Blog Post : miVersa

I’ll be completely honest and say that I will most likely not use this tool. I see this as a relay between people, phone, cloud storage and a computer.  For the sake of the argument, I have only used it initially and have not seen or know of any feature of this tool that completely blew me away. I just can’t imagine this app as something incredibly better than simple texting and emailing.

What I recommend for miVersa is to include some sort of timestamping. Inspired by our recent timesheeting, I think the app can benefit from logging time of activity, like a generated image of a calendar with recorded times of effort placed into assignment as well as future schedules. It needs something other than simple features of communication.


Blog Post : ABC American Born Chinese

How do I identify myself? A true-blooded Chinese man born in China but raised in America. I have a deep appreciation for Chinese culture, its language and its roots. I try to stay true to my roots but it is difficult. I dream of returning to my birthplace, a rural village with fields and farm animals. I sometimes reminisce of what little memories I have regarding that place. I lived in a stone home, I think it was cement, with our only technology being a TV. It was simple yet fulfilling.

I am now Americanized and can never return to those times. To travel to a place with limited internet connectivity is daunting . I can’t even speak fluent Chinese anymore. I speak with an American accent which people would react similarly to if you were to hear a Chinese immigrant speak poor English, pitying and ridiculing them. This identity crisis is, to say the least, exhausting.

Then I come upon this show, From Here to There. What is this? Why does this resonate with me? Why am I frustrated with the fact that even though I can speak Cantonese I still have to read the English subtitles? In fact, the host, Andrew Ryan, speaks the language better than I do! These were my initial questions and thoughts for this show.

Then, I began to relax myself as I see the countryside of Taiwan. My grandparents have told me about there, windy, green, and full of life. Ah, a moment of peace. I admit to closing my eyes a little to drift into my memories and had to rewind and watch the part I missed.

This show portrays the Taiwanese sights, people and culture. Although this is different from my roots in Hong Kong, they still resonate with me. What is it about this show that does such? The host with blindness shows that even a disability does not hinder one to experience Taiwan. The other host speaks fluent Cantonese even though he is not Asian. It is a journalistic documentary of their adventures into the hidden treasures of the country that not many can see and experience whether it be the food, the people, the sounds, the sights, etc. Those that have lost their roots and/or wish to understand the great value that a small village or town can provide should give this show a chance.

Blog Post : Writing War II

In the beginning, I have treated this class and the project as something “below” me. How carefree, ignorant and naive I was. If you gave me a pistol and I would’ve probably accidentally shot myself in the foot. Pretty much that ridiculous.

So my new approach is to expect the worse. Tackle the problem onto the floor and beat it to a bloody pulp with enough factual and structural evidence to bury it. There is no mercy and nothing should be left out. Found one fact to support your argument? Place it into your project like a tactical missile. I will make the best use of the resources available to me. I will make sure my weapons are refined and ready. I will build upon my own experiences of failures and successes.  I will make out of this alive with a purple heart.

Blog Post : A Lab Rat in a Maze. A Student in This Class

The analogy is pretty spot-on. What we are being taught in this class is unlike any other class I’ve ever experienced. We are little rats in this maze where the ultimate goal or “cheese” is the ability to write dynamically. The beginning is the entrance to writing and we start learning basic concepts of writing structure, design, rhetoric and research. These are simple directions left, right, forward and backward to navigate yourself through the maze. Then the professor gives you the ability to go at your own accord. So you wander the maze taking turns, retracing, restarting, relearning and it’ll take a long time to get to your goal. Then, you have reached it, the goal. Your journey is over. Then a voice appears above, “You have only found the first piece of cheese. Now go find the others.” So you turn your head into another direction and begin your journey again.  Tough but certainly rewarding.


Blog Post : A Destroyed Man

After many hours, writing, revising, designing, realigning, proofreading, siting, destroying and rebuilding my work, I’m done. Having to write a blog post about my gruesome and tiring experience with this assignment has got to be somewhat sadistic right?

If there’s anything that I’ve learned from this experience is yet another perspective in which I fail at writing. Following the template for essay writing, namely the 5 paragraph model, I would usually start writing the introduction first. What is the introduction? It introduces an idea or opinion. How can you possibly have that without any facts? In previous writings, I’ve placed the opinion before the facts when it really should be the other way around. Only when you view facts and credible sources can you actually develop an opinion about them. Here I’ve developed a new approach to writing that will most definitely help me in the future. I just wish it didn’t cost me hours of sleep and cups of coffee.

“But man is not made for defeat. A man can be destroyed but not defeated.” – Ernest Hemingway

Blog Post : From Hate to Fascination

Let’s get this one thing clear before anything else : I hate writing. Yup. Hate it. Even from a young age, whether it be the fact that I’m an immigrant or my ethnic background (Chinese), I’ve always preferred Math over English. It’s because of this one problem with writing, “What is the right way to write?” That’s why Math, having one concrete answer, is better in my opinion. However, I will admit that I certainly see writing in a new light. The question now becomes “What’s the most effective way to write?” Writing is and possibly will never be perfect. This is what fascinates me. Since there is no definitive way to write, infinite writings of the same material can be made with each holding a bit of the writer’s perspective and personality in it.

My approach to writing is from an engineer’s point of view. “What is the purpose of this writing and how do I make it work efficiently?” I will admit, however, that this probably the most boring way to write. Like a robot, I organize the outline/blueprint of the writing on a sheet of paper, separating paragraphs by topics, lining opinions with facts, checking consistency, and all that. This is something we are spoon fed in school, the 5 paragraph essay. However, recently, I’ve begun to notice different styles of writing lately. This blog, for example, allows a certain amount of freedom in writing, something that a young middle school student, preparing for the English exam, can never hope to incorporate. I am in no way belittling the things I’ve been taught, since they’ve become the foundations for my ability to write, but now, and only now, did I come to the realization that I haven’t been truly writing in a way that I can be proud of.

We’ve always been told to do it “by the book”. But what happens when the “book” is gone or has become irrelevant? What do we do? There’s but one obvious answer. We write our own.

Blog Post : The Full Scope

Be mindful of all factors that are involved in the situation before you, especially if they involve others around you. Every person goes through hundreds of decisions a day whether they be major decisions like choosing a job or minor decisions like choosing what to have for dinner. Bottom line is that any decision a person makes always involves a certain amount of cause for their decision and its result, essentially cause and effect. Although one can argue to which side is more important, like the saying “Does the ends justify the means?”, there is no doubt that both sides should be considered.

In the professional world, these types of decisions take on a whole new perspective where an infinite amount of factors may come in play. A few examples can include wages, managements, hierarchies, protocols, relationships between coworkers, etc. Therefore, making rash decisions in the workplace with little to no understanding of the situation and its outcomes is not recommended. Also, decisions are not limited to high stakes company ones. Even minor ones can make a huge difference. For example, you have walked into your workplace and decided to say “Good Morning!’ to your boss or coworker. Just by saying that simple phrase, you have increased good relations and are thereby more likely to be favored. It’s not like saying this will get you a promotion but it’s certainly a start.

People should not be goalies (like in soccer). If you’re not doing anyone any harm, I will either step aside and/or assist you.

Blog Post: Video Games as Schoolwork? All Hail the 21st Century!

The idea that a game that I have played for a few years can be considered in any way, shape, or form something beyond just a game never truly crossed my mind. In fact, if you were to ask a person “Can a game be considered a piece of professional work?”. Whether they say “Yes” or “No”, they wouldn’t be able to concretely answer the follow-up question : “Why?”. I have decided to analyze a patch note for a game, League of Legends. The findings are eye-opening, in the sense that it completely blew me away. I was basically on two separate standpoints and was switching in between them. I was on the fence between the writer and the reader. To analyze this document, I had to put my perspective as the writer and try to understand the thought process behind how and why they decided to give us information about the changes to the game. After that, I had to think of myself as the reader and how  well I’ll be able to understand the information handed to me, which wasn’t as hard as the former since I am a devoted player already. My findings gave me a new found respect for the game that I play and the company behind it. The format, language, images, and information are concise, organized, clarified, and easily understandable. As a bonus, the patch notes allows comments from other readers and players to allow some feedback. These are things which I have taken for granted for years. To help players understand and get used to the changes to the game as quickly as possible, all these subtle things are being conveyed all at once, which hides the amount of professionalism put into it. Perhaps we, as a community of consumers, don’t need to worry about such trivial things. However, we would fail to appreciate the amount of work behind the process of “conveyance”. Anyone can give you a fact or formula (2+3=5) but it is the process of getting us to understand the meaning behind it which is truly an art in and of itself.

Document :
Analysis :

A champion, Varus, with the Heartseeker skin from the game, League of Legends. Happy Valentines!

Blog Post : My Dad, the Tyrant of Communication

In my home, Chinese is the main language that is used. However, there’s difference in the way that I communicate with my mom and dad. My mom has become slightly Americanized and I speak to her with a mix of Cantonese and English( when I don’t know how to say it in Chinese). My dad, on the other hand, is strictly Cantonese. When I was a kid, he would always snap at me when I tried to talked to him in English. Even though he’s become more lenient on me, since I am an adult, and doesn’t yell at me for speaking English at home, I still try my best to speak to him in Cantonese only. You can call it conditioning but I’d like to think of it as his way of preserving my ethical background and I can’t thank him enough for it. Although I can only speak Cantonese in simple conversations, I can see the differences between my sister and I when we go out on the streets. My younger sister, born in America unlike me, has trouble connecting and communicating with the Chinese community to the point of not wanting to go in there. I’m more in-tuned with our culture and Asian values than she is. One good example is when we gather for dinner. In China, the family gathers together for dinner in the kitchen. This is ,from what I’ve heard, not that common anymore in American culture. They need a TV or something to entertain them or that each person of the family takes their dinner and eats in their own room. My sister doesn’t like this too much since she has to be away from the computer. I, on the other hand, like being away from the source of my hours of distraction and talking to my dad (he’s hilarious). On one occasion, my sister got bored and decided to take out her phone during dinner. I already hate it when people take out their phones in public at restaurants or during meals. My dad absolutely hated it with the burning fires of his very Chinese soul. He grabbed it from her and dropped it into a nearby cabinet. The dinner continued in awkward silence and only until the end did she get back her phone. I walked back up to my room, clenched my fist and raised it towards chin while I said to myself quietly  “Nice….”.