How To Take Smart Notes: 10 Principles to Revolutionize Your Note-Taking and Writing
German sociologist Niklas Luhmann (1927-1998) designed his slip-box made up of index cards. They were thematically unlimited. His simple system produced a prolific output. Over his 30-year career, Luhmann published 58 books and hundreds of articles while completing his two-volume masterwork, The Society of Society (1997). He regularly pointed to his slip-box as the source for his fantastic productivity.
SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:
Ask yourself why are you reading:
The Zettelkasten way or the ‘slip box’ method was pioneered by Niklas Luhmann, is an always-on, filing system that one can use to categorize and ‘slip’ any new insight or idea in a separate file or cabinet.
With this method, any new idea or insight now has a readymade home where it can be placed easily, with the growing collection facilitating new projects and cross-connections.
Many note-taking apps can mimic the functionality of the Zettelkasten system but have certain limitations like few backup options, and loss of insight links in case of a shutdown of the app. Others offer pristine functionality of the idea filing and linking system but have the same proprietary and database concerns.
The best way is to go manual and build a word file using hypertext links, notes and references.
One can try a mix and match approach, making sure that one is able to:
Preparation steps before a note-taking session:
Taking a structured approach to note-taking is the best way. Put the outline notes by choosing four or five key points of the lecture, followed by in-depth sub-points. One way to review is to use the Cornell Method, which divides the note sheet into three sections:
The mind map is a visual diagram of abstract concepts.
It works best in subjects like chemistry, history and philosophy, subjects having a neural network like interlocked and complex topics.