Writing — some of us are good at it, and some of us are not. However, the measurement of being ‘good’ at writing is a useless one. The yardstick we use to measure writing is “effectiveness”. As is any form of communication. For writing is a form of communication. Or is it?

Imagine my pleasure and excitement when I came across this lesson on Youtube — The Craft of Writing Effectively by Larry McEnerney of the University of Chicago? This lesson was targeted at graduate students (and leaders) on how to write effectively in the real world.

In service of learning in public (another one of my personal improvement projects), here are the notes I took while listening to this lecture and its sibling lecture “Writing Beyond the Academy 1.23.15”. Even if you find these notes useful, I strongly recommend you take the time to watch the lecture. …

Poem slips on a maple tree — https://www.artic.edu/artworks/127643/flowering-cherry-and-autumn-maples-with-poem-slips
Poem slips on a maple tree — https://www.artic.edu/artworks/127643/flowering-cherry-and-autumn-maples-with-poem-slips

A certain age, a certain generation has its own unique needs. Each such age sometimes borrows concepts and ideas from other ages and other cultures, sometimes combines them, and very rarely creates its own unique ideas which future generations will borrow or push against.

Here are some ‘Untranslatable to English’ concepts, which have infused themselves into our zeitgeist. Almost all of them are old, have tons of articles and at least a book or two written about them.

And they all help you become happier, live longer, learn to accept the uncontrollable.


A Danish word which translates into “a feeling of cozy contentment and well-being through enjoying the simple things in life.”. …

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There goes an astronaut
Floating through space
A moon rock in her pocket,
And a grin on her face.

Brrring Brrring the com rings
It’s her honey from back home.
“Honey, I’m at the grocery store.
Do we need milk at home?”

There goes the astronaut
Floating in space.
She passes by an asteroid
Watching its trail

Brring brring the com rings.
It’s her boss from back home.
“Hey, we need a volunteer to decorate the conference room
You can do this right? Let me know by noon.”

There goes the astronaut
Flying in space.
There is Oumuaomua
She’s keeping pace.

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Photo by Ethan Weil on Unsplash


I just migrated my blog Rope and Tire to use Markdown and React using Gatsby.

Why Gatsby

As a React developer, the idea of having a blog written in React is appealing — I can maintain and experiment on my blog. And using this fancy new thing — Gatsby appeals to my inner neophile.

My blog used to be hosted on Wordpress. While quite good, I have longed for something simpler, easy to edit. And I was irritated with plugins.

Why Markdown

  • Simplicity and Portability of plain text files
  • Rich formatting
  • Easy to read with formatting
  • Easy to learn syntax
  • Can be easily converted to…

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“Several hot air balloons with different colors flying into the sky in old began.” by Sven Scheuermeier on Unsplash

I wrote a React component, transpiling using Babel, bundling and building using Webpack. I wanted to use it in another application via NPM. My NPM publish package needed to include component behavior, styles and images. So how difficult is it to package my React Component for distribution via NPM? An hour or so of work maybe right?

Well, it took me a lot longer to figure this out because of the following speed-bumps.
– React version conflict
– How to bundle and consume styles from a component
– How to include and bundle images

Here are the steps.


npm init

In the package.json, …

I treat my entire life as 2 week experiments and 6 month projects because, and maybe this is just the way I cope with life and decision making, but I feel that if you make a 5 or 10 year plan that you can reliably hit, almost by definition, you have to set a plan that is below your
current capabilities. Like, if you are an A student you must set a C+ plan for it to be 100% achievable. That I think is just a great way to paint yourself into a very unattractive corner.

- Tim Ferriss in his Podcast #175: How to cage the monkey mind…


Suprada Urval

Reader, Coder, Maker, Climber, Writer, Human.

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