Rustic Cyberpunk

Coffee & Cabins

It Should Fit on a Floppy

3 min read

I've been following this philosophy that I think is working out very well for me. Any piece of software I write for the web must fit on a 1.44Mb floppy. I can't do much about existing projects that I have to use for work, but for anything I start from scratch for personal use, this has been the norm for a while.

The deliberate size restriction makes useless features mostly infeasible. Much like a cabin lifestyle, it enhances your choices with simplicity and contemplation.

Keeping things small also makes the web more usable. I was borrowing a computer the other day and discovered the filter-free web was nearly unusable. I've personally taken to browsing with JavaScript disabled for the most part and it helps to keep my own laptop under steak-searing temperatures.

There seems to be some noise already of fatigue in web development; An area I've been out of for quite a while. It's one of those fields that leap lightyears ahead, or behind depending on who you ask, such that not keeping on top of the latest trends every few months effectively makes your knowledge obsolete.

I think part of the framework craze is that fear of falling behind. Being intimately familiar with framework-x, or language-y, or whatever other miasma of malarkey, without which, you become potentially unhireable this week. But I'd rather avoid companies that filter hires based on bleeding-edge trends.

Somehow, I've become less afraid of being unhireable.

Worse comes to worse, I can sell my apartment and become the carpenter or soap maker I always wanted to be. Luckily, I hadn't made risky investments so I do have a small buffer in case tech collapses under my feet. It should last me long enough to start a furniture company, wood stove shop, or soap boutique. People still need chairs to sit on, stoves to get warm, and soap to get clean.

I've also become less afraid of making hard choices.

I understand that not having a family in my care is one of the reasons I can think this way. If I had a wife and children, their needs would overrule my flights of fancy. A family too is a goal for the future, but I don't know how far it is yet.

I'm pretty handy with a mop so I can still probably make do as a janitor somewhere. Robots aren't quite there yet in terms of cleanliness in the real world. I'm only now starting to appreciate working in a swath of minimum wage jobs in my youth. I had no idea the foundations of reality that grew under my feet like the dirt under my fingernails would somehow help me brace myself against an onslaught of stress by osmosis.

I've become less afraid of life.

Living relatively disconnected, especially not being glued to social media lately, has made me more content about my life choices. A diet on my needs and wants has also left me more time for contemplation of future choices.

Meanwhile, I've been brushing up on welding again. A friend who went one of our local BOCES taught me the basics. There are lots of tutorials on YouTube too so I can pick up some rudimentary work to start off. Welding is an immensely useful skill that's sorely underappreciated.

In addition to building the cabin, I've had this idea to make my own wood stove. This was a learning exercise, a way of reducing costs, and a way to tailor the cabin heating to my needs specifically. I've been drawing up the plans for it for a while that I hope to open source along with my cabin plans.

The wood stove and cabin plans will also fit on a floppy.