"My Favorite Obsidian Plugins for Automating the Management of Notes"

`` Undoubtedly, the greatest strength of Obsidian is the extensive number of plugins available that extend the app’s functionality. The community of developers creating and actively maintaining plugins is huge, and with new plugins being released every week, there’s always something new to try. By far, the plugins that I use most are those that remove the friction of setting my writing environment up the way I want it, formatting my documents, organizing my notes, and dealing with form documents. I’ve got a lot of plugins installed and have tried even more, but today, I want to share several that have withstood months of experimentation and remain the ones that I use most frequently.

Markdown Insert Plugin and Obsidian Shortcuts Launcher

It probably comes as no surprise that two of the shortcuts I use most often were commissioned by Federico for the MacStories team. Markdown Insert Plugin works the way I expect Markdown links to work in a text editor. I highlight a word or phrase, type the ⌘K hotkey I’ve assigned to the plugin, and the URL on my clipboard is linked to the highlighted text. A Markdown-formatted link is created with placeholder text between the square brackets if no text is selected. This is similar to how Markdown linking works in iA Writer, one of my favorite text editors that I still use frequently, making it easy to move between the two apps. Markdown Insert Plugin is a Club-only plugin that you can download from your Club Downloads page. Obsidian Shortcuts Launcher is available publicly as an Obsidian community plugin. The plugin allows shortcuts you’ve created to be invoked from inside Obsidian and can pass data to the shortcut. It’s this last part that’s so powerful. Selected text, a paragraph, a link, and a document, its title, link, or path, plus multiple of these items can be passed from Obsidian to any shortcut you’ve created, greatly expanding how you can process your notes.

Workspaces Plus

Obsidian windows can be split into multiple panes, allowing you to work on multiple documents at once. Workspaces is a built-in core plugin that allows you to save sets of panes, so they can be recreated later. It’s an excellent feature for sets of documents you work on together regularly or when you get interrupted by other work and want to save a workspace as a sort of bookmark to pick up where you left off later. Workspaces Plus takes the idea of Obsidian’s built-in feature further. The plugin adds an icon and the name of your current workspace to Obsidian’s status bar along the bottom edge of the app’s window. Click on it, and a list of your current workspaces is revealed, allowing you to pick one, rename it, or delete it. You can also type a new name into the provided field and save your current configuration with Shift+Return. Workspaces Plus allows you to set hotkeys for workspaces, too, which I’ve done for the ones I use most often. Most of my time with Workspace Plus is spent interacting with the plugin’s status bar button. However, the plugin goes further with a feature that is currently in beta called Workspace Modes. I haven’t spent a lot of time with the feature yet, but in addition to saving sets of documents for quick access, it saves associated settings. What that allows is for documents to be opened in the same view mode every time, using the same appearance theme every time, and more, which is a much greater level of customization than you get with Workspaces alone.


I use templates every week to create the structure for some of the MacStories Weekly sections, AppStories show notes, and other documents. Obsidian has a built-in templating system that’s a great way to get started. Just point the core plugin at a folder of template documents, trigger it with the Insert Template command or a hotkey, and pick one of your templates. The plugin will use the template to create a new document based on your template, and you’re ready to go. Like Workspace Plus, Templater takes the idea of Obsidian’s built-in templates plugin further. It’s best to think of Templater as an automation system for templates that allows you to use JavaScript to manipulate variables in your templates. The plugin can be a little daunting at first but worth exploring because it’s so flexible. On the easier end of the spectrum, Templater will allow you to add predefined functions for adding dates in a wide variety of formats, manipulating files, managing YAML frontmatter, pulling data from the web, and more. Because these functions are part of the default configuration of the plugin, they’re the perfect place to begin. If you want to go further, you can build your own JavaScript-based functions that will run as part of your templating system.

Auto Note Mover

One of the recent additions to my set of Obsidian plugins is Auto Note Mover. I generate a lot of notes every week, and I was frustrated by Obsidian’s folder navigation and tools for moving documents from one location to another. As a result, I often found myself with a long list of unorganized notes at the end of the week. Auto Note Mover monitors your notes and takes care of moving them into folders automatically based on a couple of different kinds of rules you can establish. The easiest rule to set up is based on tags. Add a tag, tell Auto Note Mover which folder notes with that tag should be filed under using the plugin’s settings, and every note you create with that tag will be moved into that folder. You can also create rules based on regular expressions that analyze the file’s title. I’ve set up several rules based on tags, and ever since, my list of orphaned notes has been much shorter and easier to manage. -"My Favorite Obsidian Plugins for Automating the Management of Notes"