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Nov. 1, 2014

We had our first creative leader class. We learned some ways to increase our creativity, but they doesn't seem to work so well. Sometimes the method didn't really fit the problem, and other times, the method didn't help to come up with "creative" ideas. The class materials had other methods to make creative ideas. Probably I can try some new methods from the list.

Nov. 2, 2014

"Creative economy" is a copyright of Korea's current administration. There has been lots of criticism on what "creative economy" is, but until now the idea seems to be to help lots of venture capitals with new ideas. Though, one problem of this campaign is that the way to "creative economy" is not creative at all.

Being a Korean, I got a chance to look at the preliminary procedure of judging companies. Each venture company was "scored" following some criteria. The criteria included something like, whether the company is evaluated as a government confirmed venture company before. I have no idea what a government confirmed venture company means, but to me, it seems completely unrelated to the innovativeness of the idea or the company. I even feel weird to see that the innovativeness of the company can be "categorized" into different criteria and "scored".

The above is a preliminary procedure and the main evaluation of the company may use different methods. However, even in the preliminary evaluation, "scoring" a company based on whether the company is government-confirmed or not does not make any sense to me.

Nov. 3, 2014

Being creative does not always seem to help. The system I am currently building had a chronic problem with checking the status of progress. I came up with a great idea today which seems to solve the problem in a very ideal way. The only problem was that I had to change the structure of my program drastically. Though, the new solution looked very attractive and I decided to give it a try.

Unfortunately, the result was very very bad. First, changing the program required huge changes here and there. I had to spend hours making the changes and fixing problems derived from the changes, and problems derived from the derived changes of the changes, and more. It took way longer than expected. Second, change of the program required change in our data, which I had to make manually. Third, it turned out that my new idea had critical problem and could never work. I found that the new idea does not work only after making big changes here and there, and I had to revert all the changes I made.

After making all the roll-backs, I found that I could actually solve the problem with a very efficient but small change. I should have thought a little more before I make this adventurous changes.

Nov. 7, 2014

Reading my son's books, I get surprised how creative children book writers are. Starting from a story about a book eating boy, taco eating dinosaurs, crayons complaining to a kid about how they are treated unequally, such as blue complaining about being used too much to color all the skies and oceans, while pink complaining about being never used by a boy.

Looking at the people who makes creative products, it looks like people who need to do something new needs to be more creativity while people in routine work can be less creative. For instance, people who works on different projects repeatedly, such as book writer, song writers, artists, and game designers continually needs creativity to do their work. On the other hand, people like post officers, bankers, teachers, and truck drivers, whose work goes continuously in routine requires less creativity or being creative may work against them.

Asking creativity to all the people seems not correct. Instead, a leader should ask creativity only to those people who really needs to be.

Nov. 10, 2014

Maybe very different from others, but noisy environment seems to improve my focus and productivity. One of my favorite place to work is inside an airplane like today.

It is very noisy and shaky inside an airplane, however, this seems to help me get focused. In noisy environment, you have to work somewhat to keep focused, and this helps me not to be distracted. When in a quiet place, I often become distracted by internal reasons not by external ones. When I become little tired of working or am looking for some short refreshment, I take a short redirection to some fun from my work, and unfortunately that short redirection becomes a long distraction. However, in a slight disturbing environment, I try to keep my focus, and because I know short redirection is not allowed in such environment, I eventually become better focused.

Another places I usually work well are foodcourt in a mall, inside a subway, and in a train. I am not too uncomfortable to sit in these places for a long time, and there is no one who disturbs me. I can just keep focusing on my work here. However, inside a bus never works because the seats in bus is narrow and I cannot get enough space to work without being disturbed by other.s

In eastern martial arts stories, sitting under a waterfall is a cliche way of getting focused, and that seems to match my way of getting focused. Noisy sound of the waterfall and water falling on you can distract you, but instead you try harder not to loose your focus. However, there is no other person who disturbs you, and you can become more focused.

This "focus in the noise" may be something that only works with me, but maybe worth research deeper.

Nov. 11, 2014

I make a presentation tomorrow at PhoCusWright 2014 conference. I didn’t want to make it as an another so-so presentation. I wanted to put passion into our product and make people be excited.

From presentations done by others yesterday, I found that ‘demo’ video makes people get focused. We decided to make a demo film overnight. We had very limited time and had to keep come up with new ideas.

Because we didn't have any plan for a demo, we didn’t have demo-building softwares ready. We had to download them. We could search for softwares in three different operating systems, Linux, Windows and Mac. We needed a systematic way to achieve our goal, in order to minimzie the switching between the systems and decided to draw a lattice of procedure. Each node contained an intermediary product, e.g., demo webpage, video-captured file, processed video file, converted video file, and final presentation powerpoint slide with demo video. On the directed edges connecting the nodes, we wrote down the procedures we could try and the operating system that is required to run that procedure. We allowed multiple edges between a pair of nodes because there can be more than one way to move from one node to another.

After drawing the lattice, we searched for the feasibility of each task, whether the required software can be downloaded quickly through the hotel’s slow wifi, does not have limitation with the software, e.g. 1 minute limit in video processing, and etc. We removed all the edges that didn’t work, and found the optimal path that we could finish the job. This “lattice” method worked out well, and we could quickly judge whether the work can be finished in time. We were able to build our demo in time, earlier than expected.

Two things today seemed to help us be creative today. First, we were working on something not “routine”. Optimal solutions for routine tasks are fairly well known, while in case of non-routine jobs, we have to come up with a new solution and are forced to be creative. Second, we were “improving” our presentation not coming with a draft. Because we had a safe back-off model, we could focus on making things “better” and be creative.

Nov. 12, 2014

We had a workshop today, but we couldn't do our presentation today.

There were three companies in the workshop, Fusion, StayHome, and us, Trevii. The presentation was about 35 mins, and it was supposed to be 5 mins of presentation for each team and 20 minutes QnA session. However, there was some problem with the system and we had to do QnA first. After about 20 mins, the conference engineers finally fixed the system and each team started their presentation in the order of Fusion, StayHome, and Trevii. The presentation went fine, but when we tried to show our demo, the system crashed again, and the system never got recovered.

The demo we created last night was less than 3 minutes, but if was of high quality and was more 100MB. We were concerned about the size of the video and negative effect the video can cause to the system. I talked to one of the managers and asked whether our demo can run fine. We test-ran the demo on the machine and it seemed to work fine. We decided to let it run.

But about an hour later, the system crashed after showing only 3 slides. I looked around but there was nowhere I could ask for help. The manager I talked to was unfortunately not there. I ran down the stage and picked up my laptop whether I could continue my presentation from my laptop. Unfortunately, the video cables of my laptop didn't match that of the projector. There was nothing I could do and had to briefly end my presentation and come down the stage.

At the moment of risk and quick decision, something practical seems to be in more need than something creative. What I needed at the moment of system failure was a proven way to continue my presentation not an innovative way that could change the game. I expected bringing my laptop to be a safe backup plan, but it turned out to be not working.

We are now talking with the people from the PhoCusWright conference, how we can be reimbursed. They told me that they will never forget the system crash that happened, and will get back to me with a good reimbursement before conference. We will need to wait and see.

Nov. 13, 2014

Conference ended. We could not agree on reimbursement yet, and still talking. It seems that we would need to wait more.

A person from StayHome suggested us to talk to hotels w.r.t. ticket discounts. He worked in hotel business for 30 years, and told me that we might be able to work with hotels because hotels often have discounts for local attractions and would love to calculate the savings to their customers. A person from Fusion told me to look at the discounts from AAA. I told him we are having hard time finding discounts for big tourist attractions, such as Disneyland and Universal Studios, and he told me AAA often has discounts for those big attractions, and many drivers in US has discounts for drivers.

I believe new ideas come from clash of two different field, and above ideas are examples. Trevii's cheapest attraction ticket recommendation system comes from clash of two fields, algorithm and tourism. StayHome could give us such suggestion because they worked in hotel business for tens of years. Fusion could give us a new idea because they always deals with AAA discounts. Benefit of clash of fields applies in many other fields, not only tourism. Optics, acoustics, mechanics, and computers improved broadway shows in many different ways. Graphics changed how films are made nowadays.

This may be why people from many different fields need to work together and paying attention to many different field is necessary. Only when you know enough of two different fields, you can create a new idea where the two fields collide unlike silly statements made by philosophers when Theory of Relativity was released to the world.

Nov. 14, 2014

Visited a restaurant named Bottega Louie in Los Angeles and was interested to see a different kind of bakery-restaurant joint. My family ran bakery for more than 40 years, and has always tried to start a restaurant business but every single trial failed. Upon seeing the success of Bottega Louie at the downtown of Los Angeles, and realizing it is a restaurant of less than 10 years old, I hoped I could find the key of their success, but unfortunately could not find in short amount of time. Probably because I only saw the outcome of their success, not the reason.

My dad, the operator of our bakery, is a great innovator and an idea bank. Although, he is not a baker but a gynecologiest, he always comes with great new ideas for the bakery. While the real expert bakers seem to have hard time coming up with a great new ideas, my father, who has some but yet superficial understanding of the field of bakery, seems to come up with better idea. I think this is because the field experts are so used to the customs of the field. The field experts, who has been working in the field for a long time, knows what an 'efficient' way to do a thing is and why an 'alternative' way is not very efficient. However, an innovative product are often not very 'efficient'. For instance, a new type of bread with lots of good ingredients and chocolate covered on top, may need three times more ingredients and may take four times longer to make, but may sell 50 times better than the previous product. I have seen my father often come up with these "new bestsellers" many times.

As stated above, the people who often stop innovation are the field experts. They have worked on the field for a long time and they believe their value comes from their understanding of the field. If an outsider, like my dad, brings a new idea, they seems to feel like that the success of a new idea proves their shallow understanding of the field. The field experts aren't necessarily trying to be selfish, but feel ashamed when they are not the one who came with a new good idea. However ironically, these field experts are the ones who should build the prototype of this new idea. The field experts may sabotage the new idea prototype, unless they believe that these new idea is great and they can benefit from them. Therefore, my father try very hard not to upset the field experts and at the same time keep trying new ideas.

I believe every organization has an innovator inside. What's more important than having an innovative people, is to make them speak out and make the other people believe that these innovators are helpful for the group, not disturbing the group. The operator of the organization should be dealing all of these wisely.

Nov. 15, 2014

At the creativity class, the comparison between innovator and adapter was very interesting. I strongly agree that both types of people are necessary. I turned out to be an innovator in the I vs. A test. I actually learned that I am an innovator even before I did any test. As being an extreme innovator, I had lots of 'uh-oh' moments, and now I made some rules to avoid those 'uh-oh' moments as much as possible.

First, I always stop & wait one moment before I make any decision. I love new solutions and revolutionary ideas. Problem with these ideas is that even though they seems to be very innovative at first glance, they often turn out to be bad when applied. If I have a very calm and deep-thinking personality, I would not make decisions in haste and choose innovative but bad idea. However, unfortunately, I am a fast decision maker, and I often make big mistakes. To avoid these problems, I try to stop & wait one moment before making any critical decision. By doing so, I can get away from making innovative-looking but silly decision.

Second, I try to have an "adapter" near me. When I am about to make a decision, I tell my adapter, "Stop me if I am about to make a crazy decision". They don't tell me, "You are crazy" in front of me, but provide me with balanced view of the problem and help me come up with a better solution.

Another interesting thing during the creativity class was the video of IDEO. I remember that I saw it more than 10 years ago, but the same video looked very different this time. Now I am preparing to start a company, and every decision I make is important and would last for years. "How an office should be designed" has been a question for me, and I liked the way people in IDEO make their office spaces. This does not necessarily mean that my co-workers would like the way IDEO makes their office spaces, but it looks worth a try.


2bed에 룸메이트 구합니다. (7, 8월~) (928 Mass. ave, Arlington, 월 $600+전기)

룸메이트 구하고 있습니다.
주소는 928 Mass. ave, Arlington이구요,
집 전체 rent를 $1200+전기 정도로 집 주인과 상의할 생각이어서
각각 월 $600 정도 낼 수 있으면 좋습니다.

집이 마루도 넓고 굉장히 커서,
2명이 지내면서도 공간이 아깝다는 생각이 들 정도입니다.

Harvard sq.까지 77번 버스 (,
Alewife까지 79번 버스 (가 운행해서,
Harvard까지 쉽게 갈 수 있습니다.

저는 82년생 남자구요, 담배 안 하고,
같이 조용히 독립적으로 지내실 분 구합니다.

django-modeltraslation making translation field null=False
This article is a go-around for the above issue that django-modeltranslation forces "null=True" for all translated fields including CharField.

PageRank vs HITS (Hubs & Authorities)

pptx; contains animation

이한이 여권

이한이가 6월에 처음으로 한국에 들어간다. 외국에서 태어난 아기는 한국에 들어오기 전에는 주민번호 뒷 7자리를 받을 수 없다. 종로구 여권과에 전화해보니 한국에 들어와서 주민번호가 완전히 생성된 후에 이한이의 여권을 신청하라고 했다.

쿨타임 종료

쿨타임 종료되었다.
덤벼라, 세상아!

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