About

Hi, I am Venkatesh Rao, and Ribbonfarm is a blog I’ve been writing since 2007. Many other writers have contributed to this blog over the years. I also write an associated subscription newsletter, Ribbonfarm Studio, on substack.

New readers may want to start here.

The best way to connect with me for general conversation is to follow me on Twitter at @vgr. If you’re interested in my consulting services, check out my personal site, which has some details of what I do.

About the name…

The name Ribbonfarm refers to the ribbon farms of 18th century Detroit — strips of lands 2-3 miles long, each with 2-300 yards along the Detroit river waterfront — that the then French governor used to resolve water disputes. We think it is a great metaphor for a blog trying to get a thin slice of attention from the great river of eyeballs that is the Web. Here is a picture (courtesy, Detroit Public Library) of an 1818 map of Detroit that shows the ribbon farms.

About the tag-line

Our tagline from 2007 to 2019 was experiments in refactored perceptions. That is a geek joke. It refers to changing how you see the world by trying to rewire the software inside your head through writing.

Since 2019, our tagline has been constructions in magical thinking. Think of it as disciplined solipsism and escapism.