Networked note-taking as feminist research method


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Last updated May 28, 2023

# Review and re-evaluate notes periodically

A note is not necessarily complete once it is written. Future information may come to shape a note slightly differently or encourage it to be merged with another note—or atomized (Node 1) into further notes. Notes in a networked note-taking system are living ideas, and should be reviewed periodically to ensure they still fit your needs.

The liveliness of notes and the need to maintain them brings a number of PKM contributors to use gardening metaphors to describe their networked note-taking systems (see Ang (2021) and Matuschak (n.d.-a)). I hesitate with the naturalization of knowledge some of these metaphors imply, which risk ignoring that knowledge as always socially produced and situated. They do, however, usefully demonstrate the value of tending to your note-taking system. The system should serve its users,1 and if it becomes unwieldy, it should be adapted. Often, PKM community members have already developed solutions to particular issues— Nick Milo (n.d.), for example, suggests creating specific “Map of Content” notes which contain no ideas but simply lists related notes to view them all from a macro perspective. An attention to scalability and implications for social justice should continue to be centered, however. Regularly reviewing notes and their connections is a useful way to ensure they meet our research needs, with the added benefit of bringing older notes back to mind to develop future connections.

👈 📖 Four nodes overview

  1. 📖 Atomicity 👉
  2. 📖 Flatness 👉
  3. 📖 Interconnection 👉
  4. 📖 Iteration

  1. Although Obsidian renders local Markdown files, saving these files on cloud storage allows others to contribute to the note-taking system as if they were also local on their own machines. Andy Roddick (2022), for example, demonstrates sharing a networked system with his students for collaborative note-taking throughout the semester. ↩︎