Can make a choice These blocks can then be nested indefinitely underneath each other and they can be collapsed or zoomed into/out of. I find that if you enjoy spending time in an application, it definitely makes it easier to be productive. Obsidian also has many community-developed themes, which are very easy to access. During study time, I go deeper. RoamBrain.com offers links to high quality Roam-related resources. Their dedication to the application is readily apparent. With a simple filter, I can enhance focus and see progress by displaying only the bits and pieces of the work that still need attention. By essentially “querying” your graph, you can much more easily visualize specific topics or trains of thought and see how you might create links between previously unconnected nodes. I, however, personally do not mind. That was the extent of the use I made of the graph feature. Clicking any note in the graph highlights its connections. I hope this post gives you some useful insights as you identify your own best thought processor, and that you’ll be inspired to share with me what you learn along the way. Concerns over privacy, whether founded or not, grew. The structures I’m using to record thoughts in Roam enhance my memory of the material I read, listen to, and study. Be aware, too, that both Roam and Obsidian are being developed at a furious pace. Here is a screenshot of the application settings, where you can modify any keyboard shortcut you want: As examples, here are some of the shortcuts I use frequently: By learning and understanding shortcuts within Obsidian, I have been able to achieve a workflow that is both smooth and seamless. This is a fairly new tool, so we’ll keep you posted on this! If you would like to see screenshots for each feature, click the link … Block references cannot pull in adjacent nested text automatically, since Obsidian doesn’t operate on a block-level structure. Gay couples Combinations like these are not possible in Roam. If you are interested in hosting your notes online on a personal webpage, that service (Obsidian Publish) is currently $8/month. For some background, I am a fairly long-standing Roam user, having used the application since around February 2020 up until the last few months. I Asked Roam Research, “What Do I Want?” The Results Devastated Me. Content is stored in the cloud, but can be quickly and easily exported to markdown files when desired. I would be remiss to not at least briefly talk about the Obsidian community. For another thing, Roam’s development is a bit haphazard. The larger the project, the harder it was to maintain a vision of the project as a whole. When inspiration lags, a few clicks through random notes can get creative juices flowing again. Obsidian also has all it’s files synced locally. For things that don’t necessarily need to be parsed on an individual block level, you have more flexibility with Boolean search in Obsidian. There is a longevity implied to anything you write down in Obsidian. I should preface this by saying that I was an avid Roam user for around 8 months and never experienced any data loss that I know of. Ren gives a great introduction for students, in the context of a comparison of features with Roam. Each of these tags is also clickable from this panel, which then automatically pulls up a search for all the notes with that tag. 2. While there is a local-only version of Roam, there are a few issues there: The Roam team has said that a local-based application is on the roadmap, though the timing of this is unclear, as other advances are taking priority: public API development, mobile application, etc. On the right, a search field, a filtering control, a collapsed list of features (including sharing and exporting), and a help menu are always visible. And to avoid losing productivity to endless dithering, I agreed to pick a solution and stick with it for a minimum of one year. And that gives away my choice, doesn’t it? There is a Roam Scholars program where you can apply for a discount or even free access, depending on your situation, and many folks have been able to get access through that program. This is something that is incredibly handy, especially when writing long-form articles in Obsidian. When I first pasted a link to a tweet into Obsidian, it appeared as a link, rendered in tiny grey text. In Obsidian, the basic unit of thought is the page. There is no equivalent feature in Roam at the moment. I can also share that any time invested in exploring Roam is time well-spent. As an example, I have my saved boolean searches (essentially queries for Obsidian) to the lower left panel and my note outline panel to the lower right panel. Your hard-earned knowledge and writing is future-proofed. I’m now around 2–3 months into using Obsidian and over that time, it has slowly become my daily driver for note-taking, knowledge management and writing. Obsidian is the brainchild of Shida Li and Erica Xu who have worked together on Dynalist. I should probably start by saying that it took me several tries to get into Obsidian. It has also enabled other users to create truly amazing visuals within Obsidian: From a modifiable standpoint, I think Roam and Obsidian are on similar levels, though I personally think Obsidian is a more visually pleasing working environment. As a result, even if you learn the basics from Roam tutorials, you’ll feel very much at home the first time you launch Obsidian. If you’re a budget-conscious person, Obsidian.md might be the better choice. I can live without block-level transclusion and queries in Roam. (I’m just starting to understand how I might use queries, for example.) 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