I often imagine the world of note-taking as a giant funnel; it’s where note-artifacts are discovered and the memorialization process begins. Think of it as the headwaters of a massive array of tributaries feeding into a large lake of knowledge. The funnel is extremely wide at the top of the rim, aka - the Outer Rim of KM; a place where the horizon is a big ocean of tools-of-choice by data and content practitioners. The personas that use these tools as vast and uncommon as the types of artifacts they often encounter.
No single tool can address all of the possibilities and user expectations for the outer rim of note-taking.
This — as Steve Jobs would say is — “... an intractable problem; you cannot earn a profit here” and by “here” I mean the Outer Rim of Note-Taking.
I have experimented with a Hypothesis-to-Mem pipeline. Also, separately a
My assertion is that the headwaters of things worth noting is a vast landscape of tributaries that cannot be easily addressed by a single app or approach. Collecting information is, therefore, intractable - the higher up the note-taking funnel you go, the more difficult it becomes to earn a profit. At the very top of the funnel exists a giant circumference of possibilities. It’s important to note that the shape of the funnel varies by device ; desktop funnels are quite different from mobile device funnels making the funnel challenge all the more difficult for profiteering startups.
Today, I cannot think of a single note-taking product that plays well at all levels of the funnel. Mem is somewhere in the middle-upper level as it attempts to gather your artifacts from low-hanging fruit. And it’s not particularly ideal in funneling capability as the members of this community have been quick to point out.
I experiment with many approaches to address the odd shapes of users who need to funnel content into a realm of sensical recall and discovery. I tag web stuff with Hypothesis. A Google Cloud Function spins up every five minutes to pull the latest Hypothesis artifacts into Mem. It also updates Mems where the original Hypothesis item has been modified or embellished with other references.
This diagram is an over-simplification, but it’s essentially how I blend the topography of dozens of potential sources of noteworthy artifacts. (edited)