Favorite Movies and TV

A list of all of my favorite movies and TV shows.

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Medical Physiology Notes

My notes from reading the "Guyton and Hall Textbook of Medical Physiology" textbook so that I can better understand how the body works.

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Things to Save for Any New Mac

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My Quotes

A set of things I find myself saying over and over again.

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Bookmarked Websites

I don't really view these any more, but they were formative in my high school years (when I actually used bookmarks), and somewhat my college years.

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A Complete List of Books I've Read

Yes, it is that short and yes, it ends in 2013.

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Break Up a Saga

After the break-up with Tara, I put together a document to process what had happened and chronicle all the events that took place after the break-up. I shared the document with my friends to get their input, and during my manic episode publicized the document to thousands of Coursicle users.

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Splitting Up Coursicle

The break-up with Tara prompted a business crisis: what we do about the company we created together. Things got incredibly hostile, but ended with a $100,000 payout.

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Censorship

This is exactly why censorship is bad. I'm sitting here talking to 500,000 people through an app I had to make over 10 years crying for help because I'm afraid that I'm in a psychosis. And what does Twitter do when I speak my truth? They ban me for 7 days. As of this writing, my name isn't coming up when you search "Joe Puccio" on Google. I imagine Apple will soon take away my ability to send push notifications and I'll lose the ability to contact you.

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Google

Is joepucc.io not showing up in Google for others? Did Google censor me from their search? Not sure, but I'm not seeing it on my end at 3:25am EST. It's not showing up at least for the search of my name, which it used to.

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Theory of Psychosis

Just some mathematics based thoughts for a theory of psychosis.

Maybe psychosis is just axioms + high intelligence. And the ones who we think have a bad sense of reality are born/conditioned during childhood to have incorrect axioms, or at least ones the majority doesn't agree with (who is the majority to claim their axioms are true). With an incorrect axiom, you can derive all sorts of nonsense.

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Verifiability

I need help verifying I'm not in a psychosis. Please reach out to these people and please have the best psychiatric person come to me so I can be evaluated. Also, jokes aside, I think whoever wrote/acts in the show Euphoria might be able to help me. Please, I'm really scared. Also please fucking get Mudge to speak out. https://www.reddit.com/r/Coursicle/comments/soy314/please_read/

Also, for those too fucking daft to understand why I'm talking about Zendaya nudes. It's because I'm in pain and I want to draw attention to my cause as fast as possible so the pain will end and the best way to do that is to be provocative.

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William

One of my friends from Washington Square Park, William, and I are talking right now. He is basically the only one I know, other than Nina, who is awake all of the damn time. The three of us are a very interesting trio. William is intensely right wing, and many in our friend group can't stand listening to him. But [girlfriend 1] and I like talking to him, because we find what he talks about interesting, even though we disagree with much of it.

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Cancel Culture

You cancel without examining what you're cancelling. You said I had lost my mind. You said I was throwing a tantrum. You said I was an anti-vaxxer. You said I was abusive to a woman I cherished for 10 years. You said I was a pedophile after I had finally found someone who understood me. I told you I finally felt better. But rather than trusting me, you took your word over mine.

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Save the World

So often in tech, founders say they're going to "change the world". This rubbed me the wrong way and I think I've realized why. The world doesn't need changing, it needs saving.

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The Founders of Artificial Intelligence

In a very real, beautiful way, we are all the founders of artificial intelligence. It was the effort of every living human, and indeed every living and non-living organism, that led us to its developement.

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I'm a Vegetarian Now

I think it's important that we treat those with lesser intelligences than us with the exact same respect we would want to receive.

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Crashing My Drone in the Snow

I went downstairs for some ice cream and I noticed it was snowing beautiful white fluffy puffs of snow, so I decided to take my drone for a spin. I think I was overeager.

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The Future of Computing

I think rather simply about things. Take existing data, find the pattern, and extrapolate. You must know where you've been to know where you're going. As such, I think taking a look at the history of computing can pretty easily let us predict the future.

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The Creative

For a long time, I've struggled to figure out "what" I am. Our tendency, at least what we're taught, is to figure out which of a set of buckets we fall into. Which career to choose, what kind of person we are, what physical or mental illness we suffer from, etc.

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All of the Songs I Like

All of the songs that I liked enough to add to my Spotify.

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Pronouns

It was only after the break-up that I had the mental freedom to really consider my gender identity, which was significantly aided by my friends in Washington Square Park and meeting so many trans and non-binary people there.

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An Email to David Lipsky

This is a very important email I wrote to David Lipsky, who I hoped understood David Foster Wallace as well as anyone.

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Order at Junoon

One of my favorite restauraunts in NYC is Junoon. Any time I have the chance, I'll take visitors or have meetings over lunch there.

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Joe's Obsessions

I have a tendency to get obsessive about things. Here's a list of all of the things, so far, that I've been obsessed with.

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Contentious Interaction with Landlord Regarding Stove

Yay for shitty NYC landlords.

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Call with Psychiatrist 3

A series of calls ending in October of my notes for my psychiatrist.

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Washington Square Park Sound Regulations

As a regular at Washington Square Park, I spend a lot of time with the musicians who sit southwest of the fountain. I've seen the cops crack down on them countless times, even threatening to confiscate their instruments if they didn't comply. It really started to piss me off, and it was difficult to watch these buskers, many of whom I knew were homeless or nearing homlessness, have their income stream shut down because of "complaints" from the rich people on 5th avenue. As it turned out, the cops weren't actually enforcing any laws a lot of the time (sometimes they'd even shut down a tame jam session at 2pm on a weekend). I started to distribute pamphlets to the musicians with the specific laws that apply to the park so that the musicians know their rights. Now when the cops approach and threaten the musicians when I'm around, I calmly ask them what law they're enforcing and am usually able to convince them to just ask the musicians to lower the amps rather than turn them off or confiscate them.

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Wireless Backup System for Apartment

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New York Vs San Francisco

I regularly say that living in New York has made me feel at home for the first time in my 27 years on this earth. I love the place.

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Questions for Mutual Aid About Occupy Wall Street Documentary

I was really expecting to meet more like-minded people here, but frankly it seemed like these people thought it was acceptable to continue putting bandaids on a sucking chest wound.

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Drone Wedding Shots

This is a video I made when two of my friends got married. I got exterior shots of the building and the city with my Mavic Air 2, and stitched together videos that I gathered from others to make the rest of the clips. I have to admit, music choice was...questionable, but hey, I have a type.

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Notes After Going from Prozac 20mg to 40mg

Since my anxiety wasn't subsidding and Tara was in the process of breaking up with me, my psychiatrist recommended upping my dosage from 20mg to 40mg (which would be the highest dosage I'd ever been on). I made sure to be vigiliant for side effects.

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Thoughts on La

My take on LA, mostly compared to the two major cities I knew best: New York and San Francisco.

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Thoughts on Gjelina

Per the suggestion of the chef at Fellow, I went to Gjelina while I was in LA. It was nowhere near as impressive as Fellow. Quite a disappointment.

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Feedback for Fellow

While visiting a coworker in LA, I decided to go to a fine dining restauraunt near UCLA. When I get there, I ask if they have a Prix Fixe menu, and the waiter says he can ask the chef. The chef comes out and introduces himself and says he could do one for me. It’s pretty clear at this point that they think I'm a food critic because I'm sitting alone and asking for a wide range of food.

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Life Goal

I think I realized, in some sense, what I want to optimize for personally: maximize the number of people who would take a bullet for you. Those are real friends.

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Tara

I have created a lot of notes around this time that delve into the emotional abuse that Tara inflicted on me. As I spend time with new people, I realize new things that I add to this list about how I should have been treated. I'm choosing not to include them for now. I've also created two Google Docs, one 91 pages that details the progression of the break-up day by day, as well as a 48 page one that details all of the insanity I got myself into once I was signle. Since it's significantly harder to protect the identity of individuals, I'm choosing not to include the content of these Google Docs.

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Final Questions for Tara

I wanted some closure from Tara after we had broken up, so she agreed to meet me and discuss. I limited the conversation to an hour.

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Call with Psychiatrist 2

Call with psychiatrist immediately following the break-up.

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Facts About New York

A list of fun and interesting facts I've learned about New York.

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Text to Tara

My last stand before she broke up with me.

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Notes About How Tara Broke Up with Me

Sequence of events that led to the break-up.

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Notes from Call After Tara Says She Wants to Go on a Break

Notes from when Tara told me she wanted to go on a break.

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Notes from Talking to Friends Trying to Be Ok with Open Relationship

After Tara told me she wanted an open relationship, I was working hard on trying to come up a way where I could be comfortable with that while going through my anxiety.

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Notes from Call with Therapist

Notes from call with therapist after Tara told me that she wanted an open relationship.

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Second Call with Dr. Walker

A follow-up call to check in with my psychiatrist, Dr. Walker, on how things have been going.

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Notes for Therapist

Notes I took to prepare for my calls with my therapist.

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Note to Self 7

Notes to self after Tara told me that she had feelings for someone else.

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Experience with Dr. Randolph Badler SF

After several days of searching for a psychologist who would take me on as a new patient, Dr. Badler agreed to take me on. I was enormously grateful, and he did help me enormously especially at the beginning. That said, he often brought up how annoying it was to get reimbursed through my health insurance (Blue Cross Blue Shield, which he was in-network for) and would sometimes take that frustration out on me/ask me to do things that appeared to be his job.

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Notes on Ginger Mental Healthcare

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Notes to Parents

Some heartfelt notes I wrote to my parents. I normally don't write to them.

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Making Great Marinara Exploration

Like any good Italian, my favorite cookie is my mom's. So I've been adopting her marinara recipe and trying to tweak it for even more impact.

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Call with Psychiatrist

After I had given it a week and the anxiety wasn't improving (per Tara's instistence, I wanted to go back on Prozac immediately), I had a call with my psychiatrist, Dr. Joe Walker.

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Note to Self 6

A short note I wrote to myself to try stay calm during my anxiety.

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LG G1 TV Settings

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Ending of My Friendship with Kevin

My second anxiety episode began when my friend of 8 years said he still didn't want to rekindle things after he cut me out of his life a year prior.

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Nyc Laundry in the Village

Ended up going with Brown Bag Laundry. Have had a good experience with them so far, although they are hella expensive.

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Reciever Settings

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Topographical Layout of TV and Audio Setup

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How to Cool a Screened Porch in the Summer

One of my friends was looking to cool down his screened porch, so he came to me knowing I had some bacic physics knowledge and might be able to help.

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Plex on NVIDIA Shield

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Attempt to Rekindle Things with Kevin

Exactly a year after he cut things off between us, I decided to try to see if he would rekindle things. When he said no is when my anxiety started up again.

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Selling Macbook Pro to Lawyers Suing Apple for Dysfunctional Keyboards

I was solicited to sell my Mac with a bad keyboard to a law firm so that they could use it in a class action lawsuit against Apple.

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Slice Harvester

There are few people I admire more than Colin Atrophy Hagendorf. Over the course of two years, he tries every pizza place in Manhattan (thank god, because if hadn't done this I would have felt like I had to do it). I also find his writing style very appealing. He landed on Pizza Suprema near Penn Station as the best slice, and I have to say: he's probably right. Their upside down Sicilian is especially incredible. I was reading their site one day and found that the owner used to be so purist that even though customers always asked for toppings, he refused to add any to his pizza. Eventually he relented, but some of his commitments remained, including using 3 different marinaras for different types of pizzas. It makes sense: a sauce that works for a Sicilian slice isn't necessarily going to hold for a NY slice.

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Helping a Woman Who Fell

I was showing my friend Matt around the city when we walked by a woman sitting on the ground with blood on her head.

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Touring Sf

Every time someone came and visited us in SF, I would take them on a tour of all of my favorite places.

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Email to Novavax CEO Regarding Transfer

When I moved to New York, I put in a request to be transferred from one study site (in Chapel Hill) to another (in Manhattan). I was told that this was a pretty straightforward process, but after weeks of checking in with UNC about my transfer, they just said they still were waiting for Novavax/ICON (who was managing the study) to do the transfer. It got to the point where I felt like it was unethical, because I didn't know whether I was vaccinated (only 2/3 of those vaccinated in January 2021 actually got the vaccine, the rest got the placebo), and we were at the crossover point (which I believe Fauci came up with, which was a point where everyone in the control got the vaccine and everyone in the treatment got the control, that way everyone was vaccinated but nobody knew when they got vaccinated and comparisons could still be made between the two groups while maintaining the ethics of letting people get a vaccine during a roaring pandemic).

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Notes for New Dog Owners

My friends had recently gotten a puppy and were having trouble (this was their first time owning a pet). They asked me to embed with them and figure out what they could do to improve sapien-canine relations.

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Cosmo Howl

Cosmo howling, which we'd never heard before.

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Notes About Recycling

Some accounting of what the numbers on the plastic things we recycle actually mean.

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NYC Mesh Request for 89 MacDougal Street

A letter I wrote to the NYC mesh team.

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DIY Construction and Electrician Notes

Notes I took while researching how houses are constructed and wiring placed, etc.

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Construction and Other Diy Learnings

While furnishing my apartment, I became interested in construction and how exactly these walls around me came to be, so I decided to study it for a couple days.

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Email to RSL About Speedwoofer 10S

I've exchanged quite a bit with Joe Rodgers at RSL, and I must say, this is a fantastic company. It's one of the few companies where I felt like they cared about me so much as a customer that I wanted to return the favor and offer my help to them. Come for the product, stay for the support. Proud to own a Speedwoofer 10S.

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13th House I Live in and Other Race Related Notes

A summary of my notes from the documentary 13th, The House I Live In, and some other movies that focus on the continued oppression of black people in the United States.

P.S. Michelle Alexander seems like a boss.

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Deciding on a NY Healthcare Plan

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12w 104th Street Pros Cons

I helped Tara find her apartment in New York, and we found a really great one in the upper west side. I constructed a pros and cons list for her to help make the decision easier.

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Notify People when Vaccine Appointments Become Available

Back when it was very difficult to get vaccine appointments for COVID-19, I created a little script that would notify users when a vaccine appointment was available near them. I circulated it around friends/family and people who I met in NY who brought up having difficult getting a vaccine. I wanted Tara and me to start a more official website to do it, but she thought there was too much reputational risk in doing so. So, I decided to just email one of the sites that was doing something similar (sans the notification part), and offer them the code + advice on how to scale a notification system like that to hundreds of thousands of people.

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Living Room Layout Reasoning

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Furnishing Ny Apartment

When I moved into my first place that I wasn't sharing with a girlfriend, I decided I wanted to do everything I could to make it as perfect and mine as possible. It took about 4 months to renovate it, working almost only full-time researching each item, going to every store that sells products that I think look nice: Crate & Barrel, CB2, Mji, West Elm, Target, IKEA, the Container Store, and the MoMa Design Store. After multiple visits and research, I slowly began compiling a list of everything I was going to buy.

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Airsoft

I had a pretty big interest in Airsoft in middle school, and it was revived by a Reddit comment on one of my posts about VR of all things (I just hadn't thought about Airsoft at all in years). I think part of the interest comes from being interested in guns but being very afraid of the responsibility and the potential danger that comes from owning one, so buying a very high quality gas blowback Airsoft gun I figured would scratch that itch while not introducing the capacity to seriously injur myself by accident.

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Cosmo Sprayed by Bark Collar

Cosmo getting sprayed by his bark collar.

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Thuma vs Drommen Acacia Wood – Full Bed

The conventional wisdom was to go with the Thuma, but I didn't like the fact that the headboard wasn't attached, and there wasn't anything design-wise that was particularly calling me to the Thuma anyway.

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Cosmo Instructions and Flowchart

A list of things to keep close while taking care of my dog, Cosmo.

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ISPs in NYC

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Tuft and Needle Mattress Review

Some brief thoughts on the Tuft and Needle mattress, when trying to buy my first mattress.

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Notes on 89 Macdougal Street Lease

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Joe's NY Apartment Search

I knew I wanted to live within 3 blocks of the West 4th street stop, in part to be close to Joe's pizza, in part to be close to Washington Square Park, and in part because the West 4th street stop is very centrally located and an express stop on two lines (on the west side nonetheless, which is the side more traveled, I'd say). So I just constructed a list of apartments that were within that radius and picked the ones I liked the most. I was fortunate to get my top pick, and during COVID prices nonetheless ($2500/month for a 1 bedroom in the village, on MacDougal and Bleecker).

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Notes About Covid Risks and Vaccine Trial

Prior to moving to New York, I was very afraid of getting COVID and suffering from long-term effects, namely reduced cardiovascular output. I did a lot of research into long COVID to try to understand the risks the best I could, but certainly anxiety surrounding the pandemic was tinting my lens a bit. In the end, I ended up volunteering for the Novavax vaccine trial and got my first shot on January 20th, 2021, about 30 minutes after Biden was sworn in. It was a good day.

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Drone Pre Flight Checklist

A full list of my current drone missions as well as the pre-flight checklist to make sure all systems are a go.

This also includes a summary of what to do when you're confronted by the police while flying your drone.

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How to Interact with Police

A small guide on how to interact with the police while preserving your rights.

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Things to Save for Any New Iphone

Every time I get a new phone or computer, I have a ritual of setting it up from scratch to ensure I stay up to date with all the new / deprecated settings, etc. It usually happens every 2-3 years, although with my iPhone I was upgrading from a 6 to a 12, so much longer.

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Things to Do for Any New Pc

Any time I get a new Mac or PC, I usually need to set it up with a bunch of configuration tweaks so I can be most productive and have the least frustrating friction points. This is the note that I follow any time I get a new Gaming PC or if I have to wipe my Gaming PC and start from scratch.

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Vr Games for Auntie

After really enjoying my VR headset, my aunt asked if I could help her buy and setup a VR headset of her own. I made her a list of recommended games for beginners that I thought she'd like (she also was the one who got me into Star Wars when I was 6.

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How I Lost 30 Pounds in 3 Months

After gaining a lot of weight from medication and excessive eating, it was time to lose it. Dieting sucks so I was committed to getting it over with as quickly as possible, so I did a lot of research. Frankly, people think it's significantly more complicated than it is; it's just a matter of calories in vs calories out, and most of your burned calories are just from keeping your body functioning even in a resting state (i.e. they're not burned from exercise), called your base metabolic rate (BMR).

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Auto Hot Key Convert Pc to Mac Keyboard Dvorak

My AutoHotKey mapping file for my gaming PC which lets me use it as if it's a Mac, and handles the mappings you have to handle from typing in Dvorak.

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Mom Tree Surprise

My mom was really sad that we weren't going to get a Christmas tree before Christmas, so the rest of my family got one and set it up to surprise her.

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Notes from Watching Tenet

I love movies that make me think, and Tenet was a prime example. There were some abuses of science, sure, but the fundamental principle of determinism was everpresent in the movie, although they did try to claim free will did still exist, which doesn't make sense.

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Perfecting Icons:artwork for Non Steam Games in Steamvr

It's frustrating that SteamVR does not have the ability to very finely tweak things to your liking in the same way desktop Steam does. Through a ton of experimentation, I managed to figure out how you can mostly get all of the album artwork that you want into SteamVR in every place artwork is displayed.

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Note to Shahid Buttar

After Shahid Buttar called me again, presumably hoping to secure Coursicle's support, I sent him this emailing explaining why the company would not be endorsing him.

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Notes from Overclocking Gaming Pc

Notes from overclocking my PC, namely the CPU.

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Notes During Virtual Visit to the Jim Crow Museum

I found out there was a Jim Crow museum but didn't really like the idea of traveling, so I found this page which lets you tour the museum from your home.

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Digitalocean Questions for Coursicle

All the questions that DigitalOcean asked us in order to get their case study out and our answers.

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Notes on Sorry to Bother You

My notes while watching Sorry To Bother You, including some added thoughts after some rewatches.

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A Perfectionist's VR Setup

This is a comprehensive guide to my VR setup, including descriptions of some VR concepts and phenomena.

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Nightmare Fulfilled

I eagerly awaited the arrival of the HP Reverb G2 VR headset (it was going to be my first serious VR headset, I had bought the Oculus Rift S knowing I was going to return it just to play around with VR and set up my system while I was waiting for the Reverb G2; Walmart has an incredibly 90 day return policy by the way). I had a comically sad experience with UPS that I wrote what I thought was a pretty funny Reddit post about. It also had a response comment that I was probably the most proud of ever recieving. I had managed to trick some hapless soul into thinking I write for a living.

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Inconsistencies in Max Kennedy Jrs Statements in Totally Under Control

One of the friends in Tara's circle at Harvard was Max Kennedy Jr. He was quite nice to me, so I was excited when I saw that he was featured in a documentary about the government's response to COVID, called Totally Under Control. But when I watched the documentary, I became pretty confused. Here are my notes.

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Election Prediction

Suprisingly, only a few of my friends were following the 2020 election data closely. One of them was my friend Li, and me being as impatient as I am and Li being as good at spreadsheets as he is, we set up some incredibly simple modeling on the remaining states to see if we could predict who would win. All we did was copy and paste the NYT data, determine the current margin of Trump to Biden votes for each county, and then figure out how many more votes would go to Biden or Trump (assuming of course the margin held; although at times we allowed for some skew for mail in votes, because those tend to be more blue). While everyone was freaking out on election night about Nevada and Pennsylvania, we were freaking out about Georgia because it looked like it was going to flip blue for the first time since 1992.

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Notes from Watching Spike Lee's Malcolm X

Notes from watching Spike Lee's movie, Malcolm X.

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Overclocking Settings and Description

My notes while researching overclocking a CPU and GPU.

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Rewiring Outlet from Half Hot to Full Hot

I think it's really horrible design when an outlet is controlled by a light switch. I understand the idea: you plug in a lamp or some other light source into the outlet so when you walk in the room you can turn on all the lights in the room, or just certain ones, just by reaching for the light switches. But it's just so short sighted: whan happens when you want to turn off the lamp? The instinct is to go to the lamp and turn it off, since that's the source of the light in your brain, not the light switch. So now you've got a lamp that's off, but the outlet to it is on, so what happens next time you enter the room? You fidget with the light switch and the light doesn't turn on. That's annoying. Moreover, let's reset and say you're in the room and you want to turn on the lamp. Obviously, you're going to approach the lamp to turn it on (not to mention the lamp is probably closer to where you're sitting/standing if you're trying to use it), but instead of this you have to walk to the entrance to the room, flip the switch, and walk back.

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Wirecutter Shitty Monitor Recommendation

I absolutely love Wirecutter, and still highly recommend them, but on something like a 4k monitor I figured they would have done a more thorough look at the options. This just felt like they compared these monitors on paper without actually using the damn things. I decided to write a comment on their post.

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High Pitch Noise on Tcl Tv

For some reason, the TV in a powered off state makes a very high pitched noise. The only way to resolve this is unplugging the TV after each use.

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Thoughts on Buying the NVIDIA 3090

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An Embarassing Photo Shoot

UNC asked for some photos of me for an article. Taking things outside totally wasn't my idea and I definitely end up looking really cool in those shots.

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Game Options and Tv Monitor Options Explained

An explanation of all of the common graphics settings you find in video games and what they actually do.

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Injured Toad Rescue

Both Tara and I notice a stationary toad in the grass near our office, and I eventually go out to inspect the fella. He has a badly injured back leg so I decide to bring him home to rehabilitate him. At first I was thinking of putting neosporin on him but immediately after some research it turns out that if it had pain reliever it would have killed him, so I decided not to take the risk. I put him in our terrarium with our baby tortoise so that he could heal without risk of predation.

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Conversation with Friend About James Damore and Paul Graham

As I've learned more about him, I like Paul Graham less and less.

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Real Time Thoughts on Jonathan Haidt Regarding Incompatible Sacred Values in American Universities

My friend asked me to watch this lecture by Jonathan Haidt with an open mind. So I watched it and took notes as I was listening.

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Request for Removal of Sexist Technical Demos from NVIDIA website

I was excited about the NVIDIA 3090 and was very impressed by the Marbles at Night demo that they showed during its release. While trying to see if NVIDIA had published the demo (which apparently had 500GB of textures), I came across a page with a lot of old demos that struck me as problematic. I felt like it was important that I try what I could to get it removed. I emailed Jensen Huang and the board and when I checked a couple weeks later it was gone. I thanked them for listening and Jensen thanked me for bringing it to their attention. Great stuff.

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Intel Core I5 9600k and Msi Rtx 2070 Gaming Z Overclock Results

Overclocking is exhausting. Frankly, I wouldn't really recommend it in the end, the instability of software just makes it not worth it for the performance gain. I mean, sure, if you have nothing else to do and you want a couple more frames, why not, but unless your card or die has a known large overhead for overclocking, just use your time playing games and enjoying (relatively) stable software.

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Selling My NVIDIA 2070

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Joe Wrangling a Snake

I found a snake while walking around our development and decided to bring it home. It was an Eastern rat snake so I knew it couldn't do much harm to me.

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Reptile Photos

Photos of me wrangling a snake, some lizards outside, and some very creepy looking box turtles mating that my dad found.

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Hospital Bill for Kidney Stone

Ah, the joys of the American healthcare system. Apparently they charge about $5,000 for the CT scan in the ER for diagnosing a kidney stone. Of course that's on top of the $4,000 they charge for stepping into the ER, and the $500 they charge for various labs trying to detect if there's blood in my bright red urine.

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How to Perfectly Match Steam Vr Home with Physical Space

I really like being able to run around my Steam VR home as if I'm running around my physical room, which means I need to lay out the bounds and the objects in VR space to match my physical room as closely as possible so that when I go to jump on my bed in VR I actually am jumping on my bed in real life, etc.

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Oculus' Poor Quality Software and Its Effects on the VR Experience

Guess Facebook destroys everything it touches. A post I made on the VR subreddit.

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Follow Up Call with Urologist

An extensive conversation with my urologist about kidney stones and kidney functioning.

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Kidney Stone Photos

After several weeks of the most severe physical pain I've ever endured, this little devil was done.

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Duke University East Campus by Drone

Some friends and I went to hang out at Duke (Trevyn is a physics PhD student there) and I decided to bring my drone so we could fly around. I'd say this is one of my better edited videos, and at the time became one of the top 50 posts of all time in the Duke subreddit. Shot while social distancing 🙂

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Helping International Students Get into in Person Classes

The Trump administration did a pretty evil thing (who would have thought) where they required international students to take at least one in-person class to take their visas even though every university was basically moving online because of COVID.

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Questions About Kidney Stone

While my anxiety was by far the most painful thing I've experienced, the most painful physical experience (so far) was my kidney stone, which took about 6 weeks. I went through a couple scares about kidney failure, did a bunch of research on inversion tables, and even rollercoasters.

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Cat Scan Analysis

Unfortunately, I got a kidney stone. What's more? They charged us $10,000 for this CAT scan. Yay.

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Feature in Unc College Arts & Sciences Magazine

UNC reached out asking if they could feature me in the College magazine, Carolina Arts & Sciences. This is the article.

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Getting Started with a Dji Drone

I read the fucking manual.

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Mavic Air 2 First Shots

I decided to upgrade from the Mavic Air to the Mavic Air 2 because I wanted the increased transmission distance, which was always the most annoying thing about the Mavic Air. These were the shots I got from the first day using it.

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Tips for Driving Fast

I like driving fast, but want to do it as safely as I can.

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Things to Do While Staying with Quinn

Before moving out of SF, I stayed with my friend Quinn for 6 days. I made a list of all the things I wanted us to do togethehr before I left.

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Mavic Air 2 with DJI Goggles

I purchased a DJI Mavic Air 2 with the expectation that they would add support for the DJI Goggles (VR goggles) because I wanted to give my friends and family the sensation that they were flying. I made a post on the DJI forum and was sure to keyword it well for SEO. As of December 2021 it has over 60,000 views, 289 replies, and is one of the most viewed posts on the DJI forum not just for the Mavic Air 2, but every DJI drone.

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Second Drone Purchase

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The Cousins

There's a 5th one but she didn't make the cut.

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Sf Photo

A photo I took in SF of a mural and a Taco Bell that apparently I saved.

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Confrontation with Guy in Sf

An interaction with a guy who was blocking the entire crosswalk with his car.

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Moving from SF to NC

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Drone Shots to Get

After watching some videos of very cool drone videos, like this one I decided to make a list of all the cool things I should try to do with my drone. Now the thing was I had this very cool device, but I needed certain missions otherwise I was just flying around with no purpose.

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Sharing Sicilian Pizza with Your Neighbors

Good food must be shared. Whenever I make my pizza, I share it with the people I love nearby. In San Francisco, that was the owners of the Market Mayflower & Deli, who were very nice to us and would sometimes give Cosmo some meat because they liked to feed him (we lived next door). I also shared it with a rather fantastic Roman style pizza place, Gusto Pinsa Romana, one of the only roman style pizza places I've been to. I was very proud when they posted on their Instagram that it was one of the best slices they'd had in SF.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Jazz

Notes from Ken Burns' documentary on Jazz.

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My Favorite Food That My Mom Makes

My mom used to be a chef, so I grew up eating some great stuff.

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Not for Ourselves Alone the Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony

Notes from Ken Burns' documentary on Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony.

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Sweet Potato Pecan Pie Recipe

My mom's favorite pie, arguably my favorite dessert. Must be served with vanilla ice cream for the full effect.

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Italian Places in Sf

A list of all the Italian places in SF that I wanted to go to and the ones I had gone to (and my thoughts on each).

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Intro Talk to High Value Candidate

I created a list of all the people who we knew who we thought would be good culture fits at Coursicle, then I reached out to all 70 of them to set up calls.

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Trying to Get out the Homeless Vote in San Francisco

On election day, I spent most of the day walking around downtown San Francisco and talking to the homeless people I knew as well as meeting new ones. I tried to get them to the poles, because I knew nobody was focusing specifically on getting them to the poles. I believe I managed to get one or two to a poling center, but some were concerned that by filling out the ballot they would be turning themselves in for certain crimes they had committed.

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Trying to Get Shahid Buttar Elected

I met Shahid Buttar after an EFF event. He was an impressive speaker, and I was pretty quickly taken with his mission and wanted to figure out how Coursicle could help. As it turned out, he's most likely a pretty big fraud. The sexual harrasment stuff is one thing, but what really did him in for me was that he was paying himself $100,000/year while working on his campaign while many of the people on his campaign working incredibly hard were working for free. I frankly found it unjustifiable; if he actually had practiced what he preached, he would have made things work on as low of a salary as possible. Oh, also, he was apparently very rude to his employees and yelled at them. That's not cool.

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Meeting with Dean Rhodes at Unc About Computer Science Funding

After meeting with some professors in the CS department, it became clear that they were severely underfunded and it was affecting how many new students could take CS classes. I saw this as especially bad, because it was likely that the people who were going to become discouraged first were women and other under-represented minorities in tech. So I asked my contact in the IT department if she could get me a meeting with the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, Terry Rhodes, if she could reconsider.

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Constant Kernel Panics – userspace watchdog timeout: no successful checkins from com.apple.WindowServer

It hadn't been more than a couple months since I got the newly released 16-inch MacBook Pro with a keyboard that promised to finally resolve the horribleness that was the 2016-2019 keyboards, when my brand new Mac starts to kernel panic. Constantly. I mean, at least once a day I had to re-open everything on my computer because it had shutdown without warning or (knowable) reason. What surprised me the most was just how disruptive this was to my work (I wouldn't have anticipated that; having grown up in an era where computers rarely crashed, this was a new experience for me). I made a post about this on MacRumors and people started to congregate (fun fact, it's now the second most viewed post in the macOS Catalina (10.15) category at 300,000 views and over 1,000 responses). I was able to reproduce the issue very reliably and started to share with others how to reproduce, when I was given a final warning that I was about to be banned from the Apple Support forum for "inappropriate posts". Pissed off, I forwarded the email to Craig Federighi. He was very kind and helped me with some debugging. Although he was unable to fix the issue for me, he did give me a new Mac which I wasn't able to reproduce the issue on (thank god).

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Well Edited San Francisco Drone Video

After getting better at flying and reviving my editing chops, I cut this video to music.

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Good Photos from Drone

Some of the better photos I took with my Mavic Air and Mavic Air 2.

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That Time I Lost My Drone in San Francisco

I've always considered myself a risk averse person but for some reason this kind of stuff happens to me all the time. This was one of my early flights in San Francisco. Needless to say, I got too excited and flew way farther than I should have on half a battery and the drone was forced to land itself before it made it back to me. The launch point for these videos was Huntington Park (the dog park) and Ina Coolbrith Park (the park that looks like it's on the side of a mountain). Some really crazy shit happens at the 4 minute mark...

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Great Marinara Exploration

My notes while trying to find the best jarred marinara you can buy (spoiler alert: it's Rao's, but you should make your own if you can afford the time).

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Great Pastas Exploration

My notes while trying to find the best dried pasta you can buy (spoiler alert: it's Afeltra).

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The Hallmark of a Top Law School

There's a running joke in the law school admissions community (at least on Reddit) about Baylor being a fantastic law school that everyone wants to go to. I think I came across this while I was doing my Coursicle work and decided to share it with the law school admissios sub.

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Phantom Fireworks Purchase for Christmas Eve Party

Every Christmas Eve, we throw a large party where my mom bakes hundreds of cookies and I shoot off hundreds of dollars of fireworks. I went through every firework that Phantom Fireworks sells and picked out the coolest ones.

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Concerns About a Friend

One of my friends appeared to be struggling with some substance abuse, and some of my other friends who didn't know him pointed it out to me. I decided to talk to his sister, who I know well, to make sure he was ok.

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Buying Paul a Car

Coursicle had a good year and I decided I should buy my friend Paul a car with some of the extra money (he kept having to take Ubers and Lyfts to get to his two jobs, which cost him a ton of money every day and he wasn't going to be able to afford one himself in the forseeable future). I did a bunch of research on how to buy used cars, put together a nice spreadsheet, and then we went shopping. We had a good time and were able to find something we liked same-day. After some successful haggling, it was ours.

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Christmas Eve Party to Do List 2

The full list of TODOs for the 2019 Christmas Eve party. This was the biggest one yet.

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Plan for Recording Fireworks with Drone

I wanted my friend to record the fireworks using his drone while I was running the show. I ended up doing some of the flying because it was hard for him to tell where he was in the sky. This is the checklist for pre-flight and the night before I determined what altitude and positioning was best for capturing the fireworks.

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Fireworks for Christmas Eve Party

In preparation for the 2019 Christmas Eve party, my friend Li and I drove to South Carolina to load up on a ton of fireworks.

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Notes from Researching Italian Food

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Fantastic Things to Do when Visiting Ny

When visiting New York, I usually give people a couple places to eat/areas to walk around.

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Notes from Researching Pasta

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Meeting with Education Consulting Group

A meeting we had with a group that was in education consulting and also invested in other edtech companies in our space.

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Trying to Recruit

Now that I had recovered from the anxiety, I had the energy to go into recruiting gear, trying to solicit friends to join Coursicle. Our methodology: don't hire assholes. You can train a technical person to code, but you can't teach them to be a nice person.

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People to See While at Unc

Whenever I'd go back to Chapel Hill over the holidays, I'd make an effort to see former professors and friends to keep in touch. To see if I could help them with something, or if they could help me. This note also includes the notes of what happened while I was talking to these professors.

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Notes from Advising Montessori on Technology

The new principle at MCS asked if I could come in to help advise them on some pushback from parents on some new technology they were using. I was able to explain the privacy implications of the technology and make them feel better about the stance they were taking. While I was there, they also asked me to help them with some issues they were having with their LAN (local area network) and Google Classroom.

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Ideas for Unc Computer Science

An email thread with a UNC CS professor who I got along with well.

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Notes from Another Potential Acquirer

Another company in the edtech independently reached out asking if we were open to acquisition. We preferred the first company's culture so we were likely to go with them, but it was good to know there was general interest from the market.

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Notes from Triumph of the Nerds Documentary

Although sexist at times, this is a fantastic look into the start of the personal computer industry, and in subsequent documentaries the start of the software industry.

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Big Jewlrey Purchase for Tara

I prefer to buy people presents when I feel like it, rather than on certain occassions like a birthday or Christmas. While I was in New York staying in Brooklyn, I decided to stop by Tara's favorite jewlrey place and get her a nice haul. They were very sweet, and gave me a discount because I told them that "I don't wear jewlrey, but if I did it would only be Catbird".

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Order at Borobudur in Sf

Probably my favorite restauraunt in San Francisco was an Indonesian place, called Borobudur. Generally, when you go to the same restauraunt on a weekly basis and you order the exact same thing each time, they start to get to know you. I became friends with one of the waiters and the new owner once the family who originally started the restauraunt ~30 years prior decided they were tired.

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Question for Director of Engineering at the EFF

Tara and I regularly attended EFF events, which nobody seemed to show up for other than people who worked at the EFF, and over the incredible free buffet they provided to guests I'd talk to people who work at the EFF about the privacy initiatives we have at Coursicle. This led to a call with the director of engineering at the EFF.

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Notes from Talk with Advisor

Notes from discussion with advisor about acqusition.

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September 21st Lsat

After a year and a half of studying on a nightly basis, Tara took the LSAT for a second time. I waited outside the testing center for the 3.5 hours just nervously scrolling through the LSAT subreddit asking people how it went and making jokkes about what people were saying were the most difficult questions on the test. Fuckin' logic games, man.

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Baby Turtle

For the first time in 20 years, our red foot tortoises laid a viable egg.

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No Usb C

The last iPhone I got was an iPhone 6. I told everyone I refused to buy an iPhone until Apple switched to USB-C. 6 fucking years later I had to no choice, my phone was just too obsolete and the battery too dead. Even Phil says "I know what you're waiting for, I am too". Fuck that guys, just do it.

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Women in Cs Discussion with Close Friend

Discussion with a close friend about sexism in our industry.

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Appointment with Sf Psychiatrist

An evaluation of how I'm doinhg mentally for my psychiatrist.

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Database Disaster and Mysql Config Changes

One day, all of a sudden, we were having serious database connection issues. We reached out to everyone we knew who might be able to help (not many database experts out there, honestly).

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Phenomenal Support from Digitalocean

As always, frankly. Although now that we're one of their biggest customers, I think we get the best they have to offer.

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Issues with Early Employee at Coursicle

Morale was low at the company due to one of our employees becoming very somber when she was at work. Given how small the team was, this was a pretty critical problem so the co-founders decided to speak to her.

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McDonald's Food Poisoning

One time I got food poisoning from McDonald's while I was visiting family in Chapel Hill. I posted it on https://iwaspoisoned.com/ to see if anyone else had the same thing. A couple days later I got a call from the Chatham County health department who asked me a bunch of questions (they had seen my post on the site), and then actually did a surprise visit of the McDonald's and found that they weren't cooking their chicken to a sufficient temperature. It was pretty fucking awesome to see local government work like that.

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Meeting with Advisors About Acquisition

Sequence of questions we asked our advisors, who have gone through acquisitions before.

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Team Order at Bix

The Coursicle team's order at Bix, a fantastic restauraunt in San Francisco.

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Potential Projects for New Intern

A list of potential projects for our new intern, Monty.

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Sophia and Cosmo

Cosmo and my Granny's dog, Sophia, fighting to the death.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Frank Lloyd Wright

Notes from Ken Burns' documentary on Frank Lloyd Wright.

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Frank Discussion with Employee

It appeared as though one of our employees wasn't doing too well mentally at work, so we decided to have a discussion with her to figurue out why and how we could help.

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Visual Birth Control Reminder Before Bed

I always wanted to help my girlfriend remember to take her birth control because it's such an easy thing to forget to do every day. Alarms work pretty well, but if you're in the middle of something or you don't have it with you, you'll sometimes turn off the alarm or snooze it a couple times and then turn it off and end up forgetting before you go to bed, sometimes you don't even notice until the next day when you're supposed to take the next pill and see you didn't take the day before's.

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Meeting with Digitalocean About Coursicle

After meeting the DigitalOcean team at a conference in San Francisco, they suggested that they do a case study on Coursicle since they really liked our mission and the fact that we were running on our own revenue. When I was in New York, they had me come into their office for an interview.

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Ice Cream Order at Ample Hills Creamery

After a lot of taste testing, I decided what 6 scoops I wanted.

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Crazy Week

This one week in the middle of July, a lot of good things ended up happening. It was a good time.

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New York to Do List

List of things to do while visiting New York with Tara.

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Notes from Talk with Potential Acquirerer

While we were in San Francisco, a very large company in our space asked if we could meet them regarding a potential acquisition. These are the notes after our first meeting with them.

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Selling Coursicle

Some notes I took before going into a meeting with a large company that was interested in buying Coursicle.

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Just Another Day

Some thoughts on the drugs I was taking.

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Questions for Chef at Eataly

One of my favorite Italian places in New York is La Pizza La Pasta at Eataly. Often, I can't convince my friends to go with me at whatever random time I feel like eating somewhere, so I went alone. I believe I ordered a salad and two pastas, which was a little strange for someone eating alone. At the end, I asked if I could speak to the chef since I had a couple questions. The waitress brought out the manager and the chef, Denis Dello Stritto (who was visiting from LA at the time), assuming that I had some complaints. After about 5 minutes of excitedly absorbing as much information about pasta as I could from Denis, the manager realized that I was not a food critic who wanted to lodge a complaint or something of the sort, and was just some kid who loves pasta, so she walked away and let Denis and I have at it.

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Talk with Friend

Notes that I took after a talk with a friend of mine.

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Short Notes from Mavic Air Drone

Notes about what features I should play with and some main takeaways from reading the manual.

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Drone Videos

A set of drone clips, shot mostly on the Mavic Air 2.

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Quinn's Wedding

Tara's best friend, Quinn, got married and naturally Tara and I were invited. Funnily enough, Quinn's sister, Anna, happened to have her final crew race scheduled on the day of the wedding. So their parents bought a private jet to fly Anna from the race in South Carolina at Clemson to the wedding in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. I'm good friends with their dad, and he invited me to go on the jet because they had some extra seats.

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Psychiatrist Update

An update on how things have been going for my pschiatrist.

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Short to Do List

Short list of TODOs.

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Therapy

Another set of notes to prep for therapy.

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Initial Research when Building PC

My notes while researching each part of a desktop PC, what function it performs, etc.

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Euphoria

Notes prior to going into my therapy appointment.

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Constructing My Gaming PC

Surprisingly, I was 25 when I built my first PC. It was easier than I expected, so I decided to go into the depths of things and tried to understand everything about the hardware I was buying to make it more interesting. I also relied a lot on my friend Deven for the process, asking him a lot of questions about what everything was.

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General Notes During Anxiety

A set of notes to myself and based on conversations with my pharmacist, psychologist, and psychiatrist.

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Notes from Guy I Met in Shared Lyft

Notes I made about a very sweet and interesting guy I shared a Lyft with one morning.

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An Inflection Point in the Anxiety

One of the first days in months where I had a very good night that led into a good morning.

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Turtle Shelter Construction

My dad taking a timelapse of himself contructing the shelter for the turtles in 2019. I usually did this for them in years past.

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Notes from Ken Burns' the Congress

Notes from watching Ken Burns' The Congress.

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Notes from First Appointment with Sf Psychiatrist

Notes from my first meeting with Dr. Joe Walker, who turned out to be a fantastic psychiatrist who I ended up having manage my medication for years.

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Trying to Find a Psychologist in Sf

Just like trying to find a psychiatrist, finding a psychologist in SF was a real pain. Certainly much harder than finding a pschyiatrist, and you need both for effective treatment of a serious psychiatric issue.

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Reflection on Anxiety

After reading a New Yorker article about how psychiatric drugs can escalate issues if not prescribed responsibly, I wrote a note detailing why I think things got as bad as they did.

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Traveling to Soccer in Sf

Despite living rather centrally in San Francisco, it was still going to be at least an hour and half commute to get to and from playing soccer. When the threshold for action is so high, it has such a chilling effect. San Francisco's public transit sucks.

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Note to Self 5

It could be worse: you could have had Celiac's which would have been lifelong. Nothing is falling apart. You don’t need Ativan. That’s improvement.

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Trying to Find a Psychiatrist in Sf

It's pretty fucked up how difficult a task getting help can be and how you have to do it when you're mentally at your worst.

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A Fantastic Article

My dad sent me this one, have re-read it multiple times over the years.

The Day the Dinosaurs Died

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My Proposed Reasons Why I Was Anxious

A list of the reasons what I thought triggered the anxiety.

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Plan of Action

Plan for how I was going to start getting better (socializing and exercise).

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Note to Self About Depression

Trying to stay motivated to make it through the depression

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How to Stand out when Applying to an Internship

It's better to take a risk and get someone's attention than it is to blend in with everyone else.

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Tara's Thoughts on My Anxiety

Tara giving me a pep talk for how to handle all this.

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Analysis of Medications

Trying to do a cost benefit on the different options of drug combinations I have.

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Note to Self About Staying in Sf

Trying to keep myself committed to a plan, because wavering was just making everything worse.

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Notes from Conversation with Psychiatrist

Notes from discussion with my psychiatrist.

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Notes from Discussion with Psychiatrist

More notes from a call with my psychiatrist.

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Notes for Psychiatrist

Notes about call with psychiatrist.

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Sf to Do

Lits of things to do in SF to keep mind off anxiety.

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Anxiety Breakdown Notes

A breakdown of what I thought the cause of the anxiety was.

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Going Back to Sf

Tara was very insistent that I go back to SF because I had been gone for a couple months and she didn't want to be alone. As with most decisions I made at the time, I'd vascillate between all the options almost as soon as I thought I had made a firm decision.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Thomas Jefferson

Notes from Ken Burns' Thomas Jefferson.

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Notes from Visit with Allergist

My throat started bothering me enough that I went to see an allergist to see if something I was around or eating could be causing it.

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Visit with Physician

Notes from my visit with a physician after things started to settle a bit.

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Massive Compliation of Health Notes

A huge note which aggregated the timeline of what I had experienced to try to find patterns.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Lewis & Clark

Notes from Ken Burns' Lewis & Clark.

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A Daily to Do List

A list of things to do each day to keep my mind occupied and off of the anxiety.

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Notes on Condition

Notes on my psyche during probably the most painful period of my life.

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Trying to Rationalize Medicine Change

My mom insisted that we switch to Wellbutrin because it worked for my depression 7 years prior.

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Coming to Terms That This Was Mental Health

A new plan given the realization that this wasn't physical in origin.

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Note to Self 4

Tomorrow will be better. You just have to get over the drug withdrawals.

You can do this. Just be strong and think positively.

Just take deep breaths and say "you're okay".

You've already told Tara the plan. You can't waiver.

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Serious Guess As to the Cause

Trying to determine what the source of the issue was.

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Note to Self About Treatment

A note to myself trying to stick with a certain plan. It didn't last long, they never do.

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Notes Post Lexapro

Notes of my experiences after starting LexaPro and a smorgasbord of other goodies.

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Italian Wedding Soup

One of my favorite soups that my mom would make. It's a fucking mess of a recipe though.

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Notes from Meeting with Nc Doctor

Now that the endoscopy results came back with nothing, the next question was: what's the problem?

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Endoscopy Experience Without Sedation

My experience having an endoscopy without sedation.

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Notes Before Endoscopy

Notes right before endoscopy.

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Sinus Notes

Notes on the sinus stuff I had been experiencing, perhaps it was connected to my distress?

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Note to Self 3

A note to myself to help me stay calm while working on a very stressful bug at Coursicle, which ended up having to do with a previously unknown memory leak in the Python framework we were using, Celery.

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Drone Name Ideas

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First Drone

Research I did when I was buying my first drone. Ended up with a refurbished Mavic Air. Great decision, and DJI shipped it as if it were new. Frankly, it was almost impossible to tell it was used, and was able to save a lot of money from buying refurbished (and also was able to use my .edu email to get a 10% discount).

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Notes from Reviewing Dji Documentation

Notes from reading the manual.

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Notes from Ken Burns' the West

Notes from Ken Burns' The West

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Seeing Nc Gastroenterologist

Once things it became clear that we needed some diagnostics, I flew back to NC to have an endoscopy. I didn't want to do it in SF because my family wasn't around to support me (and Tara was very busy with work).

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Seeing Sf Gastroenterologist

As the nausea started to grow, so did my obsession over resolving it.

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Notes to Self About Ben Not Accepting Coursicle

Our first intern, Ben, was fantastic and I really got along well with him. It was also really nice to not have to do everything, and to be able to delegate certain tasks. Unfortunately, when we gave him a full-time offer, he wanted to accept it but only if he could work remotely from NC. This was very upsetting for me, because I wanted to be working in-person with people, so ultimately he didn't join Coursicle after graduation. He also didn't want to move to SF (he ended up moving to NY to work at Amazon).

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Guide for Making Tara Chai Tea

I would make Tara her tea every so often, and she was pretty particular about it, so I wanted to make sure I got it right each time (I almost always got the amount of milk wrong).

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Coursicle Motivation

After starting to struggle with what turned out to be anxiety, I started to question whether working on Coursicle was the right thing for me. Perhaps it was the cause for my unhappiness? Perhaps if I worked a "normal" job I would feel better. I made this list as a way to stay motivated with my Coursicle work (the company was doing very well).

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Notes from Ken Burns' Empire of the Air

Notes from watching Ken Burns' Empire of the Air (about radio)

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Notes from Gastroenterologist Visit

Notes from meeting with a gastroenterologist regarding my regular nausea.

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Notes on American Healthcare System

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Trying to See Doctor in Sf

Dealing with intense daily nausea is one thing, having to do it while navigating the byzantine conduit that is healthcare in the United States is a whole other animal.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Brooklyn Bridge

Notes from watching Ken Burns' The Brooklyn Bridge..

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Travel Schedule While Living in San Francisco

At this point, I was pretty unhappy living in San Francisco and I decided I needed to go to places I liked more often (since working on Coursicle allowed me the flexibility of working from anywhere).

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Feeling Unsatisfied with Life

Some notes to my self trying to get it all down why I wasn't feeling satisfied.

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Steps to Improve Stomach

The beginning of a very difficult time in my life, where I was trying to find a source for my morning nauseau by looking for patterns in the food I ate.

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Incase Backback Comparison City Commuter Citybackback City Compack

Someone at the Incase HQ tested a 15" Macbook Pro with a classic sleeve in a variety of their backbacks and let me know which ones fit at all, were tight, etc. Then I bought the three most promising ones to try out for myself. Really loved their customer support, Incase is a company I'm proud to buy from.

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Credit Card Research

Research on what credit cards are, their history, etc.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Thomas Benton

Notes from watching Ken Burns' Thomas Benton.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Huey Long

Notes from watching Ken Burns' Huey Long.

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Notes from Ken Burns' Statue of Liberty

Notes from watching Ken Burns' The Statue of Liberty

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Notes from Ken Burns' the Shakers

Notes from watching Ken Burns' The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God.

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Joe's Life Slideshow

Back in 2018, I wanted to create a slideshow of photos that I could put on my TV for when friends came over, so I decided to cull some photos from my library. Of course, I couldn't really just pull some here or there, I felt like I had to go through all 40,000 of them and pick out all of the important moments, people, places, and food in my life.

Here's the slideshow.

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Notes from D&d with Paul

Notes from when I played my first game of D&D with my good friend Paul and some old buds from high school.

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Fireworks from Christmas Eve

David Jenkins shot these on his iPhone. Very high quality.

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A Paranoid Person's List of Things to Do Before Leaving Apartment

Tara and I are rather neurotic people, so we want to make sure every base is covered.

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Story of Secretly Getting My License

The process of secretly getting my license for Tara as a surprise present.

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Citi Secured Mastercard Research

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Notes About Driving Test

Tara had wanted me to get my license for a very long time, so I decided to fly back to NC and get it without telling her, and then surprise her with it as a Christmas Eve present.

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The Entire Saga of Almost Losing a Month of Ios Code

A minute by minute accounting of all of the craziness that was me almost losing a month of Coursicle work.

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Incredible Experience at the Apple Store

An absolutely fantastic tale from my time at the Union Square Apple Store.

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Macbook Pro Not Responding Black Screen

Exact sequence of events leading up to my Mac becoming completely unresponsive, almost as if the logic board had died.

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This is the Most Beautiful Little Table That Exists

The benefits of being self-employed are hard to ignore.

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Bad Experience at the Apple Store

An accounting of a bad experience I had at the Apple Store with a phone swap.

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Witnessing a Computer Theft in San Francisco

This is the full account of what happened when I saw a group of kids steal a laptop while a woman was typing on it.

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Discussion with Tara About Equity

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Notes from Visit with Eye Doctor

My dad made a lot of fun of me for asking this guy so many questions.

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Hiding the People Also Searched for Box on Google After Clicking a Result and Returning Back to Search Page

This is one of the most infuriating things that Google has introduced to the seasoned internet user. I'll regularly go to a page, quickly determine that it doesn't have the information I want, and then will return to the search results and try to click on the next result. Of course, with this feature the next result I'm trying to click on slides down with an animation, causing me to misclick. It's very reminiscent of when you're reading something and an ad loads and it shifts the page and causes you to lose your spot or to misclick on the page. It's an infuriating "feature".

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Questions for DigitalOcean

Notes from when we went to a DigitalOcean conference and I pulled aside one of the main database people at DigitalOcean to ask him some questions. Fantastic people, fantastic company. 10/10 would host again.

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Notes on Nexium

I believe this is when I started to have morning nausea, and so I started to take nexium every day to see if it would help.

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Tratto SF

An order we made at Tratto. Tratto was very good for the price, and the fucking Tagliatelle, Marone!

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Fleet Week San Francisco

Every year in San Francisco the blue angels do a show. It's fucking dope. Probably my favorite thing about SF. Highly recommend going to Ina Coolbrith Park to view them.

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Application of the Monty Hall Problem to Multiple Choice Questions

A good friend of mine, David Jenkins, once called me asking me a question I don't think I ever fully solved. He wanted to know the applicability of multiple choice questions to the Monty Hall problem. Update 12/21/21: looks like it's not applicable.

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Major Coursicle Updates

A set of updates that we sent to some advisors to let them know how Coursicle was doing.

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Small Journal Entry

Not really happy with how things are going. I frequently say something to Tara, either a statement or a question, and she just doesn't listen to it at all, and makes me repeat it. It's like she's not even paying attention to anything in her surroundings. When I take Cosmo out, she doesn't even notice that I've left or remember when I last took him out.

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Best Movie Candy

  • Snowcaps
  • Nerds
  • (Blow pop?)
  • (Hubba Bubba)
  • (Ring pop?)
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Citi DoubleCash Card Notes

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Notes from Reading Veritas Realty Lease Rentsfnow San Francisco

Notes I took while reading through our lease at 969 Bush Street.

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One of the Best Articles I've Read

The recovery effort is something out of a dramatic movie. This story is incredible.

The Untold Story of NotPetya, the Most Devastating Cyberattack in History

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Potential 2018 Macbook Pro Issues

After being traumautized by all the keyboard issues of my (otherwise beloved) 2016 MacBook Pro, I was very concerned when I upgraded to the 2018 MacBook Pro (Apple had also given me a 2017 MacBook Pro as part of all the trouble I went through with my 2016 MacBook Pro, but it had the same terrible keyboard issues).

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Request for Thoughtful Discussion Regarding Silent Sam

My friend reached out to my other friend and me asking to understand why we felt the students tearing down the statue was justified.

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Sequence of Events with Macbook Pro Keyboard

The ridiculousness that was the 2016-2019 MacBook Pro keyboards.

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Dog Cost Estimate

A set of questions (and my answers) from a friend who was looking into getting her first dog.

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Sweet Email from Professor

This kind of shit makes our week.

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Why I Need Spotify Premium

A little note about why I couldn't live with the free Spotify.

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Learning Italian

Some notes I took while trying to teach myself Italian.

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How to Handle Fleas

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That Time Cosmo Got Fleas

Turns out you do need to give your dog tic and flea meds when you live in San Francisco.

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Thoughts on SF

Some thoughts I jotted down after living in SF for a year.

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Working with Tara

Rules of engagement when discussing Coursicle work with Tara.

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How to Cook Pasta Correctly

Response to John Siracusa's Better Pasta (how to cook pasta correctly). Update 12/21/21: he was right about 3., it's significantly better; I do this every time now.

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Comparison Between Google Home and Amazon Alexa

We got both so we could do a side by side comparison.

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401(k) Scams by Evan Vanderwey

My dad's company was being solicited by this guy, Evan Vanderwey, to move all of his money over from his existing 401(k) and IRA into the fund this guy managed. My parents were about to do it, when I asked if I could just take a look at things. I had recently watched an absolutely incredible Frontline, The Retirement Gamble, in which they detail the racket that is the retirement savings industry. In essense: people's retirement are often a very big sum of money they have just sitting there, people on average are rather innumerate and easily persuaded, and those things combined attract some real predators.

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Bats

I decided to sit out on the porch to see if the bats would fly over my head. They got a little close for comfort at times, even for me.

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Possible Esophageal Diverticulum

Really fucking weird sequence of events where I ended up being scared something was like permenantly lodged in my throat, so we went to Urgent Care. The doctor said it could be a Esophageal Diverticulum, but it wasn't anything to be concerned about.

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List of Food I Was Looking Forward to Having at Home

My mom is an amazing cook (former chef), and so I really look forward to the food every time I go home.

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Surprise Party for Tara's Parents

This was a lot of fun. Julianna and I went to their house and cleared the place for a dance floor so that when they came back to the house there was a party ready to go. We also stored the cake at my house.

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Joe at Rao's

The NYT said it practically takes an act of Congress to get a table there. Guess I'm going into politics.

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Regions of Italy My Family is from

Both sides of my family are Sicilian. Fun fact: my dad's side is from the same very small town that Fauci's from!

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Tara Doing Law

Tara struggled for a while what to do after she finished undergrad. She knew she wanted to go to grad school, and finally one evening we started discussing law school very seriously, and everything clicked. I took notes during that discussion.

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Cosmo Stuck

Cosmo stuck underneath a blanket.

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Cosmo Terrified

Cosmo gets really scared by a black bear.

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A Couple Iterations of My Marinara

Log I took of variations I was trying of my mom's marinara recipe.

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Italian Restauraunts in SF

There were certainly some hidden gems.

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Today Was a Sad Day

Not the best day, lots to be sad about.

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Battle for the Nest

Directly outside our window were two Mourning doves who kept a nest. A third showed up one day, at first I thought it was trying to take over the nest, then it became clear that it was trying to lay its egg in the nest so that it didn't have to raise its old child.

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Mourning Dove Photos

Some photos I took of the mourning doves who had a nest in the palm tree directly outside our window in San Francisco.

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Questions About Having a Dog in SF

Questions I asked the vet in SF about what was necessary for a small toy poodle given the climate in SF, etc.

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Antisocial Cosmo

Cosmo just doesn't like other dogs.

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Call with Senior Advisor (lots of good detail on CRUs)

Notes from my call with a Senior Advisor at Apple Support. This was after dealing with so much shit trying to get an actually keyboard-functional 2016 MacBook Pro and I just wanted a computer that worked.

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Notes About CRUs at Apple Store

Notes about CRU (Customer Replacement Unit) at Apple.

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Dream About Tara

A dream I had about Tara. Very interesting to interpret. I wouldn't be surprised if this was me realizing that she was becoming more of a conformist, since I see alcohol consumption as a proxy for conformity.

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Automatically Convert Google Doc to Email and Send

I really hate repeated tasks, so I do everything I can to minimize them. It's helpful to split up big tasks into smaller TODOs, so every week the team edits a Google Doc that has the past week's successes, past week's failures, and this week's goals. I wrote a script in Google Apps Script that converts the Google Doc to HTML and emails it to the team a couple hours and our advisors so they can track our progress. It runs on a time trigger which is good because it means everyone has to be sure their goals are finalized by the time the email goes out.

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Next Level Rubber Duck Debugging

A joke my friend made that I found really funny.

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Kitty on Floor

Kitty looking straight gorgie. Julianna decided to record her like one of her french cats.

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Kitty Pounce on Cosmo

One of the most epic slow-mo scenes I've captured. They didn't talk for a week after this.

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Netgear Nighthawk R7000P Setup

Notes about some local area networking basics which I took while setting up my first router, the Netgear Nighthawk R7000P. I wanted to make sure I understood all the settings that could be changed so that required a decent bit of research.

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Nisha's Explanation of Accounting Things (Income Statement, Balance Sheet, etc.)

My friend Nisha's explanation of various finance concepts, which I am woefully uneducated on.

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Ken Burns' The War (World War II)

Notes from Ken Burns' The War (World War II)

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Ken Burns' Vietnam War

Notes from Ken Burns' Vietnam War

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Notes on Frontline United States of Secrets

My notes while watching Frontline's United States of Secrets. Fucking love Frontline.

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Third-Party Doctrine

Due to the third-party doctrine, 4th amendment protections don't apply to data given to third parties, like Google, and Apple, so warrantless extraction of this data is legal. That's some bullshit and just another reason why you should own your own data, your own website, your own power, instead of giving it away to corporations.

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Call with Peter Piche

Notes from a call with my former teacher of 10 years at Montessori, Peter.

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Family Clips

Clips from family videos taken over the course of a decade.

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Food for Four

Food four four. Just wait for it.

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Joe Soccer Clips

Young and fearless.

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Wat

One of the funniest little talks for sarcastic programmers. I love this.

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Christmas Situation

There has been a multi-year struggle between my family in me, in particular my mom and me, about Christmas. I don't like getting presents that I didn't explicitly ask for, because I just don't like having "stuff" that doesn't serve a purpose in my life. I need to feel a painpoint before having something to solve that painpoint is necessary. So I usually only ask for money, or specific things like an electric razor or better headphones or that kind of thing. But some people just seem so unable to handle that that, despite my protest, they still buy me things knowing that I'm going to ask them to return them.

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Christmas Eve Party to Do List

Since I was young, my mom would throw a Christmas Eve party for friends and family. Once I got older, I started to run my own little part of the show (the kid hangout + the firework show).

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Family Related Photos

A collection of photos of my family spanning many decades.

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Call of Duty Montages

A set of my Call of Duty montages.

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Early Kitty Playing

Early videos of Kitty exploring her world.

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Paul Thug Lyfe

I always loved this clip of my friend Paul missing the goal by a mile, and then making fun of himself. So I decided to pile onto the fun.

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Telnet Magic

Go to terminal, and enter in: telnet towel.blinkenlights.nl

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Vet Research in SF

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An Advisor Using Coursicle

An exchange with an advisor at the University of South Carolina.

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Ben Thai Cafe

In San Francisco, our favorite Thai place was Ben Thai Cafe. One thing they served sometimes on the side that I had to start asking for was this incredibly spicy mixture of peppers, eventually I asked them what it was called: "Thai chop chili". Fantastic stuff. Sometimes I'd take some home and use it to spice up some Mac N' Cheese.

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Coursicle Meeting October 29th

Next dinner I had with Tara where I gave an update.

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Ken Burns' Civil War

One of my favorite documentaries, Ken Burns' Civil War was both moving and educational. After I watched this documentary, I became determined to watch every documentary by Burns. It'll take a while, but I've already watched over 100 hours of Burns' and I still can't get enough.

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Trying to Get Cosmo to Be an Emotional Support Animal

In order to avoid the fees of flying with Cosmo, I tried to get my psychiatrist to write me a letter to make him an emotional support animal. To be honest, the original reason was for the financial benefit, but having the little guy around when I was alone all day, every day, working on Coursicle, was very helpful for my mental health.

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Montessori Matters Paragraph

My Montessori school (Montessori Community School, MCS), which I went to from kindergarden to 8th grade, asked me to write a short blurb about how Montessori impacted my life.

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Coursicle Meeting October 7th

Dinner with Tara where I gave her an update on what I'd been doing on Coursicle.

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More Hussle

More posting and the random insights gathered from doing this day in and day out.

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Cloudflare's Lava Lamps

My dad sent me this blog post, very cool stuff.

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Kitty and Jojo Fight 2

The battle of the cats. A sequel.

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Cosmo and Jojo

Cosmo and our the new kitten we found in the woods, JoJo.

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Persistent Xss Vulnerability in Coursicle

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Blockchain Notes

Notes from discussions with Tara about how blockchain works on a fundamental level (cryptographically, mostly). Boy oh boy did it start to be over applied. Rich people just trying to figure out an easy way to make a buck.

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Setting Up Bank of America Account Notes

I was very thorough when setting up my first bank account.

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Splitting Expenses with Tara

Tara and I cared a lot about splitting expenses up evenly. Like, down to the cent. We didn't want to feel like one of us was paying for more than the other, even though she was making $120,000/year and I was making $16,000 (all of Coursicle's revenue at the time).

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Figure out if Email is Valid

Determined how to tell if an email address is valid or not without sending one to it.

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Kitty and Jojo

The battle of the cats.

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Tcl 43 Inch 4k Tv Calibration

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Julianna Dropping Phone in Water

Julianna dropping her phone in water. The reaction: priceless.

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Bank Account Research

Looking into what bank accounts are and why you might want one.

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Notes on Personal Taxes

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Why Google is a Dick to Developers

They do not handle the calculation and remittance of sales tax on in-app purchases (Apple does this).

That means I had to write code to calculate the sales tax we have to pay to each NC county, because we have to do this on a quarterly basis. It was such a fucking waste of time in order to pay Wake County like $4.25.

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Svsm

A series of photos and videos from Summer Ventures of Science and Math at UNC Wilmington (UNCW).

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Alan Videos

Videos of my close friend, Alan, that I like a lot.

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Chasing a Dog at 1789

I decide to chase a dog in our office space.

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Christmas Timelapse

A timelapse of my family opening Christmas presents.

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Cosmo Attack

The most viscious attack we've seen Cosmo make. He was defending some food from Logan.

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Cosmo High Jumps

Cosmo showing off the hops.

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Cosmo Trying to Find Joe

Cosmo trying to find me once he heard I had come back home.

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Croaking Tree Frog

You hear them all the time, but finding one is pretty cool.

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Dad Rescuing Snapping Turtle

Every time we would go by a turtle on the road, my dad would stop to make sure it gets across safely. This time we saw a large snapping turtle that had already been hit by a car (it was bleeding), than needed to find water. My dad always has a shovel in his trunk for such occassions.

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Fat Logan

A video of fat logan. Just being fat.

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First Moments with Jojo

First moments with JoJo, after Julianna and I captured her from the forest. She still hasn't forgiven us.

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First Time Meeting Logan

First time we met Logan, our new dog.

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Frog Catching Moth

Frog catching a moth for the whole family's entertainment.

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Harvard Game Board Game Night

Game night at Harvard. Nerds unite.

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Henny Catching Bug

Henny catching a bug in mid air. Very impressive.

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How Henny Searches for Food

Henny's nine to five. Gotta put food in the tupperware.

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Kitty Feeding Cosmo

Humans better watch out. They're learning.

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Kitty Finds a Bird

Kitty finds a bird and is transfixed by its beauty.

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Kitty Twitching

Kitty twitching in her sleep.

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Laughing It Up on Camera

Most holidays, some of my friends and I would volunteer at UNC-TV to help with accepting donations (by answering calls and entering in the donator's info into a form). We had a good time, as you can see.

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Logan and Kitty Sleeping

Logan and kitty cuddling.

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Logan Slow Mo Catch

Logan slow mo catch.

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Mad House

My parents made the mistake of leaving me with 4 dogs. First thing I did was rile them up.

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Married Life

Frankly the parallels between my parents and my pets is profound.

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McOlive

Julianna's cat, Olive, after being spayed got caught trying to steal some Mc. Donalds.

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Mom Burrying Body

For some reason my mom wanted to go outside and start digging. In the rain.

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Pet Snakes

Every summer we get some rat snakes who come out to play (and mate???).

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Piggy Back with Paul

I'd ask all the time but he'd always refuse. This time I just decided to jump on his back while other people were around and he had no choice.

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Post Prom Tiredness

Tara and some other friends hanging out after prom. We were all pretty tired.

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Spooking Cosmo

Cosmo parroted the noise I made.

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Turtle Surprise

The turtles surprising Cosmo.

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Animals Loose

Pandemonium at the Puccios.

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Jojo and Logan

JoJo, a new member of the family, with Logan, an old one.

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Feeding Baby Bird

We found some baby birds who had fallen out of their nest, and after we put them back and didn't see a parent return,we tried feeding them (dog food soaked in warm water).

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Timelapse of Furnishing Apartment

When Tara and I moved into our apartment in San Francisco, I insisted we timelapse the entire furnishing process.

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Furnished Photos of San Francisco Apartment

Since I was working from home, I spent a lot of time in our apartment alone and cared (as I do about most of my living spaces) how it looks and feels to be in there (not for others, just for myself). As such, I spent a lot of time tidying things and making sure we got furniture that matched the aesthetic we were going for, which was light oak.

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More IKEA Notes

More notes about what we were buying from IKEA. We bought almost all of our furniture at IKEA, and if we needed something and didn't like what they had there, we bought it on Craigslist. Tara and I had a very minimalist approach when we first moved (although from her side, I think it might have been to save money, I'm about reducing clutter and only having things in my life that bring me joy; yes, I know who I sound like). We didn't want to just buy something because everyone else told us we needed it, or because we assumed we needed it. We would wait until we felt the pain before we bought something. A good example was a printer. We didn't buy a printer for like the first year, but we needed to print so much stuff (for returns, for taxes, etc.) and printing by going to FedEx was such a huge pain in the ass that it was just worth it to buy a printer.

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San Francisco ISPs

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List of Issues with First Sf Apartment

A list of all of the things wrong with our apartment so that we could get them on record with the landlord in case they tried to claim we made the damage.

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IKEA Shopping

Tara and I went shopping at IKEA. Yes, one of us cried, but it's because she wanted the pink couch, and I said I didn't like the look of the pink couch or the feel of the fabric, and she got upset, but not because she wanted the pink couch, because she wanted the option of the pink couch.

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Notes on Renter's Insurance

Our landlord in SF required we have renter's insurance, so we just had a couple questions for StateFarm, which is who we landed on (would recommend).

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Researching Renters Insurance

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Joe's Packing List for San Francisco

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Sf Apartment Hunting

Tara and I made a spreadsheet prior to flying out to San Francisco with all of the apartments that looked good, their prices, how many bedrooms, etc.

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This is Joe

A good (and accurate) call out by Kevin.

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Article Correction 2

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How to Make Deep Fried Ice Cream

Spicy 9 in Chapel Hill offers arguably my favorite dessert at a restauraunt: fried ice cream. Naturally, I tried to recreate the dish at home, but it was difficult to replicate. I believe the key is coating the ice cream with pound cake to get a thick layer of fried stuffs outside the ice cream.

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Logan and the Cats

Photos of Logan and our cats, including the last photo I took of him before he died.

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Generating Strong Memorable Passwords with Dicewords

Although I'm not a very private person, I am someone who cares about security. When I want something to be a closely guarded secret, I ensure with my entire technical capacity that it is. To that end, I have done a lot of research on encrypting my hard drives, protecting data in transit, and of course ensuring strong encryption with difficult to brute force passwords. It's imperative to use a password manager like LastPass or 1Password, and the one password that you use should ideally have 90+ bits of entropy. So that you don't get an aneurism every time you type it, I recommend using dicewords (just a concatenation of household words). For the extra paranoid, use an actual die instead of a computer's random number generator and open all of the files so that an analysis of your drive (which should be encrypted anyway) can't be done to determine which word list you used.

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Crash of Chrome That Results in Kernel Panic of My Mac

Every so often doing development, Chrome would crash and it would take my machine with it. It was weird.

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A Great Set of Ideas for Blog Posts on Coursicle

Blog posts to make. Should look at keyword analysis to see what people are searching.

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Japanese Puffer Fish

An absolutely rivetting video my dad sent me.

Japanese Puffer Fish (Excerpt from BBC Life Story)

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6 Replacements for the 2016 Macbook Pro

Frankly, the keyboard wasn't the only thing fucked with the 2016 MacBook Pros. I went through 6 replacements before I just said fuck it and kept the first one I got because it had the best quality control. One of two things are going on at Apple: they don't give a shit about quality control anymore because they're focused too much on their stock price/making money (given the way they handled the whole 2016-2019 keyboards, this seems somewhat likely) or they literally just can't see the quality control issues anymore because Jobs is gone.

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Running in Circles Together

Cosmo and Kitty running in circles together.

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Catching a Ride

I guess lizards are to turtles as humans are to horses.

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This is What Hussle Looks Like

I fucking hated these days, but hey, it got us to where we were. Nothing better than getting to the point where users are coming to you rather than the other way around. Working on Coursicle is so much more fun now that we don't have to do all of the grunt marketing that we used to.

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Chicken Care

One day I heard some clucking outside our house in NC, and I go out to find a chicken plotting around. After successfully seducing her with some (cooked) rice, she lived under our screened porch for 6 months. Since this was a new species of care for us, I did a lot of research so we knew how to take care of her.

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Email with Senior Advisor About Macbook Pro Keyboard Issues

Little did I know how many years it would take for Apple to get their shit together.

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1password Security and Contingency Plans

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Thoughts on the 2016 Macbook Pro

My thoughts while reviewing the 2016 MacBook Pro.

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Setting Up a Completely Secure 1Password Setup

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Notes on Password Security

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Paying off Student Loan Most Effectively

Fuck debt. I just wanted to get rid of my student debt as quickly as possible so I paid the least amount of interest possible. I painted a bunch of different scenarios with regard to paying down my loans and how much cash that would leave me with. Since I was born, my dad's side of the family had got me about $100 in bonds each of my birthdays, which was very sweet of them because by the time I finished college that amount was about $8,000, which I was able to use to knock out about half of my loans. What I was surprised to find was that I was charged a capital gains tax (I think that's what it was) on the loans, which were government backed loans...used for education...I really feel like maybe there should be an income minimum for capital gains tax, like I was making under $15,000/year at that point, but I still get hit with a tax bill for selling these bonds?

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Email to Tim Cook

An email I wrote to Tim Cook because I was so tired of dealing with the bullshit keyboard issues of the MacBook Pro. I was an early adopter of the 2016 models as I was eagerly awaiting a redesign to upgrade to from my 2012, but within a couple hours I had some funkiness with the keyboard. I made sure that my post didn't get lost in the noise, and sure enough hundreds of others were having issues with the keyboard (it's now one of the top 40 posts in the MacBook Pro category on MacRumors, with 320,000 views and over 2,000 replies). This eventually led to a number articles featuring this issue and my video. Little did I know it would be 3 years before Apple righted course. Apple really did not do the right thing here, and this is probably the most Apple has ever dissappointed me since I became a devout customer in 2007 (with the iPod Touch and a PowerBook G4). Tim never responded (not surprised), although I have gone back and forth a couple times over the years with Federighi over some software questions I've had (he's been great).

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Question Regarding Imessage Automation

When Tara and I were trying to fix some issue with Coursicle we wanted to automate texting some users from our phones so we could tell them they needed to resubmit the classes they were tracking. One part of this was just automating figuring out if a user had an iPhone or an Android, so we were hoping to use iMessage to determine that.

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How to Spoof MAC Address

A pretty basic understanding of networking fundamentals can help you get around most blocks put in place. For instance, if you're at a cafe or other public Wi-Fi that limits free sessions to 1 hour? Well first of all, fuck that. Second of all, you just need to change your MAC address (yes, this works for PCs) in order to get around the block once you've hit that limit. Just run these commands every hour or half hour or whatever the limit is, and you'll be able to use the internet indefinitely for free.

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Time Machine Commands

Time Machine can be a real pain in the ass.

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This Fucking Moron

Confidence is important, but overconfidence causes people to do stupid shit.

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Old Photo Soccer Team

An old photo I found of my freshman year in high school. I was the only freshman on the team (yes, I told people that fact regularly) and I definitely thought I was hot shit (spoiler alert: still do).

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Call with MyEdu Founders

Soon after we launched Coursicle at UT Austin (which is where MyEdu was the most popular), we exploded. Tara was the one who thought we should do the work to launch there as soon as possible and she was absolutely right. She added UT Austin and 3 weeks later we had 19,000 users just from UT. It was insane. It also got the attention of the former founders of our biggest competitor, MyEdu. They had been bought by Blackboard and then got shut down. The founders wanted to pitch us on something.

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Notes About Mass Emailing

Back when we were sending a lot of emails to students as a way of marketing Coursicle, we got pretty good at email marketing. 80-90% open rates and 10-15% CTRs. Our secret? People don't like marketing emails, so make sure your email doesn't look like one. Also have something you're "selling" that the person actually wants to buy. If you can't do that, well then you should probably work on something else. Also send at the perfect time (students procrastinate the most at the start of the week, so they'll read an email they might not normally read), and we would send right around the time of registration, so we knew Coursicle would be relevant. If we could hit those metrics with a niche seasonal product and no email marketing experience, God, anything's possible.

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The Death of Some Fancy Pants

My friend Alan lent me some of his fancy pants, and I managed to fuck them up in just a day. I felt pretty bad, so I made a card.

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Notes on Jobs for Tara

I wanted to make sure I did everything I could to help Tara find a job in one of the cities I wanted us to live in, because I didn't want to end up in a "we're going to Chicago" situation again.

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Life of Pi

A message I sent my favorite teacher growing up, Peter Piche from Montessori.

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Question Regarding Pullout Method for Pharmacist

Tara and I both were prety concerned about getting her pregnant, so when unusual birth control related things came up she asked me to make calls to pharmacists asking if we needed to take plan B. Fun fact: you should almost always be able to call a pharmacist, just call a CVS in New York that's 24 hours. You obviously don't need to live in NY to do this.

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Gathering Jobs for Tara (Full-Time, September 2016)

After the company Tara had a job at went under before she could start in the Fall of 2016, we set out to find her another job. I wanted us to move to NY (but was open to SF and somewhat Boston as well), so I helped her find jobs that fit her needs and skewed heavily toward sending her NY ones ;)

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Notes on Mr. Robot Rewatch 2

Another set of notes while rewatching Mr. Robot.

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New York Friendliness

Tara and I decided to take a business trip to New York to try to get the word out about Coursicle at schools in New York. We were ultimately unsuccessful, especially at NYU (had a funny story about something that happened at WSP when we were flyering one day), but as I was getting in from the airport, it was just so clear how much friendlier people were in New York. Namely, the bar for them to start talking to you was lower, and about real stuff, not saying "good morning" or smiling at you when you walk by, I mean actually engaging in conversation that isn't about the weather. I've always loved New York, and this in one reason why I probably always will. Culture is contagious, and it gets passed on to the people who move here.

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Notes from Flyering at UNC

Back when we finally launched textbook price comparisons at UNC, we were about to make our first dollar (this time we weren't going to give a shit what the Student Stores said because we had graduated and we needed to start making money at this point). I decided physically flyering would be a good idea, so we printed about 20,000 of them on the free printers at Sitterson (sorry Jeffay, I'll get you back, I promise) and I went about flyering every single room, at every single dorm at UNC's campus (because why not). A couple of nights I had my friends Max and Michael help. I think it took 4 days, but I went to every single dorm and slid a flyer under every single door (completionism at its finest). We ended up making a couple thousand dollars from affiliate fees that first semester. It wasn't great, but it wasn't horrible.

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My Order at Checkers

One of my favorite fucking fast food places became Checkers. They didn't have them in North Carolina, but they sure as shit did in Memphis. I probably got it almost every other day, and god damn, was it amazing. Better than Cookout? I don't know, would need to have them back to back.

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TechCrunch Call

Call with Jonathan Shieber at TechCrunch. Met him at a conference that Start Co. forced us to go to, called 36/86. It was stupid, we told them we didn't want to spend all this money to go, that the money would be better spent on the business, but they insisted we were stupid and should go. In the end, they ended up paying us to go. Nothing really came of this conference in the end, a couple of connections that fizzled out (a company that offered to buy us for a whopping $50,000, and meeting this TechCrunch guy). He was nice, but the fact is: TechCrunch only fucking cares about companies who raise a bunch of money. It's like people have forgotten what companies even exist to do: generate fucking revenue. He didn't end up writing an article, which I was pretty bummed about, but it helped me realize: the game is fucking rigged, the only winning move is not to play.

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Granny Sauce

Marinara recipe from my grandma, and my mom's lack of endorsement.

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Nurse Visit to Granny 2

A second letter from the nurse.

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Bed Bugs Bullshit

This should have been handled better.

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Full Saga of Bed Bugs in Memphis

A note Joe wrote detailing exactly the sequence of events that we endured during the bed bug fiasco.

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Bed Bugs in Memphis

When we were in Memphis at the accelerator, we got bed bugs. Now, that just sucks already, because these fuckers are really good at psychological torture, but what made it even worse was that the building we were staying at, The Exchange, tried to blame us for the bed bugs. They claimed that we had brought them to their building, and that we were going to have to pay them for the extermination. Now, clearly, this was absurd. We had no history of bed bugs in college or in either of our houses. They had an exterminator come to our apartment and that person believed that the bed bugs were brought into the apartment, and from that they concluded that we brought them into the building. Here's the thing: when we first got to Memphis, our apartment wasn't ready yet, so they put us in a different one for like the first 4 days. Turns out: that apartment had bed bugs (and they later found out about it). We brought them in, indeed, but from one of their fucking apartments into another one of their apartments. They were so stupid that they never made the connection until we brought it up that we had stayed in another apartment for the first 4 days. Then they were like "oh, yeah, turns out that apartment was infested with bed bugs".

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Marketing Success at Coursicle

Some marketing stats we were asked to put together, and the success rate we had with marketing in untapped channels.

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Questions for Uber Engineer

When Tara was trying to find new places to work, she was put in touch with other people who left TGG. One of them worked at Uber, and we came up with a list of questions.

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Suggestion for Where Tara Could Work

After the company Tara had a job for went out of business, she was trying to figure out where she could work instead. I had a suggestion for where she could apply.

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Notes from Mr. Robot Rewatch

Re-watched Mr. Robot with Tara and a good friend we met in Memphis, Connor, and I was picking up on things on the second watch that I had missed. Really great show.

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Step by Step Marketing Plan

The plan of action for marketing Coursicle at new schools that we've just launched at.

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Talk with Program Director

Things at Start Co. started to get a bit tumultuous. We were not happy with how we were being treated, and felt like we were really losing the autonomy that made us love working on Coursicle in the first place.

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36 86 Conference

We were not treated like rational beings by our accelerator. It really pissed Tara and me off. B2C companies should not be wasting time and money on fucking conferences and T-shirts when they're first starting out.

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Short Emotional Pitch

A short pitch probably intended to pull on those heartstrings.

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First Web Development Resource

My friend at the time, Winston, shared with me a fantastic website (I believe on the Virginia Tech domain) that detailed how to set up a basic website using MySQL and PHP. It was so easy to understand it allowed me to get started with web development very quickly. What I learned her is still the basis of all of the web code that we use at Coursicle, and I don't really see any reason to change it (we've been able to scale perfectly fine with this setup).

Tragically, they took down the site, but I saved a back-up here.

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Bucket List for Boston

Last set of things that I wanted to do with Tara before she graduated Harvard and we probably wouldn't be in Boston for a while.

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Inspire Us Challenge

Some sort of challenge that we were asked to do as part of the accelerator.

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Notes from Meeting Early Facebook Employee

Notes from when I talked to an early employee at Facebook. I don't remember this guy's name (not that I'd publish it), but he was a total douchebag and rather rude.

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Advice Needed

List of questions we wanted help on for Coursicle.

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Questions After Reviewing Our Incorporation Documents

List of questions and comments after I read through all of the incorporation documents we were asked to sign as part of going through the accelerator.

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Notes About Places to Live in Memphis

I went around trying to find all the places we could live for very little money in Memphis.

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Note to Self to Stay Motivated

A note to myself to stay motivated and excited about starting the accelerator, even though we really wished we had gotten into YC.

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Questions About Saving Money

Questions about saving money while running a start-up.

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Coursicle Presentation for Unc Innovation Showecase

Innovate Carolina and the Office of Commercialization and Economic Development at UNC selected 6 companies to invite to present in the social/tech track of the showcase that year. They gave us a booth and had us do a presentation to an audience of about 150 people. It was pretty fun, but no real useful contacts came out of it or anything (consequence of being in a small pond, I suppose).

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Motivation for Self Work

Some notes to myself to keep me motivated to continue working on Coursicle after graduation.

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Speaking Presentation Notes for UNC Innovation Showcase Talk

My notes from presenting Coursicle at the innovation showcase.

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Food to Live off of

List of food I was planning to live off of once I started living alone on a very low start-up founder salary.

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Notes Prior to Moving out of Chapel Hill

Notes prior to leaving for Memphis to start at the Upstart accelerator.

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Rejection from Y Combinator

The rejection email we got from YC.

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Yc Interview

I'll never forget when we got the interview for YC. It came at a time of serious dispair, just earlier that day or the day before we found out that our main planned method of marketing wasn't going to work. This re-motivated me like no other.

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Questions for TechStars Chicago

Set of questions we asked Techstars Chicago when we interviewed with them. I vaguely remember being very unimpressed by their answers and the interview in general. Definitely seemed like the quality of the YC people was better (of course at the end of the day they all are just trying to profit off your work, so fuck 'em).

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General Startup Notes

General notes about how to compensate people when you don't have much money, paying people as employees vs contractors, etc.

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How to Set Up a Website

Part of a presentation I gave at UNC to show people (computer science students) how remarkably easy it is to create your own website that you have full control over.

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Notes on the History of Personal Computing

I've always found the history of the computing industry important to study, but it's upsetting how few of my peers found it interesting. They're so focused on all the "new" tech. I think there's a lot more to be learned from the companies that have found a way to be around for 50 years than the ones who have just raised a shit ton of money to land a space on the homepage of everyone's smartphone.

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Why Can Bugs Sustain Falls from Very Large Heights

Why can bugs sustain falls from very large heights (relative to their size)? Is it because their mass is so small that the force with which they hit the ground isn’t that much relative to the amount of force their bodies can sustain?

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Comparison of StartFast and Upstart Accelerator

A comparison of the two main contenders for which accelerator we were going to go through with Coursicle.

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Questions for the Accelerator We Were Considering

Once we were coming to the point where we had to decide which of the three accelerator options to go with, we had a lot of questions we wanted to ask. We got accepted to Upstart in Memphis, StartFast in NY, and NMotion in Nebraska. Everyone else rejected us. They were all about the same with regard to the investment (about $25,000 for 7%), so it was really a matter of which program/people we liked the most. Upstart in Memphis was the top contender (it invested specifically in teams with at least one female founder), so we came up with this list of questions to ask them.

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List of Accelerators Coursicle Applied to

This is the list of accelerators we were looking at/applied to with Coursicle.

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Notes About Raising Money in The Triangle

Notes from talking to someone plugged into the fundraising community in Chapel Hill about raising money.

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Technical Ability vs Website Design

I fall somewhere in the middle (hopefully).

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Y Combinator Coursicle Application

It became pretty clear that the most likely way we were going to raise some money before we graduated was to get into an accelerator. We applied to a ton of them, but our top choice was certainly YC. Here's a link to the application we submitted.

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Call with VC from Notre Dame

In response to one of our posts on Reddit about Coursicle (this was right after we launched Coursicle at our first school other than UNC, which was Notre Dame), a VC guy named Mike reached out and offered to do a call. This felt pretty promising, since it was someone with money reaching out to us rather than the other way around. But once it became clear on the call that all I was asking for was money so we could continue working on Coursicle after graduation, he and his partner gave a little lesson on how VC investing works: they want to fund specific "experiments", not just pay for the founders to keep working on their startup. Frankly, it still seems pretty myopic to me to only want to fund specific experiments. Creativity can't be rushed in the same way productivity can. It doesn't just happen when you want it to happen, so when you need money might not coincide with when you have a good idea for an experiment. Continuing business as usual and listening in wait until the idea strikes you with such force you simply can't ignore it, that's what we've found successful. Very sweet guys, though. We did a couple check-in calls with them after that up until we decided we didn't want to raise money.

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Automatically Convert Youtube Video into Mp3 and Add It to Library

Often I'd be sent a song via YouTube that I liked and I wanted to add it to my iTunes. That process was always rather tedious, so I decided to create a little script that would download the YouTube video in the background, strip the audio as an mp3, and add it to iTunes. It worked really well and was incredibly useful, and I set it up to be triggered when I did a certain gesture on my trackpad (using BetterTouchTool). I only stopped using it when I switched to Spotify. I also made one that would download the YouTube video and then open it in VLC so that you could watch it fully buffered rather than waiting for it to buffer (relevant for my house, which only got 3mbps down, 1.5mbps up).

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Student Loans

A PDF of the loans that I had to pay off after graduating UNC. Having debt stressed the hell out of me, I wanted to pay it off as quickly as possible. I was pretty upset with my parents, though, because they didn't tell me that interest was accruing while I was in college and if I had known I could have used my internship money to work down the principal and saved many hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

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Notes from Genius Bar Appointment

Some notes on issues I was having with my 2012 MacBook Pro at the time.

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Trying to Schmooze Rich People

I took one class my second semester senior year, and I don't think I ever showed up to it. I was focused entirely on trying to get Coursicle some funding so that I could keep working on it after graduation.

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Short Chat with Kevin Hale from Y Combinator

Notes from a quick 15 minute chat I had with Kevin Hale from YC when he was in Chapel Hill doing interviews at Launch Chapel Hill and 1789.

As much as it pains me to admit it, these were an incredibly useful 15 minutes. His suggestion to parallelize our growth across as many schools as possible was both simple and genius. We added as many schools as we could and then emailed him. Couple weeks later, we got the invite to interview in Mountain View for YC. We were stoked. Tara even considered whether she could ask TGG to delay her start date.

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Kill NAC UNC

UNC made us install some bullshit software, called NAC (Network Access Control) in order to access the network. I don't remember the specifics of how I found a way around it, I think if you connected to UNC-PSK maybe you didn't need NAC, or you just needed it when you initialize a session. Anyway, for some reason I ran this script in my crontab every minute and it allowed me to keep whatever software I wanted on my computer but still access the network.

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Second Meeting with Chris Heivly

Second set of questions, this time Tara and I met with him in Durham.

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Trying to Determine a Business Model for Coursicle

Now that I had decided I was going to try to work on Coursicle full-time after graduation, we had to make money from the damn thing.

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Really Like the Font of the Question Mark

Really liked the font of the question mark in my friend Joao's app, Roof.

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Viscous Attacks Kitty Fighting Cosmo

Cosmo and Kitty escalate to hardcore.

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Notes on Audio (Channels, surround sound, audio files, etc)

Trying to get a grasp about what all of this audio business is. Channels, different types of audio files, compression, all was very foreign to me.

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Exchange with Damn Interesting

An exchange with the creator of probably one of my favorite websites of all time, damninteresting.com.

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Meeting with Chris Heivly

Some notes I took to prep for a meeting with Chris. He was one of the more ingrained start-up people in the Triangle, specifically Durham. A nice guy who is very generous with his time.

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Sticking with Coursicle

Not taking a job for post-graduation was terrifying. I didn't know anyone else doing it. I had to constantly reassure myself that I could change course if things weren't working.

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Accepting Moving to Chicago

After a long battle, I agreed to move to Chicago with Tara.

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Thoughts About Life

Some thoughts about life as I approached graduating college and had to figure out how to support myself financially.

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Leaking Student Store Pressure to The Daily Tar Heel

In the summer of 2015, Tara and I added the ability for students at UNC to compare the prices of textbooks at the UNC Student Store and Amazon, Chegg, and AbeBooks. This was big for us because it was going to be our first bit of revenue (we could make up to 7.5% of the textbook purchase price through Amazon if we drove enough volume). We were incredibly excited, because if it went well then we wouldn't have to sell to universities (it was becoming clear that they weren't interested) and we could launch at the schools without working with them and make money through these affiliate fees. Within a month of launch, the people at the UNC Student Store furiously summoned ITS and demanded that they "shut down" Coursicle (I think they even asked them to block the domain on campus). ITS told them they weren't going to do that, but they would get us to take down the links. We insisted on a meeting with the UNC Student Store leadership team to try to convince them to change their minds. They were convinced their prices were cheaper than Amazon (which didn't make sense to us, because then why would there be a problem?) and that the funds they make at the Student Stores help fund student scholarships (something we obviously didn't want to disrupt, but we were unable to verify the extent to which this was true). In this meeting, we offered to put up a notice encouraging people to buy through the Student Store because it helps fund scholarships and add links to add the textbooks directly to their student account, no dice. We even offered to give them all of the money we made through the links (we just wanted to know how much we could make), nada.

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Tara's Tgg Decision

My notes while trying to help Tara decide whether she would accept TGG. I was very concerned she would accept it and I'd have to move to Chicago.

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Trying to Convince Tara Not to Move to Chicago

I knew that if Tara moved to Chicago for her job, then I'd have to move there too. We were just about to finish 4 years of long distance all throughout college (we were the only ones we knew who made it), and there was no way I was going to prolong things another year just because I wanted to live in NY.

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Bus Fiasco - Megabus from Boston to New York

Back in 2015 I would regularly travel between Boston and NY. I always tried to find the cheapest method of transit between the two cities, often buses. One trip was more memorable than the others. After a relatively peaceful 3 hours (other than the woman who had vomitted in the aisle which passengers began spreading all over the bus with their shoes unknowingly because of how dark the bus was), we stopped in the Bronx. Everyone was confused, since our destination was Chinatown in Manhattan. The driver sat in the driver's seat calmly and refused to keep driving. After about 45 minutes of people asking questions, the driver got out of the bus, got into a car his friend was driving, and left. We were marooned on a highway in The Bronx. I believe we determined that he had hit some limit of how long he could legally drive in a day, and so he had to just pull over and stop. Some passengers took their luggage and walked to the nearest gas station and hitchhiked into the city, while others stayed on the bus hoping that someone else would show up. I was unsuccessful in getting my $5 back from Megabus for this experience.

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Notes from Hacking Presentation (USB Rubber Ducky for SSL decryption)

Notes I took on a presentation at UNC about hacking.

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Letter to Tara About Consulting

Tara rather quickly found a company she liked for after graduation, and wanted to accept their offer even though it was the first she had recieved. It really bothered me that she wanted to work at a consulting company, because I had felt up until that time that she wasn't someone who was going to do what everyone else was doing (all of her friends from Harvard were also going into consulting). It was also in Chicago (I really wanted us to live in NY, or at least San Francisco or Boston). I wrote this letter to her after we had some very serious and difficult conversations. I saw this as a complete shock; clearly we weren't as mentally in sync as I had thought. I remember feeling intensely depressed for at least three weeks during this time.

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Julianna Telling Mom About the Dishwasher

Julianna telling my mom about how the dishwasher got dented. My mom and dad didn't notice for 4 months.

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Facebook Quotes

A set of quotes that I accrued on my Facebook page.

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Jobs Slouch

People, especially my mom and girlfriend, would always tell me to "sit up" when I was sitting in chairs. I loved putting my feet up, and I've always found it difficult to work in a normal seated position. Most of the time I'm working, I'm lying down in bed. If I'm in a chair, I'm slouching like a motherfucker and I have my feet up, often raised above my head. Found this photo a couple years later.

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Nurse Visit to Granny

Due to my Granny's worsening Alzheimer's and dementia, it was decided that it wasn't safe for her to live alone in the mountains of North Carolina anymore. So my family moved her (against her will) to a retirement home in the triangle. This resulted in her being very upset with the family, especially my mom. They hired a nurse to talk to her about how she was feeling, thinking that she would open up more to the nurse; so the nurse was basically a spy for them (I'm not endorsing the ethics of this, for the record). This is a note from the nurse. One side-note: be sure to take care of your hearing as you age and get a hearing aid early, do not resist it if your significant other/family suggests you might need one. It appears as though the brain works under the following principle: if you don't use it, you lose it. One's risk for these cognitive deficiencies go up enormously (I'm talking like 5x, it's absurd) with untreated hearing loss, because your brain just isn't really being utilized.

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Basics About Encoding

Encoding was always such a pain in the ass when programming (specifically scraping data from websites). I learned too late that the reason it was such a pain in the ass was because I just didn't understand it, so I decided to study it a bit (spoiler alert: I still don't really understand it).

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Name Ideas for Coursicle

Names are important. We fucked up a couple times before we landed on Coursicle. One of them was classchef.com. People, understandably, thought we helped connect you with cooking classes (we figured people would think of it as "cooking up your class schedule"). Here are some other domains we noticed were available while brainstorming.

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Cosmo Playing with Wasp

Cosmo saw Kitty playing with the wasp, and so he started whining, clawing at her, and then clawing at the wasp.

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That's Our Bathroom...

My friend Alan and I basically had our own private bathroom on our hall in Old West because it was so far from all the other rooms and didn't have any stalls. Guess it wasn't as private as we thought.

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Elon University Four Year Planner

When we tried to sell Coursicle to universities, we only made one sale: to Elon University for a completely new product that we had to build from scratch. It allowed students at Elon to make a four year plan for what classes they were going to take each semester, and we'd enforce corequisites and prerequisite and even show them which classes they needed for their major/minor/general ed requirements. It was a huge pain in the ass and not at all scalable to other schools, but it was pretty damn cool. Tara did the vast majority of the development here and she did a great job.

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Apple Watch Bug

A very funky Apple Watch bug, looks like the UI was painting the circles in the wrong location, and too many of them?

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Meeting with UNC Registrar

Back when Tara and I were trying to sell Coursicle to universities, we tried leveraging the friends we had made at UNC through running Coursicle (dean in Academic Advising, the CIO, the Registrar, etc.) We thought some warm intros would help us make sales (they didn't).

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Dock Customization

How to customize the doc, namely hide the mirror effect that I didn't like.

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Understanding Mac OS X

Trying to learn the underpinnings of my favorite operating system.

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Shell Commands Learned from Movie Blackhat

Pretty sure this was a horrible movie, but hey, leared some shell commands so that's cool.

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Useful OSX Utilities

Some useful commands for us macOS users, although some apply to UNIX systems generally.

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David Hume Notes

My notes on some David Hume readings.

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Apple Watch Overhead Plane

On the morning before the Apple Watch arrived I was working in my parents' living room at about 5am, and I heard a plane go overhead. I looked out the window and could see the plane above the trees. My thinking was "no, that can't be". I pulled up the UPS flight that I was pretty sure my Apple Watch was on based on the flight patterns, and sure enough, the plane was directly over the house. I lost my shit; I had seen the plane my Apple Watch was in the day before it arrived.

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Apple Watch Apps and Research

Prior to getting the first generation Apple Watch, I did a bunch of research so that I was educated on what I was getting.

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Standing Up for Women

Sometimes your guy friends are just so overtly and obliviously sexist that you have to say something. I think men often feel safe expressing these sorts of things with me because I'm a straight, white, man, so I think it's especially important that I give pushback. This friend handled it very well, and I appreciated that, but he stopped talking to me a couple months after this exchange.

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Laravel Framework Explanation

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Notes from Tamara Berg Lectures Artificial Intelligence

I wanted to dip my toe into Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence stuff, but I didn't want to actually invest the time to do the boring schoolwork associated with it, so I decided to just download all of the slides from our Machine Learning class and study the shit out of them for a couple weeks. I later did research with this professor, Tamara Berg. She was great, but I did feel bad beacuse I didn't really dedicate much time to our research together because I was busy trying to get Coursicle off the ground before we graduated.

As with anything complex that I learn, I spent a lot of time trying to write down descriptions for the different methods/concepts in the simplest way possible. If I don't have an intuition about something, I don't really feel like I understand it.

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Spam Response

A response I tried in order to get email marketers to actually piss off.

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Body Language Insights

Notes I took when trying to study the science of body language. It's hard to know exactly how rigorous this "science" really is, but it was interesting to research nonetheless.

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Learning Machine Learning

Just before I started auditing the Machine Learning class at UNC, I started reading some pretty good explanations of machine learning and found it rather intuitive at its base. These are my notes from those readings.

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Thoughts on Building a Chatbot

Some notes about applying human psychology to creating a chatbot.

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Check if IP is a Proxy

This won't work for every proxy, high quality proxies won't include any headers indicating that they're forwarding a request from someone else, but some proxies do include this stuff. Put this on a web server of your choice and throw some requests at it to check the quality of the proxies you're routing through. Your actual IP might be leaked more than you think.

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Question About Unc Class Checker

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Notes from Harvard University Credit Union on Personal Finance

During one of my many visits to see Tara at Harvard, we went to a presentation by a credit union about personal finance (great date idea, I know). Took some notes.

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Notes for Harvard i3 Pitch

Tara and I applied to i3: Harvard College Innovation Challenge. I think we had to pitch something new (we couldn't pitch Coursicle), so we pitched my idea from 2012 which determined hidden relationships between niche websites (based on links and likes) to help people find sites they might like based on the ones they already do. We didn't win, but we got "Runner-up" and like $5,000 in AWS credits. If there's one thing college startups can't get enough of, it's AWS credits...(I'm kidding, fuck AWS; DigitalOcean 4 lyfe).

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An Intuitive Explanation to Pulley Problems

I always struggled to gain intuition about how pulley problems, so I asked my physics major friends for help. One of them delivered (and then some).

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Extreme Sledding

Behind our house there's a very steep hill. It's a rather treacherous path for sledding given you have to dodge trees on the way down but it's the best we've got. Only ended the day with a couple bruises. Success.

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Kill.sh

This program is designed specifically to wreak havoc.

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Article Correction 1

Sometimes mistakes bother me so I decide to see if I can get them fixed.

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Amazing Find from Kevin

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In Other Words

In other words, "the Zombie apocalypse started a while ago and now we really may as well give up":

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Cosmo and Kitty

Some of the better photos of Cosmo and Kitty.

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Feedback for Developers of Project Maelstrom

I was an early beta tester for Project Maelstrom, a project I thought was really cool. I gave them some feedback.

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Hawk Eating Squirrel

A hawk eating a squirrel for the entertainment of the UNC student body.

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Vote Spamming

Back in 2014, I had launched a site called estipaper.com, and I was trying to figure out ways of getting some early traffic. I had noticed that someone had posted it on a website where people would rank pointless sites (yes, I did want to get to the top of this list and I understand the irony of that). The higher the rank, the more traffic. So I started a long game of cat and mouse with the site operator where I would vote spam my site to get higher on the rankings. Eventually, they just removed Estipaper from the site entirely, but it was a lot of fun (and got tens of thousands of visits in the meantime). The cat and mouse game probably lasted 2-3 months.

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Early Cosmo Kitty Fights

Cosmo playing with our first cat, who we found in the woods, Kitty.

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TCP over DNS

I always found it annoying that you couldn't use the WiFi on planes for free. It turns out that they allow DNS traffic through (e.g. the domain you're trying to visit gets resolved to an IP address). So you can piggyback TCP off this DNS traffic and get free internet on planes. All you nede is a server (on the ground, with a static IP, always connected to the internet that you can tunnel to).

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ARP Poison

After learning about how computers on a network learn who the router is (using ARP), I figured it would be possible to trick all of the computers on a network into thinking my computer was the router, and then drop all their traffic, thereby causing every person using the WiFi network to be unable to load any page. Tried this out at a UNC Hackathon (I was always annoyed that they called in a Hackathon even though nobody was actually hacking), and it worked. Sorry guys.

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Email from Tara's Mom to Tara

A serious email that explains the dynamic between Tara and her family.

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Man-in-the-middle Attack

A script that man-in-the-middle's user's traffic on a network (intercepts it and allows you to play with it, but only HTTP traffic of course).

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Ever Want to Read a Sad, Depressing Story

Just choose a random mathematician from the past and read his/her backstory, typically their mental ailments and cause of death.

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That One Time I Killed a Fly

I'm always a capture and release person, doesn't matter if it's a cockroach or a fly, but this one just had to go.

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Its Article on Class Checker

ITS was always very supportive of us, even though sometimes they got in our way more than they meant to.

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UNC Computer Science Budget Cuts

Back in late 2014, the UNC computer science department had some serious budget cuts, causing them to significantly reduce the number of students they could accomodate in their classes. I knew some students who all of a sudden couldn't get into classes they needed to graduate, and I knew that the seat cuts they had made to intro classes would discourage more newcomers, especially women and other underrepresented minorities in tech, from studying computer science. I wanted to take pretty drastic action: turning off UNC Class Checker and UNC Class Finder (both very widely used at UNC at that point) and put up a note to the effect of "Like using our service? Click here to write to the administration to tell them to fund the CS department, because it's students in this department that make websites like these possible". Li and Tara convinced me not to do this, which was probably the right call (maybe we would have made an impact, but we would have pissed off a university who we still were very much subject to). I did provide some data to my friend, Matt Leming, who wrote an article about what was going on. I was also interviewed.

These are the notes I planned to post.

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Funny Tweet from Friend

Normally I don't like Twitter. Too short form. but this was great.

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Education Policy Committee Vote

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When My Parents Ask Me to Watch the Animals

I usually send them a photo like this soon after they leave.

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Epic Cosmo Kitty Slow Mo Battle

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Expanding Class Finder and Class Checker

Email exchange when Tara and I decided to expand our products to other universities, and asking if Kevin and Li wanted to join us.

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Contact for Duke Its

That time we tried to sell Coursicle to Duke without realizing that we made a joke about Duke in our FAQ.

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Interview Questions at Microsoft

The questions Microsoft asked me during my interview there for a summer internship.

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Things to Do for Microsoft Interview Prep

Some notes about what I wanted to do prep-wise for my interview at Microsoft for a summer 2015 internship (I didn't get an offer).

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Why I Want to Work at Microsoft

My answer to why I want to work at Microsoft, as well as my questions for the interviewer.

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DNS Propogation Checker

One of the few things on the internet that's not instant, I made a shell script that just checks a bunch of DNS servers to see if they have the new IP.

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Good Stuff from Computer Organization Lecture

Some of the more interesting things I learned in COMP 411 at UNC (computer organization).

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Couple

Back when Tara and I were doing long distance, we tried a variety of apps to communicate. iMessage ruled supreme, but we also tried Couple and Path. Here's an email we got when I visited each other (so we weren't using the app any more all of a sudden).

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The Best Fucking Milkshake

Perhaps my favorite place at Harvard was Quincy Grille, a student-run Grille at Quincy House that was known for its delicious decadence. Specifically, I loved their milkshakes. One day I noticed one of the workers looking at a piece of paper on the wall while he was making it and I knew I had to see what the fuck was written on that paper. Only edit I'd make is: you should do it for a lot less than 1 minute 45 seconds. I think it comes out best when you mix it by hand with a spoon for 45 seconds to 1 minute.

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Quick Question from Unc Registrar

Despite UNC often making our job at Coursicle harder (dictating what's on our site, forcing us to remove grade data, forcing us to remove textbook prices, etc.) we always were very helpful to them whenever they asked. Pretty sure he wanted to know which gen eds students were having the most difficulty satisfying, which I was able to tell him pretty easily based on the search patterns on Couriscle.

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6tracker.com

I co-created a website called 6tracker that notified people when an iPhone 6 was available for pick-up in an Apple Store near them (sound familiar?). It did pretty well overall, about 62,000 sign ups and 102,000 visitors (most of them in the first 3 weeks).

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Palantir Interviews

The questions and prep I did before my interview and technical interview at Palantir.

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Interning in California

Back in the days when I thought California was the promise land.

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Young Kitty Fighting Cosmo

The newest member of our family asserting dominance on the cutest.

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Coursicle Meeting with Unc Education Policy Committee

The Registrar's office asked us if we could remove our grade data from Coursicle (which is public data, by the way, which you can get via a FOIA request) because they were afraid of further scrutiny regarding easy A classes for athletes. In order to keep good relations with UNC, we complied, but we said we wanted to start on the path toward getting some sort of data on the quality of courses/professors, so they said they'd have us pitch our case to the Educational Policy Committee. It was a pretty bullshit meeting.

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List of Internship Applications 2015

A running list of places I applied for a Summer 2015 internship.

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Class Finder Report

UNC advising asking for some data from Class Checker with 24 hour turnaround time was pretty bold.

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Good Morning

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Nyt Article

We have never gotten into any major publication. Was very sad when someone in the IT department sent this to us and we weren't included.

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Plcy 340 Unc Justice in Public Policy

I was so impressed by this professor I just had to send him an email when I dropped his class.

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Microsoft Interviews

All the prep and things I wrote while trying to get an internship at Microsoft for the summer of 2015.

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Overlapping Initials

I one day noticed this pretty cool thing: Tara and my initials shared two characters in common. In an instant, "TJAP" was born.

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Turtles Eating Berries on the Loose

A series of videos I sent my friends of my turtles and other friendly folk outside.

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Things to Talk to My Cisco Manager About

Within a week or two of starting my internship at Cisco, I was bored out of my mind. The project they put me on was so uninspiring that I just couldn't work on it. I asked my manager if I could work on something else. To his (and everyone at Cisco's credit), they wanted me to have a good internship experience first and foremost, and so they let me pick my project. I will always appreciate that they let me do that.

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Camping Trip with Tara's Family

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OneTask: My First iPhone App

A lot of my early programming was designed around helping my girlfriend remember her birth control. The first iPhone app I created (and published to the App Store) was called OneTask, which would ensure you get your most important daily task done. You could set push notification reminders and it would text or email a number or email of your choice when you completed the task. This was basically automating the process that my girlfriend and I were already doing for her birth control. Once you tapped "done", the background would change to another photo. The idea was that the user would be motivated to see the next photo and that would help motivate them to tap "done". Probably the thing I liked most about the app was the icon I designed with Adobe Illustrator.

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Notes About Developing Iphone App

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Two Truths and a Lie

Must have been an ice breaker exercise when I started working at Cisco. I was talking to my friend/former Coursicle intern Monty about these not long ago. On one hand, we thought they were stupid. On the other hand, they did appear to be a great way of identifying who in the group is actually creative/interesting. If the most interesting fun fact you can think about yourself is "I have 2 dogs" then either you're not very interesting or you must not think you are. This was a great insight he had, and ever since then I've looked at these exercises differently. My go-to for fun fact is "I type in an alternative keyboard layout called Dvorak."

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Email to HBO

An email I wrote to HBO after I started watching "Silicon Valley". In retrospect, it's probable that they chose to just be representative of the actual gender ratios in these communities, which they got spot on.

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Notes While Learning Objective C

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Packet Memory Overflow

A note about a packet doing a memory overflow, explained in a why I could understand. This must have been about Heartbleed.

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Tara Refusing to Pay for Domain

Tara didn't want to help pay for the domain.

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Dvorak researching for Fuchs

After he subbed for our computer organization class at UNC, I struck up a conversation with professor Henry Fuchs about something (I don't really remember), but it led to us talking about the keyboard layout that I typed in, Dvorak. He was fascinated and told me about his work many years ago on alternate input devices for computers. We talked for a couple hours and I helped him remap his caps lock key to backspace, something I'd done for years because it significantly reduces how much hand travel you have to do to type.

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Questions About Computers

A set of questions I had, most likely while I was in lecture for COMP 411 at UNC (computer organization), which was really what finally taught me how computers worked. That's basically all I wanted out of studying computer science: to understand how the damn things worked. Great class.

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The Deets on Heartbleed OpenSSL Error

Some details from research on the Heartbleed vulnerability in OpenSSL.

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Text from Winston

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Carolina Class Master Exploit

Looks like this intelligent fellow uncovered Winston's exploit. The guys’ profile picture is the third result for searching Google Image for “college kid”.

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Applescript Easter Egg

An easter egg I found in AppleScript.

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Trying to Beat 2048 Game

Around this time, it seemed like everyone in the world was obsessed with this game 2048. I was never very good at these things and didn't really have the patience to try to get good, so I usually tried to find a way to "hack my way to the top". In this case, I hypothesized that just alternating between two keystrokes would lead you to success depending on the initial conditions and some luck in terms of what tiles you got during the course of the game. I think it proved pretty successful, doing better than I had been able to do myself, but I don't think it ever won the game.

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Carolina Class Master

One of the first times I was seriously betrayed by a friend. Winston, who I met while I was taking math classes at UNC in high school, decided to create a competitor (Carolina Class Master) to my websites, UNC Class Finder and UNC Class Checker, once he saw how sucessful we had made them. It was a very strange (and total asshole) move. Fortunately, his overconfidence came back to bite him, and ITS blocked his website on the campus WiFi and deactivated all of the credentials of anyone who used it (so they had to call the IT department before their credentials could be reset). That's why you don't collect university login credentials, kids.

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Things to Remember

When I was in college, I had a severe aversion to alcohol. This extended beyond me, though. I strongly encouraged Tara to stay away from alcohol too. When she did drink, I would try to rationalize that it wasn't a big deal, that it wasn't much, etc.

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Joe's First Personal Website

UNC gave us some server space, so I decided to create a small personal website on the .edu domain, thinking that would help catapult me to be the top result. I don't think it worked. Maybe in part because it was a horribly ugly plaintext website that looked like it was designed by a computer science professor in the 90s.

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Talking to Granny

A discussion I had with my Granny. Got a lot information about our family's past that night.

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Why Cisco?

Trying to answer the question "Why Cisco?" while I was going through the interview process with them. I was really excited about this prospect of working at Cisco, because it would finally give me some of that brand-name recognition that I missed out on by getting rejected from every college under the sun except UNC. I could say "I work at Cisco" and people would just think "oh, he must be smart", rather than me having to prove it to them.

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How Networking Works (from Joao) for Cisco interview

Some basics about networking that my friend Joao helped me with prior to my Cisco interview.

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Questions for Premier

Questions for Premier, probably jotted these down during or just before the on-campus interview.

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Housing Plan Junior Year

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Early Stats

Some early stats about the products I worked on. Probably jotted these down to have them on hand while at a career fair or something.

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Measuring the Impact That Compensation of British Slaveowners Had on the British Economy

Back in sophomore year of college, one of Tara's friends, Ellora, asked if I could help her scrape a publicly accessible database because the guy who owned the database wouldn't give her a dump of the data. The database was the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slavery. This was one of my first scrapers, so my apologies for using bash.

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Premier Healthcare Interview Prep

Interview prep for Premier, a healthcare company in Charlotte, NC. I believe I went to their offices for the final interview and was given an offer, but I turned it down to work at Cisco.

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Joke Email to Tara

Back when I learned you could fake the originator of emails (just fake the To: header), I decided to try pulling a prank on Tara. I can't remember if it worked.

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Linear Algebra Notes

Some notes about linear algebra. God, I fucking hated linear algebra at UNC. Same with differential equations. I have no idea why there's an entire class taught (that's mandatory) on differential equations. Tara told me this joke between math professors at Harvard: "the less diff eq you know, the better you are at math". Yes, it's just the pure mathematicians shitting on the applied math people...but boy do I love that sentiment.

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Note to Self 2

An evaluation of the state of my work at the time.

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Turn off iPhone Alarm Without Getting Up

I set alarms for everything, especially meetings because I have maybe 1-2 a week so it doesn't make sense for me to be "calendar driven" but there's also no way I'm going to think "oh, it's 2pm on Tuesday, I have a meeting in an hour".

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Compiler

Questions about compilers, probably for my friend Kevin who had wrote an assembler for fun and was telling me about it.

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What It's Like at Unc

It was pretty incredible how many people would be "checked out" in class, rather engaged with the content. Admittedly, this was a remarkably dull class with content even I found unimaginably boring (COMP 455, Models of Languages and Computation taught by David Plaisted) which was for some reason required. So I don't entirely blame them, but rather than doing something productive, they just play games? I obviously love to game, but I don't want to half-ass gaming and school at the same time.

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Thi Sis Art

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Lol I Applied to Mckinsey

What a hoot. I want to punch myself in the face.

Tara responded to this email with "Jesus so quickly wtf"

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Resumes and Transcripts

My various resumes and transcripts from applying to internships for summer 2014 and summer 2015. C's get degrees, people.

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Helping Nisha with Housing

A short note I wrote to my friend trying to help her navigate UNC housing.

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Notes on Unix

Some notes about the fundamentals of using a Unix system, mainly helpful for server maintenance and those kinds of things.

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End of Poem About Tara

The start, or potentially the end, of a poem I was writing about my girlfriend.

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Notes from Time at Home

Some notes to fill Tara in on. I took them while I was at home for the holidays.

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Thomas Puccio

One of my relatives was represented in the movie American Hustle.

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Attempting to Improve Pagerank

After a ton of research, I had compiled a list of ways I was going to try to improve the PageRank of the unc.edu page I owned. My goal was to make it so that personal website was the first result when you searched "Joe Puccio".

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To the Most Beautiful Girl I've Ever Seen

(she hates that music video)

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Interesting SEO tactic

An interesting method I found of getting your website more trusted backlinks to help with SEO.

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Things to Tell Tara(serious Things)

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Final Dates

Why did I take 4 technical classes what the fuck is wrong with me.

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A Very Long and Honest Email to Tara

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Hacked Statuses to Post

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Idea for Game from Dream

An idea for a game that I saw a friend playing in a dream.

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Notes from Career Services Meeting

Notes from meeting with UNC's career services.

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Adventures of Alan and Chiraayu

A series of adorable photos I took of my suitemates, Alan and Chiraayu.

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Learning hacking (from hackthissite)

Some notes I took while trying to learn some basic hacking.

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Notes on October 22nd Keynote

Notes I took, probably for Tara, about the October Apple keynote.

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Something to Keep in Mind for Job Apps

Some notes I made while preparing applications for the 2014 summer internship cycle.

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Carrot Cake Checker

I'm pretty obsessed with carrot cake, and UNC used to serve it at the dining hall sporadically. I didn't have a meal plan, but my friends did, so I wrote a script that would scrape the menus of each of the dining halls and notify me when carrot cake was being served so that I could give my friends tupperware and they could bring me back a couple dozen slices.

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Question

Conceptually, why is the derivative a linear transformation?

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Summer Plans

An (admittedly funny) email from Tara's uncle about her summer internship plans.

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Trying to Get Router Working at UNC WiFi

UNC doesn't like when you are running a router on campus because they're (understandbly) afraid of congestion, so they figured out a way of preventing routers from working. Of course, I wanted to set up my own router so that my and my roommate's WiFi could be stronger in our dorm (Morrison, 8th floor supersuite at the time), so spent some time experimenting to figure out a way around their block.

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Tar Heel Makeout

In sophomore year, one of my friends form SVSM texted me asking if I was still dating Tara or something. I said "of course", and he said "there's a photo of you online with another girl". He sent it to me and it was Tara and me on a Twitter called "Tarheel Makeouts" where they post pictures of UNC students making out. He didn't recognize Tara (apparently he recognized by "Boston" shirt) and we weren't even making out, we were just pressing our faces up against the glass of the bus looking out.

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Argument for Teetotalism

A note I wrote, most likely trying to explain to Alan why I don't drink.

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Things to Tell Tara 5

A long note to tell Tara. Although I thought it was wrong for me evangalize my teetotalism, Tara made a good point: if I didn't want her to drink because I wanted her to take care of her body/brain (another example of being paternalistic: I also got her to start wearing her seatbelt, which she often wouldn't do when she was in the backseat), then I should feel the same about my other friends. So, I decided to have a conversation with one of my closest friends about it. Looking back on all this, I think I should have very much taken a "your body, your choice" approach to everyone, although I do think it was all right to at least make sure they were making an educated decision about what they were doing to their body.

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Songs from Nisha's Graduation That I Liked

Songs from my friend's graduation that I liked enough to make note of.

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Interaction with Dewan

One of the more frustrating interactions I had with the computer science professors at UNC (in general they were pretty great, much better than the math professors, but this guy sucked).

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Note to Winston

A note I wrote to Winston about ConnectCarolina 2.0 (later Carolina Class Master).

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Guide to Setting Up Server

An HTML guide I made my sister to help teach her how to create her own website.

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Geofence Ideas

Ideas that leverage geofencing, which was emerging at the time.

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A Possible Birthday Present for Tara

A very long note that I wrote soon after Tara left for Harvard.

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Guides for Web Development

A set of guides to help get a website setup.

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Vetting by Business Bro

I was once vetted by some students for a project they were trying to hire a programmer to do. Non-technical people tyring to see if they can stump a technical person on their own turf can be pretty funny.

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Resume for Shoeboxed

The resume I submitted to Shoeboxed when applying to their internship my freshman year.

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Startup Ideas

A list of possible applications of Shoeboxed's OCR tech to new domains, which we were tasked with as part of our internship.

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Applying to Work at Shoeboxed

As freshman year was coming to a close, I didn't want to get an internship because I didn't want to work for anyone. I wanted to do my own thing (namely continue working on Class Checker), but then an email went to the CS students about a "start your own startup" internship at Shoeboxed, so I decided to email them (I got the internship and enjoyed the people I met there, but getting the product off the ground and using Django fucking sucked). This is when I fell in love with the idea of having my own company that was like ~50 employees in size.

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Website I Made Tara for Her Birthday

For Tara's first birthday since we started long distance, I decided to make her a website. We generally felt like making each other things was more meaningful than buying each other things. It was supposed to be viewed while this song was playing in the background, but browser audio doesn't always play so it may have to be opened manually. I also designed it to look best on native Retina resolution so the parallax might not look the best unless you run it at that resolution. I hosted it on tarabday.com for a couple of years so she could visit it any time she wanted.

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Life Hacks

A list of life hacks that I don't feel remarkably confident in the repeatibility of.

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Goldbach

Back when I was taking a number theory first year seminar, I thought I had discovered a pattern in the primes, that they could be written as 2p+q where p and q are prime. After doing pretty extensive testing in Java to test this for a large data set, and then it turns out that both my professor and I had missed the fact that this was already covered by the Goldbach conjecture. I was pretty bummed. I thought I had finally discovered something in math.

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Assistance with Sleepy Tara

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Investigation of 2p+q Primes

I thought (hoped) at the time that I had coined a type of prime number that was of the form 2p+q where both p and q are prime. I named them "Aidian" primes after my girlfriend.

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Stuff for Unc Course Looker Upper Thingy

While constructing UNC Class Finder, Tara and I were trying to construct a script that would programatically extract the course data from a PDF.

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General Resources for Web Development

A list of resources that I compiled to help with web development.

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Note to Tara

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Modeling Balls Attached by Springs

This is a pretty simple system, just a bunch of masses attached by springs. One of the masses has some velocity, and so it pulls the other masses with it (the speed at which they move of course is dependent on their mass and the spring constant of the spring attaching them). One thing introduced in this model was that one of the balls has a lot more mass than the others, so you'll see it takes a while for it to start to move, that's because it takes a lot of force to cause the mass to accelerate, so the distance between the two masses must be really big before it'll start to accelerate.

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Modeling Cellular Automata

Modeling cellular automata, using the rule from the game Lights Out, which I used to play all the time on my iPod Touch.

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Bullshit Psychiatrist

I guess there were signs that he was a shitty psychiatrist back when I was in college, but I couldn't have predicted he would be overzealous with his prescribing and how bad it'd get 6 years later.

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Boston Snowstorm 2013 Harvard

One time when I was visiting Tara at Harvard, Boston got 24.9 inches of snow (the 5th highest it's gotten from a storm on record). I believe it was also one of the only times Harvard actually cancelled classes (other times included when the British invaded Boston in 1774 and the 1918 pandemic).

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Issues with Freshman Roommate

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First Vine

Probably my last, too.

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Script That Loads a Facebook Group's Members

In order to do network analysis on Facebook's graph, sometimes it was necessary to load every member of a Facebook group. This script simply automated the scrolling so the members could be copy-pasted and names/their IDs be used in analysis.

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Where is Michael

We'd get all sorts of accidental texts to Coursicle (formerly UNC Class Checker) back in the day, so sometimes we had a little fun with them.

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Question Regarding Going off Wellbutrin

An exchange with my psychiatrist about going off Wellbutrin.

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Joe Photo

A photo Tara took of me.

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The Kiss

One of my favorite videos of Tara and me.

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Helping Tara Before First Set of Finals

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TODO List for UNC Class Checker

A short TODO list of things I needed to do for UNC Class Checker.

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Determining Parabola from Three Points

Just like two points uniquely defines a line, I realized that three points uniquely defines a parabola. It's fun to determine the equation from the three points and sometimes I'd use this method on homeworks/tests instead of memorizing other formulas, because I found this much more intuitive..

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Notes About Orgasms and Erogenous Zones

I guess my proclivity for research applies to all aspects of my life. Soon after I started having sex I evidently did research on erogenous zones.

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Note from Mom

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Wallpapers for Macbook Pro

To show off the resolution of the new Retina MacBook Pros, I collected some very high resolution photos to use as my desktop background. Many are shots of the Andromeda galaxy, the 7th one is the highest resolution photo that the Hubble took (as of 2015), which has a width of 60,000 light years across and contains over 100 million stars.

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A Look Back in Time...because I Couldn't Help Myself

A series of pretty cute exchanges on Facebook between Tara and me at the start of our relationship.

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Email to Psychiatrist

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Back and Forth Conversation

An exchange I had with Tara, most likely at Harvard while we were in a room with her roommate sleeping so we were typing back and forth on my phone.

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A Note to a Special Someone

A note a wrote to a lover.

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Things to Tell Tara 4

A small note I made of something to tell Tara.

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Creepy Fucking Dream

A really fucking creepy dream that, upon reading, I still remember having 10 years later.

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Email from Tara

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Wrapping Problems

An examination of wrapping problems.

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Investigating the Discriminant and the Quadratic Formula

A short investigation into the determinant and the quadratic formula.

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Default Latex Document Form

A template I created to make certain common expressions easier when typing up Real Analysis problem sets. For instance, shotrhands like: \converges, \cauchy, \implies, etc. Also some of the default mappings are downright stupid, so things like \intersect and \union plus some things that make transcribing easier, like \suchthat and \implies.

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Math 23 Question for Tara

A question for Tara while I was watching the recordings of her Math 23 (Linear Algebra and Real Analysis) lectures at Harvard. This was also just as a way of trying out LaTeX.

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Unc Math 521 Exam 1 Theorems and Concepts

A guide I made to help others study for the first exam of Real Analysis at UNC.

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Airfare Purchasing Tickets

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Fall Break Flights and Updates on My Condition

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Things to Try

A list of things to try in order to scrape a webpage, I believe this was in the very early stages of Coursicle when I was trying to figure out how to make web requests in Java so we could scrape a webpage.

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Attempting to Represent sqrt(2) on the Number Line

Trying to represent sqrt(2) on the number line, most likely thinking about this during my Real Analysis class.

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I'm Sure It Won't Come to This

An email thread with my parents, Tara, and my psychiatrist. This was after I was struggling mental health wise after Tara and I started long distance. My parents insisted that I get treatment for depression by seeing a psychiatrist and I was put on Wellbutrin.

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Note to Self

A small note to myself.

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Notes from Session

Some notes from what was likely a therapy session. I started going to therapy after my freshman year roommate had a suicidal episode our first night at UNC.

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Notes on Reading MATH 521

Notes while starting to read the textbook for Real Analysis at UNC (which is actually called Advanced Calculus I for some reason).

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Best Option for Tethering with PDANet

Testing out the various speeds achieved when tethering to an old app available to jailbroken phones called PDANet.

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Programming Assignments

This is a series of assignments I created for my girlfriend at the time to help teach her programming in Java. I believe these assignments are a really great way of gaining intuition about object oriented programming.

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Things to Do for Saturday August 25th

TODO list for a single day. Not sure why this was significant, probably because of how much I had to do.

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Computer Science Placement

An email I sent to the head of the computer science department when I couldn't get into a computer science class.

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Concerns

A list of concerns that I was having at the time.

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Joe's Experience

My experience the night when my roommate struggled with a suicidal episode.

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Things to Tell Tara 3

A small note I made of some things to tell Tara about my first night at UNC.

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Making a Hackintosh

Notes for trying to make a Hackintosh out of a Inspiron 530.

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Thoughts on Flashlight Beam

An exploration of a question regarding a beam of light from a flashlight being obstructed by a piece of paper. I believe Tara and I worked on this problem together.

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Things to Tell Tara 2

A small note I made of something to tell Tara.

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Plan for August 1st Add Drop at UNC

Since I didn't get close to my ideal schedule at orientation, I had to plan out exactly what to do for add/drop.

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Resources for Flight Tracking

This is the set of resources I used to track which flight my MacBook Pro because I was impatient and wanted to know precisely where it was at all times.

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In Preparation for Macbook Pro

All things TODO before my new MacBook Pro Retina arrives.

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Things to Tell Tara

A list of things I noted to tell Tara about, mostly related to my freshman orientation at UNC.

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Status with Classes with GenEds (Tara's)

A spreadsheet that Tara created to help me figure out which classes I could register for.

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Strategy for Fall 2012 Sign Up

Last minute reminders for how to go about course registration at orientation.

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Final Steps of Planning for Fall 2012

Final steps before orientation when planning my UNC freshman class schedule.

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Questions for Tara on BBC's Story of Maths

A set of questions based on watching BBC's Story of Maths.

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UNCW with Tara

For my birthday, Tara drove us to UNC Wilmington (where we first met, at Summer Ventures of Science and Math) to give me the presents she made me (it was a picture book she put together and illustrated). It was very sweet. I took some photos of her in the exact spot where we first met (near the bike racks), which is where she asked me for directions to the physics building (we were both late on our first day).

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Fermat's Last Theorem

Like Fermat's proof of Fermat's Last Theorem, what this code actually is supposed to do is lost to history...

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Perceived Download Duration

Estimating percieved download times based on how fun the activity being performed while waiting is.

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w^x + y^x = z^x Exploration

An exploration of w^x + y^x = z^x

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Dynamical Systems

I became obsessed with dynamical systems in 10th grade, and studied them at Summer Ventures of Science and Math.

A dynamical system is, at its core, a system that uses the output of the prior run of the function as the new input. Clearly, then, its importance cannot be understated: the universe is a dynamical system. We simply take the state of the world at one timeslice, apply all of the laws of physics to it, and we can with certainty compute the next timeslice. The future is simply the present with the laws of physics played out a little bit farther. At least, that's how us determinists see the world.

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Be Wary of Questioning

Questioning can be a powerful tool when used wisely, and can be responsible for one's downfall if not kept in check.

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An Ode to Math and Physics

A criticism of education alongside a realization for why there are subjects I hold much more near and dear to my heart.

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Graduation Speech Points

This is the set of notes I created to guide my graduation speech at Woods Charter School.

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Unique Faculties of Humans

Some thoughts on what makes humans unique.

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What is the Economy?

Some (very uneducated) thoughts on what the economy is. One day I'll really need to read an econ textbook.

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UNC Fall 2012 Class Schedule Planning

Planning my class schedule for freshman year, prior to orientation.

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My Hobby

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Craigslist Ad for 17-inch MacBook Pro

Selling my 17" Macbook Pro 2.2GHz Quad Core i7 8GB RAM 750GB, box + free sleeve - $1700 (Chapel Hill)

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Miscellaneous Networking Hacks

A bunch of little scripts I compiled over time for various networking hacks/pranks. Any major ones were pulled out into their own post.

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Moduli of Fibonacci Sequence

Looking at the Fibonacci sequence but, specifically their moduli.

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Visually Mapping Packet Paths

After I discovered the traceroute command on *NIX systems, my natural instinct was to plot it on a map. This was the first real Bash program I wrote and oh boy will it be my last. I spent like 45 minutes trying to debug something that ended up being an extra whitespace character somewhere.

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Research Assistant This Summer

An email exchange with my former research advisor while I was in high school. I was trying to help Tara get a job for the summer and given she was going to Harvard for math and physics I thought she'd be a good fit for the lab I worked at the prior summer.

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Thank You to Mr. Friedman

A thank you letter I wrote when I found out Mr. Friedman was leaving Woods.

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Email Has Been Hacked, Change Your Password Asap

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Good Scene from Woody Allen

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UNC Housing Research

A spreadsheet I made that combined all of the advice I got on which dorm I'd ideally like to live in at UNC freshman year.

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Modeling Dancers Aligning in a Crowd

During my girlfriend's prom, I found it interesting how quickly everyone in a crowd of people could align to all face the same direction when a certain song came on where everyone danced in unison (like the Macerena). I figured each individual had some field of view in front of them and they were turning toward the average vector of all of the people in front of them, so I tried modeling it. My code gets some alignment, but then some strange wave pattern sweeps through the crowd and I'm not sure why.

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A Denatured Enzyme Hasn't Lost Its Naturality

An email to Tara about what's "natural".

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Factorial Divided by Sum

Exploring the patterns found when you divid a factorial by the sum of the numbers in the factorial.

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A Night to Remember...with Music!

A slideshow I made of Tara and me at prom, with a twist!

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Note from Tara

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Recollections of a Practicing Lover

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Cellular Automata

A short discussion with my friend Alan about Cellular Automata and the Sierpiński triangle.

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Two Thousand One Hundred Twenty Five Words Baby

Trying to convince Tara to accept the Morehead instead of going to Harvard or MIT.

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Letter to Send to Tara when I Can Input My Thoughts

A letter I wrote to Tara to try to furtively convince her not to go to Harvard.

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Life

Thoughts on resilience and adaptability.

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College Application Decisions

Results from my college applications

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Email from Alison After We Broke Up

An email I got from Alison after I had been dating Tara for 4 months. Admittedly, I really shouldn't have texted her out of the blue after we had broken up and I had started dating Tara. I was kind of addicted to the drama of dating Alison and wanted more of it, but it was very insensitive of me.

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Shooter Game in Java

I showed Tara one of the physics based games I created and she wasn't impressed and said I should make something more like a shooter. In the proceeding 2.5 hours while she was at softball practice and I was waiting in her car for her to be finished, I programmed this (incredibly difficult to win) game.

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Patterns in Sum of Primes

A rather scattered exploration of patterns in primes.

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Visualizing Divisibility

A visual respresentation of which numbers are divisible by others, as a means of gaining intuition/finding patterns.

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Dynamical Spring System

A dynamical system I modeled in Java (two balls attached by a string bouncing around a room).

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Facebook Status Breakdown

An analysis of the Facebook statuses floating around at this time.

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Email Counts with Tara

Relative email counts as a function of how long we'd been dating.

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Physics Based Game

A game based on the dynamical spring system. Two masses connected by a spring, and each time they hit each other or they hit a wall, they lose a bit of energy. The objective is to collect all of the stars before the masses run out of energy. You set an initial velocity for one of the masses and physics does the rest.

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Predicting Friend Groups from Facebook Network

Given a map of a portion of the Facebook network, this script would try to identify groups of friends, based on the number of mutual friends shared between individuals. I guess you could call this a "poor man's k-means".

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Apology for Tara

An apology I wrote to Tara when I felt very guilty about accidentally seeing a secret blog.

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Primes Calculator Code Backup

Backup of code I wrote to calculate patterns between prime numbers.

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Moduli of Primes

Looking at the modulus of various primes (for patterns).

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Notes About Primes

Notes about primes

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Funny Exchange with Andy Nelson

God, I miss this man.

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Teaching John Functions

A write-up of functions to try to teach my 11 year old cousin John more advanced math for his age.

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Letter from Tara's Mom

4 months into dating, Tara gave me this letter to give to my parents from her mom.

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Unit Circle

Created a program in Mathematica that animates the unit cicle to help visualize the values of trigonometric functions (sin(x), cos(x), tan(x)).

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Sparknotes is Analogous to Plug and Chug

A criticism of how many view my method to english class through the lens of how I view how they approach math class.

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Problems with Academia and College

A small complaint about AP classes.

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English Matters

An email I wrote to the principal (who was also my english teacher at one point). He and I had a good relationship, but I really didn't like to read. I was almost always on my computer in his class, usually coding some physics/math thing, and one time I went to the bathroom and when I came back I saw that someone had put the book we were supposed to be reading open face down on my keyboard. I looked at him and we made eye contact and I gave a nod and picked up the book.

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Mapping Networks

After scraping and analyzing Facebook as a graph (looking at it as a network and seeing how many hops you had to take to get between any two nodes, just like the six degrees of separation hypothesis), I became interested in other things that could be seen as a network. I tried analyzing words via their synonyms by scraping a thesaurus, hoping that I'd be able to show that two words that clearly don't mean the same are technically the synonym of synonyms and stuff like that. I also did the same thing with YouTube videos, scraping them and trying to map out the network of "related videos". Main question was: how many steps would it take to get from a video of your choosing to some set video, like say "Shake It Off" by Taylor Swift. I don't think any of these projects yielded any interesting results.

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I Love You Say Anything

After some insistence from Tara, I decided to go off of my ADHD medication. The withdrawals I experienced were pretty severe and I fell into a very deep depression for a couple days, but I think it was the right call. I don't think I needed stimulants.

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Notes on Discrete Math for Truth Table Calculator

Notes from my discrete math class in, most likely was planning on writing a program that would automatically create a truth table for me.

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Joke for Tara

A joke I made for Tara based on the app FindMyFriends.

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Thoughts During Acute Depression

My thoughts while undergoing a severe depression during withdrawal of my ADHD medication (Methylphenidate, brand name Concerta).

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Program for Constructing Truth Tables

When I was taking MATH 381, Discrete Mathematics while I was a senior in high school, there ended up being more "busy work" than I expected, which was filling in truth tables. Basically evaluating, for every possible configuration of true/false variables, what the full statement evaluates to. I decided to write a little parser that determines it for you.

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Recursion

A recursive computer.

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Determine New and Unfriended Friends on Facebook

I thought it was interesting that people could unfriend you and you might never notice, or not notice for months or years, and then not know when and if it correlated with something you did or something. So I wrote a program that just compares your old friends' list with your new one so you can get notified when someone unfriends you. The same thing would be useful for Instagram, I'd say. People will want to know when they're being unfollowed and by whom.

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Mensa Scholarship Application

An application I submitted to Mensa requesting a scholarship. Never heard back.

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Wondering About the Dot Product

Thoughts about the rate of change of the dot product while the vectors are rotated.

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Looking at the Square Roots of Numbers

An examination of the square roots of numbers and their midpoints.

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Truth Table (experimenting with Exclusive or Statements)

An in depth investigation on truth tables and representing exclusive OR statements using them.

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Knot Patterns

Looking at knot patterns based on how to tie up certain cables.

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Wondering About Determining Cubics from 4 Points

Starting looking into a method for determining a cubic from just 4 points.

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Funny Things from Alison

Some discussions with Alison that I compiled to share with Tara.

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Tara and Joe's Timeline

A timeline of the exact sequence of events that led to Tara and Joe dating.

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Carnegie Mellon Application

The essay I wrote for my Carnegie Mellon application.

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Mit Application

The entirety of my MIT supplemental.

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Princeton Application

My supplementals for Princeton.

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Determining Parabola from 3 Points

A method I came up with for determining a parabola from just 3 points.

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Berkeley Application

My personal statement essays for my Berkeley application.

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General Questions About Physics

Questions come to on Christmas day.

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What’s So Special About e^x

Examining e^x, a curious function that is its own derivative.

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Yale Application

My "Tell us more" response for Yale.

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College Applications

My common app and links to each of my applications.

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General College Application Notes

Some general notes that applied to my college apps.

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Book Search for Tara's Christmas Present

A stream of consciousness when trying to choose a gift.

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Cornell Application

My application to Cornell.

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Duke Application

My supplemental essays for Duke.

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Harvard Application

My full Harvard application, including some notes for the "Why Harvard?" question of the interview.

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Analysis of Early Decision/Regular Decision

An analysis of the college admission process, specifically the routes one might go depending on whether they choose early/regular decision.

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College Thoughts with Teacher

An exchange I had with one of my favorite teachers at Woods, Andy Nelson.

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Paul

I decided to try writing my friend's name using parametric equations.

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Minimizing Class Transition Times

Thoughts on how to make it easier/faster for students to switch classrooms.

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Uchicago Application

Application to UChicago.

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Understanding the Meaning of the Taylor Series

One of my favorite things I learned in math was the the Taylor/Maclaurin series, so I spent a lot of time thinking about how they worked.

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Correlation Between Photo Count and Friend Count on Facebook

I had a couple of hypotheses, one was that the more friends you had on Facebook, the higher your photo count was likely to be. I wanted to verify this with my friends/my friends of friends on Facebook programatically using AppleScript. I also tried to see if a correlation existed with regard to gender.

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Stanford Application

My application to Stanford.

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Discussion of Optimization Problem and Growth

A problem that bothered me for a long time, how to fill up a page as quickly as possible using copy/paste operations essentially.

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Simple Chatroom Idea

A chatroom that models real life interactions between students in a classroom (spacially).

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There's a Reason People Distract Themselves

A set of thoughts that I had soon after watching the movie Revolutionary Road for the first time.

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Unc Application

My application to UNC.

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Could a Relationship Between Sqrt(2) and Pi Be Found Using This

Thinking visually.

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Spectrum of Plausibility

Applying mathematical concepts to other realms of thought.

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Attempt to Form a Finite List of All of the Amazing Things About Tara

An attempt to list all of the things I liked about Tara when we started dating.

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Methodology for Figuring out Math Problems

A set of approaches I generally use when trying to solve math problems.

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Thoughts on the Nature of Time and Energy

A series of questions about time and energy.

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Geometric Interpretation of Nonlinear Growth

A geometric representation of non-linear growth to help build intuition.

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Investigating the a^2+b^2=c^2 Relationship

Looking into the nature of the pythagorean theorem.

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Photos of Joe Playing Soccer

Some photos one of my teachers sent me of me playing soccer.

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Small Facebook Puzzle

I was texting Tara a lot prior to us starting to date, and I noticed that her first and last name had the same number of characters. Then I noticed that my first name, Joseph, and last name, Puccio, also have the same number of characters. I wanted to point this out to her but I didn't want her to know I had been thinking that much about her name, so I decided to kind of burry the insight in noise, by making this Facebook post where I wrote some AppleScript that went through all Facebook friends and found the ones whose name matched this criterion and tagged them in the post.

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Collatz Conjecture

A program I wrote in AppleScript to explore Collatz Conjecture.

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Nyu Application

My application to NYU. A mere 10 years later, I'd move in next door and realize I'm never leaving the village.

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Math Faculty at UNC

An accounting of the UNC Math professors based on what undergrad they went to.

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The Best Bad Idea I've Had

A great bad idea.

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Misc Mathematics Document for Calculations and Diagrams

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Ball Bouncing Around Box

This program models a ball bouncing around a room.

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Examining the Curvature of Hanging Objects

An examination of what I latered discovered to be catenaries. Still don't understand them, though.

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An Alternate Coordinate Plane Representing Using Squares

An interesting idea for an alternate coordinate system that uses squares for 2d, cubes for 3d, etc.

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Iteratively Segmented Triangles

Questions regarding various sizes when iteratively dividing up a triangle.

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Limits of Sequences

Thoughts on finding the limits of sequences.

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Feynman

Some excerpts from Richard Feynman's books, such as "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" and "What Do You Care What Other People Think?"

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Thinking About Division Multiplication and Subtraction Visually

Looking at the most simple of operations in a visual way to help with intuition and potentially build insight.

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Google Adsense Tips

A set of guidance, probably pulled from some internet comments or something.

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Interesting Thoughts About the Internet

Some thoughts about how the internet is expanding our exposure to ideas.

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Unc Id

After spending about 4 days at UNC Asheville with my friends who had already graduated high school, I had to go to UNC to get my photo taken for my OneCard (the student ID), since I was starting some math classes there while I was in high school. Some people found the photo they snapped of me particularly funny. I never got the appeal.

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Number Types or Nomenclature

A little diagram detailing the relationships between the different classes of numbers.

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What is the Rate of Escape of This Geometric Pattern

"Rate of escape" is an interesting term.

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Wondering About Infinite Series and the Nature of e

A quick pondering about the nature of the constant, e

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Caltech Application

My application to Caltech. I applied early and was deferred, so I called the person who reviewed my application. She was very nice and said she liked my application but wanted to hear more about what I did at SVSM, so I created a report for her.

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Little Frog by Matt Phillips

One of my first friends in high school was Matt Phillips. I've thought about him often after we graduated, since he has relentlessly pursued his passion for music. I liked this song Little Frog, quite a bit.

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Script That Pokes Everyone on Facebook

This is a script I wrote that would start with a given one of my friends on Facebook, poke all their friends, then move on to each of their friends and poke them, ad infinitum. Ended up poking upwards of 50,000 people and caused pandemonium among our friend group.

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Probability and Combinatorics

Word problem based on Facebook statuses and probabality/combinatorics.

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Thinking About the Properties of Ellipses

Guess there's not much to think about.

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Economic Insights

A reminder that value is subjective, not an inherit property of a substance or item.

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Things I Noticed

Some realizations about fluid dynamics based on observations about the real world.

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Feel Good List

A list of things that I used to cheer me up when I was feeling down. Added to this over the years. Last modified March 31, 2013.

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Columbia Application

My application to Columbia. I applied early decision, since I really wanted to live in New York and Columbia was the top ranked school in Manhattan.

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Thinking About Integrals Geometrically

A visual examination of integrals to build intuition.

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Colleges Are Starting to Check Applicants' Facebook Profile's for Illegal Activity

I should really delete these from my profile...

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Word Problem

My friend Tyler was able to get this without any hints.

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Summarized Independent Study Projects

In preparation for college apps, I went through all of my independent projects up until this point and put together the most compelling projects I had worked on.

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Looking at Fundamental Frequency (Harmonic Series) as well as Some Interesting Polynomials

What equations (polynomials involving one variable) result in the fundamentals?

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Riemann Sum Accuracy and Error, Sectors of Cylinders, and Thinking About the Area of a Bullet

An in-depth intuitive look at this fundamental principle in Calculus. This was fascinating math.

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Thinking About the Complex Number Plane

Brief thought on the complex number plane.

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Carl Sagan

I wrote an email that said "His humility and analysis put me at the verge of tears": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuN7pmtsZww

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To Think My Dad Used to Be a P.C.

A couple years after I got my first Mac, this was my Dad's desk.

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Investigation of Prime Numbers

The realization that primes are worth exploring further.

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Approximation of Improper Integral Using Riemman Approximation

Thoughts on riemman approximations.

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Exploration of the Rate at Which a Function Diverges Converges

An examination of how quickly a function will diverge/converge.

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Quick Note and Question on the Calculation of e

A quick note and a question regarding how the constant e is calculated.

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Comparison of Exponential Functions Numbers

An examination of exponential functions, was unsatisfied with the results.

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Understanding the Exponent e^x, etc.

Attempting to intuitively understand the growth of the function e^x

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Examining the Fibonacci Sequence from the Lens of Calculus

It appears as though I was looking into how the Fibonacci sequence could be made continuous, thinking about the rate of change of the sequence, etc.

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Relationship between i and φ?

This equation, x + iy = (a+i)^t, t=0..100, that has i (the imaginary number) in it looks strikingly similar at points to the golden ratio, φ.

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Exploration of Exponents and Natural Logs

An in depth examination of natural logs and exponentials.

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Investigation of the Alternating Harmonic Series

An investigation of the series 1 - 1/2 + 1/3 - 1/4 + 1/5

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Prank Texts

A small prank I tried where I'd text random phone numbers during school hours the following message: "Put your phone away, now. To prevent your phone from being confiscated, respond to this text with a formal apology." just to see who I could trick.

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How Teachers Should Approach Classroom Polls

A better way for teachers to ask students a question (e.g. how teachers should approach classroom polls).

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Battle Human Idealism and Human Compulsion

An examination of what drives humans.

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Modeling Electric Field

Attempting to model two charged particles moving and the resulting force vector field. Looks like I got the magnitudes correct but the directions were wrong (lol).

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Raw College Application Material

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Script That Loads a Facebook Profile's Older Posts

In order to save some time when doing analysis on a Facebook profile, this script would auto-scroll on the profile until everything was fully loaded.

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Investigation of the Birthday Paradox and the Newly Coined Permutation Space

Examining the birthday paradox but with a geometric lens.

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Mapping the Network of Facebook

In an attempt to map out the network of Facebook (where people were nodes and friendships were edges), this script started with my Facebook friends, visited their profiles and got their friends, ad infinitum.

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Physics Questions: DC Circuits

A set of questions that came up while studying DC Circuits.

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Feynman Quote

I just love it because Feynman asked himself one of those why questions (like why does gravitational and electrical attraction fall off over r^2?) that one just can't answer. He gave the best answer anyone could possible give: that's just the way it is.

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Defining Three Dimensional Objects Using Transformatios of Two Dimensional Objects

An exploration, guided by intuition, of defining three dimensional objects via the transformation of two dimensional objects.

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Exchange with First Serious Girlfriend

An exchange with my first serious girlfriend, Alison.

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Alan Understanding Displacement

A little visualization I made for my friend Alan to help us study for the SAT Physics subject test.

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Feynman Lectures on Physics

One of my favorite people of all time is Richard Feynman. He desired to understand the world in the same way I do. He had a child-like glee for learning, explaining, and teaching. These are his lectures on physics: volume 1, volume 2, and volume 3.

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Email from Alison

An email from Alison.

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Email from Alison 2

Another email from Alison.

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The Beach

An email I wrote to my mom.

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Understanding Light Phenomena and Terminology

A small list of notes on lasers work, essentially (was done as part of my research at UNC during high school). Here's the full paper and here's a reference paper we used.

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Conceptually Understanding Object Oriented Programming

An attempt to understanding object oriented programming as it was intended to be understood: conceptually.

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Email Exchange Between Alison and Andi

I managed to get between two best friends and it got kind of ugly.

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SAT Words That I'm Still Learning

A subset of all common SAT words that I specifically still needed to memorize.

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Alison's Letter

A letter (with my funny input/edits) that my girlfriend wrote to her friend.

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SAT Vocab

A full list of SAT vocabulary (highlighted). I went through this list just days before my SAT so that I could absorb and remember as many words as possible.

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New Roll Dice Payout

A program I wrote to help my girlfriend at the time with something.

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Attempt at Explaining Sin(x) Integral

An attempt at explaining the integral of sin(x)

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Learning Program for Dice Game

Apparently there was some game I came up with and I wanted to make a program that could play it really well.

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Letter to Bret Victor

In response to Bret Victor's Kill Math, I wrote him an email.

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Normal Distribution Discovery

As discussed in Ideas:

In an attempt to understand the nature of permutations, found all the permutations of a four-digit binary number (0001,0010, etc). Noticed that if you tally the number of times a given number of 1's appeared for each permutation, you would get a much higher occurrence of two 1's than four or zero 1's. Also found that if you graph these tallies, the results had a bell shape. Wrote a a program that does this tallying for a much longer binary number and found similar results. Hypothesized that if you were to take the limit as the length of the permuted binary number approached infinity, would get a perfect normal distribution curve.
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Possible Diffy Q Problem

An intuition that maybe the phenomenon I was observing could have been described by a differential equation.

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Psychology Encoding and Dvorak

Notes as I was switching from typing in QWERTY to Dvorak, and deductions made on how the brain encodes information based on the mistakes I was making.

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Speed Typing Before and After Dvorak

A set of benchmarks before and after I switched from typing in QWERTY to typign in Dvorak.

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Physics Vector Notes

A brief set of notes on vectors.

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Modeling Two Mass Motion

Modeling the motion of two balls attached by a string.

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Two Philosophical Debate Topics: Existentialism and Morality

Pondering the questions that beings more intelligent than us might have asked themselves.

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Text Bomb

Once I figured out how to use AppleScript to text bomb (send a ton of texts to someone's phone in rapid succession), I didn't really know what to do with it. Then one time some guy was kind of harassing my girlfriend at the time, Alison, so I tried the app on him. She said his phone stopped functioning and kept turning off and on and he got really angry. It was pretty cool.

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Unit Circle: Secant, Cosecant, Cotangent

A unit circle depiction of these lesser well understood trigonometric functions.

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Infinite Monkey Theorem

The idea that, with certainty, a monkey typing randomly on a typewriter for infinite time would pen the entire works of Shakespeare is a powerful one. In some ways, it's not too dissimilar to the evolution of humanity: we're the result of (essentially) random processes (mutations, environmental factors, etc.) over the course of 3.5 billion years. It's something I think people have difficulty internalizing: very simple random processes over very long periods can create things that are incredibly complex, such as the human eye or the works of Shakespeare.

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Electrostatics and Vector Fields

An examination of the equation that guides elecrical attraction between two points.

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Macbook Pro Estimated Shipping

While excitedly awaiting my MacBook Pro 17" (BTO, built to order), I hung out on the MacRumors thread where people would exchange ship dates and such. This linear exchange seemed so inefficient; I wanted to be able to find patterns in the ship dates, so I created a spreadsheet (and marketed it aggresively on the thread), so that everyone could go there to give updates on their . In just a day, we were up to 40 entries. I suppose we even chatted on the spreadsheet since I told someone "I'll be on the spreadsheet if you want to talk." We all worked together to figure out which FedEx flight our Macs were on. I loved this feeling of community, and I liked that I had been the one to create the spreadsheet in the first place. We ended up with 92 people entering in their info.

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Belated Psychology Project

A project Camilo and I did for AP Psychology.

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Web Post

A comment I made on a forum that I thought was funny enough to save.

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NIH Application

An application to intern at the NIH over the summer (another spoiler: I didn't get it).

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Email to Steve Jobs

After a full night of struggling with installing software and going through many old discs to find the right one, my room was a mess. It felt as though the tech was so behind the times at this point that it was comical, so I figured he would relate.

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Monty Hall Problem Simulator

Once I read about the Monty Hall Problem in high school, I became pretty interested in exploring it. Didn't do much other than try to understand it intuitively and create a simulator to kind of "prove out" the solution.

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Calculating Maxima Using Integrals

Program that uses integrals to calculate the maxima of a function.

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Analysis of My PSAT and SAT Scores

An in depth analysis of my PSAT and SAT scores.

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Math Problem: Integral of sin(x)

A geometric explanation (using the unit circle) for why the integral of sin(x) is what it is.

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I Miss You Email

I write an email to Tara about 5 months after SVSM ends that just says "I miss you". Tragically, it goes to her spam and she never sees it.

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Macbook Pro 15.4 inch 3.06 GHz 4GB RAM 500GB 7200 RPM HDD EXTRAS - $1500

A Craigslist listing for my MacBook Pro.

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Dimensions

A poem, probably inspired by Flatland.

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Talking with Tyler About Dimensions

A discussion with my high school friend Tyler about multiple dimensions.

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Explaining cos(x^2)

Attempting to intuitively understand why the graph of cos(x^2) looks the way it does.

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Determining Angles After Collisions

An algorithm for determining the angle of incidence.

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How to Get Around the Linksys Routers Limitations

My dad implemented a MAC address block on my Xbox after a certain time so that I couldn't play online. I figured out a way around it.

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Jedi Battles Compilation

Since I was young, I loved video editing (really just creating anything, and editing videos was something that was easy enough to pick up). Still more than 10 years later I'm pretty proud of the work I did here. The syncing with the music took an excessive amount of time, but the climax of the song still gives me chills.

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High School Teacher Questionnaire Outline

A set of true/false questions for the teachers in high school to evaluate their thoughts on effective education.

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An Interesting Quote

"Honestly, I don’t want any of this to happen. But it did. In this vat of cascading deterministic actions, it doesn’t matter what I say, what you do, what will happen will always be what will happen. So it goes." - Joe

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Scientific Stagnancy

A fleeting thought about the state of modern science.

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Inquisitive Prose

A set of prose examining the feelings I was having during 10th grade.

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Joe's Informal Views on Girls

A poem, perhaps, about the struggles of dating in high school.

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Measuring the Degree of Differentiability of Function

I believe the idea was that functions with a greater rate of change are "less" accurately differentiable, in a sense.

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Jonestown

Some notes on the PBS documentary, Jonestown Massacre - Peoples Temple.

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Powerful Quote

A quote from Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show". Episode date was September 14th, 2010.

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Byu Philosophy Class

I forgot that my sophomore year of high school I took a philosophy class online with BYU. I don't think I did very well in the class. I never really found Descartes believable.

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Exchange with High School Teacher

Nicole Gerber was, by no small margin, one of my favorite teachers at Woods.

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Equation Grapher

One of the earlier programs I wrote, all it does is graph equations.

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Early Mcs Photos

Some early photos I found of my friends and me at Montessori.

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Some Really Funny Artifacts (emails)

A compilation of snippets from emails and chat conversations (mostly from 5th - 8th grade, 2005 - 2008) that apparently had enough significance to be written down.

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Bifurcation Diagram Plotter

A program I wrote while at Summer Ventures of Science and Math to generate the bifurcation diagram. You can zoom in on portions of the diagram to see the self-similarity.

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Social Justice and Capitalism

An examination of modern capitalism, originally entitled "Capitalism: The Financial Oligarchy"

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NCSSM Appeal Letter

An appeal letter I believe I never submitted to the North Carolina School of Science and Math (NCSSM) when I was rejected.

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Website Idea

An idea I had for a website that allows people to track their "achievements" in life, just like one does in video games.

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Issues with Education

A continued railing on the education system's instence that facts be taught, rather than critical thinking and an understanding lying underneath everything.

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Facebook: The Problem

My primary issues with Facebook (and all other social networking mediums)

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Julianna and Early Cosmo

Julianna making a video with Cosmo when he was very young.

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The Effect on Hypotenuse with a Growth of Height

This was a very small project exploring the relationship between these two attributes of a triangle (with bonus Christmas tree).

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iPhone Cydia Packages List

A list of all the Cydia packages I would typically keep on my iPhone.

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Calculating the Area Under a Curve Using Traingles

This was a small exploration I did to try to calculate the area under a curve using triangles.

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Fuck Education

A set of quotes from Einstein about education.

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NCSSM Application

This is the application I submitted to the North Carolina School of Science and Math (spoiler alert: I didn't get in and I'm totally not still salty about it).

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Evaluation of Education

This is a week long project I did in which I categorized the time spent in the classes I was taking my freshman year of high school. The categories were: Rote Learning & Facts, Understanding & Comprehension, Irrelevant & Unnecessary, Uncategorized, Review.

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Note About Education

An email I sent myself, probably after a frustrating exchange with a teacher.

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Candid Poems and Some Neurotheology

A set of candid poems and some neurotheology. Entitled "I am aware, yet I cannot change".

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The Peril of Education

A concern about the conventional education system and the limits it imposes on curiosity.

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Permutation of Ratios Improved

An examination of some permutations of ratios.

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Sects of Intelligence

A breakdown of various sects of intelligence (but more like the distribution of the capacities of the population).

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Cognitive Science

An small list of definitions of common terms in psychology.

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Letter to Damn Interesting

A letter I wrote to Damn Interesting, which is my favorite website, with no near contenders.

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MacBook vs MacBook Pro

An analysis of the MacBook and the MacBook Pro..

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Letter to John

A letter to my cousin, John, who sent me a small figure and asked me to take pictures of my friends holding it.

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Questions 2009

Another set of questions.

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SAT Vocabulary

A set of example sentences to practice using SAT vocab words.

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Environmental Questions for Mr. Bryan

A series of questions that my high school vice principal, Cotton Bryan, asked me to come up with after I told him I wanted to teach the school about environmental science.

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Workout Schedule

A very rudimentary workout schedule for freshman year of high school.

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Circle of Knowledge

An early examination of epistemology.

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John Locke and Socrates Comparison

A comparison of two great philosophers.

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Motherload

A set of screenshots detailing how far I made it in the game, Motherload.

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A World Without Computers

An examination of what the world would look like without the invention of computers.

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Julianna's Book of Memories

A small picture book I made of my sister, Julianna.

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Call of Duty Final Classes

A list of the classes I decided were the best to use when playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.

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My Philosophy/Religion

A hypothesis for an afterlife.

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Money

A calculation of savings to determine when I could buy an XBox 360 and which games I could afford.

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Piano Song Status

A summary of the piano songs I was working on learning.

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Soccer Strategy for Woods 2

A second set of strategies that I proposed to the Woods Charter School high school soccer team after I joined.

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Soccer Strategy for Woods

A set of strategies that I proposed to the Woods Charter School high school soccer team after I joined.

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Xbox 360 Proposal

A formal proposal to my parents for an Xbox 360.

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Xbox Outline

An outline of the argument presented to my parents about why I believed I should be allowed to get an Xbox.

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Guitar Hero World Tour and Rock Band 2 Plan

A plan of action regarding what to buy for Rock Band and Guitar Hero for the family.

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Rock Band Agreement

A set of rules that my sister and I would abide by in exchange for the Rock Band video game.

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The Joys of Middle School

Just another lovely email from middle school.

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Call of Duty 3 Agreement

A set of proposed guidelines to allow me to buy and play a violent video game on the living TV on the family Wii.

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Abbreviations

A rather comprehensive list of common abbreviations used online.

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Guitar Hero 3

Some organization of the Guitar Hero 3 songs by the way you had to play each song.

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Youtuber Problems

I think I might have online dated this girl. I can't remember.

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iPhone Plan

My plan for purchasing my first iPhone.

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iPhone Proposal

My pitch to my parents about getting an iPhone and why it was reasonable for a 13 year old to have a cell phone.

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An Email to My Mom

An email to my mom about me doing the yearbook for the school.

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Spanish Assignment

A pretty dope way to learn Spanish. And I hated Spanish.

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Metro Station Shake It Music Video

One of my more well known videos, my friends and I got a lot of views on this because we posted it as a "response video" to the main "response video" to the actual Shake It music video, so we got a pretty good click through rate. Frankly, this song still rocks.

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Shake It Music Video Plan

The screenplay for Joe, Joey, and Jonny's infamous Shake It video.

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The Baby

In 8th grade, everyone at Montessori had to take care of a fake "RealCare Baby", which would cry sporadically throughout the night. This was shot on my MacBook camera, which is why some of the angles are so strange; it was the only camera I had at the time. Needless to say, I failed this assignment and had to write a paper instead. My take: thank god for contraception.

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Trying to Prove God is Not Real

A response video (never made) to someone attempting to prove the existence of God.

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PowerBook vs. MacBook

A comparison of the performance of my old and new computer.

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Selling PowerBook G4

My proposition for selling my first ever Mac, my beloved 12" PowerBook G4, to my mom's hairdresser.

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PowerBook eBay Description

The eBay description I wrote for my PowerBook when trying to upgrade to a MacBook.

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How to Rearrange the iCons on your iPod touch

A guide for how to rearrange icons on the iPod Touch. Also posted on a smattering of forums at the time.

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Questions

A set of science questions, unanswered.

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The Pros and Cons of Alex

An analysis I did of the first girl I was completely obsessed with, Alex. I actually put this in a protected Word doc, interestingly.

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Information Should Be Free

#aaronSchwartz

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The Loss of Love

A poem I wrote to try to get over a girl I loved.

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Well at Least Im Not Ew

Title says it all.

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7th Grade Breakup

I wish all of my break-ups were this amicable.

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Quotes

A set of quotes I found unabashedly true.

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6th Grade Love

One thing that certainly hasn't changed about me: I fall in love quickly and hard.

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Meeting an Astrophysicist

An email I sent out to the kids in my class when I was in 6th grade.

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Joseph's Promises

So many questions.

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