Personal Opinions Otherwise Destined to /dev/null

Is The Instant Messaging War Over?

Facebook snatched Whatsapp for the mind-boggling sum of 19bn USD and drastically changed the global OTT (as in “over the top”) messaging market. This move was flabbergasting for both industry insiders and outsiders alike – in fact I’ve spent the last two days analyzing and contextualizing what’s going on with my colleagues here at Tencent and talking about this subject (mostly via messengers, to be honest).

What’s gonna happen next?

Close Encounter With a Meteor

So the flight with Aeroflot was overall a solid 6/10 but the highlight of the trip was a close encounter with a frigging meteor while flying over Belarus! Unbelievably scary and flabbergasting. We saw a plume of smoke over the horizon and then a shooting star – literally. I have photographic evidence and will soon upload it.

Flying Aeroflot for The First Time

So a tight budget left me with the only option of an Aeroflot ticket… Some people already told me farewell. I’ve always been a bit reluctant about this carrier, and once I’ve heard horror stories about drunken pilots and water constantly dripping from the vent nozzles above the seats – no doubts, the hallmarks of quality. Personally I only know this Russian company gets fined for its terrible service and its domestic flights are often on the news because they’re relatively unsafe.

Cryptocurrency Mining in China is So Mainstream

You know a phenomenon has gone mainstream when it becomes a topic for casual conversations with colleagues. Most Chinese are generally obsessed with money (at one point they’ll tell you it’s because they lack “safety” in their life, the so called 安全感), and chatting about price swings in the real estate market or stocks is as casual as talking about football or politics when in Europe. Today a guy in my team suddenly asked me “do you mine Dogecoins?” because I mentioned the Doge meme during an online chat a few days ago. He didn’t ask about the most famous Shiba Inu dog on the Internet but went for the jugular by asking about Dogecoin. With similar candor he wanted to know whether I belong to any Dogecoin mining pool. Yes, nice weather today Sir.

Then I remembered reading this article and it all made sense.
Very China. Much cryptocurrency. So mainstream. Wow.

Reflections on Applying to Business Schools

The whole process of applying to b-school is lengthy and demanding – the exams, the essays, the paperwork. But it’s a golden opportunity to reflect upon your career, your goals, and who you are.

It’s a great moment in a person’s lifetime and comes with its toll of uncertainties, doubts, hopes. If you’ve applied to business school then you know what I’m talking about. I can only say it’s really enjoyable.

One of My Heroes: King Yellowman

Do you have a hero?

Most of my heroes now rest in my childhood, when I avidly devoured stories from European classical mythology at bedtime. Most of these heroes are all plausibly fictional, all but one: Yellowman, the “king” of dancehall music.

Someone I love was recently diagnosed with cancer. Yellowman’s life is an endless source of inspiration and strength for me in this very moment: although unbelievable difficulties and a cancer diagnosis he’s never lost his will, never stopped rocking stages all over the world with his countagious style.

Essential Digital Industry Glossary in Chinese (Part 1)

As you probably know I have been in China for quite a while. Do I speak the language? Yes, enough to work in a local company and fish information from Baidu or read articles on CNBeta (one of the best local resources for Internet industry news). After lots of tears and two seared retinas thanks to Mandarin characters I can somehow write up something technical or businessy, and it’s time for me to share my little indispensable list of Chinese terms for digital professionals who deal with the Mandarin-speaking Internet.