post update on how I generally use dynalist for notes / whatever. Its been 1 year since I started using dynalist. I haven’t dumped an update on how I do things for at least 3 months.
I try to keep dynalist extremely minimal and simplistic now, sometimes I step away from it for some time, come back and see what things worked and didn’t. Ideally everytime I do this it should be really easy to pick up where I left off.
E.g. I might be really deeply focused on a project and notetaking is not the first thing I think of, I go on vacation, etc.
I started adopting more shorthand writing styles (less grammer, more broken english sometimes), less desire to use images / gifs, more reference URLs, etc. The way I write notes is not that dissimilar to math logic / a research paper. The question I always ask myself is what my RoI is for writing notes.
Early on, I think I started building an obsession over just trying to write good-looking notes, not practical notes in chunks that I could easily reuse, etc. When I write notes in dynalist now, its mostly to break down information.
If I don’t feel like I get a good RoI on some specific notes, I simply don’t write them anymore and just write some notes on paper (which I hardly look at either, its just the fact that I wrote it that counts) / write some code instead to help retain the information. This is true especially if I’m trying to wrap my head around some concept I don’t understand.
If I have the option to write image-driven reference notes, I always try to defer to anki instead (flashcard app for retaining information). There’s always a huge RoI when I do things this way. I dump lots of gifs and images here at times.
Also, I’ve adopted significantly less software now. I threw out pretty much almost all my onenote /evernote notes save 1 or 2 documents that I use for work, since I don’t need it. I believe in having as few “inboxes” as I possibly can. I adopted a better folder tree structure in dropbox and made quick shortcut icons with directoryOpus instead.
I try to if possible keep notes on another platform with a rich library if at all possible. It removes a lot of abstraction and thinking on how I should organize things. For instance, I upvote lots of helpful stackoverflow questions, and make flashcards at the end of the week from those. Another example is alternativeto.net, I dump my notes in the form of comments about my opinions on software.
Also, for me since most of my notes are geared towards webdesign, I’ve adopted heavier emphasis on git-based workflows, commenting rules, etc. I adopted to have all my notes on a private codepen log since I can get immediate feedback when I write code, and easily search these docs
Afterward, I use embedded links to link into dynalist for codepen code snippets I created that I reference often.
All I use right now is really 2 documents on dynalist. Additional documents are now only reserved for well organized course notes (mostly for external links though). Dynalist is serving as a bookmarking resource dedicated to keeping track of obscure webtools that are useful
These are the 2 documents I use everyday:
- Journal log notes / Standup daily summarized note
- Doc reference (Embedded Codepens, Bookmarks to obscure tools / developer manuals, etc)
My general Daily / Weekly routine. Let’s say today is Friday
- Morning -> Write a one-liner summary of things I achieved yesterday
- Afternoon -> If I feel like it, write some journal notes
At the end of every week I have a routine I follow on Sunday morning
- Dig through all stackoverflow questions I upvoted & other resources, try and make flashcards
- Summarize the most important things I did that week
- Write a blog post about something haven’t really adopted this yet too much though
general formats for my 2 docs
My general formatting for journal looks like this:
|---summary (written the next day) *write on same line*
|---journal (written the same day)
|-----random journal stuff here, no specific formatting
|-The Day before yesterday
My general format for my doc reference looks like this:
|- Styling Guides
|- Youtube notes
|--- [CSS animations vs transitions](http://youtube.com/coursePlayList_orVideo)
|- embedded at 300px ht
|- embedded at 300px ht
I only collapse items I have no intention of every really looking at for at least 3+ months. Too much effort to click and collapse, check off bulletpoints, move around information, etc. The only thing I should be doing when viewing notes is scrolling up and down, period.
Doc reference is strictly limited to creating at most 2-3 bulletpoints created PER day
Journal area I can add as many notes as I want
I normally have 1 or 2 objectives I want to achieve everyday, and these are normally reflected in the “summary” area of my daily journal.
Anything else, I have another tool I use instead.
I forgot to mention I use a lot more README.txt and README.md (markdown) files in my file explorer / github, directoryOpus is actually really nice here for this application, as it has an automatic viewer option
This way I don’t need to spend an extra step figuring out where I put those notes in dynalist