ZURB Soapbox – Katie Dill

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Yesterday my coworker, friends, and I attended ZURB Soapbox to hear Katie Dill, Head of Experience Design at Airbnb, share her experience working at a consultancy and in-house, and how designers can improve the experiences of their audience.

Some key takeaways:

  1. Watch Making the shopping cart video
  2. Triforce: Product, Design, and Engineering. If these three have equal power, then the experience of the product will be great.
  3. Designers should inherently be good communicators.
  4. Storyboarding supports your voice because it brings an emotional reaction when you can visually see the human interactions. It helps us understand what’s happening in that moment (context, environment, etc).
  5. Watch Joe Gebbia’s TED talk on trust
  6. Users traverse between the on and offline world. Experience Design is different from Product Design because it considers the offline component.

Binge

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I was taught that being myself was not only okay, but encouraged—and by being unapologetically yourself, you thrive and inspire others to thrive.

I just finished reading Tyler Oakley’s Binge. One word: wow.

Tyler Oakley, like many YouTubers/YouTube content creators out there, recently released a book. However what makes his book distinct from others I’ve read is his transparency and realness. I can’t exactly put into words how intimate it felt reading his experiences, such as coming out to his family and friends, working multiple jobs to pay for school, and his life as a YouTuber. I laughed out loud reading his Disney Princes ranking, and I wholeheartedly agree Aladdin deserves the number 1 spot. My heart ached reading his struggles with eating disorder and his relationship with a closeted homosexual. Honestly, reading Binge felt like I was chatting with Tyler over drinks (except I don’t drink alcohol, so water on the rocks, please!).

I can continue to rave about the book, but I think I would spoil so much of it. Nevertheless, here is one of my favorite quotes from Binge I would like to share:

Maybe we all go through life carefully constructing our profiles to say what we’re looking for, all while not saying anything that might scare people away… and after a time we start to believe what we’re putting out there. Our fear of people’s rejecting the things that makes us happy limits how much happiness we can actually find. I guess when we’re a bit more honest with ourselves and others, we might get more of what we actually deserve.

Tyler is a phenomenal person who I think puts an insane amount of effort into maintaining a relationship with his audience, and bringing to light social issues, particularly LGBTQ+ issues, that we often forget or are ignorant about. Regardless whether or not you’re into the whole YouTube culture and community, I definitely recommend reading Binge.

Rating: ★★★★★

Dear mom

Words cannot begin to describe this strong, determined woman whom I have known for 24 years (well even longer if you count the months the her womb, haha).

My mom is the one who
… listens whenever I vent about trivial matters in life,
… patiently puts up with my mood swings and antics, but then again, I like to think that I get my weirdness from her,
… wakes up at the crack of dawn to cook food so we will never have an empty stomach,
… is not afraid to speak her mind and bluntly tell me when she can see the zit growing on my face or when my brother gains a few pounds,
… and brightens my day because of her sass, and we somehow both end up laughing like hyenas.

Most importantly, my mom unselfishly places my brother and me at the center of her world and sacrifices so many things to singlehandedly raise my brother and me in the states.

謝謝媽媽。我愛你。

Because my mom brings so much happiness in my life, I thought I should start a comic series of the things my mom says because she quite often says a lot of silly things, and also I wanted to find a way to practice writing Mandarin. Please stay tuned 🙂

The Soul of Bread

Title: 愛的麵包魂 (The Soul of Bread)
Type: movie – Taiwanese
Director: Pin-Chuan Kao
Genre: Romantic Comedy

Summary: “A charming breadmaker comes up with a unique plan to save a small-town bakery from going under, but he also gets tangled up in a love triangle with the owner’s daughter and her baker boyfriend.” (source: amazon.com)

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Continue reading The Soul of Bread

O’Sulloc Green Tea Milk Spread

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While traveling in Seoul, one of the places I wanted to visit was O’Sulloc (오설록), a café that specializes in all things tea, particularly Jeju Island green tea. If you ever plan to travel to South Korea, I definitely recommend going to an O’Sulloc branch and trying out their green tea latte. Utterly divine.

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Look at that hot serif in all caps… just kidding. But that logo…

Anyway, while I was shopping around Insa-dong (인사동), I came across an O’Sulloc branch. I wandered inside, and a small glass jar filled with some green substance caught the corner of my eye. I walked over, grabbed the jar, and read the serif font that splayed across the label: Green Tea Milk Spread. Wait, did my eyes deceive me? Green Tea? Milk? WHAT?! Would it taste like matcha milk tea?

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Don’t let the green gross you out

I contemplated for several days before saying “F it, YOLO,” and bought the 8000won jar. When I came home, I was so excited to try it. I immediately broke the seal, and an intense green tea aroma greeted my nostrils and made my mouth water. The spread is thick and smooth. I greedily sampled it, and my smile disappeared. It was like eating frosting. I enjoyed the subtle taste of green tea, but that was all it offered. There was no explosion of green tea flavor. The sweetness, probably from the amount of sugar added, overpowered the bitterness of green tea.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it makes whole wheat bread—utterly dry and bland—taste great. Add slices of banana on top of the spread, and you got yourself breakfast. Though, for me, I can only handle eating it once a week. Hopefully I can figure out what to do to find the perfect balance of sweetness. If you have any suggestions, let me know!

If you love sweet things and green tea flavored goodies, then maybe O’Sulloc Green Tea Milk Spread should be your go-to spread on bread 🙂

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