Vigneshwar's blog

learning + clarity

I am passionate about helping others find clarity. Here's why:

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In previous posts, I’ve shared that I am an extensive note-taker. Since then people have curiously asked me about the sort of things on which I take notes.

Luckily for me, a few crucial things had already happened within my note-taking system leading up to this point thus allowing me to answer this question as follows.

Emergence of structure in the note-library

To begin with, I describe how I loosely organise my notes into clusters with links between related notes, considering that presently I have about 650 individual notes written over the period of about 2-3 years.

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Ever since I decided to move to all-digital note-taking, over the past few years, I’ve used a number of note-taking apps to find what works best for me. During this pursuit for the ideal note-taking app, I realised that two features were essential for my purpose.

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Recently, I came across this mindset: ’No more zero days’. There is even a subreddit by the same name motivating people to dodge zero-days.

It instantly resonated with me for being the succinct articulation of a principle that I already adopt in my daily life.

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Make the process of writing seem less daunting

This week I started reading a new book and wanted to share with you how reading and note-taking contribute to my process for writing.

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This is the second part of the 2-part series on access control and account security. If you haven’t already, read Part 1: The beginner’s guide to using a password manager.

What is MFA?

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is an additional layer of access control beyond user ID and password credentials for your online accounts. MFA-enabled accounts require a unique authentication key in addition to your user ID and password to verify your identity.

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Find the original post here

Hi There! My name is Vigneshwar Shankar and I am a Senior Fellow of the Melton Foundation from Bangalore, India. Way back when I joined the Foundation, we were both still in our teens. Looking back over the years, to me the Melton Foundation is that organization with which I have been associated for the longest period of time, completing one decade this year.

In my early days as a Junior Fellow (JF), both the Foundation and I were still figuring out our purpose, vision, and calling. After all this while, we both certainly find a lot more clarity on our focus today, relative to 10 years ago. However, in some ways, there’s still more left to be defined as we move forward.

This post is my attempt to offer you a unique insider perspective on the opportunities presented by the Melton Foundation and what I was able to take away from them.

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I readily admit that I have a yearning to just write, to write something all the time. But I also have a filter in my head. It prevents me from turning my thoughts into words on the screen. It does this because of the self-doubt that we all have within us.

  • What if the words we put out there are not adequate?
  • Who would even want to read it?
  • What is the point?
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This is the first part of the two part series on access control and account security. After this, be sure to read Part 2: Multi-factor authentication is for everyone.

Introduction

Let’s face it. In modern life, as an integral part of the digital economy, we have to remember a bemusing number of user account IDs and passwords. With each passing year, more and more services that we avail go online and thus compound this problem.

It’s not easy and it’s certainly not efficient to tackle this manually. And so, to reduce this heavy load, we all come up with our own hacks for storing passwords. This invariably results in us picking up some terrible habits for both choosing passwords and storing them. Some of these include:

  1. Reusing the same formula or password-ingredients across accounts over and over to the point where it becomes committed to our muscle memory and we could type them out even in our sleep;
  2. Storing passwords in really worrying ways such as

    • writing them in our diary that we might leave at the coffee shop
    • scribbling it on post-it notes which may fly away out the window; or
    • using plain text files on your local drive which would leave us locked out of all our accounts if the disk fails

How to cope with all this?

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I am an extensive note-taker.

Today, I began writing a new note in my note-taking app of choice, Bear. This note is of a new kind. It Is metadata or context for existing information in my repository in order to adopt a new approach to organise the knowledge I have accumulated over the years. While my notes are already quite organised, filed under tags and nested sub-tags for convenient access, there is a need for improvement. As the number of notes increase over time, I realise that using tags as the sole form of organisation is neither efficient nor sufficient.

While I have come across the the concept of Personal Knowledge Management earlier, the real trigger for me today to revisit the existing structure was coming across a new note-taking app known as Obsidian. It is a thing of beauty.

Why is it so good?

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