Visual Studio Code – The ultimate writing experience

Microsoft Word. Google Docs. Ulysses. These are the applications that come first in mind for most writers. What would you say if I tell you that “Visual Studio Code” would be another option that you should seriously consider?

Wait a minute. Did you really mean Visual Studio Code? Isn’t that actually an IDE for coding?

Actually, it is. It was developed by Microsoft as the go-to IDE for typescript. In time, it became one of the major IDEs in the javascript ecosystem and not only.

Ok… So what it has to do with tools like Microsoft Word or Google Docs?

Well… Visual Studio Code is offering an experience that no other tool managed to come close to. Machine learning helps you write twice as fast, reduce spelling mistakes and give you full control over every detail of this experience.

Pretty hard to believe, right? Take a look at this recording on how I wrote this exact article that you are reading, right now.

Visual Studio Code – Writing Experience

Does that look interesting? Do you want to know how you can achieve the same results?

Install Visual Studio Code from here. At the initial start, choose a dark theme or any that you prefer. For me, this is especially important as it helps to reduce eye strains during long working sessions.

After that, you need to add a couple of extra plugins to customize the default experience:

To get started, turn the “zen mode” on and the application will go into full-screen, hiding all unneeded UI elements and letting you focus on what is important: your writing.

And that’s it.

Start writing and enjoy!

Writing or Reading Morning Routine

Morning routines are key to a sustainable, healthy and productive lifestyle. I am always looking for small optimizations to my routines and I was faced with the question:

Should you read the first thing in the morning or should you write?

For quite a long time, my morning routine contained one hour of reading time. 

This week I decided to challenge my approach as I was feeling that the ratio of the content I consume over  content I create was getting out of balance. Therefore, I started writing first thing in the morning. I couldn’t be happier with the decision.

Here is my recommendation:

Take advantage of a fresh start in the day and start writing. Your mind is free of other people’s thoughts and filled with your own, born from your subconscious or your imagination.

Read throughout the day or in the evening. Let all ideas that you collected brew overnight, and turn them into nuggets of wisdom the first thing the next day.

Do this every morning and not only your writing will get better, but as will your thinking.

The Fisherman

Once, a powerful executive went on vacation—his first in fifteen years. As he was exploring a pier in a small coastal fishing village, a tuna fisherman docked his boat. As the Fisherman lashed his boat to the pier, the Executive complimented him on the size and quality of his fish.

How long did it take you to catch these fish?” the Executive asked.

Only a little while,” the Fisherman replied.

Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more?” the Executive asked.

I have enough to support my family’s needs,” said the Fisherman.

But,” asked the Executive, “what do you do with the rest of your time?

The Fisherman replied, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, and stroll into the village each evening, where I sip wine and play guitar with my friends. I have a full and busy life.

The Executive was flabbergasted.

I’m a Harvard MBA, and I can help you. You should spend more time fishing. With the proceeds, you could buy a bigger boat. A bigger boat would help you catch more fish, which you could sell to buy several boats. Eventually, you’d own an entire fleet. “Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you could sell directly to the consumers, which would improve your margins. Eventually, you could open your own factory, so you’d control the product, the processing, and the distribution. Of course, you’d have to leave this village and move to the city so you could run your expanding enterprise.

The Fisherman was quiet for a moment, then asked, “How long would this take?” “Fifteen, twenty years. Twenty-five, tops.” “Then what?”

The Executive laughed. “That’s the best part. When the time is right, you’d take your company public and sell all of your stock. You’d make millions.”

“Millions? What would I do then?”

The Executive paused for a moment.

“You could retire, sleep late, fish a little, play with your children, take a siesta with your wife, and stroll into the village each evening to sip wine and play the guitar with your friends.”

Shaking his head, the Executive bade the Fisherman farewell. Immediately after returning from vacation, the Executive resigned from his position.

A great parable, highlighting the common mentality of maximizing profits and losing grasp on what is really important.

I encountered the story is in the book “The Personal MBA” by Josh Kaufman. [Full Disclosure: As an Amazon affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]