Writing to Understand: The Zettelkasten System of Smart Notes
Niklas Luhmann, the son of a brewer in Germany, graduated from law school in the late 1940s and became a public administrator. Not much for socializing, he read after his typical 9-5 shift on a wide array of topics like sociology, philosophy, politics and social systems theory. Like many people, Luhmann wrote notes in the margins, placed slips of paper with handwritten notes between pages and even organized notes by topics of interest in folders. Unlike many people, Luhmann noticed the meager fruits of his labor. The notes he collected did not amount to much.