The Zettelkasten’s power as a note system is undeniable. Collaborating jointly on smart notes or a knowledge management system is a new paradigm, one that is made possible by by technical advances, and now available to everyone with RamSync.
Traditional physical systems just didn’t allow groups to effectively access and manage the notes. It’s still challenging, even with the best software. Luckily, we have some tips ready for you, as RamSync is the prefect platform for building collaborative knowledge management.
When multiple brains work together to build out a “second brain” of notes, the effects are compounded. Connections, ideas, and inspiration grow more quickly. While critical for all teams, this creative alignment is vital with remote team work.
Two brains are better than one, especially when they build a third together! A shared Zettelkasten is the ultimate collaboration tool, one which hones concepts, highlights learning paths, and ushers in new levels of shared creativity. However, without an aligned understanding of the Zettelkasten’s purpose and defining structural components, a shared collection can quickly spiral out of control.
Since everyone’s brains work slightly differently when connecting ideas, the first step for success when collaborating is aligning on how thought structures should form and connect.
What Constitutes a Note
Defining a note sounds deceptively simple, but only because we have an intuitive internal definition. The challenge is not everyone’s definition of a note will be the same!
Most will agree that a note is a definable and structurally independent thought. The size of the note varies though, depending on the individual, experience level, and subject matter.
When starting a shared collection, discuss the sizes of notes, types of notes (definitions, ideas, references, facts, figures, etc), and how they will affect the collection as a whole. Consider the purpose of your collection, documentation, ideation, communication, or any combination thereof! This will help guide what should be a note by itself or a bullet point inside of a note.
There are no wrong answers here, the key is understanding some of our personal definitions may not always be held by others.
Index Card: Define the Categories
It is critical to define your categories. This includes how you will use colors, icons, and favoriting notes. Aligning on when and where to use each visual helps ensure your notes are telling the right data story and building towards their best creative potential.
#Tags are the magic for organizing and exploring your shared second brain. Add them in at every opportunity! Not only do #tags extract key thoughts and concepts for each note, but they help to find those notes later. It is often best to agree on a #hashtag format, be it CamelCase, snake_case, or something else. Uniformity is key, and will reduce professional friction.
Connections are the final piece to agree on. While more fluid than categories or tags, connections are the heart and soul of any good knowledge management system or Zettelkasten. It’s good to have discussions on when to use a uni-directional versus a bi-directional link, as well as adding descriptions. The descriptions can be very powerful when presenting information through the graph view. As they say, a picture is worth 1,000 words, a graph with connection descriptions is worth even more!
With the flexibility RamSync provides, we recommend starting a team project with clear consensus when connecting, tagging, and applying icons or colors to notes. A little clarity in the beginning goes a long way to ensure the whole team is working efficiently and in the same direction.
A second brain is a living organism, and any good Zettelkasten should evolve and grow along with the needs of the team. There are no set rules, just general guidelines to always communicate when collaborating.
As always, we’d love to hear from you! If you have questions, comments, or thoughts, send us a note, we love notes!