My personal wiki requirements


Without getting into the weeds of specific tooling, what do I actually want to do with a personal wiki?

1. Higher level stuff

[NOTE: this is pretty wiki/garden focused - I would like to take this up a level to also include the stream stuff I want, too. That's currently kind of separate in blog tooling.]

  • something that makes writing easy to do and easy to maintain. Whatever works best for you for getting your ideas down, is the most important.
  • Next up is some way of linking those ideas.
  • A way to help you see the constellations of your thoughts
  • If you want it to feed into publish discussion (which I do), you probably want some way of publishing it.
  • Libre software. I don't want to use a commercial VC-funded silo that will monetise me and my thoughts, then close down.

Lilia Efimova writes about her dream wiki/weblog tool in 2004(!).

2. More technical stuff

Some more personal/techy bits of it that I want:

  • plain-text: I just want text files, man. Mainly so I can edit them with spacemacs, but for all the other benefits of plain text over a DB.
  • backed by version control: I just like VC for things that incrementally change over time. Also acts as a kind of backup if you push to a remote somewhere.
  • publishable as HTML: so I can point other people to it if it's ever handy to do so
  • easy to write and maintain: otherwise I know my enthusiasm will fizzle out. For me that means key bindings and navigation that's intuitive to me.
  • local first: I want to be able to work on this without needing an Internet connection available. To be fair, I usually do have one available, but very occasionally not. And those times when I don't are quite often those when I have the most time and headspace for writing. I also like local-first as a general principle.

Right now, I'm not so bothered about web access / mobile support. I have ways of taking fleeting notes while I'm out and about if I need to, and I see longer-form writing as more of a desk-based activity.

In short I basically want a mash-up of TiddlyWiki and emacs, so I can do all the text editing in emacs, but with all the work that has gone into knowledge management in TiddlyWiki.

3. Elsewhere

3.1. In my garden

Notes that link to this note (AKA backlinks).

3.3. Mentions

This page last updated: 2023-03-17 Fri 16:15. Map. Recent changes. Source. Peer Production License.