Confessions of a researchaholic

April 22, 2018


Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 1:39 pm

If I could foresee my entire life I might have made some choices differently. But since I cannot I have no regret so far.

March 13, 2018

Window glimpse

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 4:43 pm
Tags: ,

The moment I saw you eating alone facing away from the restaurant window, I understood that I need to live long enough for you.

March 7, 2018

What I want my future child(s) to know

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 4:47 pm

Find out what you want to devote yourself to, and stick to it without ever giving up. You will then more likely to have a happy, fulfilling life.

February 14, 2018

Employee number 88

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 10:19 am

A colleague who has been with the company for more than 30 years recently retired.
During our lunch at his last working day, I asked him why he wanted to retire. He answered that he preferred his individual researcher + developer role more than management and team roles which tend to happen as one becomes more senior, and he also likes to spend more time with his hobbies in art and physics.

I joked that if I were ever forced to retire I would heist the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. But maybe one day that will change, just like I could not imagine I will ever get married when I was still in school.

January 21, 2018

Symmetric confusion

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 6:19 pm

A few days ago a lens was knocked out of my eye glasses.
After carefully putting the lens back and ensuring that everything is in shape, the glasses still produced weird optical distortion.
Finally, I realized that the lens is symmetric in boundary shape but asymmetric in optical axis, and I have put it upside down.

January 15, 2018


Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 3:29 pm

I heard this teaching about life-long learning from Confucius when I was a little kid, but it took time to appreciate what it really means. Instead of assuming we will continue to master what (we think) we already know, constant reviewing what is already there in our heads and help learning what is new in the future.

January 3, 2018

Transformation (not sure good or bad)

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 11:19 am

What I told students prior to a major deadline:

10 years ago: you should work hard as there is little time left.

1 month ago: go for the Kobe Bryant jersey retirement if that is important for you (later – BTW I am glad that Kevin Durant made that game winning shot).

December 31, 2017


Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 5:23 pm

One of the best things I like about taking Uber/Lyft is to meet different people who are otherwise completely outside my ordinary social circles.
Some examples include a Mongolian lady who told me about the Mongolian birthmark, a reggae musician, an Iranian retiree, and an avid Trump supporter.

Today I met an Afghan who worked with the US military in Afghanistan as a translator and IT staff, and recently migrated to the US. The military helped him settled down with green card and other stuff like driver license. But since his family is around (including a new born daughter), instead of the military he is looking for civilian IT jobs, but without any luck so far due to lack of proper degrees.
(If I were to hire programmers or engineers I want to see what they can do instead of just certificates.)
I recommended him some CIA jobs (sent to me a while back for unknown reasons) such as security, information, engineering, and language.

December 17, 2017

Q and A

Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 12:19 pm
Tags: ,

Sometimes the answers are hard to find because we ask the wrong questions.

November 26, 2017


Filed under: Real — liyiwei @ 10:07 am

A neighbor wants to remove a palm tree because it blocks the view and does not belong to northern California.

A palm tree which its neighbors want to remove as "it does not belong in northern California".

A post shared by Kublai (@kub1ai) on

The tree has been there since the beginning of human settlement, and has grown very well.

Who can decide whether others belong?

I say whoever adapts, belongs.

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