It's too dangerous to go alone. Take this.

Archive for the "Work" Category

Tactlessly Loud


I have a really big voice. It’s been that way since high school. While most wouldn’t say it’s harsh or abrasive, I never have any trouble being heard. In a crowd, on a busy street, or from the back of the lecture hall, I stand out. Clearly this has its advantages. My thoughts and opinions generally will be heard and acknowledged. I’m hard to ignore if I’m set on expressing myself. And like most things, there’s disadvantages. Since I’m never not heard, there’s no room for me to hold a “private” conversation with anyone in a public place unless I’m whispering conspicuously. I think that a consequence of growing up like this is that I tend to assume that everyone can always hear everything I say and so I should only say things that are okay to say around everybody. Sometimes I slip up and then everyone hears something awkward or inappropriate.


I’m working on the new-school testing engine for OkCupid. We’re seeing lots of traffic lately and an overhaul of our test system is overdue. I can’t give too much away, but the thing that we have in the works is very slick. Much respect to Chris Coyne’s work in laying the groundwork for it.


I think the solution to my storage/media problem is easier than I thought. It turns out that a software hack exists for the Apple TV “Take 2″ which involves making a bootable Patch Stick. The instructions look scary, but lots of people seem to be having luck with it, so I think it’s worth the risk. I’ve already bought a 1 Terabyte MyBook World drive with Ethernet and USB connectivity. It should arrive on Monday. Once I get the drive working like I want it, I’ll add an Apple TV to the mix and try to bring it all together. Updates to come.


  • I just bought CoverSutra and it rocks. I was baited by the free sample I got via MacHeist and the search menu was enough to sell me on the upgrade.
  • I’m working on an OS X Chinese – English dictionary called Cidian. It’s based on CEDICT, the same source used by MandarinTools.com. MarndarinTools.com is great, but its UI is pretty tiresome.
  • Much respect to my old co-worker Aston Motes and his friends at GetDropBox.com. They’re making headlines in some pretty visible places these days. I’ve seen them on the Digg homepage, TechCrunch, and even the venerable DaringFireball.net. Good to see startups with talented people get the attention they deserve.

Back in Pittsburgh

I got back to Pittsburgh yesterday and today I cleaned my room and registered for the important classes this semester. I can’t wait to finish up and get on with life in NYC!

Speaking of which… I spent the first week of 2007 at the office of my new employer, OkCupid.com. I learned how to use a system called TAME to make callback-driven programming much easier. That was cool, except they started me out working on a pretty big chunk of code (2.5k+ lines). Towards the end, I worked on the mailing system to try to improve the matches it sends to new users. It looks like it’s going to be a fun and exciting place to work.

We spend our days relatively quiet, which is one of the more bothersome things about the office. I like to talk about my ideas, and I like it when others talk about theirs. People talk a bunch on MSN, but it’s not the same to me.

In all, I’m quite excited about working at OkCupid. I’m most interested in where the company will be going from here and how it seeks to situate itself inside of a cultivating lifestyle. I’m now a bit more interested in how internet dating will continue to grow on the internet. What people does it appeal most to? How will the element of unveiled personal intimacy change the way people use social networking sites? Will it even at all?

More to come, for sure. In the meantime, if you haven’t signed up already, get to it!

Last Winter Break Ever

I’m far away from the stressful town of Pittsburgh and getting away from it wasn’t easy. First I missed my train. The 6:40 am bus didn’t come past my corner this morning. I took the 7:07 am bus instead, and ended up 15 minutes late for my train. My options were to (A) take a later train, (B) get a refund, or (C) get the tickets honored by Greyhound. As much as a cringed to do it, I took the (admittedly shorter) bus ride. I walked all the way to the Greyhound station with all my bags along with another guy who also missed the same train. Once we got there, we couldn’t get in without either walking all the way around the station or jumping the fence, so I did that and put a big cut in my thumb in the process. The Greyhound employees gave me their usual, top-knotch brain-damaged service (accepting my tickets, giving me a baggage claim, then giving my Amtrak tickets back to me, only to get bitched at by the driver for handing him Amtrak tickets). Finally, by 9:00 am, I was on a bus (probably smelly… I wouldn’t know) to Baltimore.

The trip was fine, and besides a few relatively minor snags, I ended up safe and sound here in Baltimore by 3:00 pm. Now to start the real winter break craziness! I might be going to my high school on Friday to chill out with old friends during their winter party. It’s always big and crazy. Maybe I’ve outgrown high school, though? We’ll see who all decides to show up.

Then, this weekend, after a quick stop in NYC to split the trip, my family and I will be driving up to see my brother and family in Boston. We’ll spend christmas up there and chill out for a few days. I’ll make him extremely jealous of my laptop/iPod, and generally lounge around his place and soak up the loving rays of my niece, Simone 😀

I’ll then travel back down to NYC and spend New Years Eve and the whole first week of January with friends/girlfriend/family. Justina and I have plans to go to a fancy open bar uptown, then crash somewhere (?) for the night. I have a hotel lined up for me through my new job (more on that later!) where I can check-in on the 1st, then spend that week going into the office and getting acclimated to their systems.

Then, it’s time to go back to Pittsburgh somehow and clean my room (which I left a complete mess) and get my life together to finish college once and for all. I’ve been at that place way way way too long.

Sticking around until next semester

So it looks like I’ll be in Pittsburgh for four or five months longer than I thought I’d be. I’ve slacked off in a few key areas that hurt my chances of getting out of here in a reasonable amount of time after my accident. On a happier note, things look good for me getting out of here in May. At the start of this semester, I was gearing up to be short only a few units so next semester should turn out light and easy. I’ll post more details once I’ve met with my advisor about what those units will be.

After school? Who knows. I have a few job prospects that I’ll be posting about later on. However, things look good for my plans to go live in NYC. Everything for me is there: family, friends, girlfriend, and soon, a job.