How 15 Years of programming shaped my approach to writing

Prior to now couple of years, I’ve revealed over 150,000 phrases of content material on web3. Not everybody agreed with what I wrote, however I consider it is vital to externalise the concepts and views you will have, both by means of dialog or writing. The great concepts you may refine additional, whereas you progress on from the dangerous realizing they aren’t worthy of additional clarification. 




My writing started with The Blockchain Innovator’s Handbook and continued with these weekly posts which commenced in January 2022. 


Till I wrote my e-book, I had by no means been a eager author. I loved being a shopper of books, however going by means of the method of writing, after which publishing a e-book helped me to admire the craft of writing.

It’s invigorating to seize your concepts and ideas of their rawest type by means of writing — writing is the best and purest type of expression.

Writing my first e-book

It was in 2021 that I made a decision to write the Blockchain Innovator’s Handbook. By this level, I’d already spent a quantity of years engaged on blockchain expertise and needed to externalise the information that was sitting idle in my thoughts. 


Neil Gaiman refers to this because the seed to your story. As soon as planted it wants to be tended to, cultivated and to develop into one thing magnificent over time. 


I had my seed, and created a construction for the e-book. The subsequent stage was writing. 


I set myself a aim of writing 1000 phrases per day, 5 days per week. This enabled me to commit the primary draft down in a comparatively quick house of time. I really discovered this course of liberating, the place I blocked out 2-3 hours per day to get my phrases completed. 


writing desk setup


I didn’t edit on the fly, I simply saved writing till I hit my phrase quota. The vital factor was to get right into a state of move every day, the place I used to be committing phrases to the web page as shortly as they had been coming to me. 


Remarkably I managed to hit my goal of 30,000 phrases, however now the true work commenced. Many months had been spent refining this draft, working with reviewers and editors to produce one thing value publishing.

It was liberating after I obtained the primary copies of the e-book for overview. The tact then shifted towards selling its launch. 


One of the actually enjoyable occasions alongside the way in which was a having a e-book launch. I had no concept how to do one, however thanks to some nice assist from the Web3 Labs crew, we held an official launch on the finish of 2021. 

As well as to making a gift of signed copies of the e-book, there was even a book-shaped cake for everybody to get pleasure from! 


BIH book launch


As well as to making a gift of signed copies of the e-book, there was even a book-shaped cake for everybody to get pleasure from! 


TBIH book launch cake

The tastiest model of The Blockchain Innovator’s Handbook

Writing as an outlet 

Within the months that adopted the e-book’s launch, I discovered myself lacking the method. I used to be craving for that artistic outlet and the sensation of accomplishment that got here with producing written content material. 


This notion of producing a artistic piece of work gave me one thing that was lacking from working Web3 Labs. As a enterprise proprietor, you are continuously being thrown balls from totally different instructions and also you strive to preserve as many of them within the air without delay as you may. 


Because of this, from one week to the following your focus is continually shifting between placing out fires, working with prospects, your groups and strategic pondering. 


This may at instances go away you feeling such as you’re not being as productive as you want. That is the place writing will be therapeutic, and provide the feeling of accomplishment, even whenever you’ve been leaping from one factor to one other together with your work. 


Publishing this weekly publication stuffed that void and allowed me to share my ideas every week on web3 and the place I consider it to be heading. 


Within the 7-plus years of focussing on this area, it has advanced in methods I might by no means have imagined, however offering a balanced opinion is vital.

Writing versus programming

As somebody who spent 15 years as a developer, there are fascinating parallels between the method of writing and the method of creating software program. Of the 2, I discover writing more durable than programming. Non-programmers might discover this difficult to admire, however programming languages are less complicated than pure languages. 


Programming languages every have their very own syntax which defines the mixture of symbols that can be utilized to outline pc packages. 


Once you write code you will have a compiler that validates what you have written is sensible. It then turns it into machine code that a pc runs for you. The code compiles efficiently and runs or it fails alongside the way in which. 


It is black and white in these respects. You’ve gotten guidelines to comply with which produce an output that both works or would not so far as the creator is worried. 


Writing is way extra nuanced. In contrast to programming the place you’re offering directions to a machine, whenever you write you’re speaking to others. 


You not solely want to write in a cohesive method that is sensible but additionally faucet into human psychology to be sure that your viewers is compelled to learn what you will have written. 


This has change into more and more difficult given the huge quantity of data sources that persons are uncovered to every day. As soon as it was solely adverts, however now you will have tiny nuggets on a number of social media platforms all vying for individuals’s consideration. 


This has additional shifted the kind of content material that folks write, however in some respects made it less complicated for content material creators on social media platforms. The extra sensational the content material, the simpler it’s to draw individuals in. 


Regardless of the kind of content material being written, having the ability to resonate together with your viewers is essential. In software program growth, your target market is the end-users of the software program. 


Each require you to make investments severe hours in your craft and are extremely satisfying whenever you get feedback out of your viewers that issues are working or resonating for them. 


Most of the individuals consuming your work won’t make you conscious they’ve learn or used it. This makes suggestions or feedback all of the extra useful. 


Having spent a lot time coding, it has positively influenced my writing workflow. Like with writing a program I sketch out elements of an article earlier than I write it, offering some unfastened construction. 


Then I write utilizing the superb iA Writer editor during which I take advantage of Markdown for writing which I can simply export right into a Phrase doc. 


Writing in Markdown is probably the most paired-back format I’ve discovered. It is simply you and your textual content, with no formatting menus, every little thing is achievable through the keyboard. I contemplate it the closest there’s to utilizing a typewriter, however with magical formatting choices that make it easy to format textual content as you would like.


Markdown syntax
Basic Markdown Syntax

The affect of AI on writing

Even with the abundance of content material throughout the totally different social media platforms, we’ve now entered a brand new part of content material creation pushed by AI


Prior to the emergence of ChatGPT, the one manner for long-form content material to be generated was through copywriters of transcription companies. We’re now coming into a brand new part within the evolution of content material the place essays will be generated with ease. 


This does imply that we’re drowning in ever extra content material, making it more durable than ever to floor the nuggets of data amongst all of it. 


From my personal private perspective, I don’t write my content material with AI. However, I’ve embraced AI instruments to sharpen what I write. I see AI assistants resembling ChatGPT as akin to junior workers members. They’ll present further views and repair elements of what you have written, however they want to be watched carefully, and positively not trusted blindly. 


The way in which I see it’s that we want to have people proceed to write high quality content material that will probably be used to additional practice the AI


We could also be at a disruptive level within the evolution of content material creation, however at its coronary heart, machines at finest can solely simulate people and our writing. As such, I do not see a necessity to cease writing any time quickly.

In writing as with code, nothing is ever good, it may well repeatedly be improved upon. Therefore there’ll all the time be a necessity for people to make machines higher. And this coupled with the psychological readability that comes with writing is motivation sufficient to preserve going. 


That being mentioned, within the coming months I’m going to take a break from publishing the weekly essays. There’s nonetheless a lot to write about in web3, however there’s additionally so much I want to share on Web3 Labs services which proceed to develop. I’ll be persevering with to put out content material through web3labs.com, however these essays will probably be extra sporadic. 



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