22 April 2022

April 22 - Obsidian One Year Later (Weekend Special)

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I left my "Good Old" note application Evernote back a year ago. In "Ep 75 - April 20 - All out of Evernote" I talked about my migration from Evernote into DevonThink as an archive of my old notes. Everything new has then been created in Obsidian. I use it for a lot of different notes - but it is not my only note taking application. Let's look at the application and how I use it now when it's been in my workflow for a while.

It is one of the handful of applications I use every day. I may not create new notes every day but I am updating and reading notes every day. The structure I have setup is a three based structure where I link out from a root-page - I call it my INDEX note - yes I am an old web developer! Here I link to other sub-pages - these are project, customer or theme based. And from these I can link out even further. 

All pages are not linked but the majority is. I also have a folder structure where I group sets of notes that are related. One example for that is my scripts or this podcast. I also have other big notes grouped like this. I have a limited use of tags - I prefer to use links as the glue to get themes and categories together and I am afraid to end up in a tag-hell where they become unuseable - like they became for me in Evernote.

I create a ton of notes straight in Obsidian but Drafts, another text-editor, is also being used for text capture. From drafts I can use actions to export the text to other tools. I have multiple actions that is importing text into different places in Obsidian as an example, I have an inbox for notes that should be processed and organised, a quotes note and a note with writing ideas. This way I can quickly and easily capture these and feed them into the right place in obsidian for later use and reference.

I also do more long from writing in Bear - there is just something with that app that makes it easy for me to write. The written texts stay in Bear after I publish them elsewhere.

My Obsidian is not filled up with a ton of addons. I use the built in functionality - dataview, better word count, advanced tables and a few more but these three are the main ones. I am after a year still using the same Cybertron theme - I like it except when I need to export text since parts of the styling comes out with the export.

I started of with multiple vaults but…

I have the Obsidian sync service since I am using obsidian on both my iPhone and iPad. On the phone it is mainly to consume or look up thing but on the iPad I often draft out and work on various notes. It is not ideal but it works.

 Electron app - it works on all platforms, but it doesn't work well anywhere. There are these small things like OS-integrations, Window management and more that is just a little bit different. Different enough to annoy me a bit.

I think I could do something similar to what I have in Obsidian in Evernote. A clean start is always good and it forced me to create a new and fresh system that i useable. Not just a dump of various things that I never get back to. Durning the year I have searched my old Evernote notes a handful of times - and it was never a successful result. Its mainly crap in there. With a clean start where the creation of things where done more carefully a good system could have been created.

I am not committed for life to obsidian - if there is something that shows up that is equally powerful and work better I would change without hesitation.

One year later would I still recommend anyone else starting to use Obsidian. Yes, every day of the week. It is a fantastically powerful application with great price (free), it is hard to beat that ROI calculation.