Another week in quarantine, another issue of this newsletter. Last Monday, Washington instated a similar policy to that of the Bay Area, which they decided to brand as “Stay Home, Stay Healthy”. As a result, I don’t have too much interesting stuff to talk about this week.
As a result of being stuck inside, I’ve been partaking in a few virtual board game nights. We tried playing an online version of Secret Hitler hosted through Tabletopia, but found that manipulating the physical pieces in virtual 3D space made focusing on the actual gameplay pretty difficult. (The physics engine is pretty impressive, though.)
It turns out, a combination of Discord and Jackbox Party Packs works perfectly for quarantine board gaming. Now that Discord allows people to “go live” directly from a voice channel, the person who owns the game just needs to stream what would normally be shown on the TV, and everyone can play on their computer or phone while watching the stream. Push the Button, their take on the social deception game genre, worked really well remotely. Shoutouts to Discord for being one of my favourite pieces of software written in the past few years.
I guess one cool thing is that I did my first technical interview as a Googler last week, which was a nerve-racking experience — now I finally can say I’ve experienced both sides of the interview loop. While I have helped several other people by conducting mock interviews, being the interviewer when there’s something at stake feels significantly more meaningful.
Fortunately, this interview went very well! I managed to decide on a good question beforehand (no, I’m not going to say what it is; I don’t want to have to come up with another one), and the candidate explained their thought process nicely. I’ve been drafting up a blog post on technical interviewing for a while now, and I think after I conduct a few more interviews, I’ll be confident enough in my interviewing tendencies to publish it.
One of my favourite mediums for learning interesting things is the video essay. For most things, I much prefer reading through a written blog post than sitting through a way too drawn out video, but a well-crafted video essay is truly a piece of art. There are a number of YouTube creators that have mastered the art of the video essay, and I’ve been wanting to share a list of some of my favourite ones for a while.
I scrolled through my subscriptions list and, for each creator I really enjoy watching, picked what I feel is one of their best videos, and in no particular order, listed them below. Consider this a sampler pack of video essays (and a small glimpse into how I tend to spend my free time):
I really ought to turn this list into an ever-growing page on my website. I’ve been toying around with the idea of creating some sort of “list site engine” powered by GitHub Issues (so you could mutate the list by opening/closing issues); sooner or later I’ll get around to it.
Hopefully I’ll have more to share next time. Until then, stay safe out there!