Don’t be Ashamed. It’s just a Note Taking App.

Don’t be Ashamed. It’s just a Note Taking App.
Photo by Brett Jordan / Unsplash

For the past week or so, I have been using the application, Capacities. I had been aware of Capacities for some time, as a PKM application enthusiast I seem to make it my business to torture myself with new applications, never listening to my own advice that the perfect application doesn’t exist. I’ve gone over this before in the following blog:

I am in an Abusive Relationship with Note Taking Apps
Obsidian. Roam. Loqseq. Bear. OneNote. Drafts. I’ve tried them all and frankly, I feel like I’m caught in a tornado of indecision.

So last week, I found myself reading a lot of random stuff on Medium and came across this post by Dave Sharpe. When I first became aware of Capacities I looked at a few screenshots and immediately thought “nope, that’s not for me” and left it at that. Readers of my blog will know that I have been using Tana for some time now, and it’s become my ‘daily driver’ for my work. I spent about 60-80% of my day in meetings and so writing notes during those meetings and categorising them with supertags means that I suddenly can pretend to have similar memory recall as Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory. As I have also mentioned in this blog previously, it’s the perfect scratchpad that organises itself.

Tana Basics - A Scratchpad That Organises Itself
In my first week of Tana, I focused on the basics and learning the core concepts of what it is, and how it differs from other outliners. You can read that post here. This is a second in a series of blogs that I am writing, summarising my learnings of

But for the other parts of my life; writings, YouTube, research and everything else, I have continued to use Obsidian. Now, I don’t know why, despite there being so much love for Obsidian, at the same time, so many people just seem to want to get away from it and try something else. Obsidian has become the reliable Honda of the PKM world.

So why do I feel bad, why do I feel ashamed, why do I feel like I’m having an affair with other PKM solutions? It’s because I’m a drama queen, that’s why.

Look, Obsidian is great, but you need the patience of a saint to get it set up the way you want and that’s fine, but it’s still a Honda. Reliable, boring.

Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce you to Capacities. Even the icon excites me. But this isn’t a blog about Capacities and what it can do, honestly go speak to PKMBeth or watch her videos, that’s kinda what sold it to me after I read Dave’s article. She can explain it way better than I ever could.

Right, let’s go back to the crippling feeling of urgh.. starting again.

Logistics Over Emotions

There is always going to be a new kid on the block, but you don’t have to always play with them, what I have found when I approach a new workflow or software is - will this make my life easier? Will the set up, migration or education needed to get this to work the way I need it to ultimately improve on the way things are currently working. If the answer to this question is ‘yes’, then migrating to another app should be easy. Or at the very least, a worthwhile endeavour. If you take the emotion out of the task, and break it down into what you actually have to do - then you can ask yourself, ‘can I be arsed?’

It reminds me of the whole Elon Musk-Twitter drama that’s become the anticlimax of the past 12 months. People talk about leaving, but they never do, it’s fear of starting over. New Account. Zero followers. If you’ve got hundreds or thousands of notes in an application, moving over and starting at zero can really be a daunting task. But it’s a task just like any other and if you’re a PKM enthusiast like me, task management should be second nature. It’s just a ball ache of a mammoth task.

I think that one of the many overlooked features on any new applications is the ability to batch migrate content, or to use a standardised format. Markdown files is the simplest way to do this, but I know with Capacities batch importing doesn’t exist. I do know that with some applications, this is possible - but it’s a mess. I remember trying to migrate my entire library of content into Logseq and it was a bloody nightmare. These are all logistical matters that are clear considerations that all PKM enthusiasts need to consider when moving applications, just as I have (on more than one occasion)

So I guess it took me 600 words to say, no - don’t feel guilty if you want to change it up and try something new. Its your system, no one else’s - but what you should weigh up is if it’s going to be worth the effort in migrating.

And if you’re a developer of an application, please - make this as easy as possible.

Thanks for reading.

Oh, by the way I'm now on Threads. you can follow me here:

Anthony Gifford (@antgifford) on Threads
51 Followers. Formerly WellMax81, I’m always creating stuff and frankly I’m desperate for attention.

Also, if you haven't already my newsletter, Not Entirely Boring is out every 2 weeks and it's full of stuff that's somewhat interesting. I've been working behind the scenes developing some awesome multimedia stuff as we grow from a blog into something more... dynamic? Yes, dynamic. Anyway, check it out and subscribe for free at if you haven't already, if you're reading this on Medium. Otherwise, there's a button right up there that says 'subscribe'

And since I'm irritatingly promiting myself. Glen and I, today, were accepted into the YouTube Partner program, we're both incredibly excited as we've worked so hard, so please subscribe to the most awesome youtube channel mentioned in this paragraph

Ant & Glen
Hey, thanks for the checking out our channel, please subscribe 😊