Summary June 2021

Math course

A while ago I have signed up for an online Maths course. I’ve been thinking about getting back to university to study maths for the past 2-3 years, and eventually decided to refresh the knowledge by taking the free course. It started in June and after the initial assignment I dropped out. Why?

The curriculum is really interesting, and so are the teachers. In the first week I spent about an hour every day to go through the problems, and while sad to admit it, I simply do not have enough time right now.

Having two young children and a startup job takes most of the time I have. And the remaining free time is spent doing sports and reading books. I just cannot use it right now for these studies. Maybe in a few years.

Reading

I stumbled upon a Reddit post about note taking which lead me to the rabbit hole of how to read books, science papers, how to take notes, etc. Not that I didn’t take notes of the books before, but if I try to recall something from the books I read last year or few years ago, I almost certainly can tell you nothing. Just the gist. This made me re-consider not only how I read, but what information I extract, how I retain it, and how I will later use that.

I tried to outline how I consume (read and listen) to books in this post. I also re-did the reading section of the website into the book section. Each book now has a template that I will be filling in as I read and finish every book.

Along the way I started testing different ways (and apps) to take notes, quotes, and knowledge out of the books so I can memorize it better and also apply in real life (instead of just being proud that I’ve finished yet another book).

RC car progress

There’s not much to report here again. I printed out 2 parts for the chassis, and both were slightly off. I need to re-model those parts and print again. Unfortunately I do not have a 3D-printer at home so the process takes ages to prototype.

I did receive a teensy board to use as the brain for the car.

Public speaking

Last year I visited the public speaking lab. This is a short course on a specific topic (impro) where you get both the theory and practice in front of the audience. There were about 15 people in total, and after each performance everyone would give you the score. At the end of the evening I took the 1st place and won a free visit to the next lab. This month I have finally visited it.

This time it was a game where you throw the dice to get the topic and specific tasks. For example, an acting role or a debate. And for each topic tasks were like make 3 jokes, use pictures from the 5 cards in your speech. Again, a completely unknown audience of 5 people (girls) made that evening full with adrenaline, laughs, and new friends. I got to use most of the “tricks” I learned in the previous courses, and as a result won the free lab again.

Video reports

After sharing the link to this blog with a friend of mine, he suggested I make a video version of these monthly reports. At first this seemed like a weird idea, but then I decided to give it a go. Watching how you perform on camera is a great way to learn about all the mistakes I make while on stage. Things like overly long pauses, eyes all over the place except the camera, never-ending “uhhmmmmm” and “eeeehm”, and other typical mistakes people make.

Unlike this blog, the video is in Russian and is meant more for myself rather than the wider audience which makes it extremely boring (like these posts) :-)