Elena' s AI Blog

Minimalism in Coding and Design

16 Dec 2021 / 4 minutes to read

Elena Daehnhardt

Midjourney, May 2023


Time goes quickly, and our lives demand efficiently solving daily tasks and problems. We also want to have fun and enjoy being with families and friends. It is thus paramount to solve issues in time, avoid procrastination and too much complexity when possible. In simple words, keeping it all as simple as possible. I think that well-thought minimalism in everything we do or plan is the key to saving time.

Knowing and honing your skills

Let’s focus on the coding and design process. My front-end skills require so much polishing that I do not even dare to delve into them. I position myself as a back-end developer because it is what I like to do. And it is OK, it is not possible to be perfect in everything. Firstly, I did my breadth-search on things I wanted to learn in programming and design, and it took me years. But in the end, I definitely found out that I do not have patience in meticulously finding colors and creating layouts while creating perfect web pages.

I like to create worlds in code, objects, and control flows to realize the needed functionality. I think that coding is magic, and magic can be manifested in different ways. So when I do programming, I cast some spells that impact the core algorithm, making it adaptable for the end-user, and more accessible for code reuse. The design can be changed later or even outsourced when possible.

Focus on what is essential

However, I still like to learn what is most essential for my projects. I have learned basic HTML and CSS. On the Web now, it is an absolute must-have skill. And, when having some programming experience in hand, with a bit of time and effort, we can quickly learn new tools, languages, libraries. This is time-consuming, and development tools are in constant flux. Thus it is good really to focus! Choose a minimalistic skill set that solves 80% of your problems. You can skip 20% of unnecessary effort most of the time.

Do not re-invent the wheel!

When we want to be effective, we can stand on the shoulders of titans and use state-of-the-art algorithms instead of spending our time “re-inventing the wheel.” For instance, just do it if you like using WordPress for your blog! There are so many plugins and themes that address any requirement or taste! Nevertheless, all these goodies come with the cost of bugging our daily routines, maintenance, and unnecessary hustle. Consider that some installed plugins introduce security holes and how much damage they can cause when not dealt with in time!

Update your skills set in time

Nowadays, technology advances so rapidly that I sometimes feel like running after leaving the train. More technical knowledge is needed every day. Yesterday, it was GIT and workflows, and today it is Docker. What is next?


I like to focus on the essentials, and use tools that I like, which address 80% of my tasks. I know that I prefer the back-end, which was not always the case; Learning your preferences takes time. So I focus on the back-end, particularly Machine Learning, Flask, Python, REST. At the same time, I know the essentials of the most needed HTML and CSS, so I can quickly fix minor things.

By the way, I am designing this blog to be as minimalistic as possible. I do not use any complex patterns. I am focusing on the primary goal of this website - to keep things simple, well-organized to keep track of what I am doing. This should help me to devote more time to learning new things.

Did you like this post? Please let me know if you have any comments or suggestions.

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About Elena

Elena, a PhD in Computer Science, simplifies AI concepts and helps you use machine learning.

Elena Daehnhardt. (2021) 'Minimalism in Coding and Design', daehnhardt.com, 16 December 2021. Available at: https://daehnhardt.com/blog/2021/12/16/edaehn-minimalism/
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