- Sep 2022
Heyde, Johannes Erich. Technik des wissenschaftlichen Arbeitens. (Sektion 1.2 Die Kartei) Junker und Dünnhaupt, 1931.
(Unknown translation from German into English. v1 TK)
The overall title of the work (in English: Technique of Scientific Work) calls immediately to mind the tradition of note taking growing out of the scientific historical methods work of Bernheim and Langlois/Seignobos and even more specifically the description of note taking by Beatrice Webb (1926) who explicitly used the phrase "recipe for scientific note-taking".
first reading: 2022-08-23 second reading: 2022-09-22
Oftentimes they even refered to one another.
An explicit reference in 1931 in a section on note taking to cross links between entries in accounting ledgers. This linking process is a a precursor to larger database processes seen in digital computing.
Were there other earlier references that are this explicit within either note making or accounting contexts? Surely... (See also: Beatrice Webb's scientific note taking)
Just the word "digital" computing defines that there must have been an "analog' computing which preceded it. However we think of digital computing in much broader terms than we may have of the analog process.
Human thinking is heavily influenced by associative links, so it's only natural that we should want to link our notes together on paper as we've done for tens of thousands of years (at least.)
- associative thinking
- associative memory
- accounting influence on note taking
- Ernst Bernheim
- note taking methods
- Charles Victor Langlois
- Johannes Erich Heyde
- zettelkasten method
- idea links
- historical method
- scientific note taking
- Charles Seignobos
- Beatrice Webb
- analog vs. digital
- Aug 2022
The sheet box
Interesting choice of translation for "Die Kartei" by the translator. Some may have preferred the more direct "file".
Historically for this specific time period, while index cards were becoming more ubiquitous, most of the prior century researchers had been using larger sheets and frequently called them either slips or sheets based on their relative size.
Beatrice Webb in 1926 (in English) described her method and variously used the words “cards”, “slips”, “quarto”, and “sheets” to describe notes. Her preference was for quarto pages which were larger pages which were likely closer to our current 8.5 x 11” standard than they were to even larger index cards (like 4 x 6".
While I have some dissonance, this translation makes a lot of sense for the specific time period. I also tend to translate the contemporaneous French word “fiches” of that era as “sheets”.
The use o f t h ediphthong is becoming rare.
Interesting that he notices this and explicitly calls it out in a handbook on writing.
Dutcher, George Matthew. “Directions and Suggestions for the Writing of Essays or Theses in History.” Historical Outlook 22, no. 7 (November 1, 1931): 329–38. https://doi.org/10.1080/21552983.1931.10114595
Useful suggestions in regard tonote-taking will be found in Samuel S . Seward, Note-taking,Boston, 1910; and, especially for more advanced students, inEarle W. DOW, Principles of a note-system for hirton’calstudies, New York, 1924
He's read Langlois/Seignobos and Bernheim, but doesn't recommend/reference them for note taking, but points to Seward and Dow instead.
What are the differences between the four methods?
Note that this advice is in 1931, a few years after Beatrice Webb's My Apprentice which has a section on note taking that prefers the first two without mention of the latter two.
It would appear that Seward is the brother of William Henry Seward. see: https://hypothes.is/a/MwspfCBOEe2YCpesAgwiGQ
These Directions and suggestions were first cornpiled in1908, and the first edition was printed in 1911 for use in theauthor‘s own classes. The present edition is the result ofthorough revision and is planned for general use.
This will be much more interesting given that he'd first written about this topic in 1908 and has accumulated more experience since then.
Look for suggestions about the potential change in practice over the ensuing years.
Is the original version extant in his papers?
As more requests came to the Vienna museum from abroad, a partner institute called Mundaneum (a name adopted from an abortive collaboration with Paul Otlet) was established in 1931/2 to promote international work.
Neurath's Gesellschafts- und Wirtschaftsmuseum collaborated with Otlet's Mundaneum in 1931/2