Simplicity

 

‘The simplest way to achieve simplicity is through thoughtful reduction.’

John Maeda

 

I use the above quote and the following slide in my presentations.

This slide is based on an email I received over a year ago. The only thing I changed are the names, so as not to identify the writer. In case you are wondering, I also obtained the writer’s permission to use his email.

 

 

I find that people relate to this slide because it highlights the need to aim for simplicity when writing. This process involves removing anything that does not add any value to the message. The first example is the original first sentence. The other two examples show what can be achieved through simplification.

I’ll spare you from having to read the whole email (you can see some of it in the background).

 

Comments

  1. Arnold Burian

    Great point, Chris. I’m a big fan of minimalist documentation, for many reasons. Recently, someone asked me what the "tone" of documentation should be. I told him that if you can detect a tone, you’re probably using too many words. 🙂

  2. Arnold Burian

    Great point, Chris. I’m a big fan of minimalist documentation, for many reasons. Recently, someone asked me what the "tone" of documentation should be. I told him that if you can detect a tone, you’re probably using too many words. 🙂

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