[Day 823] Google X

Simon asked me to come to a robotics event with him at Google X, the moonshot factory. I was psyched — there’s such an air of secrecy around X. The only problem is that I wasn’t invited. Some friends at X asked around for me but unfortunately, the event was full (s/o to Nick and Stephen for being homies). Simon told me to come anyway. If I couldn’t get in, we’d just grab a drink.

Continue reading “[Day 823] Google X”

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[Day 823] Google X

[Day 815] A party at Jensen Huang’s house

Jensen Huang invited all interns, 400 of us, to a party at his house. He was as funny as ever. Everyone loved him, though watching him, I had a feeling that he should have a lawyer with him at all time. He was prone to jokes that, while hilarious, weren’t exactly politically correct. HR reminded us about a dozen times that everything was strictly confidential. They walked around telling people to put their phones down when things got out of hand. Continue reading “[Day 815] A party at Jensen Huang’s house”

[Day 815] A party at Jensen Huang’s house

[Day 803] How do writers make money?

Recently, I’ve taken to introducing myself as a writer. Occasionally, I receive a response along the line of: “But aren’t you the person teaching the TensorFlow class?” or “But didn’t I see you in that CS class?” and I was always a bit confused: “Why should being a writer stop me from being interested in CS?”

This morning, I went for brunch with a bunch of people I didn’t know. A man in his fifties, after hearing that I’m a writer, asked: “So how are you supporting yourself financially?” Continue reading “[Day 803] How do writers make money?”

[Day 803] How do writers make money?

[Day 795] Is Andrej Karpathy human?

Sophia the robot visited Vietnam today and VnExpress asked me to write an op-ed about what it means to be human. In the article, I mentioned the program that Andrej Karpathy wrote that generated Shakespeare-sounding text.

I didn’t think much of it until my editor texted me: “Is Andrej Karpathy human?”

I was like: “I guess.”

She was disappointed and took that example out of my article.

[Day 795] Is Andrej Karpathy human?

[Day 794] “If you don’t fund us, you’re a f* sl*t”

Disclaimer: pardon my French. This line is from Silicon Valley.

I’ve been back in Silicon Valley for less than a week and I’ve already collected half a dozen business cards from my Uber/Lyft/carpool drivers. They are all either raising funds or looking for new customers.

Levi thinks it’s because I have a disarming face. People look at me and think: “I bet I can squeeze some money out of that little person.”

I’ll take it as a compliment.

[Day 794] “If you don’t fund us, you’re a f* sl*t”

[Day 486] This guy bought a Tesla Model S to drive Uber select hoping to potential investors

Disclaimer: I didn’t verify whether he actually bought the Tesla S or not. This is what he told me.

Today, Dani and I went to watch Baby Driver. It was meh. The director seemed to have problem deciding whether to make an action or a romantic movie, and he ended up doing both. The best part of our cinematic experience was actually the Uber drivers taking us back and forth.

The first driver was an earnest guy in his mid 20s. He drove a nice Toyota Corolla whose window pockets were filled with water and granola bars. “You’re welcome to have some.” “No thank you. I’m good.” When Dani and I saw a checker cab with “You can book us online with curb” painted on the side, I wondered out loud if “curb” was Uber for taxis, and the driver laughed hysterically. I was feeling pretty good about myself until I realized that he laughed hysterically at almost every attempt at jokes we made.  Continue reading “[Day 486] This guy bought a Tesla Model S to drive Uber select hoping to potential investors”

[Day 486] This guy bought a Tesla Model S to drive Uber select hoping to potential investors

[Day 282] The pressure of impressing new people

Some of the cool things that happened today:

  • Jeff Dean high-fived me! I was having a drink with Brennan Saeta at the TensorFlow after party when I looked up and realized that standing right next to me was Jeff Dean. “OMG that’s Jeff Dean,” I said, slightly freaking out. “I’m just going to act casual. No big deal.” Brennan laughed: “Would you like to say hi to him?” “Maaaybe.” SoBrennan introduced me to Jeff and Jeff thought that teaching a TensorFlow class was cool.
  • I guess my *new* best friend just got on the cover of Nature. Brett Kuprel was featured on the cover of Nature before he turned 25. PhD students these days (shaking head).

Continue reading “[Day 282] The pressure of impressing new people”

[Day 282] The pressure of impressing new people