When Will We Run Out of Fossil Fuels? Likely, never

This article began with a simple question - when will we run out of oil to drill? It’s likely that you must have come across the answer that puts the date around 2050, which is derived by dividing the proven reserves we have by the annual consumption. Another answer considers the game of demand and supply. Oil will progressively get expensive as we run out of it, in the face of which, the alternatives will become much cheaper. That is true, but it still carries an unspoken assumption that we are, in fact, running out of oil pretty quickly.

Being Fast Matters

Recently, I learned an interesting thing about my programming ability. That I have become faster at it over the years. In software literature, being ‘fast’ almost carries a negative connotation — of being reckless and clumsy vs. taking a more nuanced approach: using a pen and paper, and deliberating over the solution. Fred brooks famously said only 16% of the estimate should be devoted to actual coding, while 33% to planning and 50% to testing and debugging.

Clean Git History is Kinda Overrated

An important thing I learned early in my career was that best practices need not to be accepted at face value. There are so many nuances to Software development that a rule followed religiously can bite you in the back somewhere in the future. It’s not easy to realize this, though. Often, you read about an idea, you are sold to it (without considering its wider implications) and next thing you know you’re married to it.

How I Started Enjoying Programming Again

A question that has haunted me all my life is of identity. If I include my hobbying years, I have been programming for more than a decade. However, my interests have always been much wider—economics, psychology, mathematics—and the list of things that I have dabbled with is long and growing—design, writing, vector art, photo editing, chess. I am a textbook dilettante. The idea of having a single pursuit for your whole life doesn’t appeal to me, and perhaps, never will.

The Most Important Thing Paul Graham Taught Me

Few weeks back, Paul Graham published a post on having kids. When I was finished with the post, I knew I had read something very insightful. The topic of his essay was mundane, done probably a million times, but his perspective never is. I don’t know where the magic comes from, but he has a special ability to distill the wisdom lying in the far corners of the brain—what you might not know you know.