Zettelkasten and OneNote

Experimenting with the Zettelkasten concept with OneNote. Highlights of my OneNote adaptation:

  1. Archive – This consists of all the pages within OneNote.
  2. References – This is a separate OneNote notebook, labeled Zettel.

So far, Zettel is primarily an index of keywords used in the archive (i.e., OneNote). When a note requires the use of a keyword, using Ctrl+k allows a quick search for the Zettel page, when then embeds as a link on the note.

If this is the first time that keyword has been used within a notebook, that notebook name is added to the Zettel page.

Benefits after just a week of testing:

  1. The process generates a standardized list of keywords, making searches more productive. For example, notes always use Triple Bottom Line, at least the first time it appears on a page, rather than TBL. Thus, a search for Triple Bottom Line should find all relevant pages.
  2. Zettel pages contain a list of all notebooks that use a particular keyword. Since a closed notebook does not show up in searches (at least not reliably), looking at the Zettel pages shows what specific notebooks need to be open for a complete set of relevant search results.

This approach is not completely aligned with the purest Zettelkasten, but so far it has been a good place to start.

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