Do you think obsidian has made you smarter?

I’m curious to hear your thoughts. For me, I don’t know if obsidian has made me smarter, but it’s definitely made life easier, since I can write stuff without worrying about the files being lost. It’s much better than google docs. The search function helps to find older files as well.


If being able to recall knowledge faster and more accurately = smarter, then yes.

Using LYTKit and thinking about how to apply that has taught me new ways of thinking, so also yes.

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I think it depends on your workflow. Obsidian is a note-taking app.
so, it depends on what you do with your note.
Do you really revisit them, do you create something (output) with it.

It’s similar to taking photos so that we do not forget the moment, but we actually do not really revisit the photos anyway.


I am not convinced that electronics equates to permanent storage. I am huge believer in paper. I do wonder what I would do if my online storage was killed off. I still have my original paper versions of books I wrote when i worked for Megahertz, USR, 3Com and such. The electronic drafts disappeared long ago. My fear is much of history will be lost because it was not backed up on dead trees.

I don’t think its made me necessarily smarter. It just made it easier to reference old knowledge. To avoid the issue of rereading old books and highlights that I wouldn’t need to if I took good notes on it in the first place.

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Yes. I’m the kind of person who forgets details pretty easily. For the longest time though I had the misconception for myself that I had to remember everything that I learn in my vocation (Information Technology).

While I’m sure there are types that can manage that, for me I needed a different way, and it took me a long time to slowly realize that. Finding Obsidian supercharged this realization, and I think that it really helps me organize, remember, and work better.

I feel smarter.

This has largely been my experience as well. In the 7 months I’ve been using it, Obsidian has been effective in practicing recall of specific information moreso than anything else. Obsidian has acted more like a very in-depth commonplace book of sorts that has allowed me to reference a lot of ideas I had while working, studying, reading, etc.

But also, by having these notes I’ve been able to develop opinions and positions on topics in a much more clear and concise way, which therefore has allowed me to be more conversational in referencing specific information I found to be important / relevant. I have started to notice that it’s been easier to draw together ideas for research and writing which was one of the initial draws to Obsidian.

I think “smart” is subjective and it comes down to the types of notes one ends up taking. I find that I’ve taken a lot of “index” or “glossary” based notes to help establish my understanding, literature notes to develop ideas on the source or on specific topics, and then more evergreen notes as I continue to synthesize information. So in my own workflow, I’d say I’ve definitely begun to really “optimize” my learning and studying skills, which I suppose one could thus draw the conclusion I’ve become “smarter”.

I’ll have to keep with Obsidian for at least a year in order to fully answer this question, since I’m in a stage in life where I’m supposed to be learning anyways (early years of a PhD). It’s definitely been helpful to catalogue my knowledge and to track the work I’ve done in a meaningful way, which I appreciate.

TL;DR, yeah kinda

Obsidian has definitely made me more knowledgeable.
I’m able to go back to my chemistry or cold war notes from last year and easily get everything I knew about them from the time delivered to me in a format that’s personalised to be the best format for me to read and take knowledge in.
It’s also made me more organised, I use it to track my day and write down what I need to do.
But smarter? I wouldn’t say so. I’d have read those textbooks I wrote notes on anyway, and obsidian hasn’t magically raised my intelligence. It just helps me use what I already have more effectively.


Smarter? Yes. I’ll find documented IT solutions that work faster again and don’t have to do all the research again.

Smarter? No. Sometimes I forget, that I already have a solution for a special problem.

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Well, look up Kali Yuga and will see all goes with the territory: humans today generally get smarter at being dumb. Back in the day everyone had to know everything by heart and was passed down orally.

Today, when you are confined by a framework of “dumbed-downness,” you have no reference point for what’s it like to be outside of that. An eagle raised by chickens will never know how to fly.

As for Obsidian (or lack of a tool like it), my personal experience is that everyone thinks themselves smart (at their own level), a dangerous thing indeed…

It’s just that opting to use a tool like Obsidian is like owning up to the fact (“the self-diagnosis”) that there is a problem. A cry for help… And you go on to help yourself, *God will help you.

* God = all-encompassing informational grid in and outside of you.