Principle - Zettelkasten is a procedure

Engineers love the Zettelkasten method of note taking. Wikipedia describes engineering as “the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items.” Engineering concerns itself with patterns, creation and process.

When I engineer, I ask “what’s the procedure?” and “what process should I follow?” I’m concerned with the series of steps that I must take to complete a task.

In this manner, zettelkasten is fairly prescriptive. There are two main steps in the process.

  • Make notes and connect those notes to other notes in a structured manner (using links and tags).
  • Upon reviewing your notes peruse the links and tags and see if there are any new connections made.

That’s it! Two easy steps to follow! Each person1 can tweak this process and define their method of linking and tagging.