As an attempt of doing more with less, last week I've experimented trying to unify the website with the feed. The architectural changes were pretty clear, summarized in these three steps:

01 POSTS: Stop using plain text files for posts.

02 FEED: Adopt the RSS Atom syndication format.

03 UNIFY: Website and feed within the same file.

Steps one and two did happen - going back to a single-page-blog (including posts) and having more flexibility in terms of maintenance with Atom - three, unfortunately, did not happen.

Darek Kay and his "Style your RSS feed" [1] post inspired me. For blogs that are just text, XSLT is a great idea - basically keeping the site and feed on a single XML file that gets styling and XHTML output from an XSL template. I've played with that and found out that the template can do more than styling, it can automatically generate my POSTS menu; so, every time I post, I just need to write it, save the file, and commit my changes.

That's awesome, right? But, what happened? Browser compatibility happened - particularly Safari's unavoidable popup asking for an RSS client and Opera's built-in feed reader. Others would avoid these issues and assume that the vast majority of users are under Chrome and Firefox, but I just can't, it goes against my values. That said, I might go back to testing phase in the future; watch the space.

It was a fun ride, though. I've learned from this experience. The main lesson that I'd like to share is about keeping it simple and following the standards. For now, HTML is HTML [2] and RSS is RSS [3]. Because sometimes, unifying doesn't work - and that's okay.

[1] darekkay.com/blog/rss-styling/
[2] minim.blog/index.htm
[3] minim.blog/index.xml


First, I'd like to share that I'm halfway there towards the initial scope [1] of this project. I want to thank you for reading and everybody who encouraged me to keep going. This is a task that gives me joy.

And on that note, this post talks about tasks. We're used to them, we constantly do them on a daily basis. Workspace project management, personal shopping lists, weekend planning, you name it.

At the end of the day, what's the minimum that we need to do a task, even if it only happens inside our minds? Here's an approach:

01 WHAT: I mean, that's specifically needed. There's no task without knowing what the heck we're doing. Sometimes, with optional dimensions such as description, type, and tags among others.

That would have been enough a century ago. The current days of immediacy and micromanagement require what comes next.

02 WHEN: Knowing the due date it's crucial because time is ticking. We can call it orientating estimation, as it relates to the amount of tasks that we manage or the sense of urgency.

Here you have a Minimum Project Management Software (MPMS), just copy-paste and edit:

[X] TASK 1 (2023/11/01)
[ ] TASK 2 (2023/12/01)
[ ] TASK 3 (2024/01/01)

Essentially, this is all we need to perform any task, even without writing it down. I'm going to have ice cream (what) now (when). Alright, we're done here - thanks for reading.

After a couple of decades working with tasks, I realized the "why" is more important than anything else.

03 WHY: It's a liberation, sometimes, an opener of a can of worms. It can simplify or make the task irrelevant. Things would be different if more "why"'s are asked, rinse and repeat.

Too simple for you? No worries, let me share three bonuses:

04 STATUS: This one can add value, especially in collaborative environments. To do, doing, and done; wonderfully displayed in a Kanban board. The physical act of drag and drop.

05 WHO: Another one for teamwork. Although, sometimes it exemplifies the lack of clarity when managing teams and making decisions. It helps hold ourselves and the team accountable.

06 PRIORITY: Prioritization is relative, everything can be high or low. The question here - again - is why. When I want ice cream now, I don't care about priority medium.

Why do we need tools to manage our tasks? Perhaps we're doing too many things at the same time - empowered by the capitalist-induced concept of more, more, and even more. Acquisition, revenue, profit - sounds familiar? Stop, take some distance, and ask why. Doing less and doing it in a more meaningful way. Remember that these are tools and that sometimes, you don't need a task.

[1] minim.blog/#minim


The folder where all our emails land. A place that's full for some, empty for others. Introducing the inbox personas:

01 WHATEVER: All emails live in the inbox, read or unread - like a visible history of thousands of items. The whatever just doesn't care.

02 FILTERER: Incoming emails are manually filtered with a label - and sometimes moved into a folder. The filterer is extremely organized.

03 AUTOMATE: Like the previous one but with automatic filtering - trying to achieve an inbox zero. The efficient version of the filterer.

04 ARCHIVER: Everything gets archived independently of reading it or not - a permanent inbox zero. Select, maybe read it, and archive it.

05 REMOVERS: Only the important messages have the luxury of staying - an act of simple liberation. The extremist version of the archiver.

I've been all of them. Currently I'm an archiver professionally and a remover on a personal level. Which one are you?


The irruption of mobile devices drastically changed web design; it made it evolve with responsiveness, and, in my opinion, it added partial simplicity. It looks like we're going back to the basics.

If we compare it with the fashion industry, it also has its shows and awards, as well as trends that suddenly emerge and become best practices. The majority of them are pure fluffiness - rounded corners, gradients, animations. Why? To fit in or to solve a problem?

Back to the essence of the web, examples like Motherfucking Website [1], koray er [2], or this very site show that the extremes can be a good thing. Quoting the first one, "all the problems we have with websites are ones we create ourselves". I wonder why there's the general, unwritten opinion that Times New Roman and blue links are ugly. I can tell you. Adoption of trends.

Now, what's the most important thing for you? Content, interface, or both as an experience? These days, people with an average attention span are used to digesting short pills of information and content got "call-to-actionized". Visuals are more than needed because people don't read. What's the balance - if any, between design and readability?

Something that fascinates and irritates me in equal parts is the default CSS values for HTML elements. Serif is like a traditional outfit, one that is timeless. This site uses the pre element because of its formatting and because it loads with a monospaced font. Why do these defaults not change? When was the last time that changed? I wonder. I think that a few improvements would make our lives way easier. Here are my top five: Responsive and dark/light mode meta tags, margin auto, ∼600px of max-width, and system-ui as font-family. Not to mention a more than desired automatic rendering of Markdown. Damn.

People are used to certain experiences like call-to-actions, infinite scrolls, horizontal carousels... What's the equilibrium? When do we succumb? Now, the rise of smaller devices like watches and glasses will make things even smaller and simpler. The web is going to evolve along these lines.

We need to wear clothes, and we need websites. The extremes are wonderful, and the trends are mainstream. The IndieWeb is there. At the end of the day, how do we design? For the audience, or by following our values and principles? Can we really influence and change these behaviors? I hope, because the web is not going out of style.

[1] motherfuckingwebsite.com
[2] korayer.de


Dear Wi-Fi, I'm sorry for your loss - 40% of bandwidth on average. I can't rely on you, as you work on radio waves. And, on top of that, you can't keep secrets. Instead, you get cracked up.

Not to mention your cousin Bluetooth, which makes devices unstable and sooner or later has battery and charging dependency. Drop the Air and get a cleaning, you just had too much personal space.

Trusted Ethernet, my old friend. You are always there; you have never failed me, and you always give me all your undivided attention. I hope our categorical friendship never ends because of third-party sources.

Look at you, USB. Many generations that preceded you gave you your current prestige. You're simple, timeless, and universal - no matter your size or conversion. Even the forbidden fruit ended up adopting you as a standard, no more sins.

We need more cables - you connect them, they work, and you're done. It's a physical manifestation of connection, and that's what we embrace as human beings. What is more minimalist, going cableless and charging these devices with cables, or using cables in the first place? It makes me wonder.

Believe me, behind your perfectly clean and empty table lies your router - and from there, whatever goes out of the building is wired.



MacBook Air M2 Midnight.
MOFT Carry Sleeve Black.
Belkin USB-C-Ethernet.
Nokia 800 Tough Black.
2019 White Seat Ibiza.
Ludos Clamor Earbuds.


macOS Sonoma 14.1.1.
Google Workspace.
WhatsApp, still.


Wallet: ID, drivers and credit cards.
House/office keys attached to Nokia.
FREDY C-1 BLACK by XavierGarcia.
Grey polo, black chinos.
Black Nike Wearallday.


We're typing the domain name of this site, clicking a link from a friend, or reading the RSS feed.

From a browser installed on our brand new iPhone 15 Pro Max, we'd be fine with an iPhone SE.

Via an Internet Service Provider that brings us 1000 Mbps, it'd be enough with only 100 Mbps.

All of that in a matter of milliseconds. 50 on average, to be precise; that is just 0.05 seconds.

Paraphrasing Daft Punk: "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger." A couple of French visionaries.

Computing performance is getting stuck and not fiercely advancing like it used to. The average user doesn't need 70% of this power; that said, the lifecycle of devices is four years.

What's growing and growing nowadays is the size and resources that a piece of software needs to run properly. Unnecessary fluffiness, infinite scroll, real-time video streaming - you name it.

Unconsciously, the way we operate computers changed. It's messy, applications running at the same time, dozens of opened tabs that don't go anywhere, critical updates pending installation, and zero-day vulnerabilities waiting to be triggered.

In my opinion, something that must be taught is the value of thriving while using fewer resources. A brutal experiment would be isolating a group of teenagers on Pentium II's on a 56 Kbps network and telling them to surf the web. Defibrillators might be needed, along with a guide about how to use a mouse.

But nope, this never ends; it's designed for that purpose. We hate waiting digitally, and at the same time, we can wait hours in line to get to a store and buy the next deprecated thingy. Perhaps I should say wAIting? I'm not sure if there's a way out - it might be too late, and it's already coming at cruise speed.


The Technology Adoption curve of a given product gets embraced by society because of power, money, timing, or the combination of the three. Take WhatsApp - launched in 2009, when smartphones were with us for about five years. WhatsApp solved the main problem that people had back then with the ability to send instant messages across platforms for free. This before and after and other releases like iMessage or Facebook Messenger, killed SMS.

Great timing and key problem-solving made WhatsApp a big success - way before being acquired by Meta and way before the audio and video call functionalities. People loved it, adopted it, and made it the standard. Then, the whole thing became a monopoly.

I remember initially resisting using the App. Obviously, I've ended up succumbing and using it, as well as performing a series of tests. Went back to a Nokia 100 for about six months and felt pretty happy without the "smartrush". The downside of that was that - literally - I was out of my circle of friends and family, some folks answered my calls and there was an uncomfortable and intimidating annoyance floating around. Then, I've started promoting more open and secure messaging Apps, like Telegram and Signal - quite an evangelist. Some people joined, nobody stayed.

I don't need a smartphone. I'm not on social media, just make calls and occasional texting. Everything else on the Internet gets done from my laptop. A couple of years ago, I found balance discovering KaiOS and using a Nokia 800 Tough, that comes with WhatsApp - a big phew for everybody around me. It's been working well, especially battery-wise.

The main problem is that Android and Apple don't understand each other - the robot uses the Rich Communication Services (RCS) Open Source protocol for their Messages, and the fruit their Push Notification service (APNs) proprietary protocol for their iMessage. Other standards like SMTP, IRC, RSS are really universal; you can communicate and use the client of your choice. Something that, probably, the creators of SMS had in mind. Perhaps Apple will switch to RCS and call it a day for the sake of universal communication not tied to a specific device.

Wouldn't be nice to use your operating system's native messaging App and just write and send messages to people? Communicate, a pretty simple action that gets divided or monopolized by three of the five Big Tech - what a coincidence. Until then, there are some projects that solve part of the problem by unifying messaging Apps into one, like Beeper - currently beta-testing - or Texts.

Hopefully, corporations will start looking at the real user problems and trusting that people will adopt it.

P.S.: On November 16, 2023, Apple announced that they will adopt RCS in 2024.


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:

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 principle.

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 repository.

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 clocks.

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 basis.

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 thing.

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, scary.

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 post.

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 list:



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 wonderfully.

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 minim.blog manifesto in ten principles:

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, HTML tag, and tiny tiny CSS.

08 COSTS: Domain name only, €10 first year, €25 renew.

09 SHARE: Send an email at minimblog[at]duck[dot]com.

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 minim.blog, 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.