On the process of forging evergreen notes

UPDATE: This has been integrated into IMF v3: IMF v3 - Advanced Starter Kit

I’m super excited to share this because I think it’s a great way to show the power of the inter-related concepts:

  • (1) an inbox / incubation folder
  • (2) making evergreen notes
  • (3) tethering those notes to your larger web of notes

Download: On the process of forging evergreen notes 2020-05-28.zip (21.6 KB)

Walk through this library and see a process with built-in creation, connection, strengthening of note retrieval, and productive/clever use of spaced repetition.


This looks great, @nickmilo. I was wondering what is the criteria you use for adding a “hard” link on a MOC to a note vs. simply using the backlinks.

For example: Both notes that you explicitly link on the Habits MOC note also show up in the Backlinks section. In this case, aren’t the explicit links redundant?

My take is that it would make sense to add an explicit link if there was some more context around the linked note from the MOC perspective. For example: “In terms of habits, the most important concept is <LINK to note 1>, whereas it is also fundamental to keep in mind <LINK to note 2>”. This seems a more useful MOC, as opposed only to a plain link list, which is already in the backlinks anyway.

What am I missing?

P.S. Thank you very much for going all the way to do these starter packages and explaining the IMF in details.


You are 100% correct; you are not missing anything.

In my example the “hard” explicit links I have in the Habits MOC have no context and in a better example they would, just like you suggested.

I guess I was putting them in plain sight for now (until I trust the backlinks setup more), then when I add another 10 or so notes to it, I’ll spend more time to add context.

Thank you for pointing that out. And I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the starter packages :slight_smile:

Making your thinking visible here, in IMF vault, and, well frankly, everywhere, has been valuable. Much thanks.

A “cleaning up” question: In the use case you present here, do you keep the initial " 201502201713 Habit Concepts and Theory" note in incubation? Or place it elsewhere? Or now that you’ve made it “evergreen” do you delete it?

Thanks @bbain and great question. In this instance, I will delete the original note because of two reason:

  • I feel satisfied that I’ve fully digested all the good stuff from the original note into my own thoughts.
  • I have a backup of it in my older zettelkasten. In the older ZK, I append the original note with TRANSFERRED. So it would look like: 201502201713 Habit Concepts and Theory TRANSFERRED

If I lost the backup, I’d be perfectly fine. I just keep it because I like going back to the old ZK and knowing which notes I’ve already transferred.

Not sure if that’s the best or ideal method, but it seems to be working.

Hmmm, appending “transferred” in out of way vault is another idea worth trialing. thaks

I noticed that the file names were numbered at intervals of 10, but I didn’t understand why. Is it for filling in 11, 12, 13… in the future?

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@seabirdr Good question. It’s something I learned in tv editing for visual effects. Inevitably, they’ll be a need to insert another very important MOC in the lineup here. If you sort the sidebar A-Z, then the your main index categories are usually in view. I just inserted 001 Projects as an experiment.
Screen Shot 2020-06-03 at 8.03.14 AM
It’s arbitrary but simple and reliable.


Thank you for the detailed reply, the tips you shared are very useful!

I have another question about the Evergreen notes. If I were to start building my Evergreen notes right now, would I need to create multiple Vault’s for different areas of my focus, or would I only need to create one Vault that would contain all of my personal concerns?

Just one vault.

Most people feel quite passionately about just one vault. I tend to agree, except maybe for private notes. But the point is to try your best not to scatter notes across vaults. Much better to just have one vault and use tags, folders, and other structuring notes


Thanks for your simple and clear advice that cleared up my confusion :sparkles:

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I recently carefully considered using only one vault to store all the information. And I did a stress test on the current obsidian. When it reached about 12,000 notes, the resulting delay could significantly reduce the user experience. If this is the limit of obsidian, is there a suitable way to organize notes to avoid operating delays?

I reported the test results to the developer in the following post:


@seabirdr Have you ruled out the issue being your computer. For example, in a PC there is a page file and you might be maxing that pre-set size out and therefore causing a lot of disk writing. Even a SSD would lag in that case.