My knowledge management setup

Created at
21 October 2023
Last modified
04 February 2024

What do I use for knowledge management? Best paired with overall notes on knowledge management strategies.

Current systems


Been using this for ages and it’s super solid. I tag notes using a method originally popularised (I think?) by Merlin Mann, namely: creating tags by putting “X” at the end of words (so all my code snippets are CodeX, etc.). Much simpler than trying to build a good heirarchy of notes, plus it allows for misc notes to sit in there.

There’s plenty of tags/content in there that I’ve added at some point and just don’t see now. The lack of a heirarchy makes that a bit common. However, it’s really not set up to do heirarchies. Nor does it really do images.


A bevvy of tools which all do the same thing - try to maintain some kind of collection point for information.

NodeBox was my attempt to build a zettelkasten in Vue, which actually went pretty well, and which I used for a bunch, but which ended up being something where notes went to die. Plenty of stuff going in, very little review, reading, and linking, which is (I feel) what you need to do to make a zettelkasten really work. (See also: note-taking apps don’t make us smarter).

Shifted it to Joplin because my version was text only. Tried QOwnNotes after watching this rollercoaster of a review. But in all honesty I don’t think either of these are doing it for me.

There’s something here about a different form of capture between NVUltra and these three. Need to explore this and think about it further.

This - my digital garden

New kid on the block. Has a bit more of that “thinking out loud” to it, a blend of taking down info, perhaps combining it a bit? And presenting something that I don’t mind the world being able to see.

What determines where things go?

In other words, why do I use one system over another for any of this?

The key and binding principle here, I suspect, is end use. Namely:

  • How do I envision using this in the future?
  • Given that, how should this information be stored/organised?

It feels like there’s two ways in which I want to access these notes:

  1. When I know exactly what I’m searching for, and I’m looking for one small well-defined thing.
    • This includes things like looking up code snippets, details of ongoing projects, and so on.
    • Categorisation (tagging) it useful here.
  2. When I don’t know what I’ll be searching for in the future, and I’m relying on linking, proximity, review, etc. to form those links.
    • Why do I need this? It’s a bit hazy right now - a combination of something I think will come through as I build it, and a feeling I just should be keeping track of this sort of thing.

Number one is the main use for NVUltra, and it feels like this is a set thing. Number two is the one giving me trouble.