time, simply because of the physical limitations of cards.

    Is there more to separating than this?

    About me: New to Zettels AND Roam, tell me anything I might be missing.

  • @luntian you are suppose to connect everything. It is good practice to keep everything in the same project. Some reasons why I have multiple:

    • I have multiple in order to test different software
    • Some are their own in order to test different implementations of methods
    • Some are separate because they have a very specific purpose and it helps organizationally to stand alone, such as the recreation of luhmann's slip-box, which I plan to share after I finish it.
  • I see. Very cool projects you have going on there.

  • Nick,

    Are your TiddlyWiki Zettelkasten projects public? I’m only new to Zettelkasten, but I already know Tiddly quite well, but I have problems with UUID-based behaviour. I use caption instead of spoken title, but I have to modify Tiddly in too many places to see caption and title (UUID) at the same time. How did you solve it?

  • edited April 2020

    @bimlas I actually don’t use any IDs for my TiddlyWiki ones, they are all based around titles. You might find something in this discussion helpful

  • Hey @Nick how did it go with your ten projects?

  • edited September 2020

    @Massimo_Curatella all the projects except the physical zettelkasten have been combined into one super zettelkasten within the program Obsidian, making up 2,000-3,000 notes. I found having all of them separated into different programs wastes too much time and keeps the content from mixing and contributing to each other. Also experimenting with a ton of different programs turned into too much of a distraction, so keeping to one program has been helpful.

    I've narrowed my focus in terms of external projects to just working on reading for my zettelkasten while also working on a wiki within the zettelkasten with clearly marked notes that I can publish once "Obsidian Publish" goes live. All the ideas there were previously being developed are now just naturally being developed as I read and add to the zettelkasten. For example, the personal philosophy project is getting content added to it because I happen to be reading a Positive Psychology textbook at the moment. The spiral knowledge project is being worked on because I am also going through a Anthropology textbook.

    But instead of the various projects being developed purposely, they are just naturally getting developed if what I am currently reading happens to align with the ideas. If you are interested I can tell you the format I have adopted for my zettelkasten.

    I'd consider myself a hyper curious person, so I engage with an insane variety of material. This also means I start a lot of new projects and am very slow to finish any one project. I've noticed this over the spring/summer and am trying to be more careful about narrowing my focus and sticking to only 1-3 projects. Cycling between a ton of different projects though means I am able to keep a level of high engagement.

  • Great news, I love Obsidian and I am waiting for the Publish feature as well. Knowing how you organize your Zettelkasten would definitely interest me. Thank you.

  • @Nick @Massimo_Curatella Yes, same here. If you could share a bit about how you implement a ZK in Obsidian, that would be of interest.

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