Subtraction

Better less

“I didn’t have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one.” — Mark Twain

I am going to intensify my effort on concision. I might lose some occasional week post: later, shorter, and better is preferable to earlier, longer, and worse.

“How do we convince people that in programming simplicity and clarity — in short: what mathematicians call elegance — are not a dispensable luxury, but a crucial matter that decides between success and failure?” — Edsger W. Dijkstra

In programming, “elegance” is essential in a painfully obvious way. But elegance is important out of programming; in any communication, or creation.1

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupery

As usual, there are worse and better ways. The purpose is choosing the best ways.

“Words should be weighed, not counted.” — Yiddish proverb.

Too short? Read further with the Pareto Principle, and this thread:

trylks @trylks

trylks @trylks

Think of information overload with channels that are 4x human speech,l Information may be wisdom, or it may be propaganda and lies transferred directly to your brain Before increasing quantity, increase quality. To increase quality, decrease quantity, be more selective https://t.co/1t5pWoVYvX

October 16th 2020

Petra, Jordan
Photo by Brian Kairuz on Unsplash

PS: post partially motivated by:

trylks @trylks

April 21st 2022

1

Writing may be the best way to transfer thoughts from one person to many others. That is a great power, and elegance multiplies it. This thread is a good compilation of quotes about writing, and several aspects of elegance are prevalent in it:

Justin Mikolay 💻 @jmikolay

“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That’s why it’s so hard.” -David McCullough

April 6th 2022

4 Retweets30 Likes

Cross-posted from the Sigmoid newsletter

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
trylks

I write to have links to point at when discussing something (DRY). Topics around computers, AI, and cybernetics, i.e. anything.