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MOCs Overview

This is a brief overview of MOCs.

  • MOC (EM-OH-CEE) stands for “Maps of Content” because these notes map the contents of some of your notes. (Hey, if you call ‘em “Mocks” that’s fine too.)
  • In a nutshell, MOCs help you gather, develop, and navigate ideas.

When to use MOCs

The ability to know when and how to make an MOC is a key skill in overcoming overwhelm and project slowdown.

Whenever you start to feel that tickle of overwhelm ([[Mental Squeeze Point]]), that’s when you need to become a cartographer of your own content and create a new MOC.

For example, let’s say you have 20 scattered notes on the project you’re making. Just like putting 20 index cards on an inviting rustic workbench, putting links to all 20 notes into a new MOCs is the digital equivalent.

What is a mental squeeze point?

Mental Squeeze Point#^64cf60a6

(That’s from a bottom-up starting point. You will also want to use MOCs to make sense out of existing knowledge from a top-down starting point.)

Why use MOCs

  1. MOCs help you manage anxiety in a positive way by allowing you a dedicated space to place related notes together.
  2. In that space, MOCs create a concentrated environment that encourages rapid ideation through the interaction, exchange, and development of thoughts, notions, and ideas.
  3. After you’ve developed an MOC you’re happy with, it becomes a reference for whatever project you need to complete: an essay, a product, a summation of thought on a topic. Thanks to developing your MOC, you might find that your new project is already 80% complete.
  4. The MOC remains as a reliable navigational tool to the rest of your digital library.
  5. The MOC also acts as a reminding tool on a subject. Years later you can quickly return to it and remember, “Oh I remember now, that’s what I thought about the how the evolution of fonts related to the broader movements of Art History!”
  6. The MOC remains ready to evolve as your thoughts grow, mature, develop complexity on a subject.
  7. MOCs maintain their fluidity: As opposed to folders, MOCs are nondestructive, non-restrictive, non-limiting perspectives. Unlike a folder, you are not forced to use them to access your notes. MOCs are “overlays” that add relevant information but that don’t affect your base level notes.
  8. MOCs allow for limitless flexibility. Unlike folders or Table of Contents (TOC), MOCs are not hierarchical. They are [[Heterarchy|heterarchical]]. This means that different MOCs can map the same info in different ways, to fit whatever your current needs might be.
  9. MOCs encourage “Relational Positioning”: Don’t argue with the Ancient Greeks and Romans about the [[Method of Loci|value of spatial relationships]]. It helps us remember better when ideas are not floating in isolation, but as a part of a spatial constellation.
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