Bookmarked Why te database version and how it’s going (by Tienson Qin)

Long time blog buddy Jörg Kantel, aka der Schockwellenreiter, points to the discussion above, on how Logseq is moving away from running on top of you file system towards a database tool. I understand how that may help solve the issues they indicate w.r.t. collaboration and synchronisation, but like Jörg I don’t like it when my stuff is locked away in some database structure I don’t have ready acces to from inside other apps and scripts. It’s why e.g. Joplin is out of bounds for me. For Jörg it’s even more key I think, as he seems to be blogging directly from his markdown files. (I write my blogposts in markdown in Obsidian, but have a micropub script to push it one time / one-way to my website.)

There’s an intriguing remark further down that page that they will maintain both the markdown files and add a database on top, to provide other tools access. I wonder how that will work in practice, and how it impacts the things they intend to solve with the database. I use the closed source Obsidian, and it too has some data stored outside the files that keeps track of graphs etc., and I wonder if this is what they mean or not.

Jörg is looking at Foam as a result. When I started using Obsidian a few months after its launch in March 2020, Foam was more like an idea on top of VS Code editor than an application. I could be tempted to look at Foam again, but using VS Code as its base is something that doesn’t appeal to me.

We’ll continue to support both file-based and database-based graphs, with a long-term goal of achieving seamless two-way sync between the database and markdown files. This will allow you to leverage the benefits of the database version while still being able to use other tools

Tienson Qin

In reply to It is bigger than a tiny little textbox by Dave Winer

What is biggger than a tiny little textbox, like the ones we get on social platforms, and a full blown CMS, like the editing back-end of my WordPress site? Asks Dave Winer. My current answer to that is: where I’m writing this reply now.

Mid 2022 Dave Winer talked about two-way RSS, which morphed into textcasting by the end of 2023. Now he’s looking at an editor that would work like that.

In my personal feed reader I added a form to post responses. You see Dave Winer’s posting that I’m responding to, and the response form.

The editor I am writing this in, is a simple webform underneath an entry in my feed reader. See the image above. Allowing me to respond while I’m reading feeds, and then move on to reading the next bit.

The editor allows me to set a title, keep the the title of the thing I’m responding to, or have no title. It can cater to different types of response (bookmark, favourite, reply). It can send to several WordPress sites (my blog, my company’s, the Dutch IndieWeb community site, and my company’s internal team site. As a post or a page.

Me writing this post in the response form in my feedreader.

But not just post to a website. It can post an online annotation to my Hypothes.is (the ‘H.’ response option at the top), and it can post to my local Obsidian markdown notes (the ‘obs’ site option underneath the edit boxes).

It accepts categories and tags as the same thing. The receiving site or location determines if one of the key-words is a category locally and treats the rest as tags.

It doesn’t use RSS except as source of the item I respond to, it uses the Micropub standard to talk to websites. It could use RSS or OPML. It accepts HTML and posts as Markdown to my notes. I just started tinkering with my feed reader and response form again, so I can take Dave’s question into account while doing that.

Now, the question: What’s between a tiny little text box and a full-blown content management system?
The question we intend to answer.
That’s what textcasting is for, to identity the essential features. This editor supports them.

Dave Winer

During the PKM Summit last week I saw Zsolt Viczián do several amazing things with his Excalidraw plugin in Obsidian as part of his visual thinking efforts.
I’m very much a text person, but do recognise the role of visual elements as part of my thinking process. Shifting concepts around, thinking about connections, clustering etc. It engages the spatial parts of the brain, and humans are good at that. As most tools do either one thing or the other, when a tool can do both as just different perspectives on the same thing that draws my attention. It is why I’ve used Tinderbox and e.g. The Brain. Zsolt showed me how Excalidraw in Obsidian can do both too. Any Excalidraw-in-Obsidian image can have a regular note on the other side, and you can switch between them. All this because it’s just one note in markdown with some parts interpreted by Excalidraw and other parts by Obsidian.


A sketch of the elements needed to post my own slidedecks in a nice viewer, now that I’m no longer satisfied with how I’ve ‘brought slides home‘ the past four years.


The same file but now shown as text, where I’ve written a few tasks as part of creating the setup I’ve sketched in the image. Zsolt calls this the backside of the image. I’m more reminded of Tinderbox where you could see something as outline, as timeline, as tree map, as canvas etc. all interchangeable.

Zsolt very much gave me a great nudge to play with this more, and relearn that I do care about visual elements in my notes, and that it’s just that it wasn’t easy enough to build into my routines in making notes.

Bookmarked Opening Space to Remember Harrison Owen by Nancy White

The originator of the Open Space technology, Harrison Owen, died March 16th. I am very grateful to Harrison Owen, as Open Space has been a key element throughout my working life in the past two decades. Open Space has allowed me to collaboratively set the conditions at various events for interaction in a way that fosters inclusion, allows all present to be heard, and works towards outcomes that are carried by all involved. You can find resources on Open Space at Openspaceworld.org. I first encountered Open Space as a format in January 2004, and was immediately convinced of its value. Since then I’ve facilitated it in a huge variety of sessions, that included our BlogWalk series 2004-2008, many conference side-events, Barcamps, IndieWeb camps, and the birthday unconferences E and I have hosted over the years. At times opening and especially closing the space can be an emotional experience. “Coming down to earth from creating and surfing the group’s collective energy and shared attention, from weaving the tapestry of the experience togetheras I wrote two years ago.

…the person who birthed OST, Harrison Owen, who passed away earlier this month…

Nancy White


One of the guidelines of Open Space posted on the wall in our living room as nudge and reminder for the participants of our Working on Stuff That Matters birthday unconference in 2010.

Bookmarked You don’t hate AI; You hate… by Mita Williams

Mita Williams pulls together an interesting set of quotes. Need to still read this for real but this looks like a great little list that ties the unease around AI to other aspects that have been uneasy much longer. At the end at first glance it lists a court case that on the basis of Charlie Stross’s remarks on corporations being slow AI compares strict AI regulation to the loose position in the US of corporations being persons too.

Bookmarked US lawmakers vote 50-0 to force sale of TikTok despite angry calls from users (by Jon Brodkin at Ars Technica)

Apple may be misinterpreting what the EU Digital Markets Act and Digitale Services Act are about, so perhaps this example of how the US is working their own anti trust laws, here w.r.t. TikTok helps them realise what’s at stake.

If an application is determined to be operated by a company controlled by a foreign adversary—like ByteDance, Ltd., which is controlled by the People’s Republic of China—the application must be divested from foreign adversary control within 180 days.

Jon Brodkin at Ars Technica