Monday October 1st

Strange Loop 17

  • So…I’m back from Strange Loop, and I am exhausted!


  • A great conference, even though I suffered from people overload!
  • I think I personally do better at a bit smaller-sized conferences. All the talks were great, though!

On the way there

  • You can see the Arch!

Check in was very smooth!

  • Union Station hotel. It used to be an old train station!
  • It’s 24 acres! I did get lost a few times!

  • The staff there was quite hospitable, and there was a Light and Fire show every hour (on the hour!)

Pre-conference party

  • I woke up late the first day, just in time for the food-trucks.

  • These were the fish tacos. I did a workshop on Tensorflow on my first day.

That night, we attended the pre-conf party at the City Museum

  • It was awesome. It was sponsored by Riot Games, who was also hiring.

  • Part of the outside, which was filled with slides, a suspension bridge, a gutted out airplane, etc

  • caves with dinosaurs!

  • Slides, slides everywhere

  • A bunch of devs in a pool of plastic balls, playing hoops!

  • Someone mentioned there was a ferris wheel on top of the roof! So we got a group of about ten people going and started our journey!

  • I had never been on a Ferris Wheel before, much less on one that was
    sitting on a rooftop. I made friends with a Googler Guy from NY, who was my buddy, and tried to make casual conversation so I wouldn’t be distracted by the fact that I was sort of scared $h!tless :)

The conference

  • I attended Simon Marlow’s talk on Haxl, a talk on SAT Solvers that involved architectural constraints (and Rhino! I’ve used Rhino!) and Dependent Types in Haskell. Also a talk on Crypto and password-less passwords, and one on Flutter. Also attended the Keynote on Open Source, which was quite good!

Project Alloy event

  • Attended this event at the Centene, to which we were shuttled. The event was quite elaborate, and sponsored by Stripe and Netflix, among other companies.

  • They even had a photobooth. I made two friends (well, more than two haha).

  • The girl to the left (wearing the purple top), Frances, did a talk on TypeScript, for the Lightning Talks.

  • Another friend did a talk on “Why Haskell”, which I heard was quite hilarious. I was too burnt out at that time, and opted instead for a private stream watching Haskell with a friend remotely. That pretty much ended my day.


  • Project Alloy was nice enough to even have a speaker; Aston. He was the first employee of Dropbox. He spoke about his journey. He felt like he was “lucky”. But he went to MIT. His friend invited him to join Dropbox early. I wouldn’t call that “luck” at all. Heck, many of the applications to companies flat out ask you if you have affiliations with Ivy Leagues, so I can imagine (even though I go to a crappy school without connections) if I didn’t have the past experience of doing a semester at an Ivy (non-tech related), I’d be sweating bullets. And I still get passed over/ rejected.

  • I think around that time, though, I started feeling a little bit like I didn’t belong. Everyone around me just felt like they were smarter, had it all together, etc. Plus, I had gotten a rejection email from a company I had gotten to step two of (ie they had made their decision after a coding test I submitted, which made me feel like crap about my coding abilities).

  • So I was in full imposter-syndrome-mode. I sort of felt like I had stepped into the Stepford Wives of tech, and I shouldn’t be there. But I love coding. I love the tech community more than anything. So it just made me sad and I skipped out on seeing my friend, Frances’ talk, and on two other friends who invited me to dinner, which made me feel a bit $h!tty. I chatted with my friend over the private stream about it, and he made me feel better, though. I’m really thankful for that.


Tensorflow Workshop

  • for non-convergence (auto diff), use smaller increments or turn on nodes as trained constrain when nodes are turned on
  • ML is programming with data instead of instructions
  • Categorical column => discrete vs continuous data
  • DNN => embedding type
  • LIME => Local Interpretable Model-Agnostic Explanations
  • CNNs =>
    • local receptive fields
    • shared weights (all neurons in the hidden layer detect the same feature)
    • pooling => Max pooling (layers go between convolutional hidden layers)
  • for most CNNs, max-pooling is used


  • ApplicativeDo (2016)
  • Monadic operation => sequential one has to be done before another (not good for concurrency) vs Applicative
  • Dumps cache as Haskell => prints out cache as haskell programme
  • Can make unit tests, write libraries to pre-populate the cache
  • debug (reproducibility) since can dump the cache
  • Sigma is used for spam/ abusive and fake accounts on fb, etc
    • Concurrency
    • Caching
    • Testability
    • Debuggability

Web Auth

  • MAC => Message Authentication Codes
  • Soft tokens
  • STARTTLS => opportunitistic encryption protocol

Dependent Types in Haskell

  • domain specific type checkers
    • Type computation (parsing…base case…may or may not be empty.. * repeat pattern)
    • Indexed Types
    • Double-duty types
    • Equivalence Proofs


  • I am really thankful for the opportunity to have attended Strange Loop. I’d like to go back at some point, but I’m also driven to become a better programmer. I hope that there’s a space in the industry for me. People were so nice there; there were so many wonderful people. There were also so many companies recruiting. So..we’ll see.

And Goodbye

  • Back we go. Back to my favourite bed!


def calc_ms(n):
  a = n * '0'
  return int(str(pow(2, n)) + a)
  • return square of each elem in list
def square(numbers):
    arr = []
    for i in numbers:
        arr.append(i * i)
    return arr
  • return value in key-pair that is squared (passed tests but issue submitting)
    def dict_square(numbers):
      arr = []
      arr1 = []
      dict1 = {}
      for i in numbers:
        arr1.append(numbers[i] * numbers[i])
      for i in range(len(arr)):
        dict1[arr[i]] = arr1[i]
      return dict1
  • break the string via newline for number n given
function stringBreakers(n, string){
    var arr = []
    string = string.replace(/\s+/g, '');
    for (var i = 0; i < string.length+1; i++){
      if (i % n == 0){
        arr.push(string[i-1] + '\n')
    var b  = arr.join("")
    b = b.replace(/\s*$/,"");

Things to think about

Things to do

  • C++ Assignment
  • C++ Midterm assignment
  • Nanodegree Jupyter analysis/ report
Written on October 1, 2017