Link Feast: Commonplace Books and PIM

My posts about keeping a commonplace book for personal information management (PIM) have led me to other people who are publishing valuable information on these topics.


Tiago Forte is currently my “go-to” source on note-taking as a tool for thinking and workflows for productivity. Tiago is steeped in the relevant research and distills it into useful instructions. His posts offer the most sophisticated treatment of these topics that I’ve seen. Check out his blog, starting with:

Ryan Holiday advocates commonplacing and has published several pieces about his process:

Christian Tietze and Sascha Fast blog about The Zettelkasten Method. Zettelkasten is German for “slip box,” a commonplace book consisting of notes on index cards. In addition, Christian and Sascha published a new book in German on this topic. I’m waiting for an English translation.

Evernote, the note-taking app, has inspired many posts about commonplacing. See the Evernote blog, especially posts by Taylor Pipes. Also sample Michael Hyatt’s posts about Evernote. Note that most of the core principles in these posts apply to any note-taking system, including paper-based tools and other note-taking apps such as OneNote (my favorite).

Taking note—A blog on the nature of note-taking is also worthwhile. There’s lots here about the history of commonplacing, along with some deliciously nerdy cognitive psychology. Enjoy.