A newsletter about little ideas that tickle the curious mind
What do you do if you have a bunch of unorganised thoughts and ideas that you want to iron out as well as streamline? In the early 2000s, you’d probably have a journal. In the 2010s, it would be a blog. Now, it’s a newsletter.
Fragments is a natural evolution of the journal I had many years ago. Okay, sure, I know. The most prominent characters were the girls that caught my fancy in school. Fragments, hopefully, will be more than me dwelling on my crushes. Fragments is my outlet for unfiltered discussions of contemporary ideas. (One way to look at this is that evolution makes your writing less about girls and more about tech, politics, history, and other things that make you much less happy.)
There’s no particular reason for a stranger to really care about my thoughts. If I had to make a case for myself, I’d say that I have a pretty wide background (I mean, for my age at least). I’ve studied computer science and urban sociology. I’ve worked as a software engineer, a researcher, and a journalist. Right now, I work at a startup in a strategy role.
As you can probably figure, I’ve never been one to settle into a particular domain and have been a sort of a free agent. That doesn’t work for most people trying to do anything useful in most fields. It does work for writers who only need to sound a tad bit confident about what they’re saying and people will share whatever they’ve written as long as it’s something they agree with.
That’s also something I don’t intend to do. If I’m unsure about something, I’ll say it. And I’ll frequently write about things that challenge existing thought processes. At times, I might not even have an opinion on the ideas that I discuss—which I think is a completely acceptable stand by itself.
Take this piece I wrote seven years ago where I wondered how the government would deal with crime committed by an isolated tribe which doesn’t even know that ‘India’ or ‘countries’ are a thing. I really had no opinion of how we must deal with it (at the time), but something quite similar happened four years after I wrote my hypothetical, bringing those conversations into the mainstream.
Or take this example of where I now think that I was quite ballsy. Three months into college, I wrote a 1000-word rant about how I was absolutely frustrated by many things in college. I even called my college—which is called IIIT-H, short for IIIT Hyderabad—IIIT Hypocrisy. No one made any remark about this, though, which makes me think no one noticed it. Anyhow, this piece established me as a loudmouth who speaks his mind early enough in college, something that I reasserted many, many times over the course of five years (in one meeting with the Dean, she threatened to leave because she was offended by something I said).
I don’t think I’m a loudmouth. In fact, I’m fairly quiet in person. I only speak when I know my words will be valued. And I hate mindless speech (or writing, or whatever) that social media is so full with. There’s already an information overload out there. On top of which we’re all making snarky, bad faith, devoid of nuance comments that reaffirm our existing beliefs.
But I’m definitely one to speak my mind. So, all in all, if you think you’d be interested in reading—
Ideas, and discussions of ideas. Things heavily on my mind right now are the role of public health communication in dealing with a crisis like Covid, and a hypothetical on alternative salary structures (getting a new job does make you think about salaries).
Honest, nuanced reflections that don’t fall in any particular category. My writing will both be domain agnostic as well as belief agnostic (the political right and left will both hate me, in short).
That’s it really, just two points.
—you could consider entering your email below and subscribing. I’ll only write when I have something to write and won’t be incessantly emailing every few days just because subscribers need to be kept engaged lest they forget you exist.