RoamBrain newsletter #9

News about Roam Research, links to useful Roam resources and updates about new content on RoamBrain.com.

What’s new on RoamBrain

Building the Global Knowledge Graph: Dreaming the Dream for Roam Research

Kyle Harrison describes his powerful vision of what might happen when individual Roam databases become interconnected worldwide.

Read here.

How to Get the Most Out of Online Courses with Roam

Anita Amini explains the simple system she has developed to maximize her learning from the online courses she takes.

Read here.

Networked Thinking Meets Product Thinking: Using Roam for Product Management

Andrew Yu argues that Roam allows product managers to excel in their roles by making it easier to store, recall, and cross-reference ideas.

Read here.


Roam updates and useful resources

Starting to learn Roam

If you’re starting to use Roam yourself — or teaching someone else to use Roam — this advice from Conor White-Sullivan is brilliantly simple and practical!

Roam updates

There have been some particularly helpful improvements in Roam over the past few weeks:

  • You can now re-order the blocks in the right-hand sidebar by dragging and dropping them. And you can now pin blocks to the sidebar so they'll appear across multiple browser windows and also re-appear on opening.

  • The pomodoro timer is now customizable, so you can now set the time interval you want to use. It also has a bell that rings at the end.

  • Up until recently, if you had a page or a parent block open in both the main window and the sidebar, when you expanded or contracted a block in one window, the change would be mirrored in the other window. Now expansion and contraction states have become independent of each other in different windows, which allows much more flexibility for editing and reviewing.

A new visual search Chrome extension

Dharam Kapila has just released Roam Portal, a Chrome extension which significantly improves the search experience in Roam.

It allows you to search for all instances of specific words or phrases — or to narrow the search down to particular date ranges. It also gives you a breakdown of the usage of the search term over time and the 25 pages where the search term appears most frequently.

You’re not limited to your own personal databases as you can use Roam Portal to search any databases you have access to — or any public Roams.

You can install the Chrome extension here. The Roam Portal information page can be found here — and detailed documentation can be found here.

Given that the extension uses the Roam alpha API, which only a restricted number of developers have access to at the moment, it’s an exciting foretaste of the innovation that’s going to be unleashed when the Roam API is released publically.

RoamStack newsletter

If you would like to receive more Roam tips and links to useful resources, please sign up to the RoamStack newsletter, which comes out every two weeks.


RoamWorld news and information

Is Roam going to be world-changing?

Juvoni Beckford wrote an intriguing tweet last month suggesting that Roam will help spark a new Creative Renaissance and that it will have a similar impact to tools like Photoshop, the Mac and smartphones.

The impact that Roam is having as a tool for upgrading people’s thinking, the rate of innovation in the Roam space and the knowledge that Roam itself has a lot more innovations to unveil means that I wouldn’t be surprised if Juvoni proves to be right!

New courses

Two more Roam courses have been unveiled since the last newsletter.

Firstly, Tracy Winchell, who has been pioneering some exciting innovations in how to use Roam for journaling like her ‘Notes to your Next Day Self’ technique, has launched her Roaman Journaling for Self-Awareness & Growth course.

And secondly, RJ Nestor has launched his Powerful Task Management in Roam Research course, which is the first Roam course that focuses solely on task management.

Monetizing Roam databases

The functionality to charge for access to whole Roam databases or even just groups of blocks is being developed by OnlyGraphs.

It’s going to be exciting to see the new possibilities created by the ability to deliver paid-for training materials or to monetize knowledge resources in Roam.

New public texts

Two more texts have been made available in Roam database format. Firstly Jacob Jolibois has created a database of Eric Jorgenson's book The Almanack of Naval Ravikant, which is a collection of Naval’s writings, interviews and reflections.

And Grant Parker has created a Roam database of Ayn Rand's novella Anthem.

You can find a directory of all the public texts that have been put into Roam databases at RoamPublic.com.

Roam comes to publishing

There have been two recent examples of Roam beginning to have a small impact on the world of publishing.

Firstly, Eric Jorgenson’s book The Almanack of Naval Ravikant, which has just been released as a free Roam public text (see previous item), has also been made available in hardcover, paperback and Kindle versions.

Secondly, Luca Dellanna has decided to publish his new book Ergodicity as a Roam database as well as in paperback and ebook formats. Buyers who pay extra for the Roam option will receive an editable JSON export of the book as well as access to a shared uneditable private graph. Further details here.

RoamBrain merchandise

We’ve launched a range of RoamBrain merchandise, including t-shirts, hoodies, caps and mugs, which can be bought at the following links:

Europe RoamBrain shop

North American RoamBrain shop

Australian RoamBrain shop.


That’s it for today! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading the newsletter.

Francis Miller

SystemEngine Ltd
Company no: 12602162 | Registered in England and Wales
Registered office: Unit 10, 80 Lytham Road, Fulwood, Preston, England PR2 3AQ