Lending Club

There’s a website called Lending Club to facilitate peer-to-peer lending; I’ve been playing around with it, and lending a few people money. So far, one of the person I’ve loaned to has not paid for 4 months now.

This initially pissed me off. “This guy just took my money and ran!” But I noticed that this person’s credit score has been dropping like a rock.

Screenshot from 2014-01-20 23:58:55 Initially, this guy wanted the $2,000 loan for just home improvement, and was making a decent salary. Just makes me wonder how much of a selfish prick I am to not realize that either this guy passed, or recently lost his job; all I cared about was how do I get my measly $25 principal back.

Whoever you are, I wish you the best. (And when you can, just pay back the money.)

Equation to a Modern Family



On the recent Modern Family episode, Claire was seen giving a lecture to the AP Calculus teacher on how many hours each student are expected to spend each night on school work (totally off for the record…).

Strangely enough there was the word “Schrodinger’s” on the board. Never in AP calculus did I

  1. Do partial differentiation
  2. Learn about Schrodinger’s

To be honest, I’m not entirely sure of the derivation to that equation…

Still, they did get something right! The theorem to the far left seems to be Rolle’s Theorem!

/r/math Problem of the Week 2

Two real numbers x and y are chosen at random in the interval (0, 1) with respect to the uniform distribution. What is the probability that the closest integer to x/y is even? Express your answer in terms of pi.

If one were to draw the area where x/y is even, it’s pretty clear from the get-go that we will have something like the following:



I looked at the problem from the viewpoint of lines (x/y = 1/2, x/y = 3/2, …). This results in the following series from summing the area of the triangles (don’t forget to divide by 2):

\frac{1}{4} + (\frac{1}{3} - \frac{1}{5} + \frac{1}{7} - \frac{1}{9} + \cdots)

Luckily, the series at the end is basically \frac{pi}{4} from the arctan series expansion. Thus the answer is \frac{5 + \pi}{4}.

Biddle Trick Variation

I’ve been going on a card magic binge this break, going through Card College and various videos such as the Born to Perform DVD. By far the simplest, but still incredibly effective, trick was the Biddle trick as seen above. The sleights are very simple, and easy to execute. As a result, it’s great for building up the confidence to perform (I guess there’s a reason for the DVD’s title).

Still, I didn’t like how he handled the beginning. I found that using a peek control and riffling past the selected card to hold the break seems more natural for me. As justification, I say something like “are you sure you wanted that card? could’ve picked any of these fine cards!”


An Asian’s View of Costa Rica


  • Everyone is very friendly, even if they don’t speak English. Do try to learn a few Spanish phrases though, as it’s almost impossible to order food and go places without basic Spanish.
  • If possible, avoid flying Spirit airlines if a full service airline is desired. While the “ticket” is cheap, they laden it with extraneous costs and fees which ultimately brings the cost to a similar level to other airlines.Their lines were the longest in the airport, but the least staffed. They wouldn’t give a cup of water for free, and insisted on charging. It was apparently impossible to use the online system to check-in. And it turns out, we’re not the only ones who had terrible service.
  • For the love of all things good, be prepared to eat a ton of beans and the side-effects. The typical food you find in Costa Rica is called casado, which is rice, beans, salad, and a meat product.The meats and veggies are pretty decent all around, and can be pretty cheap (just ask the locals where they eat). On the other hand, the rice is practically uncooked compared to the typical Asian rice; skip it if you are used to the softness of Asian rice.

    Casado (usually without fries)
  • Travel within the country is hard; the roads are rarely paved on the outskirts.

Arenal Volcano

  • The name is pretty tough to pronounce for Asians apparently; listen to how the locals pronounce it a few times to prevent confusion.
  • The volcano is gorgeous if there are no clouds on it.
  • We want to La Fortuna waterfall area, a natural tour of the area and one of the hot springs.The waterfall was mildly forgettable (coming from Cornell, waterfalls are no biggie), but the roughly five hundred stairs were not for my thighs. Just remember to change before down the path if you intend to take a dip; there are no changing rooms at the bottom of the stairs.

    La Fortuna
    La Fortuna
  • The natural tour was okay, partly because my tour guide had troubles communicating, and partly due to two immature young ladies in our group. We managed to see a snake, and quite a few birds. I honestly preferred the Monteverde area to Arenal.


    The hot springs was anything but forgettable. We went to Baldi after our nature hike, and it was quite the relaxant. There were several different pools, with different designs for different people with different temperatures. Spending 15 minutes in each pool will burn through two hours easily.

    There is a “free” hot springs by the Tabacon resort in that the river is warm. Be wary of the love birds there making out though (source: random Canadian tour guide).


  • The weather was so weird. Have a poncho/umbrella/light coat ready at all times.
  • If going on the ziplines, DO FOR THE TARZAN SWING. It’s basically a giant ass swing and bungie jump in one.
  • In one day, we did a morning nature hike, the ziplines and a night walk. It was worth it, but incredibly tiring.
  • Both the morning and evening nature hikes were distinct on their own. We were fortunate to have a very competent guide (name was Christian) for the morning hike, which we rehired as our guide for the night walk.The morning one was more a flora/fauna + bird tour, while the night tour contained way more large mammals. They were both different and well worth it.
    Morning Hike

    Night Walk
  • The butterfly garden by Montverde Country Lodge (there’s no road names in either Montverde or Arenal…) was educational’ nothing out of the ordinary. Our guide did bite a roach to prove that they are cleaner than we think.

    The Don Juan coffee/chocolate tour was also nice. Loads of fun and demystified the makings of coffee to me; includes tons of free samples!

My Petty Revenge

I was finishing up my workout at Noyes tonight on the mat. Doing stretches and cool down stuff. Well, I got thirsty and decided to go have a drink. Note that my towel, notebook, and workout gloves are still on the mat.

Then while I was gone for 2 minutes, this girl decides to come steal my place on the mat. I didn’t want to be rude because I can do abs back home but wanted to give her a piece of my mind.

Good thing that I had a small fart in my loaded up just for the occasion.

Take that.


The desire to build is strong with me, but I never got the training (same with drawing too). I guess that’s why the Arduino is sitting there, collecting dust. I wish there’s just labs where we build stuff here at Cornell.

But anyways… ideas:

  1. App where it shows the approximate location of buses as markers on Google maps using time data, and not GPS (too expensive). I think this should be fairly doable in the grand scheme of things.
  2. Clock where the hour is given by the shape of the polygon displayed. I see glimpses of coolness here, but can’t put my hands on it.