This website is intended to serve as a digital garden for my own thoughts and ideas.
The idea behind digital gardens (also known as ‘mind gardens’, or ‘working notes’) is to take your personal notes and share some subset of them publicly, in a contextually linked interface. This way, readers can navigate the ins-and-outs of your ideas by clicking links to explore them. In addition, each note contains backlinks to other notes that reference it. This opens the door to a ton of new possibilities of how to write notes and let readers navigate them.
The concept of hyperlinking isn’t new, but the approach of combining evergreen notes together to present complex ideas on a website is rare.
Rather than just making all your notes public, you might put the ones that are top of mind at the moment, or ones you’re specifically looking for feedback on. You can solicit feedback immediately after writing them, and use the refined notes to inform outputs, such as a long-form essay.
Additionally, the working notes themselves become valuable assets that contribute to your body of work. For example, once a note is live and you see a relevant conversation on Twitter, just share a link! In the worst case, no one notices. In the best case, it sparks an interesting conversation, and perhaps a reader explores your other notes as well (especially since they’re shown in context).
The alternative would be to wait until you write that perfect essay for every complex idea you have before sharing it. I’ve been there, and in my case, far too many ideas never see the light of day.
- The first real inspiration around digital gardens came to me from Andy Matuschak’s working notes. There’s some really wonderful stuff in there, and you can tell he puts a lot of effort into them.
- Maggie Appletons shared a great thread with many other examples of digital gardens.
- Anne-Laure Le Cunff has a great guide to building a digital garden (including options for no-code setups!)