This is a card in Dave's Virtual Box of Cards.

Why am I calling them "cards"?

Created: 2022-02-26 Updated: 2022-11-08

See also cards-purpose

After a very short amount of deliberation, I’m putting these notes in a directory called cards/.

It’s a zettelkasten

This "Virtual Card Deck" is based on the "zettelkasten" concept. See Wikipedia’s excellent description and list of famous examples:

But I’m not going to call this a "zettelkasten" because it’s not actually a set of paper slips in a "slipbox". And I’m not going to use an alphanumeric indexing system.

It’s a wiki

This is also a wiki. But I’m not going to call it that for two reasons:

  1. This entire website is a wiki. So having a wiki in a wiki would just be confusing. Actually, it’s weirder than that. This website is a subset of my wiki. (Though I’m thinking of doing a ratf-wiki-inversion.) So this would be a wiki in a wiki in a wiki.

  2. The wiki is only functional within Vim using my VViki Vim plugin. The website you see here is statically generated.

A true wiki as imagined by Ward Cunningham is editable on the Web.

If you haven’t, go spend some quality time with the original Wiki Wiki Web!

It’s a commonplace book

I will definitely be keeping quotes, hyperlinks, snippets of code, "things I don’t want to forget", and "things other might find interesting" in these cards. But I’m not going to call it a commonplace book because that name is too long and I think it’s slightly more than that.

It’s just notes

This is totally notes. But I’m not going to call it "notes" because that will confuse it with my notebook system which functions as a capture system and log. Read about it and see pictures of my paper notebooks here!

So, as with "wiki", I’m already using that term.

It’s cards

When I finally decided to start doing this (February 2022), I got out some standard lined 3x5 inch index cards (roughly equivalent to the A7 paper size if you’re in a country with more civilized units).

I asked myself, "What the heck am I going to call these?"

And that was silly because they were cards.

So I can just call the digital version "cards" too.

But unlike paper cards, I can just keep writing as long as I want and not run out of space. Look at the size of this! That’s another reason I’m not going to call this a zettelkasten.

Neat, I just found another online personal note thingy that leans even more heavily on the index card metaphor:

TheCompedium (

"My Medium drafts folder organized into a web of interlinked "index cards" posted publicly"

And check out Tommi’s Jam:

"I take all of these things and I make The Jam out of them."

I love it.