This article outlines the extra features found in the Premium Edition of Building a Second Brain, our online course on personal knowledge management (PKM):

  • 5 live Q&A calls with Tiago Forte during the live cohort (including recordings if you can’t attend live)
  • Q&A library with over 40 short clips of Tiago’s best answers to common PKM questions
  • 7 exclusive interviews with experts (including bloggers, coaches, designers, professors, and entrepreneurs known for their knowledge management skills and prolific output) on how they use their Second Brain 
  • 10 advanced workshops and tutorials on specific aspects of knowledge management (such as managing images, visual thinking tools, using note templates, and making use of content bundles)
  • 12-month subscription to the Praxis blog (with additional case studies, in-depth essays, how-to guides, and video walkthroughs)

Keep reading for more details on each of these features.

5 Live Question-and-Answer Calls

Premium Edition students get access to 5 private Q&A calls with me, in addition to the 5 primary live sessions. These calls provide a smaller, more intimate setting for me to address common challenges and obstacles you’ll face as you start the journey of creating your own Second Brain.

These sessions have consistently been students’ favorite part of the program. I’ll answer questions by demonstrating ways of using notes to clear your mind, organize your thoughts, and execute projects far faster and with less stress than you thought possible.

Top Q&A Library

If you can’t attend live, or would like to know what we covered in past cohorts, we’ve edited short clips with over 40 of my best answers. These clips are clearly labeled and organized according to the units of the course, allowing you to go straight to the topics most relevant to you without wading through long recordings.

We’ll continue to add clips of the top answers to the Premium Vault over time, which you’ll have access to indefinitely.

7 Exclusive Expert Interviews

These in-depth interviews explore how experts known for their prolific output use their Second Brains to execute projects, create content, and automate business processes in the real world. You’ll see a wide variety of approaches to this fundamental practice, some of which don’t use Evernote, or even any software at all.

Interviews include:

The Origins of Personal Knowledge Management, with Dr. Jason Frand (58:27): Dr. Frand is a former Professor and Director of the Anderson Computing & Information Services Center at UCLA. His paper launched PKM into the mainstream of business computing, and in this interview, we discuss what drove him to formulate PKM as a distinct practice.

Interview and Discussion with Venkatesh Rao, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Ribbonfarm (75:43): Venkatesh Rao is a leading thinker and blogger on innovation, the philosophy of technology, business strategy, and “refactoring,” a term he popularized that refers to seeing things differently. His writing on the Ribbonfarm blog has been the single greatest influence on my ideas and writing, and in this interview, we talk about how he has sustained his creative output for more than a decade of long-form blogging.

Experience Design and Creative Flow, with Ting Kelly (68:19): Ting is an experience designer and entrepreneur who creates spaces, experiences, and products that bring more flow to work, in all its forms. In this interview, she shares her recommendations for enhancing the experience of flow through everything from specific tools, to morning rituals, to advanced calendaring, to food.

The Implications of Personal Knowledge Management, with Taylor Pearson (85:57): Taylor Pearson is an author, coach, and entrepreneur who wrote the best-selling book The End of Jobs. In this interview, Taylor explains how he tracks and manages the information he consumes, both for short-term writing on his blog and for larger book projects.

Interview with Moritz Bierling on “Making a Second Brain Your Own” (67:08): Moritz Bierling is a prolific content creator, researcher, and founder of Existential Ventures. He was part of one of the first cohorts of Building a Second Brain, and since then has developed his own version with extensive modifications. In this fascinating conversation, Moritz takes us on a tour of his system and explains how it helps him maintain a wide array of projects while traveling constantly around the world.

Interview with Nat Eliason on “Scaling Knowledge Management Across Teams” (61:42): Nat Eliason is a prolific writer and founder of Growth Machine, a leading content marketing agency that has grown to 12 employees and nearly $3M ARR in just 2 years. Nat talks about his experience expanding his personal knowledge management practices across a quickly growing team, including screencasts of how he organizes SOPs (standard operating procedures) for his team in Notion.

Interview with Buster Benson (57:44): Buster Benson is a well-known blogger and veteran of tech companies such as Amazon, Kickstarter, and Patreon. His writing has been highly influential, including Live Like a Hydra (which introduced me to the idea of using “work modes” or emotional states as a guide to what to work on), 750 Words (an experiment in daily writing), and his Codex Vitae (a public repository of his personal values, principles, and beliefs, updated regularly). In this interview, we talk about his creative process (including screencasts of his note-taking setup in Bear) and how he turns his information consumption into published creative works.

10 Advanced Workshops and Tutorials

Taking Building a Second Brain is like being airdropped onto an exotic landscape on an alien planet. You have enough supplies and knowledge to survive, but you also have the option of striking out and exploring the terrain.

Do you head toward the Mountains of Content Creation, to scale its intimidating, but exhilarating peaks? Do you turn toward the Desert of Academic Research to sift through the sands for the diamond in the rough? Or maybe you hike along the beautiful Blog Coast, and dive into the wealth of insights on popular blogs.

Each of these advanced tutorials is like a map for the aspect of your Second Brain that you want to explore further, giving you a pathway to master whichever one is most important to your work or life.

Advanced tutorials are delivered by me or other PKM experts, including:

Becoming an Evernote Power User, with Stacey Harmon (84:12): Stacey Harmon is one of the world’s foremost experts on Evernote and how to use it as a centralized organizational tool for your entire life. Her course Radical Productivity with Evernote teaches people how to become Evernote “power users,” and in this tutorial she presents a summarized version of her method.

Creative Problem Solving and Visual Thinking, with Chuck Frey (77:16): Chuck Frey is a recognized expert on mind mapping, visual thinking, and creative problem-solving, which he writes about on his blog, the Mind Mapping Software Blog, and in ebooks. In this tutorial, Chuck takes us through his top recommendations on software and techniques for creative thinking using technology.

Planning and Creating Note Templates with Evernote, with Stacey Harmon and Tiago Forte (109:35): Originally delivered as a special one-time webinar, this tutorial walks you through the process of identifying, formulating, designing, creating, and using note templates in Evernote. This is one of the most powerful methods for saving time and effort, standardizing repeatable tasks, and helping you spend more time on the work that matters.

Practical Evernote, with Frank Gerber (87:55) Frank Gerber is an entrepreneur, writer, consultant, and startup advisor who has used Evernote in all aspects of his business and life. In this tutorial, he walks us through his Evernote setup and how he uses the program to prototype new business processes. He also talks about how a notebook he initially used to manage rental properties turned into a whole new business, called Centriq.

The Secrets of Content Bundles, with Tiago Forte (57:25): In this tutorial, I walk you through my process for taking advantage of “content bundles” – any large volume of digital content you gain access to as part of an online course, seminar, database, or limited-time promotion. I show you how to use customized templates I’ve designed over the years to quickly summarize the purpose of a piece of content, so you can save it for future use instead of trying to consume it immediately.

How to Create Effective Images for Blog Posts, with Tiago Forte (59:12): In this tutorial, I show you how I create beautiful AND effective images for my slides, blog posts, websites, social media posts, and videos. Using the BASB philosophy of building on the work of others and re-using assets, I explain how to create world-class imagery without spending much time or effort.

Plus guest workshops with well-known PKM experts on:

  • How to implement the PARA system in Notion, by Khe Hy
  • How to use Second Brain techniques in Roam Research, by Nat Eliason
  • Advanced organizing methods in Notion, by Marie Poulin
  • How to automate your reading and notetaking, with Readwise founders Dan Doyon and Tristan Tristan Homsi

In each cohort we introduce new advanced and guest workshops, and those recordings will always be added to the Premium Content Vault, which you’ll have lifetime access to.

12-Month Praxis Subscription

After completing the course, you’ll have a new awareness of the important questions and frontiers in the world of Personal Knowledge Management. If you’d like some help keeping abreast of recent trends, powerful new ideas, alternative approaches, and other examples of PKM in action, my members-only blog Praxis is a great place to start.

You’ll gain access to in-depth articles and how-to guides on a wide variety of topics related to productivity, personal effectiveness, and learning. These include everything from summaries of influential books, case studies of Second Brains in the wild, new concepts that shed light on modern work, and personal reflections and experiences of my own.

Here’s a sample of the members-only posts published over the past year. Clicking a story will show you a short preview of the post. If you want to continue being part of the Praxis community after 12 months, you can subscribe for $10 per month or $100 per year.

Lifetime access

You’ll also get lifetime access to future updates and new features added to the Premium Edition.

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