Will Clarke

Simplicity is somehow still underrated


Simplicity is good. The ideas that lasts longest are generally the simplest.

The most interesting things in life are all straightforward. Here are some bad examples of simple stuff:

I’d argue that most selective pressures ultimately favour simplicity.

This holds true with technology, too.

When building something, there’s a temptation to show off. Complexity may impress people. “Look at this huge intracate thing I made. You don’t understand it. I’m so clever.”

Simplicity often seems obvious. “Anyone could have done that”

Simplicity is good:

Complexity is bad:

It’s not always that straightforward

  1. Inherent complexity. If you’re trying to model all the possible metabolic pathways, you’re going to struggle to fit it all on one A4 sheet of paper. Some things just have large scope.
  2. Accidental complexity. Programmers like overengineering. Why not add some distributed databases to a calculator app? It’ll be cool…. but perhaps not necessary.

Don’t take my word for it!

Simple can be harder than complex - Steve Jobs

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication – Leonardo da Vinci

Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler – Albert Einstein


tech simplicity perspective