Plain text has been with us since the
   sixties - and it doesn't look like it's
   leaving. We have been using it without
   being aware of it, via text editors -
   present on every single operating system
   - across emails, instant messaging, and
   last but not least, on social media
   posting. Before that, we go back to
   typewriters and handwriting.
   It's universal. It's simple. It's
   intuitive. It doesn't lose formatting.
   It just works.
   Twenty years after, the irruption of
   word processors during the eighties,
   apparently brought some "richness", also
   known as headings, bolds, italics,
   underlines, and lists - organized and
   unorganized. The nineties came with
   HTML, the new century with the cloud,
   and the rest is history.

   Let's talk about digital footprint. I've
   created a simple plain text file that
   contains a title, subtitle, two lorem
   ipsum paragraphs, and two lists. Then, I
   did the same with rich text, markdown,
   and HTML. The results are here in bytes:

       TYPE     SIZE  
    ---------- ------ 
     Plain       487  
     Markdown    487  
     HTML        788  
     Rich       9069
   Plain text and markdown have the same
   file size, HTML is 62% bigger, and rich
   text is 19 times bigger. Yes, nineteen
   times. These documents occupy extra
   local and cloudy space, they live
   somewhere, they don't die.

   Perhaps it's time to start or follow a
   Plain Text Movement, defined by our
   small daily actions like taking notes
   with a text editor or switching to email
   plain text composing. In my opinion,
   it's also a matter of the way that we
   write and highlighting our content above
   its appearance.
   I'm writing this post from vim - an
   improved version of vi - that comes
   after their grandparents, qed and ed.
   Everything else follows the same
   The most successful written stories
   don't have formatting. Do we need our
   words to be richer? I don't think so,
   plain and simple.


   Something unsent, a work-in-progress,
   the first version of a document. We're
   very familiar with drafts, used in
   writing - when ideas come to thoughts,
   sentences, and paragraphs - and also in
   technology, especially with messaging
   tools. In essence, a way of saving some
   words for later.
   I knew what I wanted to write about when
   this project started, so I wrote the
   titles of the 28 posts that I've
   committed to write in the manifesto -
   and these are saved as an email draft.
   Of course, having that in mind helps
   simplify the drafting process. I know
   what I'm going to write the next week,
   so I think about it when doing other
   stuff, like walking. When it's time to
   write, I follow a method that consists
   of a) Bullet-point-list the structure,
   b) Write the thing, and c) Edit and
   publish. That's it, and that's what I
   did for this post:
   01 INTRO: Meaning, usage on writing and
      tech, benefits.

   02 STEPS: Titles, week think, bullets,
      writing, editing.

   03 MODEL: This post, stages with tools,
      only one draft.

   04 CLOSE: One way, think first, time it,
      question end.
   The initial unwritten thoughts help me
   to get inspired beforehand. The
   bullet-pointed structure makes me focus,
   so I can write a post in 30 minutes from
   one draft - without procrastinating and
   getting lost in perfection. I use vim to
   write without distractions, LanguageTool
   for the final edits, and git to commit
   the HTML and RSS changes to my
   You know what you want to write about.
   Think first, time your work, and just
   publish it without looking back. In this
   post, I wanted to share my way, what
   works for me, and how does it work -
   that's what it is, one way. What's
   yours? Email me and let's share.

   At your pace, reading this post will
   take as long as you want.

   According to research from the Lund and
   Kristianstad Universities in Sweden, all
   mammals take their first steps at the
   same point in brain development. Baby
   camels can walk just thirty minutes
   after they're born; a milestone that it
   usually takes a whole year for us,
   humans. Cultivating the brain across
   life is like hiking a flat-top mountain
   with many starting paths - it begins and
   ends slowly, and it has a steady, rushed
   peak tied to academic education,
   profession, and social responsibilities.
   In the 2009 documentary short "Dealing
   with Time (Le Temps Presse)" by Xavier
   Marquis, they have measured anonymous
   people walking in major cities during
   rush hour, between 1998 and 2008. It's
   no surprise that the walking pace
   increased by 10% during this decade. A
   pace that probably is even faster after
   fifteen more years. The cause?
   Essentially, the expansion of clocks
   from factories to homes and everything
   that happened after we started measuring
   time. Perhaps factory workers needed
   more support when throwing rocks at the
   During my time working at Amazon
   Frontlines, I had the privilege of
   spending about a week with the Waorani
   Indigenous Nation from the Nemonpare
   community, in the Eastern Amazon
   rainforest of Ecuador. This was one of
   the most wonderful experiences that I
   ever had. One of the first things that
   I've faced inside my western brain, was
   the urge of planning. The Waorani don't
   have alarm clocks, they wake up with the
   Sun and decide what to do right there -
   maybe hunting, maybe fishing - depending
   on how they feel and what the öme
   (forest) and its universal language
   tells them. Survival wisdom on a daily
   According to Microsoft, our average
   attention span dropped from twelve
   seconds in 2000 to eight in 2013 - what
   is called "The Goldfish Effect" as this
   animal's average is one second longer.
   I can't imagine the current number; I
   must admit I didn't dare to research it,
   and that it's definitely not growing.
   That's not a surprise if we analyze how
   we operate our lives since the alarm
   clock tune, and until the bedtime
   notification. In my own experience, this
   phenomenon doesn't only affect young
   generations - it affects everyone.
   Casual conversations are becoming
   workplace briefings, where you better be
   concise, or I'll move on to the next
   Let's do a quick dive into the workplace
   - the main contractor that outsources
   your pace towards a path that you don't
   necessarily want. Time is precious and
   the busyness, workaholism, and
   preservation of status quo are defense
   mechanisms that wonderfully protect and
   support that. How many times have you
   heard the classic "I don't have time for
   this"? At the end of the day, people, no
   matter their rank in the pyramid, tend
   to be afraid of changes, failure, and
   being left out - fears that create a
   cold and comfortable frozen paralysis.
   It's like stopping the time-space, and
   no, this is not science fiction.
   When we find our best pace, we have too
   many paths to take in front of us. The
   concept of horror vacui, or fear of
   emptiness, travelled with us since the
   times of Aristotle, across cartography,
   art, and lifestyle among others. Claudio
   Naranjo (1932-2019) extensively talked
   about this social phenomenon in his
   work; and the fable of Nasrudin is a
   good example. A man who looks for his
   house key under a streetlamp in the
   market, knowing that he lost it at home;
   because there's more light. We are
   looking for the key in the wrong place.
   This makes me think about pursuing our
   peace through noise and comfort
   distraction, a delicious appetizer that
   is present in every meal. All these
   constant and nonstop inputs move us
   towards the opposite. Of course, we
   better not stop, otherwise, we'll have
   time to think, do introspection, deal
   with silence - and that is, indeed,
   Don't get me wrong, there is value in
   time too. In the end, it's an adapt or
   die situation, and there is always room
   for balance. Nature has its own
   imperfect pace; our species thrived by
   following it instinctively and without
   measuring time. Finding our pace towards
   a path takes a while, and that's fine.
   There's nothing wrong about slowing
   down, stopping, and even falling - it
   actually brings a whole new perspective
   solely spotted from that very angle.
   You decide your own pace, and only you
   can take the first step.

   Storytelling is, essentially what makes
   us human. Everybody has something to
   say; the two writing challenges that
   arise are "what" and "them."
   What am I going to write about? And,
   what if nobody will ever read it?

   I will read it.
   Following Manuel Moreale's* powerful
   initiative that empowered me to start
   this blog:
   01 BEGIN: Create a blog. There are
      plenty of platforms out there;
      find yours.
   02 WRITE: Start typing. Don't rethink;
      don't look back. Just publish your
   03 SHARE: Send it to me at
      minimblog[at]duck[dot]com and I'll be
      your first reader.
   If you have an RSS feed, I'll keep
   reading, and I'll add your blog to this


   The concept of emptiness and how it's
   socially integrated truly fascinates me.
   In a consumer-centered society, the word
   empty means useless, disposable, without
   meaning - an empty car, an empty bottle,
   an empty pool. You see it, think about
   its opposite, and move on to the next
   thing, like infinite scrolling. In the
   end, the social meme gets in the way
   Other examples make some quotidian
   objects a little bit more meaningful,
   like an empty bed, chair, or table.
   Good, the fact that they are empty is
   a good thing; I can use them. I mean,
   the majority of these objects were
   designed with a clear purpose. That
   said, we can use the bed as a chair,
   the chair as a table, and the table as a  
   bed. The value of emptiness changes as
   soon as you go bigger, out of the
   object, and into the space.
   Opportunity and inspiration come when we
   think about an empty room, house, or
   building. The purpose of this blog is
   not to lecture you about the amount of
   possessions and the value of living in
   an empty home; there are plenty of
   spaces that talk about this. What do
   you see when you enter a completely
   empty room? I see space, I get creative,
   and I normally end up thinking about
   what to put in there - inevitably,
   objects also get in the way.
   Now, if we move away from the object and
   its contained space, what is empty then?
   Is there any emptiness at all? Up to
   multiple interpretations and
   perspectives. I don't think about how
   empty a forest is when I walk through
   it, how useful it would be to plant
   more trees on top of these bushes, or
   perhaps how this tree can be used as a
   potential table. It is what it is,
   especially because we didn't create it,
   purchase it, or exploit it.
   The essentials get more essential when
   you start removing layers. Picture
   yourself sitting on a chair inside an
   empty room in the middle of the forest.
   If you remove the chair and open the
   windows to let the breeze in, does this
   make the room emptier or less empty?
   Seeing the glass half empty is also good
   - it's a matter of perspective.

   From the Latin word minimus, meaning
   "least" or "smallest".

   The manifesto in ten
   01 GOALS: Write about existential and
      digital minimalism.
   02 SCOPE: One post a week for six months
      until 03/2024.
   03 TIMED: Every Sunday for a maximum of 
      thirty minutes.
   04 POSTS: Between 300-500 words in
      digestible plain text.
   05 EDITS: Only allowed within the
      wonderful thirty mins.
   06 TOOLS: Vim, LanguageTool for the
      final edits, and git.
   07 CODED: One HTTP request, no CSS/JS,
      and just preformatted text.
   08 COSTS: Domain name only, €10 first
      year, €25 renew.
   09 SHARE: Send an email at
   10 PROMO: This blog will not be promoted
      on social media.

   Enough procrastination. It's time.

   I can't explain what made me finally
   start after these months, but here I am.
   I guess I will write about it once I
   find it.
   Welcome to, a place that
   talks about existential and digital
   minimalism and that is crafted and
   hosted minimally.
   I commit to writing every Sunday - I
   will share a manifesto soon.
   Because it's not about the destination,
   it's about the journey.

   Thank you for reading.