Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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2019 March

  • Break of dawn

    I stepped out of the house a bit past five in the morning today. I haven't done this in a while, taking my daily walk in the early morning. I used to do it pretty regularly, except back then I confined myself to the inner roads of our subdivision, or doing loops around the covered court in the nearby seminary. Walking the same routes every morning and doing repetitive routes got boring after a while, and combined with my erratic sleep schedule the habit soon fell off the wayside. I resumed my walking habit when I took a break from

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    Posted by under blog at #walking #daily-life

    Also on: twitter / 544 words

  • 750 Words

    I've mentioned 750 Words before. It's a pretty neat service that allows you to write privately online. It's not public like blogging is, so if you'd like to develop a daily writing habit but don't want things to be available to the world, it's a pretty good option. You can of course, just write on paper or on local files and just not upload anything to the cloud at all. But there's some benefits to an online service like this one too - the most obvious one is that you can write anywhere, with any internet connected device, but they

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    Posted by under blog at #writing

    Also on: twitter / 422 words

  • Unknowns

    Our instinct tells us to fear the unknowns, especially the ones that loom large in our imagination. The bigger the unknown, the more fear and uncertainty it generates, and in some cases it can lead us to paralysis and inability to move forward. Most often, the only way to conquer these unknown obstacles is to face them head on. Study them, attack them, break them apart, until you understand what they are. Unknowns are often challenging only because they are unknowns. Once you have a deeper understanding of them, it becomes easier to figure out how to proceed to overcome

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    Also on: twitter / 104 words

  • Different is not necessarily better

    Posted by under blog at #quotes #regret

    Also on: twitter / 49 words

  • Sometimes you just come up short. You try to work your brain but it always comes up dry. It happens, even to the best of us. There's no shame in failure or in defeat. It's only human. We can't be at our best all the time, otherwise it's not our best. What's important is you pick yourself up and try again the next day. Tomorrow, we can do better.
    Posted by under blog at

    Also on: twitter / 69 words

  • Captain Marvel spoiler-free review!

    movie was pretty good, no major issues doesnt follow the typical MCU origin story ‘formula’ some weird pacing issues in a few places, but that just might be because of the chosen story direction lots of little call-outs and tie-ins to the other MCU movies (although I feel like they could have done a bit more in some spots) I am not a cat person. But if you are a cat person, you might like this: there is a cat. There’s some parts that made it obvious they were aiming for that Wonder Woman audience, so the movie may be

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  • Whatever doesn't kill you

    "Whatever doesn't kill you, only makes you stronger." Nietzche I liked this quote a lot when I was younger and more gung-ho, especially about things like work. In fact, I may have considered it as a bit of a defining quote back then. I guess the idea was 'ok, we'll rush in and try anything, at worst we learn a lesson and be better for next time'. I think it's kind of the naive optimism that can only come with youth. As I've grown older my views on things like self-care and burnout have evolved, and the quote seems a

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    Posted by under blog at #quotes

    Also on: twitter / 149 words

  • RIP PS Vita

    The PS Vita has officially ended production. Sadness for the little handheld that could. The PSP that came before it was a juggernaut, and so was the 3DS it went into battle with. Unfortunately Sony never gave the Vita proper support, and third parties didn't follow, so the handheld never lived up to its true potential. I haven't had much opportunity for handheld gaming the past few years, since I don't travel as much anymore. But I still pick up my PS Vita every so often, much more so than my 3DS (which my niece has absconded with anyway). And

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    Posted by under blog at #vita #gaming

    Also on: twitter / 154 words

  • If you haven't figured it out yet, I watch a lot of TV shows, rarely on TV itself though. I outgrew scheduled television maybe more than a decade ago. I'm reminded of this because I was going through some old disks and found burned episodes of stuff like Smallville, Heroes, The Simpsons, various anime, and so on. Those were from the days before streaming though. These days an abundance of content is available online via the streaming services, no need to store all those episodes yourself. I first tried out Netflix during my three-month London stint back in 2015 (which

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    Posted by under blog at #tv #movies #pop-culture

    Also on: twitter / 602 words

  • Studying a large project codebase

    Given my recent misgivings about Quora, I thought it might be a good idea to cross-post some of my answers from there into this blog, with some edits even. So here's the first one! (stuff in italics were added during the cross-post) How can you read and study a large software project source code? Attacking a large, existing codebase that you are unfamiliar with can be a daunting endeavor. Don't expect that you will be able to easily navigate the codebase quickly after just a few days of studying it. Familiarity will come with experience. Some things that can help:

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    Posted by under blog at #quora #software-development

    Also on: twitter / 393 words

  • Four Hundred Thousand Words

    Sometime in the last week, I broke past four hundred thousand words total on this blog, as noted on the archive page. Four hundred thousand words! That number sounds insane for some reason. Over 17 years of blogging, that's an average of 23,500+ words a year. I could have written like 17 short stories or 8ish novelettes or 3-4 decently sized novels. This post is just me navel-gazing over that number. Four hundred thousand! In mid-March, there's gonna be another milestone too - we're gonna hit 1,000 posts total (assuming I don't quit blogging daily before then). I should get

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    Posted by under blog at #blogging #writing

    Also on: twitter / 103 words

  • Ranked Ladders

    As I'm writing this, I've been grinding Eternal's ranked ladder, trying to beat the end-of-month ladder reset and hoping to make Master rank again. Since this morning, I've been moving up and down the threshold of the Diamond I, the rank just below Master, hence frustratingly there has been little progress, less than 24 hours before the ladder reset. I usually do manage to hit Master rank a bit earlier than this, but I've been a bit busier this month for some reason, so my daily Eternal grinding had been reduced to the token one win per day. I decided

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    Posted by under blog at #gaming

    Also on: twitter / 554 words