ezyang’s blog

the arc of software bends towards understanding


Travel: Spring 2012 Edition

For various reasons (mostly PhD-related) I will be traveling a bit over the next month. February 29 to March 2 in Princeton, NJ March 5 to March 7 in Pittsburgh, PA March 9 to March 12 in Palo Alto, CA Let me know if you're any of these areas and want to say hi!

  • February 18, 2012

Mystery Hunt and the Scientific Endeavour

It can be hard to understand the appeal of spending three days, without sleep, solving what some have called “the hardest recreational puzzles in the world,”; but over this weekend, hundreds of people converged on the MIT campus to do just that, as part of MIT Mystery Hunt. To celebrate the finding of the coin, […]

  • January 16, 2012

Grad School, Oh My

It still feels a little strange how this happened. Not a year ago, I was pretty sure I was going to do the Masters of Engineering program at MIT, to make up for a “missed year” that was spent abroad (four years at MIT plus one at Cambridge, not a bad deal.) But a combination […]

  • July 11, 2011

Cambridge retrospective: History and Philosophy of Science

I recently concluded a year long study-abroad program at the University of Cambridge. You can read my original reasons and first impressions here. It is the Sunday before the beginning of exams, and the weather is spectacular. Most students (except perhaps the pure historians) are dourly inside, too busy revising to take advantage of it. […]

  • July 8, 2011

Ely Cycles

Yesterday I cycled from Cambridge to Ely, and back again. The route is a glorious 38 miles (round trip) of British towns and countryside. The cycling around Cambridge is quite good, because there aren’t very many hills, and in the farmland areas you get to see the tractors rolling by. The longest I’d ever cycled […]

  • March 25, 2011

The creation of a statically-typed functional programmer

The bug bit me in early 2009, during MIT’s independent activities period; really, it was two bugs. The first was 6.184, the re-animated introductory computer science class taught in Scheme—for obvious reasons. But I don’t think that was sufficient: I seemed to recall thinking Scheme was interesting but not a language I actually wanted to […]

  • March 2, 2011

Thriller: Doing it for the thrills

How do you decide what to work on? I started thinking about this topic when I was wasting time on the Internet because I couldn’t think of anything to do that was productive. This seemed kind of strange: there were lots of things I needed to do: vacations to plan, projects to work on, support […]

  • December 24, 2010

Travel advisory

I will be in the following places at the following times: Paris up until evening of 12/22 Berlin from 12/23 to 12/24 Dresden on 12/24 Munich from 12/25 to 12/26 Zurich on 12/27 Lucerne from 12/28 to 12/29 Plans over the New Year are still a little mushy, so I’ll post another update then. Let […]

  • December 21, 2010

Tourist by day, Blogger by night

In which Edward travels France Many, many years ago, I decided that I would study French rather than Spanish in High School. I wasn’t a particularly driven foreign language learner: sure I studied enough to get As (well, except for one quarter when I got a B+), but I could never convince myself to put […]

  • December 17, 2010