In this new video series, I walk you through my own learning process as I get to know Roam Research, the “note-taking tool for networked thought.”

From creating my Roam account and opening the program for the first time, I’ll ask the stupid questions so you don’t have to, experiment with every feature through trial and error, and use my own ideas as a testing ground for the best way to make use of this powerful tool.

In episode 1, I talked to Roam Founder Conor White-Sullivan. After our “Twitter feud” over the past year, in which we debated the pros and cons of different ways of organizing information, we decided to set aside our differences and join forces. By combining my techniques with Conor’s technology, I’m hoping we can make a real impact on how the world uses knowledge.

After a brief introduction from Conor, I decided to dive in and get my digital hands dirty. Whenever I learn how to use a new tool, I like to start working with it directly as quickly as possible. As soon as we finished our call, I spent 30 minutes organizing and cleaning up my first page of quotes.

This experience gave me a few insights into how Roam works differently from other note-taking apps. I got used to the bulleted list format, got the hang of the important double bracket feature, and started to experiment with the sidebar.

For my next stage of learning, I decided I need to talk to an expert. I scheduled a call with Nat Eliason, whose course Effortless Output in Roam was one of the first and most influential voices in the Roam community. We invited a few hundred of our closest friends for a “live writing” demonstration of how Nat uses Roam to write his popular weekly newsletter Monday Medley

Nat answered several of my top questions, such as how to search for things, how to use #hashtags to keep track of where I’ve written about certain topics, and how to use different sized headings to organize a page into sections. The live attendees had dozens of other questions that Nat generously stayed on afterward to answer.

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