How to automatically tag content

So last week’s one-two punch was a lot, huh?

I may have teetered on the edges of a soapbox while I picked apart the state of social media, but it felt good to reflect on a time when a little idealism could make a sizeable difference.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m motivated to get as much as I can down on paper and in your hands, but I also know that brevity is going to go a long way with this one.

So in the interest of keeping things brief and worthy of indexing, let’s figure out how to automatically tag content you add to an Airtable base.


Let’s assume you’re gathering a bunch of data about something important. You could be curating social media content or gathering your scattered thoughts like I’ve demo’d here 👇

Sure, it’s handy to get your scattered thoughts down and organized but the truly impressive piece has to do with indexing your data so you can reference it again later.

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You can set this up in a number of ways but the easiest way to think about this is as follows:

  1. you offload your thoughts to a single source of truth in one database

  2. an automation indexes your data so you can treat it like your brain’s archive or a thought garden

  3. you revisit your thought garden regularly to groom ideas, organize your data, and discover commonalities

This has actually become a paradigm shift for the way I think and work.

In particular, being able to easily gather my thoughts alongside other things worth thinking about means I can spot some non-obvious trends and oftentimes that leads to ideas that make it into this newsletter.

It has also promoted a new way to frame things – thought gardens are always going to grow and need to be tended to from time to time. Sometimes you’ll end up with a healthy yield come harvest time and sometimes your crops will fail, but you’ll always have a reliable foundation to work from if you’re looking to grow your ideas over a healthy span of time.


When it all comes together, one of the first things you’ll notice is that things boil down to the IPO model, which means you have something systematized on your hands.

With any system, you’ll need to understand your data checkpoints and throughputs to understand your opportunities to scale. The most crucial checkpoint for this system is your inputs and in it’s simplest form we’re talking about words.

Lucky for us, words are on webpages and words can also be extracted from images using OCR/text recognition. This means you can do some pretty neat stuff like pull in webpages and images using Airtable’s Web Clipper (more details in WTF NO CODE #3), expand on the processing capabilities and curate ever more types of data.

If you’re up for it, you can even go hard in the paint with a little AI, but for now let’s keep it simple so we can get the dunk.

Slam Dunk Basketball GIF by NBA

Let’s pull it all together.

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