Hypothes.is + Obsidian = Hypothesidian for easier note taking and formatting

Anyone who knows me knows that I love Hypothes.is for all my online highlighting, annotating, and general note taking. They also know that if one isn’t actively using their notes to some better end, then it’s likely not worth having taken them at all, so I store mine in markdown in Obsidian for future-proofing and portability.

Hypothes.is + Obsidian

A while back I came across RoamHacker’s work to dovetail Hypothes.is for use in Obsidian and finally managed to get it up and running with my Obsidian vault. I’ve previously outlined a method for pulling in my notes from Hypothes.is using RSS, however this doesn’t give one any formatting capabilities and it also doesn’t provide any of the Hypothes.is tags as RSS has no layer for taxonomies.

RoamHacker’s work, which leverages the Templater Plugin for Obsidian, fixes both of these problems. I suspect that I’ll keep my prior method in place to create the individual notes, but use this additional work to clean up my fleeting notes from Hypothes.is in my actual commonplace book. Since there’s no server involved, it’s harder to automate the entire process so that every time you create notes they’re automatically ported across either in real-time or in batches every few hours.

Formatting your notes

I did spend some time last night to modify some of RoamHacker’s code to re-format the annotations to better suit my current notes format and layout. I’m excerpting the most relevant part below, but the entire Gist can also be downloaded or further modified for easier copy/pasting into one’s own vault for the needed set up.

I’ve only modified the section of the original Gist at the bottom that follows the line:
/* TEMPLATE STARTS HERE */

The changes still keep all the relevant data fields, but reorder them and add a bit of formatting to fit the layout and the way I use my Obsidian notebook. I changed the formatting so that tags in Hypothes.is are turned into [[wikilinks]] rather than #⁠hashtags as in the original. (The original also doesn’t do so well with multi-word tags, which I use quite a lot.)

Hopefully the small changes I’ve made and comparison with the original Gist will allow those who aren’t as code-savvy to better understand the template and potentially let them make changes to suit their own needs.

/* TEMPLATE STARTS HERE */ 
if (tp.file.content.length==0) {
  //likely a new document, insert front matter
  tR += `---\n`;
  tR += `fileType: HypothesisAnnotations\n`;
  tR += `creationDate: ${tp.date.now('YYYY-MM-DD')} \n`;
  tR += `annotationDate: ${articleAnnotations[0].created.substring(0,10)}\n`;
  tR += `uri: ${articleAnnotations[0].uri}\n`;
  tR += `---\n`;
}

tR += `# ${articleAnnotations[0].title}\n`
tR += `URL: ${articleAnnotations[0].uri}\n\n`

for( a of articleAnnotations) {
  let tags = '';
  let user = '';
  if(a.tags.length>0) tags = ' ' + (a.tags.map(t=> '[['+ t + ']]')).join(' ');
  if(insertUser) user = ' _(' + a.user.replace('acct:','').replace('@hypothes.is','') + ')_';
  if(a.text) tR += `${a.text}\n—[[${user}]]\n\n`;
  tR += `## Source \n`;
  tR += `> ${a.highlight}[^1]\n\n`;
  tR += `[^1]: [${articleAnnotations[0].title}](${articleAnnotations[0].uri}) | [syndication link](tk) \n`;
  tR += `\n---\ntags: \nlinks: ${tags} \n- broader terms (BT):  \n- narrower terms (NT):  \n- related terms (RT):  \n- used for (UF) or aliases:  \nconnected ideas:  \nMOC:  \n\n---\n`;
}
%>
Just days before the 10th anniversary of the Smallest Federated Wiki, Ward Cunningham will be talking about the future of note taking tomorrow morning.

Free registration for the event at I Annotate 2021 should still be open.

There are also expected appearances by Daniel Doyon, Co-Founder of Readwise; Tienson Qin, Creator/Founder of LogSeq; Oliver Sauter, Founder of WorldBrain/Memex, and Flancian of the Anagora.

With any luck, it may help mark a resurgence of digital versions of the commonplace book on the order of magnitude represented by the works of Rudolphus Agricola, Desiderius Erasmus, and Philip Melanchthon during the Renaissance.

Promo card for I Annotate 2021 with the subtitle Reading Together and featuring a drawing of a book with two hands writing on each other in an ouroboros-like style

Curious that I’ve seen ramify as a verb within commonplace book settings, but not seen it in regard to zettelkasten or digital gardens in the context of Obsidian, Roam Research, Notion, et al.

I half expected to see Petrus Ramus‘s name in the etymology of the word. If nothing else, it’s a fitting word. Perhaps it was a bit of nominative determinism?

other forms: ramify; ramifies; ramified; ramifying

Read Obsidian Release v0.12.2 (Obsidian Forum)
Shiny new things Command palette can now be configured to have “pinned” commands that appear at the top. Obsidian Publish now has a search filter in the upload dialog. Improvements Obsidian Sync no longer runs into a possible race condition which sometimes causes file to be recognized as deleted. This has only been observed happening on Obsidian Mobile so far. Vastly improved Obsidian Sync boot up speed. It will now also avoid re-scans of attachments when they haven’t been changed. Obsidian S...
Read Obsidian Release v0.12.1 (Obsidian Forum)
Improvements On initial loading of the vault, the cache indexing notification will now contain the indexing progress. Improvements to the font size adjustment annoyance: Ctrl+Scroll now only activates if you hold Ctrl before starting to scroll. This option can also now be disabled in Settings > Appearance. No longer broken Obsidian Sync: setting custom device names now persists properly. Obsidian Sync: viewing version history of images and other media files no longer freeze the app trying...
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Task lists [x] can now contain any character to indicate a completed task, instead of just x. This value can be used by custom CSS to change the appearance of the check mark, and is also available for plugins to use.

I’ll need to create some custom CSS for these in the past as I’ve used:
* - [>] to indicate that an item was pushed forward
* - [?] to indicate something I’m not sure was done in retrospect (typically for a particular day)
* - [~] to indicate something that didn’t occur, but is “done” anyway
* others?
Annotated on May 20, 2021 at 01:00PM

You can now search for tasks using task: similar to block:. There is also task-todo: and task-done: which will match only the tasks that are incomplete or complete, respectively. Use task:"" to match all tasks.

This will be incredibly useful to create as a view.
Annotated on May 20, 2021 at 01:03PM

Replied to a tweet by Obsidian.md (Twitter)
Watch my linked thoughts aggregating over time.

#​​ObsidianInMotion #​​WatchMyThoughtBubble #​​CommonplaceBook

If only finding and using the resources to make the video was as easy as using Obsidian itself…

Replied to a tweet by Roam Hacker (Twitter)

I’m watching this with high hopes something similar would work with @obsdmd. Come to think if it, if such an app were a Micropub client and these platforms all supported publishing via Micropub, then the one application would work across more platforms.

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