From charlesreid1

Main: Zettelkasten

Up: Zettelkasten/Patterns

An example monthly template is available here: {{January2016}}

Summary of Pattern

The monthly template is a simple box that goes at the bottom of the page. It contains an organized list of links related to a given topic. You define a template like {{January2016}} and it is a Flag with a list of links to every daily page in January: [[20160101]], [[20160102]], etc.

The monthly template also links to the monthly template to the prior and next months, so that a daily page like [[20160101]] would include the monthly template {{January2016}}, which would link to every other daily page for that month, but also link to {{December2015}} and {{February2015}}.

Contents of Monthly Template

Refer to {{January2016}} for an example monthly template.

Links to Previous and Next Month Templates

Each monthly template should include, at the top, three links:

  • A link to the monthly template for the prior month
  • A link to the current month's monthly template
  • A link to the monthly template for the next month

For example, the {{January2016}} template includes links to the December 2015 and February 2016 monthly templates.

If next month's template is not created yet, we just leave it as a red link until we're ready to make the next month's template.

You can create a whole bunch of months of templates all in one sitting, but we don't recommend that until you've already developed a monthly template format you're happy with. Our monthly template started out more complicated than the one described here, and it took several iterations for it to reach the much simpler format described here.

Links to All Days

This is the content that makes the monthly template pattern so useful. Each monthly template should contain a list of links to daily pages for each day in the month. For example, {{January2016}} links to [[20160101]], [[20160102]], [[20160103]], etc.

The daily page for any given day will always contain links to the other days in that month, making it easy to navigate through pages by only clicking links.

Direct Links to View and Edit Template

This last point is a seemingly minor detail, but has become an invaluable pattern we apply to many templates, not just the monthly template: adding direct links at the bottom of the template to edit or view the template.

Here is the magic text that we use:

<small>[{{fullurl:Template:January2016|action=view}} view] {{,}} [{{fullurl:Template:January2016|action=edit}} edit Template:January2016]</small>

The "fullurl:" bit is built-in MediaWiki syntax that inserts the full URL to that particular page on the wiki. (Very handy!)

This inserts two small link at the bottom of the template. The one that says "view" will open the template page when clicked. The one that says "edit" will directly open the template in edit mode, if logged into the wiki. This makes it easy to edit the template as needed.

See the bottom of the box on {{January2016}} for an example of how this looks.