"The Way In Which We Take Notes Gives Us Insight Into Who We Are: Knowledge Gardening and the Power of Feedback Loops"


Hatched by Glasp

Jul 24, 2023

4 min read


"The Way In Which We Take Notes Gives Us Insight Into Who We Are: Knowledge Gardening and the Power of Feedback Loops"

When it comes to taking notes, we all have our own unique approaches. Some of us prefer to highlight and annotate text, while others opt for a more individualized approach. But have you ever stopped to consider how the way in which we take notes can give us insight into who we are?

One way to explore this concept is through the Social Web Highlighting Glasp, a service that allows curators to highlight and annotate text from various online sources. By observing how different individuals choose to highlight certain sentences or passages, we can gain a deeper understanding of what they find important or valuable. It's fascinating to see how our interpretations and priorities can differ, even when reading the same piece of text.

Personally, I find the Glasp community to be a valuable resource for creative writers like myself. The curated posts and links often lead to interesting and exciting information that I can store in my personal knowledge management (PKM) system. However, I can't help but wonder if a more individualized approach to note-taking would provide a deeper meaning to my collected knowledge and enhance my learning experience.

That's why I believe it's important to tap into our uniqueness and creative minds when taking notes. By infusing our personal perspectives and learning styles into our notes, we not only bring them closer to who we are as individuals, but we also make it easier to recall that knowledge in the future. So, don't be afraid to let your individuality shine through in your note-taking process.

Another interesting concept related to note-taking is the idea of knowledge gardening. The recursive nature of this approach is similar to a feedback loop, where we continuously take note, review, and look back over time. This feedback loop is crucial for generating new ideas and allowing them to grow organically.

Think of knowledge gardening as planting idea seeds and periodically returning to water and weed them. Over time, these seeds can sprout into a rough outline, a hypothesis, or even a complete work without much conscious effort on our part. It's a stream-of-consciousness process that can lead to the generation of finished works almost by accident.

However, in order for knowledge gardening to be effective, we need functioning feedback loops. Unfortunately, many note-taking apps and systems lack adequate feedback mechanisms. Often, our notes end up being rough, incomplete, and forgotten after a single glance. This is a clear sign of broken feedback loops.

In contrast, the Zettelkasten method, an index-card-based system, offers a solution to this problem. While it may require more manual effort, the filing and organizing of note cards in a Zettelkasten system create a feedback loop that facilitates the growth of ideas. The core principle of Zettelkasten is to file notes in a way that allows us to stumble upon them again in the future, combining and revising them to form new ideas.

A similar concept can be found in the Notational Velocity note-taking tool. Its search or create mechanic encourages users to continually iterate on their ideas, closing feedback loops with each new entry. By constantly revisiting and building upon our past notes, we generate knowledge from the bottom-up.

In conclusion, the way we take notes can offer valuable insights into our individuality and learning styles. By embracing our uniqueness and infusing our creative minds into the note-taking process, we can make our notes more meaningful and enhance our learning experience. Additionally, adopting a knowledge gardening approach with effective feedback loops, such as the Zettelkasten method or tools like Notational Velocity, can help us generate new ideas and facilitate the growth of knowledge. So, here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Embrace your uniqueness: Don't be afraid to let your individuality shine through in your note-taking process. Infuse your personal perspective and creativity into your notes to make them more meaningful and reflective of who you are.
  • 2. Cultivate effective feedback loops: Find a note-taking system or tool that allows you to revisit and revise your notes over time. Whether it's through manual organization like the Zettelkasten method or a digital tool with search and create functionality like Notational Velocity, ensure that you have a feedback loop in place to facilitate the growth of ideas.
  • 3. Engage in knowledge gardening: Treat your notes as idea seeds that can be planted, watered, and weeded over time. Adopt a stream-of-consciousness approach where you periodically return to your notes, allowing them to grow into rough outlines, hypotheses, or even complete works without conscious effort.

Incorporating these practices into your note-taking routine can not only enhance your learning experience but also lead to the generation of new ideas and the growth of knowledge. So, embrace your uniqueness, cultivate effective feedback loops, and engage in knowledge gardening to unlock the full potential of your note-taking process.

Hatch New Ideas with Glasp AI 🐣

Glasp AI allows you to hatch new ideas based on your curated content. Let's curate and create with Glasp AI :)