Jiwon's Encyclopedia

academics

My current home office setup is simple. On my desk, I have my portable small form-factor Linux machine. My code, my archived notes, and my reference books are all digital. Behind my back, always accessible, is a large whiteboard. It's where thinking happens.

Battlestation

They say that a poor craftsman blames his tools. While there's truth to it, it's erroneous to assume that a good craftsman can perform regardless of his tools. In the realm of top performers, the smallest advantages can make a difference. Excellent tools are no exception.

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I figured it'd be a good idea to outline my academic plan here on my blog as an accountability tool, as well as to help me plan sensibly. What I mean by my academic plan is a list of which courses I will take in the remaining two years of university, and other personal projects that will help me gain practical programming skills. I've also linked to textbooks or resources that I'm using where applicable.

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#academics

I've been quite motivated to study harder lately, owing somewhat to a realization of just how little I know. I was recommended a rant video from a Korean online mathematics tutor on Youtube and he asked his senior high school students, “do you know why the sum of geometric series is one over r minus one?” It's a simple equation, widely used in various applications, and one that has become ingrained in my memory at this point. Embarrassingly enough, I didn't know how to derive it. I knew, and the tutor knew, that that means I didn't really understand the equation. Of course, there are quite a few equations that are crammed out of my head, like all the variations of trigonometric identities and integration and differential formulas. The difference is that I could derive the latter by myself in a pinch, but not the geometric sum equation.

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#productivity #academics

My attention recently went to the matter of my Most Important Task (MIT). MIT is an old concept in internet ages, dating at least to 2006, that still stays relevant. The idea is simple: what is the one most important task that you must complete today? Do it first thing in the morning before anything else.

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