Creating a Personal Knowledge Base on Github

Github isn’t just for coders — as the amount of information around us grows exponentially, everybody can be helped by a personal knowledge base.

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Photo by Jamie Taylor on Unsplash

Step 1: Get a Github account

Github is free provided that you don’t want to create private repositories (the last time I checked).

Visit: https://github.com/

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Step 2: Create a new repository matching your username

Once you’ve signed up, navigate to the top right-hand corner and click New repository:

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On the next screen, enter a repository name that matches the Github username you signed up with.

For example, my Github username is georgemarklow, so I’d create a repository called georgemarklow.

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Below that, make sure the repository is Public check the box Add a README file.

The Choose a license section is optional.

Step 3: Update the README file

The README.md file provides some direction for the user who visits your knowledge base and is nicely displayed on your Github homepage.

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To edit the README file, click on the Repositories menu tab and find the repository you just created.

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Click on the README.md file (you won't have other files shown below).

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Click on the pencil icon to edit this file:

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You’ll now be taken to a markdown editor, which allows you to format your opening statement.

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If you’re new to the markdown language, let me help you by sharing this link, which covers everything you need to know.

You can also copy my README markdown by visiting this link to get you started with a template— just remember to change the links to your own!

Once you’ve done that, preview your changes by clicking on the Preview tab.

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Looks good right?

And because there’s always that one person who asks — emojis can be copied from here. 😂 😂 😂

To publish, click the green Commit changes button.

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STEP 4 (optional): Add a SUMMARY.md file

I prefer to keep my README.md file as a short opening statement and provide more detail in the SUMMARY.md file.

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It’s also where I like to tell people about my values.

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To create a new file, click the Add file button and select Create new file (or clone this repository locally, if you prefer).

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Then type the name of the file, ending with .md:

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Once you’re happy with your content, click the green Commit new file button:

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STEP 5 (optional): Create a folder structure

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To create a folder, click the Add file button and select Create new file (or clone this repository locally, if you prefer).

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Let’s say that you wanted to add a negotiation folder, which contains resources and links to useful blogs on negotiation skills.

To do that, you’d start typing negotiation in the box provided.

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Then, as soon as you press the “/” key, you’ll be prompted to add the name of the first file you’d like to place in this new folder.

I prefer to call the first file in each folder index, which serves as the main navigation point for the rest of the files in the folder.

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After you click the commit button, you’ll see a folder called negotiation appear with one file called index inside that folder (in a similar fashion to how I created my notes folder and sub-folders).

Try it out!

Written by

George is a software engineer, author, blogger, and tech enthusiast who believes in helping others to make us happier and healthier.

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