My evolving J.D structure

In the interest of working with the garage door open, here’s what I’m thinking for my stuff, but it’s very likely to change once I start clicking and dragging on real live folders. This is all just an outline right now. (I borrowed heavily from Jack to get going. :slight_smile:)

I initially had Home separate from Auto, but realized I don’t have unlimited top-level Areas to put things into.

It’s surprisingly calming just to bring this small amount of order to some of this stuff!

00-09 Meta
10-19 Family
    12 Pet records
        12.01 Roger
20-29 Financial
    21 Investments
    22 Taxes
        22.01 Federal
        22.02 State
        22.03 City
        22.04 Statements from various places?
    23 Banking
30-39 Home and Auto
    31 Mortgage
    32 Home maintenance and repairs
    33 Insurance
    34 Honda Fit 2009
    35 Honda Fit Sport 2010
40-49 Medical
    51 Sarah
    52 Phil
50-59 Employment
    51 <Employer A>
    52 <Employer B>
    53 <Employer C>

Still working these out where these will slot in:

BuJo scans 
Paper Indexes (as in Soren Bjornstad)
    BuJo indexes
Film roll notes
Camera maintenance 
Audio archiving project notes
Mac and computer admin stuff
Web/cloud properties
Raspberry Pi hardware and software history
Music projects
Other projects, but maybe those should go in whatever area they live in
Audio projects
Home stuff
    Yard stuff/logs
    Bank accounts
    Credit cards

Thanks for sharing this. So, it looks like you’re shooting for 1 giant JD hierarchy right?

Your tree looks like my Filing Cabinet. So far I have my top level JD folder named “100 Filing Cabinet”. That “100” is a hint that there will be more “projects” in the future, but I’m honestly not sure.

For example, your “Other projects” would be similar to mine, but I dread the idea of dividing them up into 10 or fewer top-level project categories. Then where do they go? And what about Client projects (which I won’t have more of in a week, but what if?). And so on.

I’m looking forward to hearing more from you and others about all this.

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Creative (BuJo, Camera, Audio) and Computer (Raspberry Pi, Cloud, Macs) seem like they might be good top level categories for this although I haven’t done much of a deep dive yet…

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Ohhhhh, I get it, @jack.baty. Doing all or most of that in 100 Filing Cabinet is a great idea. I’m trying to be conscious of the idea of a controlled vocabulary, and remembering to use those 3-digit project prefixes could help with that. I’d like to get it to where everything in the Filing Cabinet is organized by what it’s about, and the project prefixes would either be real projects and/or for grouping things of a similar kind or type outside of the Filing Cabinet. Maybe that’s overthinking it and not necessary, though. I think I got some of those ideas from reading this entire J.D thread in Hacker News. There are some great ideas in there.

And @Kordumb I appreciate those suggestions about Creative and Computer. Might use those!

Mine looks something like this…I only left one Level 3 index in here to keep the size reasonable (and avoid potential embarrasment)

00-09 Meta 
00-09 Meta /00 Index
00-09 Meta /01 Zettelkasten
00-09 Meta /02 Journal
00-09 Meta /02 Journal/2021
00-09 Meta /03 Tasks
00-09 Meta /03 Tasks/03.01 Need To Sort
10-19 Hobbies
10-19 Hobbies/11 Birding
10-19 Hobbies/12
10-19 Hobbies/13 Learning
10-19 Hobbies/14 Music
10-19 Hobbies/15 Recipes
10-19 Hobbies/16 Travel
20-29 Maintenance
20-29 Maintenance/21 Fitness
20-29 Maintenance/22 Manuals
20-29 Maintenance/23 Vehicles
30-39 Finance
30-39 Finance/31 Insurance
30-39 Finance/32 Investing
30-39 Finance/33 Misc
30-39 Finance/34 Receipts
30-39 Finance/35 Retirement
30-39 Finance/36 Schwab
30-39 Finance/37 Taxes
30-39 Finance/38 Titles and Deeds
40-49 Miscellaneous
50-59 Genealogy
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.01 Bible Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.02 Birth Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.03 Cemeteries
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.04 Census Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.05 Correspondence
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.06 DNA Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.07 Death Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.08 Descendant Files
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.09 GEDCOM files
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.10 Genealogical Societies
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.11 HTML Export
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.12 Heredis
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.13 Histories
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.14 Houses
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.15 Maps
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.16 Marriage Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.17 Military Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.18 Mills
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.19 Miscellaneous
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.20 PDFs to Extract
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.21 Pedigree Files
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.22 Photos
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.23 Quaker Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.24 Research
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.25 School Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.26 TheDixons
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.27 Transport Records
50-59 Genealogy/51 Dixon/51.28 UK
50-59 Genealogy/52 Gilmore
50-59 Genealogy/53 Peterson
50-59 Genealogy/54 Rees
50-59 Genealogy/55 General
50-59 Genealogy/56 Heredis
60-69 Writing
60-69 Writing/61 Books-Essays
60-69 Writing/62 General
60-69 Writing/63 Miscellaneous
60-69 Writing/64 Multimedia
60-69 Writing/65 Non-fiction
60-69 Writing/66 Web Sites

I had 10-19 Personal, daily life which covered most of my life for a long time. In there we had:

  • 11 Process: as in ‘a process to execute’, i.e. a thing to do. “Get a new passport”.
  • 12 People & Orgs didn’t work so well for me, I’ll talk about this another day.
  • 13 Finance for all the stuff you expect.
  • 14 Knowledge for anything I wanted to learn, remember, etc. This was handy and worked well.
  • 15 Technical, this is where your cloudy/computery things would go.
  • 16 Travel I guess you’re all familiar with if you read the site. Still one of my favourites, it’s so nice to have all of your documentation in one place when you go on a trip.
  • 17 Entertainment for concert tickets and the like.
  • 18 I think I might have used at one point but I killed it. Unused.
  • 19 House & home for all that sort of stuff. For me that’s mostly just rental agreements as that’s what I do, so mine is pretty uncomplicated.

And really, that covered most of my (uncomplicated, single, child-free, no-car-or-house-owning) life.

I had 20-29 Personal, projects whose structure mirrored this but I’d no longer recommend that. Who can remember what’s “daily life” and what’s a “project”? What when one moves from one to the other? Not worth it.


This helps a bunch! As well as the advice to be less specific than you think you need to be and break things out as needed.