Blog

A place for me to dump my thoughts — posts about design, web dev, productivity, the world, and striving to live a meaningful life, + personal essays and even occasional fiction

The Rule of Three

“Most people can handle one or two priorities at a time. A TKS kid can handle three,” says Nadeem. TKS elitism aside – take it as a proxy for basic intentionality – I find this...

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How Attacking Racial Political Identities Perpetuates White Supremacy

“Being black should not influence a political view,” reads one prompt in Jubilee’s “Black Liberals vs Black Conservatives” video. All three conservatives step forward in agreem...

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How to Innovate and Create a Culture of Innovation

The CEO of a startup I worked for as a Product Manager asked me for one last contribution in the last week of my job: a write-up on how to make the team a high-performance one. ...

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present

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The Sync Gap: How to Be Creative in Conversation, Writing, and Work

A week ago, I had an amazing conversation with Brennan and a few others at Edyfi. You know the type: it went on for hours, flowing powerfully from Taleb’s essays about black swa...

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Culture Is the Key to Sustainable Motivation

Brennan struggles to turn his beautiful tangles of thoughts into writing. Why? we inquire. Brennan expresses his admiration for my drive to just do – I had written an article a...

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Democratizing High-quality Parenting: Brennan Colberg's Vision for Radical Education Reform

Brennan’s vision for a reformed education system: teach kids the skills and mindsets they need to succeed in life – finances, networking, exponential growth, and other basic kno...

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memory as an array of locked doors

We remember the beginnings and ends of things best. The meaning I was compelled by to write in this moment belongs to this moment, and not the year 2020, or its events. Yet, ...

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a concept for an interdisciplinary, impact-driven, human accelerator community house

“My name is Samson. I’m part of a program called TKS, a human accelerator that trains high schoolers to impact billions. The first year of the program focuses on emerging techno...

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How to find your next dream job or mentor: two strategies to supercharge cold outreach

Cold reachouts are an important skill to have. When thinking about learning and careers, it’s easy to get caught up in classes, qualifications, and applications. But the most po...

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what has irreversibly passed by, lost to the currents of time, residing now only in memory

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mental health

I didn’t understand mental health until this year. My parents didn’t teach me about mental health. I haven’t thought too much about the roots of their parenting philosophies an...

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David Hume, the radical empiricist who knocked on Existentialism's door

Physical space doesn’t exist; it is only a construct of the mind, created out of experience. Time doesn’t exist either. It is also a construct of the mind, arising from collect...

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coleg

7 PM tonight was an important time for a friend of mine. This was someone who was very college-oriented, but also straight up the smartest person who I’m close friends with, wh...

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TKS Community Talks Round 1 Post-Mortem

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走向谁都末知的那个明天

Browsing through music in Spotify — unsatisfied by a racing Mendelssohn piano piece — I find my way to a playlist of Chinese EXO songs (inspired to search for by Riku having Jay...

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How I achieved exponential growth (ft. mindsets, connections, high standards, and passion) and then burned out

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peppercorn

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my childhood tech obsession is beautiful

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I built and launched a social platform app in three days. Here's how I did it, and what I learned

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Understanding the math behind neural networks by building one from scratch (no TF/Keras, just numpy)

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The line between physics and metaphysics: musings on Descartes and phenomenology

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What Does It Mean to Be Good at Something? A Framework for Excellence, Ft. Jeff Bezos and Ira Glass

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How Excel calculates trendlines, and how you can too: an introduction to gradient descent, the most important Machine Learning algorithm

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fireplace

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Rebuilding my personal website, Jekyll => Gatsby: Day 1

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From fearing React to Product Hunt webapp launch in 2 months!

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Building, connecting, and questioning my way to meaning

Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I should think and act to steer my life in a purposeful direction — “maximize the potential of your life,” as TKS co-founder Nadeem ...

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The most important step in web design happens before you push a single pixel

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How to Support User-Selected Google Fonts in WordPress Themes & Plugins

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The "Flow" Mind State

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A Love Letter to the Non-Library (Andover Commencement Commentary)

“How are you feeling?” I asked a senior friend around this time last year. “Everything has an added weight to it,” he replied. “Heavy with the thought that everything I do might...

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CSS is an art, and it's dying. A reflection on CSS and JS frameworks and the evolution of CSS

I’ve been working through the serverless-stack.com tutorial. It’s awesome, teaching you how to set up an AWS backend, React front-end, and now is going through CI/CD through See...

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“What do you truly want to accomplish before you die?” A goal-setting app that shares my life philosophy

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pedestal

Thick foam. Support — pedestal for a statue. On a webpage, a store shelf; a box, a bag, a shoe rack, a pair of feet. Rubber soles. Carpet, concrete, asphalt, grass, gravel. Win...

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Offsetting Overlapping Labels in d3.js with a Recursive Algorithm, or: using recursion on a real project for the first time eeeee

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roar

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The Only Thing A Graphic Designer Needs to Know

or, How To Break Through And Create Amazing Graphics / or, intuition derived from my jank design journey that many designer friends don’t have / or, Gesalt Principles, Purpose-B...

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Brief Reflection on Coronavirus, or: Realizing The World Is (Slightly) Falling Apart

Talking with a friend about how things are falling apart, how we might not be able to return to campus for the rest of the term; me realizing just how many opportunities are van...

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Meaning and Purpose in Life as an Equilibrium of Monkey Mechanisms in an Unmonkey World (briefly ft. Coronavirus)

Talking about Coronavirus, confrontation with the possibility of death or the death of a loved one, and the emotional pain caused by having higher desires and ambitions ripped a...

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peace

I sat on the floor of my room, eyes closed. My brain was filled with noise, with random thoughts and anxieties throwing themselves all around. “Clear, clear,” I thought, trying ...

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platonic slut

A label Tessa and Kelly came up with for me, because I have so many platonic one-night stands.1 Sure enough, I had platonically “fucked,” without entering into a close social r...

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Thoughts on Ben Platt, Excellence, and Running

I: Ben Platt Yesterday, I read this New York Times feature on “Dear Evan Hansen” star Ben Platt. It discusses Platt’s background immersed in musical theater, growing up in Beve...

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library stairwell

Searching for a study space with sight of the clear afternoon sun, Maxwell and I end up in the back stairwell of the library. Tucked between the furthest back study rooms, the s...

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folding clothes

There’s a simple joy to folding clothes. At 2 AM, I descended to my room only to find the pile of unfolded laundry I had left on my bed. I was dismayed at not being able to slee...

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bus ride

Sitting in a coach bus — “the nicest I’ve ever seen,” says Christina — my relphil reading on my lap in front of me, wearing sleek purple-blue Nordic gear up top down to ugly swe...

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apology

An apology through email holds up as an admission of guilt in a court of law. As soon as you apologize, it’s over. I spent the whole time fighting. I didn’t apologize because ...

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Welcome! ~About This Blog

Hi, welcome to my blog! I’ve wanted to build a blog for a while. Over the summer I remade my entire website and now I’ve finally added a blog to it. I have a variety of objectiv...

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Hymn for a Scarecrow Cover

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