FOMO: The Abyss of My Hoarded Treasure
10 seconds into the article, it was established that it interested me. Though I didn’t feel like reading it right then, for it was a busy day (not unlike most days). I clicked on the
Back to browsing twitter. Half a dozen new links from
Hacker News since morning - someone deployed something on RaspberryPi, another startup got funding for doing X with Blockchain, yet another flaw found in self-driving cars - the usual stuff.
Wait, what’s that last one -
An Interactive Regex Tutorial. Now that I think about it, I have been meaning to hone my regex skills. Click. Ah! swanky UI. Will definitely use this - but later. Too busy right now.
Share > Add Tweet to Bookmarks. I’ll come back to it later; at least that’s what I told myself.
Data, data everywhere, not a single drop of peace.
Yet another day in the life of the hoarder; scrounging for knowledge/wisdom/information among the drivel of the interwebs. As much as I’d like to blame technology for my fear of missing out, it was always there. Technology merely provided a channel for my depravities. As I stood leering at the broken beauty of the Internet, the flood-gates opened and out came gushing - everything I thought I wanted; filling my senses to the brim and then some, until I was subsumed by own perversions.
Everyday I found myself bombarded with links. All with the same allure, and similar destinies - either
Save to Pocket or
Add Bookmark; though most of my usual haunts offered their own versions of the coffers that grew deeper with every link I dropped -
Add Tweet to Bookmarks on Twitter,
Save post on Facebook,
Save to Watch later on Youtube. Even Instagram has a little bookmark button next to each post - what you’re supposed to save it for, is beyond me.
On some good days when I could muster the will to open the pandora’s box, the sheer enormity of my precious hoard would throw me. Until a month ago, I had accrued 9K links on
“As that I can see no way out but through”
– Robert Frost
And so I dipped my toes into the golden cesspool. The goal was to bring the number down. I decided to delete as much as possible. My algorithm for curation was simple:
Pick the first link in the queue, and read its title.
Based on the title decide:
Is it something I could’ve used in the last 6 months?
Is it something I’m
extremelylikely to use in the next 6 months?
Delete the link If
Exit if reached the end of queue, else go to
This took me a few days, but at the end, I was left with 2K links. Seemed a lot more manageable, compared to its original form. Since then I’ve managed to read tens of links in the queue. Though regrettably I added more than I read, and currently the count has reached 2.9K.
Meh, baby steps.
More importantly I needed a system in place to keep the agents of anarchy at bay. A means to not only distill the knowledge, but also organize it in a secure, searchable & manageable format. A digital Eden where the inherent entropy of the universe can be channeled, without destroying itself. This was a long search in itself, though I did manage to find such a system. More on that in another post soon.