2024-03-26 Don’t Bother Reading This

What I Did


Absolutely nothing to publish for now. I feel no shame.


This has been such a momentous event for me that I’m announcing an accomplishment. I could wait for another week, but this is exciting, and there’s nobody telling me I can’t, so I’ll take the legal risks and simply indicate it.

I’ve successfully worked through a monstrous phase of deduplication. Over 20,000 hyperlinks have been confirmed as having 1 source in my system. I’ve discussed before about this, but having multiple locations for something guarantees it’ll fracture into even further disorganization. I’m not completely done (my 45.200 section needs more work), but I’ve now handled everything in the system at least once.

For the first time since I finished all my original essays, I feel like I have a grasp on things.

What I Learned

There’s a predictable trend we all live through as we build anything big:

  1. Glee that the idea is a wonderful solution.
  2. Excitement to start the project.
  3. Enthusiasm that the project is guaranteed to solve everything we’ve hoped for.
  4. Sobriety in realizing the project may not achieve our wildest dreams.
  5. Crushing realization that the project may only partly solve our problem, or that it’s taking longer than it should.
  6. Mixed hope and despair in the fact that we’ve persevered so long, and yet it’s not done and feels like it may have been a waste of time, but a sense of obligation to keep going.
  7. Discouragement that it’s not working out correctly, which may lead to permanent discouragement if we drop the project altogether.
  8. If we somehow persevere, optimism that we’ll complete it, usually right before we’re nearly done.
  9. Glee that the idea was a wonderful solution, and catharsis that we worked so hard for it.

That final stage is where we derive all our sense of meaning, and the unpleasant not-marketable-as-a-bestseller reality is that we critically need Steps 6 and 7 to give us that catharsis at the end. Nobody likes to get beat up, but they love winning boxing tournaments.

But, to get past that horrific endeavor of Step 7, we need a few possible things:

  • Friends can help. They will be encouraging to you, and will remind you of Step 1. However, if they’re invested in the project as well, then both of you represent a small group, and your collective emotional state will work in tandem with each other over time.
  • The quality of “grit” can help tremendously. It’s the thing that makes you wake up in the morning and do that crap you’d prefer to avoid. Over time, though, it may make you a harsh person.
  • One of the easiest things to do is to slice up the mega-sized endeavor into smaller pieces. It doesn’t have the side effects of friends or grit, and makes it easier to track success.

I’ve been learning to do this, which is why I’m writing an essay a week early at 1 in the morning: I’m just that excited to share nothing you’d particularly care about!

What I’m Doing


  • Working in an insurance office right now.
  • Keeping a home together with a woman at the maximum threshold of the Crazy/Hot Matrix.
  • Slowly succumbing to the standard mental decline caused by maintaining two schoolchildren before they’re old enough to vote.


My Grandiose De-Hoarding Mission has 2 domains, loosely inspired by Johnny.Decimal:

  • It consists of 3,760 files, each one containing between 1 and 50 subjects.
  • As I go, each condensation will make fewer files, but each re-categorization may make more files.
  • The number is moderately arbitrary relative to results, thereby avoiding the risk of Goodhart’s Law while also implying I’ve made some sort of progress.

The software-leaning side has 2,630 pages, and will (eventually) go to my toolbox:

  • 05X — an inbox of stuff that goes everywhere else, and where I dump any new content when it’s not explicitly obvious or convenient to file away (39 files)
  • 2XX — has been generally grouped, but duplicates are still in the system (515 files)
  • 3XX — has been sifted for duplicates, but the information hasn’t been confirmed as grouped (1,895 files)
  • 4XX — has been generally grouped, but needs to be split between “tool” and “article to read” (167 files)
  • 5XX — is a pure pile of tools, ready to be inserted into the toolbox (1 file)

The writing-leaning side has 1,130 pages, and spans the output of my Trendless Tech essays and my remaining NotaGenius essays:

  • 02X — content to update my already-finalized essays (91 files)
  • 05X — needs regrouping into narrower classifications (252 files)
  • 1XX — written content (my notes or copy-pasted stuff) that must make its way to a new essay (694 files)
  • 2XX — hyperlinks-only lists of guides (46 files)
  • 3XX — hyperlinks-only opinions and expert wisdom (43 files)

Throughout the entire system, I maintain a sub-schema that actually reflects the content I’m building:

The flow of work represents itself through a unique flow of “phases”:

  1. Sift through duplicates in grouped content
    • S2->S4
  2. Group/merge content into clear categorizations
    • S3->S4
  3. Send grouped inbox items into the clear categories
    • S0->S4
  4. Separate out the guides and opinions, and clarify them within the pending toolbox items
    • S4->W2
    • S4->W3
    • S4->S5
    • S4->TB
    • S4->[delete]
  5. Update all the toolbox items left over
    • S4->TB
  6. Update the old content I’ve already written
  7. Regroup the hard-to-define essays through holistic understanding
    • S0->S1
    • S0->S2
    • S0->S3
  8. Add ready-to-go content updates, which will make all my essays officially “done”
    • S1->TT/NAG/TLS
  9. Make decisions on the guides
    • S2->Maybe
    • S2->Later
    • S2->[delete]
  10. Consume and update the last of TrendlessTech
    • S3->TT