A Big Little Idea Called Legibility


My Linked Notes

  • 2021-01-10
  • 2021-01-17

    This is also what originally led me to [[A Big Little Idea Called Legibility]].

  • progress-is-abstraction

    I don't know any specifics behind what happens when I press a key on this computer, or how much combined effort it took to give me this great interface but it works. That is because of great progress. Year of hard work are packed into this simple interface that gives me access to information, entertainment, and my livelihood. That hard work has been entirely abstracted away from me. Most days, I don't have to worry at all about how my computer works. And even when I do, it usually just takes a reboot to fix it. Abstraction hides progress. In doing so, it makes our lives much better. However, it becomes an issue when people forget how difficult it was to create the great abstractions we use. Those who didn't build the thing from the ground up, will inevitably have a lower [[explainability threshold]] than those who did. When those who did not create something take charge of it, they are in danger of falling for the same trap I described in [[[[January 10th, 20201]] [[Weekly Review]]]] when I talked about [[A Big Little Idea Called Legibility]]. Abstraction is great, but it makes hard things look easy. When you dig into the internals, you may think the original creators made it harder than it should be, but the real case is you don't fully understand the complexity.

  • things-you-should-never-do-part-1

    This law is the reason code re-use is so hard. It also relates to [[A Big Little Idea Called Legibility]]. When programmers come to new code with preconceived ideas about how easy some problem is, they end up bewildered by the complexity of the current solutions. "But this should be so easy," they say. Of course, until they try to implement it themselves.

One last thing

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