The Zettelkasten

Nice! Thanks for sharing. It may take another reading. :wink:

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I tried the Zettelkasten method, but i can’t find a work around with the Agenda tagging limitation. You can’t tag a specific portion of the note, it is all or nothing.

Could you please share an overview of your implementation? Thanks!

What are you trying to do? You can put a tag anywhere you want in the note? When you search on the tag it is highlighted, drawing attention to the relevant portion of the note.

Incidentally, useful advice about tagging in Zettelkasten here.

@trebso is right: every word in a note that represents or could represent some sort of topic, you make into a tag. So you might end up with four or five tags in a note but that’s the point: you’re building a web of interconnected concepts.

Have fun and happy holidays,


I am a new user of Agenda and came over to the community to see how others were using it. I am delighted with this contribution! The Zettlekasten is just what my ADHD brain needs! It’s allowing me to make association after association in small busts.

After wrapping my mind around the concepts, I’ve made a Category “Zettlekasten” with Project “Zettles” and already added about 20 Zettles in 2 days.

One thing I’ve found helpful is to use a tag #zk to mark an idea for a zettle that I can revisit later. It can go in any entry on Agenda. Then, in my Inbox project I have a not called ask Ideas. All that’s in this note is the tag #zk. I keep this note On the Agenda so in the morning I click the tag to run a search for outstanding zettle ideas and aim to develop one to three every morning. After the zettle is created, I link it to another and then delete the #zk tag from its original spot. This workflow is helping me dump Zk ideas so I don’t lose them when I may not have time to sit and develop.

I am having a little difficulty linking to a related Zettle. This may be because I am using the conventional time stamp identifier as my titles, so if I click the linking icon, I can only see numbers as I drop down to find the note I want to link to. It would be immensely helpful if there were a Search option in that menu OR if we could see a short preview in addition to the title, much like you see in email.
Of course, I can find them via tag search, then Share as an agenda link, but that doesn’t create the nice hyperlink text. :wink:

How do you go about finding Zettles to link?

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Hi Jami,

I don’t (link) :wink:
I now keep my Zettlekasten archived so its content isn’t included in search overviews - because it’s quite large and filled with many, many tags.

Tags keep information on the notes connected. So if I were to write a note on Mental Models of about 500 characters, I will tag every keyword (concept) in it. This would probably result in about eight tags.

If this note pops up afetr a normal search (in the archived Zettlekasten), I use the tags in it to see what is directly connected to it. So I start in Mental Models but might end up in Lateral Thinking, Cooking or whatever.

Of course, all notes show the origins and contexts of the information on it.

For me this is a way of keeping track and making sense of thoughts and ideas (mine and other’s), understand stuff bettrer, of innovating my line of work, writing articles etc etc.

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I already built a Zettelkasten/Sticky Memory/Scratchnote System in Obsidian. Obsidian is great for this, because it has backlinks and is able to link other notes in a way described in your first post.

But I don’t like the idea to seperate my Zettelkasten from my ongoing work. I would have to link and search in both tools. Thus I try to transfer everything to Agenda. I wouldn’t say it’s working like a charm, because important things (backlinks) are still missing in Agenda. But the cleaner interface and much better handlich of actionable items is the reason I am trying to combine everything here.

The way I am currently working is, that I have several groups for real projects (business projects, business organizational, private). The last group I called “Sticky Memory/Zettelkasten”.

Within the first groups I work in projects or “daily business”. Every bigger topic will get a project. I have a few projects to collect smaller pieces of work (e.g. in private where I usually have just a few real projects). I will create “work-notes” as needed and document and track everything where needed. When I need information from my “Sticky Memory/Zettelkasten” I link it.

I already tried lots of methods tagging information. Using lot’s of tags did not work quite well for me. I had lots of different tags and lost them in a big list. You could track them in an overview, sure. But it’s a lot of work and it’s not perfect. Right now I try to work with a minimal amount of tags.

My last group “Sticky Memory/Zettelkasten” consists a few areas of interest. E.g. business, private, productivity, medieval age, artificial intelligence, etc. For these I created projects and place all extracted information within these projects (not just copy/paste). I have summary notes (tagged like this) to get an overview for topics within these topics (e.g. neural networks in “project” artificial intelligence). The summaries are structured and consist an overview of tags I will use for this topic. Sometimes I link to specific notes. E.g. I have a research summary where I place links to notes with extracts from research papers. Same for books.

Backlinks are an important thing for this method (Zettelkasten). Hopefully we will get in Agenda as well (“in not distant future” as a developer mentioned).

The most important thing I found is, to keep things simple and short. Copy/Pasting won’t work for me. E.g. I filled Evernote with everything. In daily business I never take a look again.


I’m in a similar situation. Besides backlinking, do you find the lack of the following features bothering you?

  1. wiki-style linking (or better keyboard shortcut to link notes instead of going through “Insert → Link to")
  2. creating new notes on the fly (I guess you cannot do that because all the notes are belong to projects? So if you want to create new note on the fly you have to choose/create a project first. It would be great to have floating notes without project too)
  3. automatic updates the title (right now, if I link note_b in note_a, then I change the title of note_b to note_c, the link in note_a is still “note_b")

I’m still in a trial period with Agenda, and I found the above three issues very annoying.

Well. It seems that Agenda won’t work out for me. Its too much work and too many things can go wrong. Linking manually is a source of failure.

Thats why I dumped Agenda for now and switched to an combination of Noteplan and Obsidian. Both tools support backlings and support me in linking information e.g. [[Agenda Review]]. I can choose to work in Noteplan (better Calendar Integration an better Focus) and Obsidian (better research and search). That’s possible because they both rely on Markdown files I can even edit in VSCode.

Good news, aside from “floating notes” the other two (wiki-style linking and automatic sync of titles) will be part of the back linking feature of the next major Agenda update.

That’s great this combination worked out for you! I have used Obsidian, and I liked the graph view and the Markdown files based nature. But I was not too fond of the UI and overall UX. I’ve heard good things about Nodeplan, and I will give it a try sometime. I’m pretty happy with Agenda right now, but I always want to try out new tools. I have a problem. :cry:

Thanks for the update, Alexander. That’s exciting news! I have paid for full features because I’m happy with it so far and because I saw the post Drew made that the objective for Agenda is “a note taker with a focus on projects and dates”. This is exactly the kind of tool I’m looking for. I believe in you guys to further improve Agenda around this objective in mind.

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I haven’t seen much discussion of this, so here’s my request: please don’t put back links in the note content! That seems to be popular among note apps and I think it’s a bad idea. If I want the link in my note content, I will put it there. It is of course very useful to see which notes link to the current note, so I’d like to see it on the side near “related notes” or something like that - just some place that is not directly in the note content.

You’ll be happy to hear that we indeed share your feeling. When you insert a link to a note in Agenda to say a reference note you point to often, we agree that you probably don’t want to have that reference note now contain say 15 links to different notes. So as you suggest, we will not automatically insert the reciprocal backlink in the text of the note you link to (we feel you should be the one editing the note content and only if you want to). However, we will list those 15 notes in the related panel (so you do have access to the back links that way).