LindyLearn Reflections, Roadmap & Hacker News experiment
Overview of work in the 3 months, plan for the next months, and something to try out
Hey everyone! As mentioned in the essay on read-it-later lists I shared this week, a few overdue reflections on LindyLearn:
First, some context: LindyLearn only consists of me (Peter) and everyone on this newsletter. I quit my job at big tech 3 months ago to be less of a small cog and address one of the biggest problems we face: content overload and incentives not aligned with spending time well online.
My work in the last few months has been gathering information by exploring, talking, and too much thinking. I launched two product experiments through which you likely found this project:
Blogs Search: Resurfacing great blog posts on topics that are relevant to you, indexed by what people learned from them. The Twitter comments about each article work well, but we quite rarely search for more specific content.
Lindy Feed: Using your existing Twitter network to curate and filter new articles. The idea makes sense and works well, but doesn't replace our existing content filters or social need, and is hard to scale to more users.
These experiments made the overall problem more clear: Everyone has too many things to do, yet there are few alternatives for social networks that overload you with more content. We subscribe more and more, and engage less. The appeal of newness is strong and habits change slowly.
The fundamental goal of LindyLearn is to make exploring useful content as engaging and social as scrolling newsfeeds is. I believe the key to it is a community, similar to how you talk about great books with friends instead of small talk or trying to impress them.
That’s a vision and not a concrete problem to solve. The bottleneck is addressing the smaller problems we all have first, and attracting more people like us. So I’m doubling down on what I do best, and what has the highest chance of being useful for you — launching more small experiments like the Blogs Search or Lindy Feed.
Each of the next projects is time-boxed to a maximum of one week of development, to address the feedback you all have as soon as possible. This is the current list:
Lindy Hacker News: Aggregate posts of the best classic essays on Hacker News (like this one), so you can find inspiration without the noise. The product would be a website to browse and search across discussions of timeless content, and a Twitter account to follow new posts easily.
Surface Pocket / Instapaper articles: Show articles you saved previously when you search on Google via a browser extension. If it’s allowed, it could be a lightweight way to make our great existing content libraries more accessible.
Twitter Lists directory: There’s no search bar for Twitter lists, probably because most people create their own ones. But would be interesting to see the sources other people follow outside of your bubble. Using tech from the Lindy Feed, it could aggregate the top articles posted in each list.
Bookmarks obsidian.md integration: This one is still unclear, but I believe there’s potential to better and easier organize read and unread articles in Obsidian (or other notes apps), so they get rediscovered and are not lost in our read-it-later lists or browser history.
The whole point is to quickly try out if those ideas work. The first experiment is almost ready, here’s a small preview:
There are things to polish and complete (reliable recent posts, search, seeing past threads) before I’ll launch it more widely later this week. But you can already try it out at hn.lindylearn.io, and it’s proving to be an excellent rabbit hole for exploration.
For example, which articles written in 1995 do we still talk about? hn.lindylearn.io/years/1995
I’d love to hear your feedback on the overall plan and the Hacker News experiment — it makes this whole thing worthwhile.
Stay focused online.