Why I Move from Craft to Obsidian


Many of you have asked about why I moved from Craft back to Obsidian, and today is the day I’ll answer that question.

I Never Would Have Left

Let’s get this point out of the way immediately, if the mobile app for Obsidian was going to be a “full” app I never would have left in the first place. I had asked many times about the iOS app and was always told it was more a companion application to view your content. It was not going to be a full application.

Heck, the day I decided to make the change to Craft I went into their public Trello board and checked again, still a viewer app at that point.

I do most of my writing and research on my iPad. I’ll sit at swimming with my daughter and use my phone to take notes on the book I’m currently reading. The lack of a mobile app was a huge limiting factor in my use of Obsidian and there was no relief on the horizon.

Yes, we got a full fledged mobile application and that’s awesome. But when I decided that was not a future that seemed plausible.

As soon as they released a mobile application that was going to be amazing, I started to at least wonder if I could move back to Obsidian.

Plugins

In February my work changed, instead of many clients I have a single client and I run their development team. This means that my task management needs are much different than they were. My project management needs are entirely solved by internal tools now as well.

When you have major life changes like this, it’s a totally valid time to check out the tools you use and see if they still fit. Things 3 didn’t fit anymore so I could start looking around at other options.

First up, Things 3 was okay about managing content, but I really wanted a Kanban board. I tried many task managers for iPadOS that said they did Kanban, but they were either janky and terrible or crazy complex and had far more than I needed in them.

So I took a look through Obsidan because I had seen the Kanban plugin and it was exactly what I was looking for. This one plugin had me back in Obsidian for managing my content a few weeks before I fully moved back.

There are many other plugins, most of which work on the mobile application. These community contributions make Obsidian so much more powerful than a single development team could because it splits the coding time amongst others while the Obsidian development team gets to focus on their main focus, the core application.

Writing and Linking

Once I started managing my content inside Obsidian it was a quick trip to wanting to bring everything back into it. Maybe the second book review I did I realized that I wanted to link it into a bunch of other notes that I had and since those notes were in Craft, I couldn’t do it while writing in Obsidian.

That’s really all it took, a bit of friction in my creating process and I was back in with Obsidian because it suited what I wanted.

Another excellent feature of Obsidian is the ability to create aliases for files. I can link to a note on smoking for multiple terms like, tobacco, cigarette, cigarettes…because they all apply to the same thing. In Craft I would have to have multiple files and then manually cross link all of them to achieve something similar in functionality. I’ve dropped lots of extra files by adding aliases to my Obsidian workflow.

Things I Miss in Craft

Craft is a far more designed/visual application. If you want to have a beautiful layout of your data then using it’s cards and pages is an excellent way to do that.

I love the pages/cards for organizing data without that data existing as a file inside a folder. Specifically my course folder in Craft is far neater than my course folder in Obisidian. It’s extra visual clutter I don’t need. Yes I can move these files to another folder to clean it up, but that’s organization that I don’t have to do if I used Craft.

Another amazing feature of Craft is the new Daily Notes, specifically the drag and drop meeting notes. This is such a cool feature that I’d love to see replicated in some fashion inside Obsidian.

I Also Left Agenda

One final reason I went back to Obsidian is that it let me decrease my overall tech stack. Since February I had been using Agenda to track my notes on meetings. Things that I needed to address with my boss in our weekly meeting would get tagged on that day with the meeting note so I had a list to go over with him.

I’m now using daily notes in Obsidian to deal with that. This means I can link any client notes back to a meeting note and keep everything in a single place. Now I have one place to go to for my notes instead of two.

You should always be striving to go for as few inboxes as possible.

Should You Move Too?

No you shouldn’t move. Unless you have a solid reason that Craft is breaking for you or Obsidian has some feature that Craft simply doesn’t have, stick with what’s working for you and keep creating awesome content.

Craft is far better for the visually oriented out there. I love to write in Markdown and write/read code all day. Obsidian doesn’t feel like any stretch to my brain but when I showed my wife the same document in Craft and Obsidian, she said that the Craft one made more sense to her.

She’s even tried programming before, and built a few sites, but Craft is the tool I’d recommend to her because it’s what would fit with the things she likes.

Getting Started with Obsidian Course

Getting Started with Obsidian

If you want to learn your way around Obsidian so that you can build a great note system then this course is for you. I’ll cover basic folder structure when to use tags or links, and the plugins I think everyone needs to make their Obsidian experience excellent. Plus much more. If you want all my courses, become a member.

$99 USD (30-day guarantee)

Getting Started with Zettelkasten

If you’ve been wondering about what Zettelkasten is and how to start organizing your notes with this excellent system then this course is for you. I’ll cover the basics of choosing which tool to use, how to take notes, how to deal with linking your notes, and much more. You can also become a member to get all my courses.

$99 USD (30-day guarantee)