Saturday May 5th

RustReach First Meeting

Finally back in LA

  • I got back into LA last night around 11pm. Got to sleep around 2am.
  • I watched the Disaster Artist on the plane. Totally good movie. I laughed out loud. It’s also pretty smart, and is very tongue-in-cheek, which I really liked.
  • I had a really great time on my trip (which I can’t speak much about..sorry). All I can say is that I met some really smart people and saw a lot of Maths. It sort of cemented in my mind that I’m seriously considering the East Coast. I can’t say I’ve really fit out here. It’s a bit frustrating, and I’ve ended up shying away and just dealing with specific groups of people or none at all. That wasn’t my experience when I was briefly on the other coast. I liked the people there a lot. I think we have a lot more in common, and I like the pace and work ethic over there. I like their straight up demeanor, because that’s pretty much how I am. People actually laugh at my jokes over there; I’ve been told I have a very specific sense of humour. I’ve found that JPL-ers also like my jokes or get my sense of humour, which is nice. I’ve also been told that they too have a specific sense of humour (it’s true!).
  • Where I was has very much a mindset of “pull yourself up from the bootstraps” in terms of mentality, and making things. I loved that. It’s very much what I think of when I think of American values. Or immigrant, which is what I am. I sat next to a welder for part of my flight. I really enjoyed speaking with him. He was cool AF. I took two welding classes, and was seriously considering getting my license a few years ago (just as a skill-set), and my teacher was a dive-welder (and female, too… she was very much a badarse). I just had a great experience for the trip.
  • Out here, I feel like I’m more of a projection of what other people would like me to be, and over there I’m who I am. Well, not to be meta or anything, but I am…uh..myself. Last I checked, anyways.
  • I knocked out and got up around 10am. I don’t think I’ve slept that long in a while. It was a bit nice, but really weirded me out when I saw the time.

At 1pm

  • Okay, so I had no idea that Slack had video conferencing as an option. Wut?
  • I have two main laptops; one is for working (Linux) and the other is for general personal stuff (Windows). The other personal stuff is capable of running things like Cloud9 if I need a linux console for a workshop and I don’t need that much space (say, a one-day workshop that isn’t Android or something). However, it has limited space. So if I have Slack and am watching listening to music in the background and writing emails, the browser might crash.
  • So yeah..that’s interesting. However, it forces me to streamline the chatter in my life, and just focus on work, which is good. So one thing at a time, and I don’t get distracted once I’ve sat down to work.
  • Anyways, I met with Aaron, my RustReach mentor, and he was quite wonderful. My task for this week is to go through the cargo book. You can find it here. I was able to complete that today, but I found the list of Rust’s Compiler Errors here. So I’ll be reading that until the wee hours of the morning.
  • It may also be a good idea to go through some of the generated errors and try to fix them, to understand why they occur and how to familiarize myself with resolving them. Probably this week.
  • The Rust community is pretty great. I’ve interacted with them before. No complaints.


  • People have been randomly contacting me to ask how they can get in to such and such programme. I really don’t know because everything’s sort of a mix of the right opportunity happening, luck and timing. For RustReach, for example, I almost didn’t apply.
  • I saw it on a friend’s timeline on Twitter (and I’m never actually logged in to Twitter for a long time, tbh; it would suck up too much of my time and I’m trying to just be a better dev). When I saw it, it was due on the day, and it was 6pm of that day, so I thought yikes, I guess if it has a 4:30pm deadline, I’m toast, but the form was still open, so I filled it out anyways.
  • I think intention is worth a lot, too. I keep telling everyone to just work on stuff anyways. Don’t think too much about getting such and such opportunity. If you don’t get into X or Y, contribute anyways. I had told Chris for GSoC that I was willing to work on contributions even if I didn’t get in. The long-term goal is more important than a summer programme.
  • I think that that’s their intention, too. A lot of these programmes are geared towards trying to get long-term contributors.
  • I have a lot of friends who have made libraries and not only work, but work on open source, and I’m really inspired by them. They definitely don’t do it for the notoriety or anything. They just do it because they’re part of the community and they want their community to be a good one, and for the tooling to be better. I think that that’s a lot more noble and it inspires people like myself who are new to be a part of those communities. They’re more willing to help people who genuinely want to be a long-term member of their community than someone who is just going to try to use the opportunities in the community to promote their own career, etc. That’s all I have to say on that.


  • I’m working on CodeWorld, because today was also a bit of my day of rest (see the AM sleep-out). I was able to work out my schedule so that I spend around (on average) 53 hours on CodeWorld a week (not including meetings online with my mentors).

I’m also really excited

  • To spend part of this summer working on Racket. I really think it will make me a stronger programmer. I really appreciated that after I signed up, one of the actual professors wrote us a personal email. Really nice touch. I’m particularly looking for sort of interaction in a PhD programme. I don’t do well at places with hundreds of people. I get really burnt out. So I think my mentor (Gabe) guided me to make the best choice. I really trust his judgment. He says he’s from Texas (sorry Gabe lol..the world knows your secret now lol), and I really like that he’s straight-up. I think that that’s more helpful to people starting out like myself, to instill good habits. I’d prefer for someone to tell me “you really need to spend time on X” than to make me believe I’m doing a great job bluffingly. That’s how I grew up, anyways. We don’t sugar-coat.

This week

  • Is my last real week of sort of goofing off before my mentor can officially kill me. I can still manage to put in the time for this week (around 40 hours), but from next week, I’m officially GSoC’s and Mozilla’s. I won’t reveal much but there will be a fair amount of fun this week, and I’ll be sure to take pics (if I can) and post about it!

And that’s it for now!

Written on May 5, 2018