1. 3

There are a lot of incredibly powerful tools, ideas, and practices out there that almost nobody knows about. To evangelize them you need to convince people that they’re 1) practical enough to be worth using, and 2) accessible enough to be learned in a sane amount of time. The problem is that marketing is a completely different skill than inventing is. I’d even argue that there’s almost no overlap between the people who like designing things like Kakoune or Escher* and the people who like editing the same essay five times over and writing a bunch of simple examples.

I think of myself as being in the latter group, which means I somehow find writing technical documentation fun. I also like regularly learning weird powerful mindbending things that I struggle with for weeks before I can do the equivalent of “Hello world”. I’ve found that most of the really out there stuff isn’t hard, it’s just that everybody involved has better things to do than write guides to make it more accessible.

I recently (mostly) finished up writing guides and tutorials for a project, so I’m in the mood for a change of pace. I’m looking for obscure tools/methods/etc that are mostly unused, would improve everybody’s lives if it were more widely-used, and are primarily held back due to a lack of resources and learning material. Ultimate goal here is to write docs/etc to make them more accessible. Something that also makes me feel like an idiot is a nice-to-have.

A few things that I’m not looking for:

  • Lisp, Haskell: Both are in reasonably wide use already.
  • Two-stack pushdown automata: Interesting but not very practical.
  • Clean-Room Programming: The problem is less poor documentation and more it’s hard as balls

Looking forward to seeing what you have!

*Okay yes the Escher guy is probably a crackpot but it’s still a good example imo