The term 'memex' (memory extension) was originally coined 'at random'. It was to describe a hypothetical proto-hypertext system. Vannevar Bush described it as a device that would allow one to store all of their books, records, and communications, "mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility."


Basically, a memex is your second brain (or your 'external brain'), so it should be a tool where information can be recorded efficiently, and it must be easily accessible, searchable, and adaptable.


The one tool that comes to mind when I think of the memex functionality is called Nimbus Note. It's like Evernote, but it doesn't rape your wallet. It also offers a more feature-rich experience, especially on the web, so I always have that tab pinned in my browser so as to access it quickly whenever an impromptu thought is born.




To me, the memex functionality has to be reviewed, curated, and dashboarded for it to remain dynamic and effective. As you can see in the screenshot above, there are a lot of triggers. 


- The far-left pane shows you all of my folders that contain attachments and notes. 


- The left pane displays a list of available contents within the triggered folder. 


- The center pane, the largest in focus, displays a note that's selected and open, being viewed/edited.


The idea is that all triggers are extendable. I can nest folders indefinitely, add multiple content types and attachments into one note, and I can link them to one another in a single click.


You might wonder "is Google Drive good for this?" My simple answer is no, and here's why.


The combination of note + file storage in Nimbus makes it useful for topics or concepts that involve more than one document. This is so that you're able to store documents in other notes, and embed different content types so that you don't have to go back, search and open something in yet another window that might be too relevant for it to be separated. Google Drive, in that sense, is slower. There's only one content type allowed per trigger, which makes the whole organizational system a mess if you're working with a lot of information at once. There's no embedding, linking, or attaching of any sort. Yes, it theoretically approaches content in a similar way, but it doesn't serve as a memex, which makes it "not readily available." A memex tool must always be ready to go. 


Nimbus note doesn't really need to "load", as all functions are ready to go at a single click once the webpage is initially loaded. On systems like Google Drive, each function needs load time which you may not have. An idea in the interim may be lost and forgotten by that time.


All-in-all, I don't think that there will ever really be a "one-stop-shop" productivity tool for everyone, as everyone approaches their work differently. For me, Nimbus Note is that one-stop-shop because I can handle all of my data without the need to adapt to the platform. The platform adapts to me, and I think that's pretty rare, nowadays, where you need to adapt to the technology instead of the technology adapting to the way you work. Nimbus satisfies these needs without a second thought.


Check out a very brief video (silent) of the fluidity of Nimbus note. Go full-screen and enable HD for optimal viewing.




See how everything's pretty much integrated into one note? Your possibilities are endless, you can mix and match attachments and such.


Recorder used: Deepin Screen Recorder (a bit of lag, so I wouldn't recommend it. Try Kazam instead).


OS: POP! OS by System76.