TL;DR Obsidian should focus to provide a GUI and an extensive API on manipulating linked markdown/plain text notes, but leave development of features to the crowd.
I came across Obsidian a couple of weeks ago. It made me curious. Could it replace my ancient still paper-based note taking workflow? Not yet! But the basic idea the devs pursue with Obsidian (namely not taking the user-created content ransom) and the lively crowd here make Obsidian a promising venture.
The reason I didn’t stick with no todo/note-taking app in the last 10 years: flexibility and long-term availability.
Taking notes and managing todos is a very personal thing. Everybody has its individual needs. And since note-taking is also a creative process it shouldn’t be restricted by technical boundaries. What suits one may not suit another. Different approaches (a.k.a features) may also inspire others. I think everybody could benefit from each other if we have a universe full of features from which everybody could choose.
The ideal prototype to this is Emacs org-mode. It’s extremely customizable and some smart people added org-roam to it. Unfortunately, Emacs is sometimes called a great operating system but a bad text editor. It’s way way too complicated to use. But Emacs’ approach inspired me what Obsidian could be.
To the devs of Obsidian: Please focus on building a framework for managing linked markdown notes, but let everybody else contribute features as plugins. I have seen that an API is on your roadmap, but I wish it were the top priority.
On long-term availability
My biggest gripe with todo and note-taking apps is availability. I honestly fear that I adapt a workflow which works great for me but all of the sudden the tools I used stop from working. That’s the ultimate trump of pen and paper. And the reason I finally returned to it so many times.
Such elementary “operating system” I propose can IMHO only exist as open source. I believe that there a ways to monetize the software for the devs despite open-sourcing it. I can e.g. imagine a SaaS for use on computers I cannot install any software by myself.