Less is more (minimalist)

I haven’t blogged in a while, the last time I wrote something was nearly a year ago.

This week I started catching up on watching MasterChef Australia again. I haven’t watched MasterchefAU since I left Malaysia for the US. Nothing really has changed, the show is still the filled with reality TV hype. This week particularly was the Gordon Ramsay week and it somehow felt like a Gordon Ramsay show.

This entry today is not going to be anything about reality TV shows. Its about the next junction that life will take me. I am nearly done with my undergraduate studies and it is crunch time.

In the the last year or so (from July of 2017), I have been doing some fun stuff. One of them being my work at ASU CIS (read more here) and also looking for internships. Both ended up well and exceeding my expectations. Most importantly, I have been hard at work at refining my workflow and finding the right person inside of me that will propel me into a career.

I am honestly not sure what the person looks like yet, I might never know but the journey of exploration has definitely taught me some good and bad things about my identity.

I am going to switch over to another topic before continuing the story above. You might be thinking when you saw this article, why I chose the featured image. It’s not just some random screenshot that I slipped in. The image above is a screenshot of my Google Chrome browser. Something remarkable about it is that I have been using the same theme for as long as I can remember.

I don’t know how long that is but it should be at least 5 years. The name for the theme is “Ambiance Theme for Chrome (Maverick)” and I highly recommend it for anyone looking for a clean dark theme (download).

My justification for keeping this theme for years is that it has the perfect tone that I like in a dark theme. Maybe I’m slightly biased towards this theme as I have been using it for such a long time. But it’s not like I’ve not tried to look for another dark theme. Every now and then, I fire up the Chrome Web Store in search of a refreshing new theme. I always end up reverting back to the Ambiance theme.

The big reason for me to revert back? It is because every other dark theme has a weird combination that I simply do not want in a theme. I would say the three most important parts of a dark theme for me is:

  1. The top bar must be actually dark (and not some transparent / gradient-y color)
  2. The tabs must contrast well with the top bar
  3. The new tab page must be free of any customization (similar to vanilla Chrome)

Quite a number of dark themes have a great color on the top bar but where they fall short is in the contrasting color of the tabs. Adding to that, a lot of dark themes have a decorative background in the new tab page which honestly throws off the design. I am looking for a pseudo dark theme that doesn’t go off the roof when it comes to being dark.

And that is why “Ambiance Theme for Chrome (Maverick)” is still my choice for a dark theme on Google Chrome. Speaking of browsers, I do like how the dark theme looks like on Microsoft Edge but the thing is I don’t use Edge often enough to savor it’s amazing dark theme.

At this point I might sounds a little off-topic here but bear with me, I am about to get to my point.

Up till this point, I have talked about my personal standard for a dark theme and what this shows is that I have a very picky taste for certain things. Whenever given the choice, I would like to leverage that freedom of choice to my strengths and weaknesses. I took a while to realize this when I was uptaking the role of VP at ASUCIS in the past year.

Another thing that I found out about myself is that I love cleaning things up. Whether it be digitally of physically. It’s not like I didn’t know I liked cleaning things up, it’s just that I have a better understanding on how to play it to my strengths. There’s just something satisfying about cleaning up the ugly looking code that I wrote after hours of debugging.

fyi, I am a ‘tab’ person rather than a ‘space’ person when it comes to indentations.

Anyways, cleaning up has always been a pastime for me. For example, in the last week and a half, I have been happily cleaning up all my digital files that I have created in the past few months. That include a lot of horribly named files that I have come to regret making.  It is still a work in progress as I am still not done cleaning up the files yet.

Understanding small things like this about myself is something that doesn’t feel very significant at all. But it does lay the groundwork for looking beyond my life as student of school to a student of life. I am not going to stop learning after I graduate, in fact I have began to diversify my knowledge in the last 6 months not to prepare myself for an amazing career but to kickstart that mindset of lifelong learning.

I am not sure when I will be blogging again, I hope it is soon.



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