Notion To Markdown

I recently made the switch from Notion to Markdown for a couple ofreasons. First, Notion is amazingly featureful and especially good with
teams but I found it to be overbearing for personal notetaking.
Ultimately, it opted to focus more on teams and enterprise - which I
respect. Thanksfully, Notion makes it pretty easy to export to common
formats - markdown, in my case.

The next question was how do I get my notes shared on all my devices.Because these note taking apps are particularly helpful for making your
notes available on all devices. Given the proliferation of Dropbox-like
services like iCloud, Google Drive, etc. I figured that this wouldn’t be
too much of a problem.

Finally, I wanted to have a good editor that gave me access to thebare markdown without sacrificing helpful editing conveniences. In other
words, I didn’t want just a text editor - i wanted something that could
give me some preview capability for basic formatting like headlines,
bold, code, etc.

I looked at several different tools to help out with this. What Iended up with was Obsidian and iCloud.

Why Obsidian

Obsidian had a few things going for it and a couple of detractors.The benefits were that it had a mature and fairly stable set of
applications on multiple platforms include iOS and MacOS. Second, it had
an extensive community plugin catalog with a lot of extremely helpful
utilities. Finally, it worked well with iCloud - which is a service that
I already pay for and could do the syncing for me over multiple
devices.

The detractor for Obsidian is that it’s not open-source. As ithappens, I’m not as worried about the OSS part of this as I am the
portable nature of the content I’m storing. Meaning that as long as my
content doesn’t live in a walled-garden, I’m okay. The fact that the
gardening tools I’m using are a black box is okay for me.

Why iCloud

This is mostly because mac-based apps like Obisidian work well withiCloud I’ve found and I’m already paying for extra storage so it made
sense to use it for this as well. I could have gotten Obsidian’s Sync
service but it seemed unnecessary given my existing iCloud account.
Also, part of the reason I’m doing this is to reduce the number of
subscriptions I have and to be less dependent on proprietary
services.

Runners Up

I found Logseq and Silver Bullet to be excellent toolsin this space. They are both open source which is a plus. The downside
for Logseq was it’s complexity - lots and lots of features that are not
super well packaged for my taste. Silverbullet was incredibly simple but
isn’t yet to the maturity level it would need to be for me to use it day
to day.

Migrating From Notion

Notion allowed for the relatively easy export of markdown files. Theproblem is that it exported files that included GUIDs (which I
understand the purpose of). Thankfully, these are just files on a
filesystem so it was relatively easy to fix this.

1regex=$1find . -depth | while read file; do  # Skip if the file is . or ..  [ "$file" = "." -o "$file" = ".." ] && continue  # Split the file into basename and extension  base=$(basename "$file")  ext="${base##*.}"  name="${base%.*}"  # Remove the GUID and trailing spaces from the name if it is at the end  newname=$(echo $name | sed -E "s/${regex}$//g" | xargs)  # Check if there is an extension. If there is, append it to the new name  if [[ $name != $ext ]]; then    newfile="${newname}.${ext}"  else    newfile="${newname}"  fi  # Compute the new path with the updated filename  dir=$(dirname "$file")  newpath="${dir}/${newfile}"  mv -- "$file" "$newpath"done

And ran it with this:

1./rename-based-on-pattern.sh "[0-9a-f]{32}"

I’m not particularly good with bash but this seemed to do thetrick.

Parting Thoughts

I’m on week 3 of this transition and so far so good. I like thefreedom of knowing that my notes, which I’ve been maintaining for 15
years are in a format that is very portable and duplicated in multiple
places - both locally and in the interwebs.