Hi, I'm Vikram.

I write short pieces on how technology and design influence our society and culture.

Failure as dissonance

Failure is only a matter of perspective, and not a label. It’s the dissonance between how we expect things to work, and how they actually pan out.

Blockchain-executable code

Balaji (@balajis) describes his take on limiting blockchain-executable code in a tweetstorm.

Brexit Brief by Quartz

The weekend edition of the Daily Brief by Quartz on Brexit

Twitter's plans for AR/VR

Letter to the editor: LAUNCH Ticker

Blockchain as a filesystem

The blockchain can be understood as a filesystem for a new kind of web

Re - Doctors and Patients

Another piece to the NY Times - Science Times. It didn’t make it, so I’m publishing it here

Re - Liberal Blind Spot

I submitted this piece to the NY Times, as a letter to the editor. They rejected it, so I’m publishing it here

Snapchat in Quartz

The weekend edition of the Daily Brief by Quartz had a very interesting take on Snapchat that I wanted to publish here for those who haven’t read it

Google I/O 2016

The latest and greatest from Google I/O

The Last Experience

Apathy degrading the fabric of our society

Fight or replace

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. ― R. Buckminster Fuller

This week - Mar 26th.

Best reads from this week

On Courage

The man behind the largest pivot in technology industry

The Turing Solution

Why haven’t we made contact with intelligent civilizations?

This week - Feb 28th.

Best reads from this week

This week - Feb 19th.

Best reads from this week

Hardware Startups 101

A primer on how to build, test, scale and finance heardware startups

This week - Feb 7th.

Best reads from this week

Last week - Feb 1st.

Best reads from the last week

Contextual Runtimes - Take 2

We are embracing context in ever more applications today, but was that ultimately inevitable?

This week - Dec 5th.

Best reads from this week

Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI)

A large scale effort for personalized medicine

Oliver Sacks

Oliver Sacks passing away at 82

Bruising Workplace?

A modern workplace plagued by some of the same old office politics

Common writing errors

How can you quickly fix common writing errors

Google and Alphabet

A new model and one of the most bold moves for a large corporation

Plan of Action (POA)

A way to set goals for the next academic year

Insufficient sleep

A new public epidemic?

National Strategic Computing Initiative

A new effort to create the next big super computer and applications for it

How to get app developer on board?

Is it the right time to get a developer to work for you, on your project?

Bitcoin and Blockchain

Bitcoin and the blockchain may not be separable in near future

Objectives and performance

How to ask the right questions to keep a team on target and push for performance

Fixing science

Science is broken. What can we do to fix it?

Duqu Reloaded

Cyberespionage bug Duqu makes a return

Trello workflow

The importance of streamlining and linearizing task workflow

Austen Heinz

Standing on the shoulder of giants

Productive workflow

Stop thinking, start doing.

Your first paper

7 tips to get your first paper published in a journal

From bench to bedside

The next billion people solving new problems

Browser extensions = Kernel Modules

The browser extensions that we use today might be the future of operating system design

Beyond Automation

What lies beyond automation?

Bitcoin - The future

Reid Hoffman on why the blockchain matters?

Sunrise Calendar - Meet

Beautifully designed products moving into the future of seamless integration

Market Convergence

Tesla entering a new market of power backup systems

Digital currency revolution

More than magic Internet money

Sixteen trends - Andreesen Horowitz

16 trends in technology for this new year discussed by a16z

Belief in certainty - Innovation Starvation

Human potential, at it’s best

On Perfectionism

The Book Of Life

Being special isn't so special

What does it mean to be special? Maybe not all that much..

Stop brainstorming

Brain-warming instead of brainstorming

2015 - Ecosystem Grows Despite Price Decline

Significant bitcoin venture investment continued and much progress was made in furthering adoption, particularly in bitcoin payment acceptance by big brand names such as Microsoft and Dell.

What makes a developer?

A developer of the world

What happens when a country defaults?

The Economist explains what happens when a country defaults on their debt

Year in review - 2014

Some of the biggest trends of 2014

What do you do?

The elevator pitch expanded

10 papers for programmers

10 papers every developer should read, twice.

Deep learning - Geoffrey Hinton AMA

Highlights from Dr. Hinton’s AMA

NIPS 2014

Interesting papers from Deep Learning and Representation Learning Workshop

Bitcoin Developer Guide

A great resource to learn bitcoin development from A to Z.

Walter Levin

Walter Levin’s expulsion from MIT

Decentralized command and control

Worms using the blockchain for command and control

A good first impression

Making a good first impression by making a few small changes

Direct vs Indirect cultures

Feedback and language differences

Google Genomics

Google Cloud Compute for genomic data processing


After the lengthy presentation of SSL, let’s go with the fun stuff, namely:


Since the general concept of SSL has already been covered into some other questions (e.g. this one and that one), this time I will go for details.


There are some rare occasions when I come across some brilliant pieces of information that I can’t help but share and showcase. This is one such example. This question was asked on the security stack exchange, and well for the most part it’s hidden because no one will search for this particular answer. All the more reason I think it’s incredibly important to bring it to light. The question was asked by Polynomial. The question is answered in an incredible amount of detail by an expert, Thomas Pornin and is covered in this 3-part series. I copied his answer directly with minor changes to keep it as accurate as possible.

Entrepreneurship and leadership

Inspiring reads for entrepreneurs

Tools of Trade - Places to post your startup

This is taken from Matt McCaffrey’s repository

Social capital and social contract

Behavioural dynamics and social networks

The Oracle of Delphi

Why interpreting gross customer-analytics can be a bad idea

This week - 15 Nov.

Best reads from this week

OWASP Talk - Writeup

Why the need to blog? And more importantly, why is that all the more important for security-researchers?

The Espresso News

Short, impactful all first thing in the morning

This week - 8 Nov.

Best reads from this week

Deliberate practice

What is this idea of deliberate practice and how does it differ from plain old regular-practice?

Take 60 seconds a day

What good shall I do today?

This week - 1 Nov.

Best reads from this week

Cloudspace - Blog like a hacker

I recently gave a talk at Cloudspace on using Jekyll and a little bit of the history behind it. Lastly, I talked about how to build a simple plugin using ruby. The slides are present here

This week - 25 Oct.

Best reads from this week

Bitcoin in Japan

How will Bitcoin change the future of Japan?

Growth with epitopes

*Tweetstorm by me, on similarities between the immune system and user-base growth**

This week - 18 Oct.

Best reads from this week

Mega-man and software development

What can Mega-man teach us about designing APIs that are built to last

Disease modeling with data-structures

Tweetstorm by me, on modeling diseases with new data-structures


I’ve talked about continous deployment and integration before but today I wanna talk about one of the providers Codeship. The service is an absolute pleasure to use and their support is just as good. Let’s look at why you’d want to use Codeship:

This week - 11 Oct.

Best reads from this week

Gamification of reading

How playing minecraft could help children read better

Delightful user-experience

Building a delightful user-experience.

Q3 2014 - Ecosystem Maturing Amid Price Pressure

CoinDesk’s state of bitcoin report. Significant bitcoin venture investment continued and much progress was made in furthering adoption, particularly in bitcoin’s use as a medium of exchange.

This week - 4 Oct.

Best reads from this week

Software for revolution

Blockchain as a technology for revolution

Ideas for content

Tweetstorm from Balaji about judging crazy new ideas for content, rather than immediate application

Shell Shock

What impact does the shell-shock vulnerability have on us?

This week - 27 Sep.

Best reads from this week

Small changes

Small ripples set the tide.

Venture capital - Raising money

Tweetstorm from Marc about cash burn rates being too high

Our superpowers

Tweetstorm by Marc Andreessen on how technology has provided us with superpowers

Best of this week - 20 Sep.

Best reads from this week

Tools of Trade - Frontend development

A huge list of frontend development resources collected over time. Sorted from general knowledge at the top to concrete problems at the bottom.

Building the right team

Game theory applied to startups and people

Examining ideas - early or late

Tweetstorm by Marc Andreessen about ideas being too early or too late

Big ideas

Tweetstorm by Marc Andreessen on the big ideas that Silicon Valley is working on

DevOps - Part II

DevOps and roles in a startup

DevOps - Part I

What is DevOps and how can startups adopt it?

Product Management Threads

This is a curated list of product management threads from Quora. The list comes from Baryy Clark

Windows phone revolution

Predicting the future or defining the future? The current state of Windows phones.

Essence of disruption

Tweetstorm by Balaji, discussing the idea: Is the goal to solve problems or to try to solve problems?

Tools of Trade - Software Development

A large collection of tools for software startups

Technical CEO vs Professional CEO

Tweetstorm from Marc Andreessen on the differences between a technical vs professional CEO

A Beautiful Mind

The worlds in the mind of other people.

Single point of failure

The importance of being adaptable, and avoiding single points of failure.

Sharpen the contradictions

Conflict management done right. Bring out the conflicts and don’t bury them under feelings or the fear of being called out for messing something up. In a startup, that could be a killer.

Rule of 2

You just need two minutes to think of an idea, but what does it take to actually create a company around that idea? A startup is a lot more than just an idea.

Roles in a startup

Selling ice? A short comic about the division of roles in a startup.

Proletarian effect in programming

Emerging middle-class of programmers. How will the future of our economy depend on those who can program, and what does that mean for those who have the chance to learn it now? In the end, technology is dominating our lives and that trend is not going down.

Programming a startup

A new paradigm for rapidly developing prototypes and testing them with customers: Meteor.js for startups

What is a MVP?

MVP is not a smaller, hacked up version of the final product. There’s a lot more involved, in reality, an MVP is a model that will provide you with the best results from tests that you are conducting to verify the assumptions about your business model.

Gust - The startup portfolio

A walkthrough on how to use Gust to showcase your startup.

Data structures the world

Software is eating the world and producing a lot of that. In turn, that data is re-structuring it. An interesting feedback loop for the age of technology.

Customer Development and Lean Startup

Steve Blank summarizing the Lean Startup movement along with the recent advances and developments in his article for HBR. He has some very unique top-down insights into what makes Lean Startup work, and reprints of his paper are now openly available.

Competitive advantage of design

The importance of design to a young-startup. In short: There isn’t any. You can’t out-compete innovative features by building a better designed product. It just doesn’t work like that in the long run. Sure it’s nice to have a sleek app, but you need more lead bullets

Cloud Buzzwords

Cloud computing as a Service. There are a lot of new acronyms becoming buzz-words, everyone is talking about a new SaaS service, or a newly deployed PaaS, but what do they mean? Beyond the hype, there’s a lot of amazing technology at play here.

Q2 2014 - Expanding Bitcoin Economy

CoinDesk’s report in the State of Bitcoin in the second quarter of 2014. The most promising results include the price bounce-back for Bitcoin. A number of factors explain bitcoin’s price rebound in the second quarter, including what appears to be a stabilizing regulatory situation in China as well as continued interest in bitcoin by large, well-established brands such as DISH, Expedia, and Apple

Q1 2014 - State of Bitcoin

CoinDesk’s report in the State of Bitcoin in the first quarter of 2014. The most promising results include venture capital soaring, showing confidence in the technology and hopeful profitable performance

Hi, I'm Vikram.