Networked note-taking as feminist research method


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πŸ“– Principle of iteration

Last updated Apr 12, 2023

# Review and re-evaluate notes periodically

The last principle of a networked note-taking system is the principle of iteration. 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 noteβ€”or separated 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 user(s),1 and if it becomes unwieldy, it should be adapted. Often, PKM community members have already developed solutions to particular issuesβ€” 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.

πŸ‘ˆ Four principles overview

  1. Principle of atomicity πŸ‘‰
  2. Principle of flatness πŸ‘‰
  3. Principle of interconnection πŸ‘‰
  4. Principle of 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. Roddick (2022), for example, demonstrates sharing a networked system with his students for collaborative note-taking throughout the semester. ↩︎