Making Writing Fun 

"What if there were a way, without being an athlete, to feel what athletes feel? To play all the time, instead of working? Or else to enjoy work so much that it becomes essentially the same thing."  —  Phil Knight , founder of Nike. Knight meant this about work. I ask: what if we could play all the time while learning and writing? Let me explain how Fastjot might help. 
In order to write an article we often follow this process: 
  • Learn, research, gather information, take notes about concepts and relationships, etc. 
  • We might use social media along the way to share interesting notes, links, etc. 
  • Write a draft 
  • Review/proofread 
  • Publish 
The first steps happen in text processors / note-taking apps / physical paper / social media — Then, when it is ready, we copy our finished article and move it into our publishing platform blog, medium, linkedin, news site, etc. 
We optionally can use the  Zettelkasten  knowledge management method to gather notes, ideas, relationships between them, etc. to facilitate our memory and creativity by remembering our own old ideas. This can be done by means of physical cards or software applications. This often also help us to avoid facing a blank piece of paper as we have many existent interconnected notes about the topic we are writing. 

What if we integrated all these tools into a single social platform of notes and articles? 

This could work like this: 
  • I learn or read about something or have an idea and instead of publishing it on Twitter and maybe adding it to my private Zettelkasten, I publish it on Fastjot — adding any relevant links/tags to facilitate discoverability. 
  • This will be seen and commented by my followers, could be found on Google, etc. 
  • When I read or think about something else, I add a new note and link it to the previous one, or with a click I go to the initial note and update/extend it. 
  • As a note gets longer, but it's still a work in progress, I add the tag "draft". 
  • After some editing and proof-reading, I replace the "draft" tag with "article" or "post" and this triggers additional actions such as sharing among my followers on Fastjot and my other social media platforms (Twitter, Linkedin, etc.) 

Implications 

  • Our motivation/energy improves — and therefore our performance as  "Energy, not time, is the fundamental currency of high performance." — Jim Loehr  The cycle from having an idea into having something published or updated shorten. 
  • We save time as there is no need from changing platforms and copy-pasting (text processor / note-taking app, social media, publishing platform, etc.) 
  • Writing short notes / concepts & their relationships sharpen our understanding as  Having a language helps us to see deeper
  • Relationships (links/tags) foster our creativity as  Backlinks facilitate a conversation with our old self
  • We can now discover notes and articles by context — not only immediacy. If I write a note about Madrid, you might find it useful now, but specially when you are reading or writing about the capital of Spain. 
  • Therefore, fewer ideas would be lost. E.g. Some of Leonardo Da Vinci discoveries had to be reinvented centuries later and Arthur C. Clark's idea for a GPS had to be re-ideated/invented decades later. All this is important because I believe the solutions to many of the world problems are out there, in pieces. As the MIT professor  Alex Pentland  said, "The biggest problem in the world is not climate change, is not war, but how can we organise among ourselves to make good decisions and carry them out." 
  • Links/tags will also enable applications on top of this semi-structured data. For example, it will replace my old side-project Agreelist. E.g. list of who and who does not believe that AI is going to cause mass unemployment (and why)  https://agreelist.org/a/ai-mass-unemployment
To sum up, a  Zettelkasten  allows us to write a lot more because we do what we feel each moment so insights and new ideas drive us - instead of a plan. But this is often used by researchers and writers who need to write in private so they can publish original scientific papers and books. Also, it still requires motivation to continue writing for a long period of time before having something to publish. However, what if we non-writers do this in the open in a social platform for notes and articles? We wouldn't need to wait months or years to have thousands of cards/notes and publish a book to get feedback. In short, we at Fastjot aim to make education and writing open and fun, from the start. Like playing all the time. 
Notes that link here:
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