Roy Tang

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

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2021 January

  • Posted by under blog at #books

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  • This is 2021 week 3. Or week 2. Two and a half? How do calendars work? The world: relatively calm compared to the chaos of the previous week. However in the US, a storm may be brewing over Biden's inauguration next week locally: still a lot of confusion/inconsistencies around the vaccination plan. Or at least some senators think so. Meanwhile, we are close to breaching 500k cases. Links of interest: I've been reading a lot about personal note taking recently, in a bid to find ways to improve my own systems. I skimmed this book from like 2004ish: How to

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  • Weeknotes 2021-01-10 Now With More Links

    We are barely more than a week into 2021 and it has already been quite a year. The world: the week started off with something as innocuous as a guy going viral for making his daughter work six hours to figure out how to use a can opener and open a can of beans. I can't explain Bean Dad, but it was so weird and surreal the way it took over the internet for a while. impossible to discuss the last week without mentioning the violent attack by Trump supporters on the US capitol upon incitement by the president himself

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  • Quotes!

    I used to collect quotes a lot. Maybe I still do. Here are a couple of collections I've posted online. Tang In Cheek - a list of quotes (allegedly by me) Email signatures - a list of quotes I used as a pool to randomly select an email signature from. I rarely send email these days, and when I do it's usually web-based, so I can't use these anymore. There's probably a better way to organize these. I mean, I kind of want some kind of upvoting system like they have at (to see which quotes the three readers

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  • Regular Reviews and Tracking

    One habit I now have that I wish I had started much, much earlier in life would be conducting regular, periodic reviews. These reviews are a sort of written introspection of the time period in question, the target audience being future me. I'm reminded of the important of this because I had been going through old files the last few months and I really enjoy reading through some older entries and basically traipsing through younger me's mind. It's kind of a time machine in a way. And it helps me by providing a sort of foundation for my thinking, so

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  • Pinoy Drawing Memes

    Posted by under blog at #philippines

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  • 2020 Word Clouds

    Posted by under blog at #tech-life

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  • Goodbye Flipboard

    I've been using the Flipboard iOS app as my daily morning news reader pretty much since I first got an iPad. It offered a nice, magazine like UI where you can flip through pages full of images and short article blurbs until you can find something you want to read. The past couple of years and iOS versions though, the app has been performing terribly. Crashes a lot, reader view often fails to load, or flickers and reloads continuously and so on. Just not a very good experience. I'm sure it's not entirely their fault; recent iOS versions (starting from

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  • It's a brand new year, a brand new week, a brand new day. There's no real reason to believe 2021 will be a better year, but we can choose to try to be better, and maybe that in itself is better. Last week's New Year's Eve transition played out pretty much as expected. We just stayed at home, actually had an early media noche dinner (around 9ish) and observed the fireworks for a little bit. Yes, there were still fireworks, despite the supposed ban at the LGU level. I would estimate a drop in fireworks volume of maybe 20% at

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  • 2020 Year in Review

    It's always weird for me when people do their "year in review" or "X of the year" any time before Jan 1st of the next year. You're making Dec 31 feel left out. It's one thing the Oscars get right. Anyway, here's my personal year-in-review, such as it is. Essay-writing section It's probably impossible to talk about 2020 without talking about the Covid19 pandemic that has ravaged the world. My country is sadly still under a state of quarantine/lockdown, I believe the world's longest. I am doing relatively well during the pandemic, nobody I know personally has been infected, and

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    Posted by under blog at #yearnotes

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  • New Year's Checklist 2021

    Happy New Year! Something I've gotten used to as the New Year rolls in: make a checklist of things to do for the new year. I generally copy stuff over, but the list changes a bit every year. In no particular order: Ponder why people give so much significance to the transition between an arbitrarily-chosen pair of 24 hour periods Take stock and reflect on the past year Count your blessings for the past year and be grateful Greet your loved ones and friends and anyone else you hold dear. Maybe even those you disagree with Think about what you'd

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    Posted by under blog at #new-years-checklist

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2020 December

  • Weeknotes 2020-12-27 Season Finale

    I started doing these weeknotes at the top of 2020, so this one signals one complete year of doing my weekly reviews/notes in public. I thought it appropriate for a review! Did it turn out to be a good practice? I think for me yes! Not necessarily for anyone following the blog (all 3 of you), since a lot of the weeknotes stuff might seem boring or irrelevant to you. But for me, forcing me to publicly write some thoughts about the past week has been good for my own self-awareness and keeping me writing regularly. I mentioned this in

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  • Christmas Traditions

    This was the year when a lot of Christmas traditions were broken, due to the pandemic. There are cultural/country-specific Christmas traditions of course, but usually each person or family also has their own personal traditions that they do every Christmas. Here are some of mine: Christmas Eve dinner, or as it's popularly known here in the Philippines, noche buena. Growing up, our immediate family/household unit usually celebrates Christmas Eve with a late noche buena, an extra meal that happened after dinner and starting at around midnight. Then we'd open presents, usually with one of the uncles taking the role of

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  • Weeknotes 2020-12-20

    It's the penultimate week of the year, and I'm sure I'm not the only who's had enough of this accursed year and looking forward to moving on to the next one. I know that's silly since the world won't magically become better when the calendar flips over to January the first, but I think it helps our mental health to have this sort of "fresh start" mentality, even if it's on an arbitrarily chosen date. The holiday season continues to be weird, thanks to the pandemic. My brothers and I have been trying to hash out how to have the

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  • I've talked a bit about mentoring in software development before, and how early on I used to get feedback about me being "intimidating". I never got any concrete feedback regarding that, so I don't know what problems I had specifically. Though I was recently reminded of one particular incident that was a bit cringey for me personally. This was a bit more than 10 years ago I think. I was usually assigned to mentor new hires, which means fresh graduates who usually needed guidance with a Java (which was our primary programming language at that time) and with our in-house

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  • Weeknotes 2020-12-13

    Time passes yet again. I think I have to get used to not having much personal stuff to report in the weeknotes on certain weeks (aside from the watching/gaming parts), especially given the pandemic where I'm at home 90% of the time. Speaking of the pandemic, the UK started vaccinations last week, and the US FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine as well, so hopefully this is where things start to turn around. Sadly, it may be a while before vaccinations get widespread, especially here in the Philippines. I'm hoping things clear up by mid next year for us here, but

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  • Weeknotes 2020-12-06

    This week felt like another set of those moments-in-between, where not much seemed to happen, but it somehow still went by quickly anyway. I think the household and the family has slowly gotten used to the idea that any big Christmas celebration isn't happening. My niece's birthday was last weekend, so we sent her gifts via Grab delivery instead of being able to get together. Most likely something similar's going to happen for gift exchanges on Christmas. We're still trying to figure out what we can do in the meantime. The extended family has proposed a zoom call on the

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  • Perfect Strangers

    While digging through some old stuff recently I found a copy of the late 80s/early 90s US sitcom Perfect Strangers and decided to binge through all 8 seasons of it (really more like 6 and a half, since seasons 1 and 8 were an abridged 6 episodes each). I grew up watching this series, on live tv even, before we had cable or Netflix or anything like that. During the binge-watch I remember a good number of the episodes from the first season all the way up to the end of season 7, which implies almost all of it was

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    Posted by under blog at #tv

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  • Dress Codes

    A while back someone I know went from working as a developer to working at a senior/management type position at a bank, and that new job came with the corresponding dress code, which meant he was now going to work in long sleeves or barongs. That kind of thing is not for me - back when I still considered a regular office job, one of the fastest ways to get me to run away from an "opportunity" would be an overly stringent and/or formal dress code. I was reminded of this because a few days ago, I read an article

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  • Ephemeral Echoes

    Last week, Twitter added Fleets, their own version of stories (short-lived posts). As could be expected, it's not something I can relate to. I did post one (saying "This is dumb.") just to see what the interface was like, but that's it. I thought about writing a blog post about how I dislike this sort of ephemeral social media, but it turns out that something I'd already written about before. Things don't change I guess, and they just come around. I still can't relate to this kind of thing, since I really prefer having a record of things I've posted

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    Posted by under blog at #tech-life

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