My mind used to be a cramped room full of little tasks. Do laundry. Update your CV. Don't forget to buy salad. It got better when I started writing these tasks down (I use the "Getting Things Done" structure). With all these uninvited guests kicked out of my mind, there was suddenly room for deeper thoughts about topics that matter. This type of house cleaning happened in spring 2013.
I did a lot of thinking since then, but in a way, many thoughts just stayed as short-term visitors. Which is good, otherwise my mind would have filled up again quickly, not allowing any new guest ideas to enter. But most ideas were lost soon after. Which is also good in most cases because most ideas are not so good after all. But some are worth keeping and developing further.
Then I wrote the book Interpretable Machine Learning which revealed to me how wonderful it can be to write down your ideas. Shaping thoughts into words requires to challenge the thoughts and by that reshape and distill them.
A few months ago, I discovered tiddlywiki, which is a wiki software. It‘s weirdly beautiful since it is self-contained in a single html file. It can be used for note-taking, for a personal wiki or whatever it is that you want to do with it, since it‘s designed to be tinkered with. My initial use for it was for keeping track of my reading stack (spoiler: the story ends with creating this website as my public note sharing place and not really using it for organizing my reading stack). But then ... things happened. Things I didn‘t plan to do. Like using the wiki to keep a daily journal. Or starting the VSI Project. I also started formulating my thoughts on various topics, primarily about interpretable machine learning and climate resilience.
I find it quite motivating to write in public. So I decided to share some of my notes. Not all of them, because there is still some filtering and distillation involved, but I try to be liberal. After a bit of tinkering with tiddlywiki, I automated the setup so that my notes with a certain tag will be published automatically on mlnar.com. I really fell in love with the idea that I can, with the ease of adding a tag, make a part of my thought network publicly available.
So, what is this website here?
It‘s not a blog, since most notes are shorter than a blog post and they are much more linked.
It‘s not a wiki, since I have no intention to cover topics exhaustively and it‘s not a collaborative project.
It‘s not a newsletter, since there is no publication schedule and the topics vary.
It‘s a public place where I can send my ideas to. Ideas that would otherwise occupy my mind too much, like children that won‘t leave their parents house, or ideas that would otherwise get lost.