I find that I retain way more if I take notes too. I do some things electronically - github, evernote, blogging - but I always carry a notebook around too!
It might seem old school, but I find I remember even more if I'm writing and not typing. I don't know if it's that my brain has to think about forming the words, or not having a laptop/pad removes the temptation to wander onto dev.to looking for good articles ;) but it works for me.
I do the same thing! Partly since I don't always have my computer around when I need to note nothing, and partly I just like to write a stream of consciousness for a kind of mental release.
I totally agree with you about the feeling of taking notes on paper! I feel like it's easier to remember things and also easier to be creative and actually keep writing.
One thing that helps to focus on writing instead of refining your notes is that you can not undo what you wrote down. Some editors have this as a feature under the name Hemingway Mode.
I wrote more about my thoughts on this in the past: dev.to/jorinvo/note-taking
For me paper is a great medium for thinking, but digital is a good addition for refining, sharing and archiving notes and writings.
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