04/08/14 » Dev Dive: Index-time vs. Query-time ElasticSearch Synonyms
Around a year ago, our startup poured a lot of energy into creating a strong internal search engine - since we were a deal aggregator, we wanted our users to be able to search our deal database to find exactly the one they wanted (or be assured that the deal they're looking for doesn't exist). This simple idea, however, led to many interesting challenges with ElasticSearch that spawned from various kinds of UX feature needs. This post has a case study where we had to use different synonyms at indexing time vs. at querying time.
04/01/14 » How Foursquare Has Changed, and What I Wish It Could Be
Foursquare hsa grown impressively in the last five years, but it is clear that big product changes are still being tested, while the tech world is eagerly waiting to see how it will monetize its data and users. As a Foursquare user who now works on another consumer web product, I wanted to comment on some recent Foursquare product changes that make sense, some decisions that I wish I knew the data behind, and a couple different directions that I could see Foursquare going.
03/20/14 » My Favorite Manhattan Restaurants
A listing of my favorite restaurants in Manhattan in different categories. The list is divided into eight different "experiences" (e.g. Favorite Foodie Adventure and Favorite Guilty Meal) and eight different foods (e.g. Favorite Dim Sum, Favorite Drinks, and Favorite All-You-Can-Eat + Drink).
03/10/14 » Maybe the Venmo Ads Are Working (aka Why Lucas Works)
New Yorkers have recently seen a new face around town - Lucas, an every-day guy with a funny mustache who does any number of not-so-exciting things. These ads from Venmo, a New-York based startup' (quotes because it was acquired by Braintree, which was then acquired by eBay), have drawn a lot of strong opinions, mostly negative. But let me play devil's advocate a bit - could this advertising strategy actually be a clever and successful one for Venmo?
03/01/14 » IBanking vs. Startups for Recent College Grads
When I graduated college less than three years ago, it seemed like all my friends were going into either investment banking or consulting. But now, the tide seems to be turning. Established tech companies and startups are drawing more attention, portraying themselves as fun places to work that aren't bogged down by the hierarchy and rigidity of the older ibanking and consulting industries, and places where young recent graduates are listened to and given responsibility. On a practical level, for a college senior considering job options on these two different paths, which industry is a safer bet for the future?
02/20/14 » A Non-Tech Introduction: Search
The ability to search for information is something our generation takes for granted; almost any piece of knowledge on the internet is only a few keystrokes away via Google. Even though most users only see the end product (a user-facing query input box, and the resulting list of hits), the technology behind search is fascinating. This post is a non-tech-heavy overview of how our implementation of search works, to give a sense of how cool the concepts and challenges are even to readers who may not have a technical background.
02/10/14 » Banking vs. Strategy vs. Startups
Since graduating college, I have had the chance to work in three very different jobs in three very different industries. Reflecting on the differences between these industries has helped me think about what I value in a job, both for now and the future. In this post, I compare analyst-level roles in investment banking, corporate strategy, and startup product management.
02/01/14 » Snacking Tour of NYC Chinatown
NYC Chinatown is somewhat expansive and, if it’s your first time visiting, utterly bewildering. This is a guide meant to highlight some of the best snacking options in Chinatown, and can serve as a nice 'snacking tour' for an afternoon of food adventure.
01/20/14 » Learning to Code (Part 3 of 3): Doing It
For the final post in this series, I wanted to provide a list of online resources and links that provide a great introduction to programming in Python and web development with Django. This is inspired by Yipit's 'How I taught Myself to Code in 8 Weeks' post (link within).
01/10/14 » Learning to Code (Part 2 of 3): Tips
This is part two of my short series about my experience learning how to code. I wanted to share some tips that will hopefully help if you’re about to start learning how to code. These tips are meant to alert you to potential obstacles and how to approach them; at the very least they’re meant to comfort you in the knowledge that you’re not the only one encountering these problems!