Bidirectional links between apps would greatly improve interoperability of concepts and ideas

The implementations of linking two notes together within a note taking app is a leading philosophy of How I take smart notes. Bidirectional linking, it’s called. When you are viewing a note you are also presented with a link to all other notes that include a link to the note you’re currently viewing. It’s a fundamental belief of the note taking community that Notes should be densely linked because Ideas improve by writing about them not by thinking about them.

We don’t yet have the capability to link notes and files across the apps we use every day, however, as all implementations of this are within one app, on blogs and websites, or in someone’s digital garden.

What if we were able to link all notes and files within one application to all the other mentions and conceptually related documents with one another?

Apps like Bear, Ulysses, and Day One enable deep links directly into a specific piece of content stored in the app. They provide links like bear://x-callback-url/open-note and dayone2://view, which basically serve as desktop URLs to give direct access to a specified file.

If you were able to include a link in a Bear note that opens up Ulysses, ideally you’d be to see all the other mentions and inbound links leading to that Ulysses sheet. This way you’d be able to build associations and connections to the concept of the moment, without the limitations and confinements of walled gardens.

The interoperability of ideas is what Tom and Toby are working on in their recently released web service Quotebacks.

Toby Shorin and I have created a small tool called Quotebacks. The ultimate goal is to encourage and activate a deeper cross-blogger discusson space. To promote diverse voices and encourage networked writing to flourish.

We’re not there yet, but people are building new tools for networked thought, so definitely stay tuned.

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