Using Obsidian for ephemeral notes


I’m curious what other community members think about using Obsidian for ephemeral notes, as opposed to notes that have longer term value, or significance?


Part of my work is to have calls with our customers where I guide them through our product. I’ve been using Dynalist to take notes during my calls that I later convert into a follow-up email for the customer.

Dynalist works pretty well for this. The outliner is a good model for quick notes. I’ve been thinking about shifting these notes over to Obsidian, though.

My thoughts

One thought is that there may be some value in being able to cross-reference call notes to identify trends, and even just having everything in the one vault with my other work-related notes. I may pick up on interesting connections, too, though backlinks.

On the other hand, I may just be cluttering up my vault with fairly ephemeral notes that, at least in the short term, have pretty limited application.

I read the thread here: Does anybody use Obsidian for meeting/ reference notes? - Knowledge management - Obsidian Forum. I can see where meeting notes make sense, especially where you are meeting with the same people over time. In my case, I may only speak to the same customer once.

Does this sort of use case for Obsidian make sense? Am I missing any pros or cons?

If you are just a single member business then I’m sure Obsidian could be a valuable tool. It’s completely flexible so you can organise information how you want, and can easily switch to another method. However, in a larger organisation, I feel some kind of CRM system would suit better.

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I use obsidian for all sorts of ephemeral notes in large part because the barrier between making and deleting is nearly null. For instance, in my Logbook (Journal) I have lots of repeating notes which I date a the beginning of the file name so they line up nicely in the file viewer and adjust for the next repetition.
Example: 2021-06-20 – @1800 – Weekly Mom Skype

Often, though a one-time event comes along that I want to remember and may or may not want to take notes about. For instance my niece just graduated from college. I made a file with the date and time on it following the pattern above and then, when I slept through the videocast because it was at 2:00 am my time :sleeping: I just deleted the file in the morning and no harm done. If I had not fallen asleep, I might have added a couple of screenshots and some impressions about the ceremony…

The lack of barrier between making a file and waiting to find out if it is temporary or not is really one thing that I deeply appreciate about Obsidian.

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Thanks for your take. I add arbitrary notes to my daily notes, so I guess adding my call notes is pretty similar!

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I do something similar and collect notes for speaking with a customer once.

First, all ephemeral notes are in separate folders, so it’s easy to exclude them, move them, or delete them en masse if I want to. No commitments!

Second, I never know what client I may end up talking to over and over again. However, since I don’t know if I will, I may add an evergreen note for the client org and stick the meeting notes there. I DO NOT create less ephemeral people or project notes until it makes sense to do so.

Like the meeting notes and my daily notes, orgs, projects, and people are in separate folders, so I can nuke, move, or exclude them at my whim.

For your processing, it might be cool to process each of your meeting notes right after and pull out interesting or common things and stick them in another note.

I have similar for contractual language where I have a file with all of the “best” language and variations. I copy/paste the entire thing into decks and SOWs and delete what 8 don’t need and edit what needs it. Makes it super fast to deliver high quality content quickly.

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