Obsidian Gems of the Year 2021 nomination - Workflows

The deadline to nominate is end of day on December 15, Anywhere on Earth. Reply in this thread to nominate.

Share a workflow write-up that you benefit from or your own.

Please provide the following information:

  1. Author of the workflow;
  2. Short title (for voting purposes);
  3. Screenshot of the workflow (sensitive information can be garbled if necessary but should still show the gist of the setup);
  4. Short write-up to describe the gist of the workflow (1,000 words max), please talk about what plugins you use, how you organize content, how do you process input and how do you output content if applicable;
  5. Link to a longer write-up if available;
  6. If it’s not your own workflow and you’re just nominating someone else’s workflow, provide a short write-up how it helped you (300 words max).

Author : Myself
Title : Simple project management



Type of metadata & definition of each emoji

  1. Type : (:star:=enhancement) or (:tornado:=problem). To differentiate between the two, ask yourself if you don’t finish this project, what are the consequences ?
  2. State : :green_square:=ongoing (you’re doing right now) / :blue_square:=to-do (after ongoing projects) / :red_square:=delete (projects considered for deleting) / :white_large_square: = later (projects that needs a certain event or condition that isn’t met right now) / and of course finished project with state: done.
  3. Progress : :grey_exclamation:= not started, :question:= started but don’t know when I’ll finish, :one:,:two:,:three:,:four:,:five: = estimation of days that I’ll need to finish the project

Alternative : you can use supercharged links plugin plugin to set custom emoji for each property if you prefer to do it that way.
Appearence: I’m using the the setting in the emoji toolbar plugin that turns all emojis in obsidian into twitter like emojis. And the editor syntax highlight plugin to make the front matter stand out.

Required plugins and their purposes

  • Force note view mode by front matter : I set the unfinished project as source mode given that they require editing, and the finished project as preview mode. (When live preview will be publicly available, I’ll use it instead of edit more for unfinished project)
  • Admonition + codemirror for easy state and progress modification : I wanted to use buttons in edit mode, and the only way is to embed them in an admonition and render it using codemirror.

Fact : if live preview supports rending buttons codeblocks, there will be no need to use admonition or codemirror for this purpose.

  • Buttons : to replace the line of each metadata with a new one containing the new property. To make it cleaner, I embedded inline-buttons and I made a file with all the types of buttons.md

Alternative : to edit metadata, you can also use metaedit or search and replace commands.

  • Quickadd for adding new project : I added a template.md
    where you can choose between different options using quickadd format {{VALUE:x,y,z}}.

Tip : you can add a button at the top of the project file that links to the quickadd command add a new project instead of using the command palette.

  • Dataview lists for viewing and sorting projects : I made 2 dataview lists.md The unfinished projects are sorted by state then by type, then by progress.

Fact : At first I wanted to display the project in a kanban view, but the kanban plugin doesn’t support sorting by metadata yet. So until it is implemented, i’ll be using dataview.

  • Workspaces (core) and pin command for best viewing experience : As you see in the video, the project list remains in the left pane and the right pane changes when changing projects. To maintain that 30/70 ratio, I used a dummy file and adjusted the size of the panes, then I saved this layout as a workspace.

Tip : to get faster access to the workspace, you can assign a command to it using the worksapces plus plugin, then either pin the command or add an alias to it via the command alias plugin.


Detailed write up of the Zotero → Obsidian workflow
Author: @Cat

Original link: Zotero -> zotfile -> mdnotes -> obsidian -> dataview Workflow

It’s a great write up, with a lot of screenshots, covering everything from the very basics to the more complex dataview setup. We use it as a reference in the server for people who want to set up the workflow and it was the inspiration for the Zotero 101 talk.

The original post features dataview, but other variations can make use of admonitions (Zotero -> zotfile -> mdnotes -> obsidian -> dataview Workflow - #29 by stpag) or some of the tasks plugins, depending on the author’s preferences!


Author : Myself
Title : Simple task management




template file.md (2.4 KB)

I’m using the tasks plugin with the reminder plugin and I put all my tasks into one file after the heading All tasks using quickadd plugin custom format. I don’t use scheduled or start date, so here is the default format :

#task {{VALUE:task name}} ⏰ {{VDATE:reminder date and time,YYYY-MM-DD HH:mm}}  🔁 {{VALUE:recurrence}} 📅 {{VDATE:due date,YYYY-MM-DD}}

Types of tasks : I played with the format (left/removed some fields) and created different commands for different types of tasks :

  • Recurring task without reminders task name + recurrence + due date I added a minute estimation as tags {{VALUE:#05m,#10m...}} to each one of them. I then sorted by description to bring the easiest one at the top. I also added a {{VALUE:#today, }} tag for the ones that have to be done today (you can see a demo below).
  • Recurring tasks with reminders task name + reminder date + recurrence + due date (I try to reduce these types of tasks because I don’t want to be notified many times every day. I also hide them from other queries as they are always present).
  • Not recurring tasks with reminders task name + reminder date + due date
  • Not recurring tasks with no reminders are considered project tasks and are not displayed in this file, but within each project. This file contains only time or date sensitive tasks.

recurring task

Repeated dates and Quickadd setup : The reminder date and the due date can be the same. In this case, it is better to name them as shown below. This way you only have to input the date once and quickadd can put in the two dates automatically.

#task {{VALUE:task name}} ⏰ {{VDATE: date,YYYY-MM-DD}} {{VDATE: time, HH:mm}} 📅 {{VDATE: date,YYYY-MM-DD}}

I made 2 option for tasks with reminders (same date and different date) :


Delete completed tasks : The generated completed tasks are deleted using a quickadd macro that utilize task archiver plugin function to move completed tasks to another file. The macro is set to trigger when the plugin loads.


Hotkey trigger : As it is essential to quickly jot down your task. I’m replicating other task oriented apps feature to show/hide obsidian with one keyboard shortcut using a beta plugin called global hotkey. You can install it using BRAT.


Checkbox hover : As the checkboxes are close to each other, I like to use a theme that provides feedback when hovering over the checkboxes so that I don’t mistake one for the other in the query. Such themes include prism (the one I’m using), blue topaz, ebullientworks, clair de lune, minimal, primary, sanctum, shimerring focus, things, typewriter, wyrd, ying and yang…


Limitations to current setup

  • I can’t delete a task from the query, I have to go under “all tasks” in edit mode and delete it from there (related feature request).
  • I can’t postpone a recurring reminder because the default time changes with it (related feature request).
  • I can’t complete a recurring task with a reminder from the task plugin query, because the reminder date doesn’t update accordingly (related feature request).
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Fiction project management by @EleanorKonik

Eleanor’s workflow might fool you into thinking that it’s only about fiction project management, but personally, I found that many of the ideas behind her workflow are usable also in a more general way. For anyone that needs ideas about how to exploit folders, tags and dataview, the original video probably can give you a few ideas about how to organize your project.

A small sneak peek into the talk (please also note Folly attending in the upper right corner!)

Video: Fiction Project Management - YouTube


Journaling setup by @SlRvb

Forum post: SlRvb's Journaling Setup
Video: Journaling - Managing multiple journals - YouTube

Aside from a bunch of vault envy from the awesome setup @SlRvb has with the ITS theme, this workflow gives anyone that manages time-based notes a bunch of ideas on organization, querying and easy input. Even if you’re not in it for journaling per se, it’s easy to see how you can adapt the ideas behind it for your own workflow. I loved getting a clear example of how the QuickAdd plugin could be useful to create meeting notes, which before this talk required a longer set of manual steps.


title: Comprehensive Academic Workflow from Reading to Writing in Markdown
author: myself (@pseudometa)

In the first half, I discuss and weigh setups and organizational practices for doing academic work in Markdown/Obsidian. In the second half, I lay out an overview of several tools necessary for the various steps of the workflow, covering various Obsidian plugins, and conclude with my own setup.

Also, the whole write-up was written fully on Obsidian, and all graphs are created with Obsidian’s built-in Mermaid implementation! :slight_smile:

The Academic Workflow from Reading to Writing

  • The generalized version
  • The simple Word-Zotero version
  • The Zotero-ZotFile-BetterBibTeX-MDNotes-Obsidian-Pandoc version
  • Decomposing the workflow into its subtasks

Overview: Tools for the individual Subtasks

  1. Organizing References
  2. Saving References
  3. Linking PDFs, Reference Entries, and Citations
  4. Extracting Annotations/Notes From PDFs
  5. Citation Picker for Automatic Citations
  6. Bibliography Creation
  7. Compiling Markdown with Citations

:arrow_right: Comprehensive Academic Workflow from Reading to Writing in Markdown

  1. Author of the workflow: @abopp

  2. Short title: Using spaced repetition and temporal tags to develop your conceptual notes

  3. Reviewing Notes

  4. Spaced repetition is a tool that will help make connections between ideas, review concepts, and maintain notes. It has helped me more easily find connections between notes and use those connections to find new ideas. The basis of this workflow is the Spaced repetition plugin, and a classification of notes (either a folder or tag) that are conceptual. The idea of review isn’t pure memorization, it is ease of connection. You don’t need to be able to quote your note titles or their content (though this will help you do that) but you do want to be able to remember notes in context. The connections you make in Obsidian are doubly effective as they help you remember that concept, and make a dynamic connection in Obsidian. This process can be extended to include maintenance on your notes through a task and status system. As you review, you can create tasks with work items for you to come back too, which will allow you to review easily without getting stuck making changes. Status will help you find the notes that need to be planted, are currently growing, or are mature. For this I use two tags, #TO (#TO/DO, #TO/EXPLORE, #TO/TEND) and #EVER (#EVER/SEED, #EVER/SPROUT, #EVER/GREEN). These tags allow me to leverage all of Obsidian’s features for tags with my conceptual notes. This includes filtering searches, backlinks, and the graph view, and being able to sort and limit search queries for certain kinds of tasks. These repeated and spaced interactions with your notes, make developing ideas much more fluid.

  5. Write-up
    Spaced repetition process: Using spaced repetition for your conceptual notes - Obsidian Publish
    Tag structure: my TO(DO) and EVER(GREEN) structure - Obsidian Publish

  • Author of the workflow; Sam Link

  • Short title (for voting purposes); Obsidian for red team pentester collaboration

  • Screenshot of the workflow (sensitive information can be garbled if necessary but should still show the gist of the setup);

  • Short write-up to describe the gist of the workflow (1,000 words max), please talk about what plugins you use, how you organize content, how do you process input and how do you output content if applicable — mostly uses git, folders and tags to help the team quickly identify where and why people should put their notes for their colleagues to access. It uses Templater for automation, and makes extensive use of emoji tags. It also leverages Dataview and the Zettelkasten atomic notes principles.

  • Link to a longer write-up if available; Obsidian, Taming a Collective Consciousness - TrustedSec

  • If it’s not your own workflow and you’re just nominating someone else’s workflow, provide a short write-up how it helped you (300 words max): This was one of the few examples of genuine collaborative notetaking using Obsidian I’ve seen in months of running the Roundup, and I keep it ready-to-hand for when people ask about collaboration using Obsidian and when people ask about how to get the most out of Obsidian as a software developer.


Author: Myself
Title: Life-Disciplines-Projects


Original Vault

Personal Vault



Life-Disciplines-Projects (LDP) is a life-management framework. It attempts to redefine one’s relationship with work by reducing friction and increasing velocity towards their Ikigai, defined as their reason for being. LDP is for those who find themselves distracted by the modern world, as it re-aligns their meaning (Life), direction (Disciplines), and actions (Projects).

It takes inspiration from Getting Things Done, Pillars Pipelines and Vaults, and Agile (Scrum, Kanban), among many other ideas.

Fundamental components of LDP are organized as follows.

It also suggests following the philosophies below.

Build a System that Works for You: My life is not your life. LDP is a framework, the foundation that is to be built by whoever utilizes it. Always question and transform methods to work with you.

Everything should be Relevant and Important: Save time and energy by working on the relevant and important.

Keep It Clear, Simple, and Small: You should be able to sit down and immediately do what you want to do. Do this by reducing friction.

“Just Enough” For Now, Polish Later: Do not get stuck on perfection. Do the bare minimum now to establish structure and viability. You can always come back later to iterate on the ideas and do polish.

Work Wide, not Deep: Work to understand the bigger picture, then start to polish and tweak the fine details. Do not perfect one component and neglect work on the rest. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

Within Obsidian, various plugins are used, but at its core, this showcase uses Tasks, Dataview, Calendar, Periodic Notes, Templater, and Natural Language Dates

This is just a framework, and is meant to be further built upon by whoever adapts it. All the tips and tricks I showcase may not necessarily work for others, and this is where these philosophies kick in to try to give autonomy back to the individual.

General Workflow

Generating Work
  • Write appropriate checklist items as a task anywhere within proper context. Append #planned—or
  • Check any existing planned tasks and append #ongoing—or
  • Tag an unfinished section in a note as #resume
Doing Work
  1. Start the day by doing a daily alignment. Here you will do a check-in with yourself (journal, review, etc).
  2. Check out the main dashboard and see if you have any work you need to #resume
    • Also check for any pre-existing #ongoing tasks
    • This is your unfinished work
  3. Work on and potentially finish said #resume or #ongoing tasks.
  4. “What is the next best step?”
    • Check any #planned tasks, set as #ongoing
    • Check any backlog tasks, set as #planned or #ongoing
  5. Work on #ongoing tasks
  6. Repeat 4-5 until workday is over
  7. End the day with a check-out.
    • What did I get done today?
    • What’s the plan for tomorrow?

Vault on Github

GitHub - uwidev/life-disciplines-projects


Author of the workflow: @kitchenrunner

Short title (for voting purposes): Team-based project management

Screenshots of the workflow

Projects - home page:

Project template:

Personal page:

Short write-up to describe the gist of the workflow

1,000 words max, please talk about what plugins you use, how you organize content, how do you process input and how do you output content if applicable:

The approach does not require the use of specialized plug-ins, but for the convenience of work we use the topic Dark Graphite Pie (as some tags are painted in advance), core plugins Template and Quick switcher, and community plugins:

  • Shortcuts Extender.
  • Advansed Tables
  • Kanban.
  • Note Refactor

The approach is to work together on projects, with synchronization between storage via GitHub Desktop.

To describe each project, templates are used, project statuses are carried out in the form of various color tags, information about the project participants is reduced to the personal pages of each of us. Also on the personal page you can see the mention - we now almost do not use it, but maybe begin next year.

Each project has a separate Roadmap with tasks, each task has priority status. For easy search via Quick Switcher, all pages are dedicated to a specific project, a project ID of the project in the title. Maybe later we will start using the DataView plugin and Yaml header, but so far we fear that it will overload the appearance of the pages.

In addition to information about projects, the storage also contains information about the various standards and legislation that we use in the work. Such files are placed in the _Sources folder, while the root folder stored a different squeeze genus from these documents (which are periodically complemented by comments and observations).

Also in the root of the repositories are stored for various kinds of work plans and descriptions of new ideas - page cards for which are unique three-grained rooms.

In order for each of us to not worry, what will accidentally publish something in the repository, which did not follow, we agreed not to synchronize the Daily Notes folders, as well as notes with the prefix in the form of $ (set in the GitHub repository).

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Author: Myself

Title: Seedbox, 2021 Edition

Screenshots exist at: GitHub - pricebaldwin/obsidian-seedbox-demo: This vault shows a barebones Obsidian vault with a Seedbox set up and information on how to set up a Seedbox.

Short write-up:
The Seedbox methodology is a mechanism for quickly capturing new information and then nurturing knowledge accretion in those notes over time. It is an optimization for attention, intended as a guard against the common analysis-paralysis that early adopters to Obsidian tend to experience.

Longer write-ups exist at :


Author of the workflow

me (@akhilleus on the forums, @lkadre on discord)

Short title (for voting purposes)

Second Brain Setup

Screenshot of the workflow (sensitive information can be garbled if necessary but should still show the gist of the setup);

Short write-up to describe the gist of the workflow (1,000 words max), please talk about what plugins you use, how you organize content, how do you process input and how do you output content if applicable;

The Premise

My vault is my second brain. It aims to replicate the way my mind works, and the way that my mind works is curious, multidisciplinary, and easily distracted. Therefore, my set-up is rather simple; I’ve found that elaborate guidelines and rigid structures make me want to keep tweaking them. Same for my theme: although I admit I have changed a bit, I’m making an effort to keep it simple.

At the core of it there are folders, (sub)tags, and links. They’re enhanced by plugins, but the gist is easily replicated with Core Obsidian, or any other markdown app that supports these three features. It wouldn’t be as smooth, but it’d be possible!

The Basic

I organise content based on file type. I have 10 main top-level folders in my vault:

  • 010 LIFE: for periodic notes and journaling
  • 020 EDUCATION: for school-specific assignments and organisation
  • 030 WORK: for work-related fleeting notes
  • 040 PEOPLE: where there are author profiles
  • 050 RESOURCES: where highlights and “literature notes” live
  • 060 CONCEPTS: where notes are atomic and lean towards definitions
  • 070 INDEXES: where I put dataview tables on different topics and write
  • 080 QUERIES: where I write more extensively on any certain topic, starting with a question
  • 090 CREATIVITY: where I write fiction
  • 990 MISC: where there are templates, archives, attachments, and miscellaneous notes that don’t fit anywhere else

Besides, some meta notes live at the root, like my § 001 HOMEPAGE , my § 003 KEY and the folder notes for the folders above.

I do have an “999 UNSORTED” folder, but I never actually use it. With a hotkey, I invoke QuickAdd and always create the note in the appropriate folder, with the appropriate template. I may need a moment to process the content of the note later, but the type is always immediately obvious to me.

The Comfortable

I use tags and subtags extensively to further classify my notes. I pair this with the Breadcrumbs plugin for easy comparison between related notes. Among my tags I have, for example:

  • #j/US/DEL denotes notes specific to the jurisdiction of the state of Delaware
  • #philosophy/stoicism refers to notes about stoicism, as a subset of philosophy
  • #070-indexes is included in all notes within the 070 INDEXES folder, allowing for browsing on my Publish site, where I chose not to have a sidebar

Another important feature for me is inline metadata. I use Sanctum’s pseudo-admonitions to differentiate them from the rest of the text. Some are inline Dataview fields, more often it’s just tags that I want to be visible on Publish.

The Extensions

Although I use a fair number of plugins, the main ones that are needed for my set-up are:

  • Sanctum theme or equivalent snippet, for pseudo-admonitions
  • Calendar & Periodic Notes, for daily, weekly, monthly notes
  • Templater, for inserting and reading advanced templates
  • Buttons, for the “Created today” template in my daily notes
  • Dataview, for generating tables of notes relating to a certain topic
  • Readwise Official, for getting my highlights into Obsidian
  • QuickAdd, for creating files in the right folder and with the right template
  • Breadcrumbs, for alternative file structures and dynamic file relations

Link to a longer write-up if available;

I’ve written an overly-long and oft-digressive description through the notes (each a folder note) linked here, as well as a list of my main tags: § 002 WORKFLOW .

  1. @SlRvb
  2. SlRvb’s MediaDB Setup

  1. This is a complete write up of my setup for my MediaDB Vault where I store/track the media that I’ve consumed: Literature, Shows, Comics, Movies, Games, etc. This workflow uses folders to separate Meta information and the media folders, and uses a mix of plugins and CSS to achieve the goal of tracking and displaying the media I consume:



  • Dataview
  • Templater
  • Supercharged Links
  • Markdown Attributes

  1. SlRvb’s MediaDB Setup - Share & showcase - Obsidian Forum

Author of the workflow

me (@akhilleus on the forums, @lkadre on discord)

Short title (for voting purposes)

Advanced Breadcrumbs

Screenshot of the workflow (sensitive information can be garbled if necessary but should still show the gist of the setup);


Short write-up to describe the gist of the workflow (1,000 words max), please talk about what plugins you use, how you organize content, how do you process input and how do you output content if applicable;

After some discussion on the Obsidian Discord, I wrote this post up hoping it might give some people inspiration on how to take their Breadcrumbs Plugin setup to the next level. I later refined it a bit.

It features an overview of the features that I use, how, and why, and also what kind of different custom hierarchies I’ve set up for myself. Going beyond “parent/sibling/child”!

Link to a longer write-up if available;

It’s currently pending approval on the Hub, but you can find it here: How do I use the Breadcrumbs Plugin? .

It was initially posted on the discussion on Github as linked above.


Author: Maggie Delano (me) and TftHacker

Short title: Quick Capture + Inbox Processing


The Gist: This workflow combines quick capture and inbox processing to allow you to capture your ideas on mobile or desktop and process them just like you would your email inbox. Save thoughts, links, and ideas on the go using iOS shortcuts. Jot down a quick note during a meeting or while watching videos using the Keyboard Maestro hotkey, which automatically resizes the Obsidian window so you can see what you’re doing. When you’re ready, quickly archive, move, or trash all the created notes in your inbox using customizable hotkeys.

This workflow uses the Advanced Obsidian URI plugin to create a new note in your inbox with the template of your choosing, and uses the Templater and Hotkeys for Templates plugins for inbox processing.

Link to longer write-up: see forum post here, also featured in this youtube video

1 Like

Qualitative Analysis Using Obsidian by @ryanjamurphy

Forum post: Using Obsidian for qualitative analysis — a starter environment
Blog post: An Integrated Qualitative Analysis Environment with Obsidian - Axle

Ryan’s post describes everything you need to setup a vault to do qualitative analysis. He even has a starter vault for download with the right plugins so you can just go. To the surprise of no one, you can use Dataview to extract and perform queries on your data.


Obsidian for TTRPG
Authors: @Leah, @apolaine, @SlRvb, @nvanderhoeven and @valentine.195

Video: TTRPG Obsidian Showcase - YouTube
Hub note: Obsidian and TTRPG - Obsidian Publish

Leah’s Law states that eventually all conversations should converge to TTRPG. I’m submitting this nomination to comply with the law and as a placeholder in case someone wants to submit any of these workflows individually. GM or player, Obsidian will help you manage everything you need. There are plugins for anything you can imagine (and if there isn’t one for that thing your heart desires, @valentine.195 will probably write one for you in 5 minutes – Javalent’s law). If you need snippets or want some ideas on using folders, tags or block IDs @SlRvb and @Leah have great tips. @apolaine and @nvanderhoeven will walk you through the DM/GM aspects, whether you like to prepare thoroughly or just enough.

1 Like

Thanks for all your nominations! We’ll compile all the results into a voting post soon :heart: