Joshua Klinger

1 Year Using Obsidian

Obsidian is an excellent knowledge base that utilizes local markdown files to store information. This means that you retain ownership of your data, in its original form, even if you decide to stop using Obsidian. This feature, in my opinion, makes it the best solution for taking notes. Nothing even comes close.

Obsidian is built using Electron, which nerds despise. However, because it is designed with care, using Electron allows for customization of buttons and sliders, cool features such as tab splitting and breaking out a tab into another window, and makes Obsidian highly extensible.

The extensibility is crucial and cannot be understated. For instance, I use a plugin that organizes my notes into a Kanban board. This instantly transforms all of my notes into potential tasks.

A built-in feature that I can no longer do without is the daily notes. Every day, a new note is automatically created for me where I jot down all my thoughts for that day. At the end of the day, I review these notes, tag, and organize them. I separate more important information into personal documentation, and create tasks out of any to-dos. And if I forget something, as long as I know the day of a meeting or call, I can refer to my notes for that day and refresh my memory.

Yet the most impactful aspect of Obsidian is actually the search bar. Obsidian did not invent search, but the way I use it here has revolutionized the way I work.

If I don't know the day I took a note, I can simply search for what I'm looking for. Even the most disorganized note usually contains enough information for it to be found by date or by search. This simple system has transformed my work process, and I cannot go back.

Because of these features I can forego all unnecessary formatting and structure from my notes and I can just write. Meaning my note taking is a fast and fluid process. The extensibility of Obsidian also means that my notes can become other things, like relational databases, tasks, a CRM, whatever.

My notes are now plain text, raw data, that will last forever, that sit inside of a powerful engine that can find or transform that data in many ways. I can literally dump my brain into a text box, and extract the value from that brain dump, while continuing to use it as persistent memory.

I cannot say enough positive things about Obsidian, and recommend you use it even if your work flow is different than mine.