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Notes should be densely linked


Since Writing-is-a-way-to-record-thought-through-language, and the whole point of Linked-notes is to use Writing-as-a-user-interface-that-facilitates-thinking, related notes should be connected together.

Similar to how a train of thoughts take you from A to B to Y to C, conceptually related notes should be linked together. Being able to follow associative trails of thought and information increases ideation and creation.

When we Keep all notes in a single folder with no hierarchical structure, links define relationships between Linked notes, and the quality of the links defines the utility of the entire system.

As Niklas Luhmann said:

Each note is just an element that derives its quality from the network of links in the system. A note that is not connected to the network will be lost, will be forgotten by the Zettelkasten.

The practice of linking itself helps memorizing your notes: Maintaining-linked-notes-loosely-resembles-spaced-repetition.

Adding a new note whenever it feels necessary can be high-friction, reducing the likelihood of doing it. You can use empty notes, since Backlinks-can-define-implicit-nodes-in-networked-notes.

Also, when Note-titles-should-be-a-tiny-summary-of-their-content, you can easily integrate linking into the relevant passage of each note as I am doing right now, as opposed to e.g. linking relevant notes at the end of the current one. Integrating linking in the passage makes it very easy to keep the principle that Notes-should-be-atomic, since at any point you realize a note is too diffused and you need to break it down, the links will take care of themselves. If the links are at the end of each note, you need to manually carry over the relevant ones to the extracted note.


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Links to this note

Backlinks can create implicit nodes in networked notes

Notes should be densely linked, but it can be a high friction activity to stop and create a proper note whenever there is a need for it. Friction reduces the...

Linked Notes

Linked notes1 are a way to use Writing-as-a-user-interface-that-facilitates-thinking. The point is not writing notes per se, but accumulating knowledge, developing insight, and enhancing creativity. They are continuously-refined, living documents. Principles...