April 3, 2013 9:16 am by Jesse Chen
One of the most valuable classes at Cal that I attended was not an engineering class, nor was it technical. It was UGBA 196, Personal Financial Management. Professor Selinger seared into our brain about “the magic of compounding” and how it is ever so important that managing your personal finance while you are still young will reap benefits orders of magnitudes higher than if you started later.
I’m writing this guide because ever since I took that class, I have learned how important it is to understand personal finance, and that especially for young working professionals, it is extremely important to start saving correctly right now. I am not claiming to be an expert (hardly one) in managing money, and you definitely should do your own research before doing anything. But I hope this is a guide that will help jump-start or help get you on track to managing your money right. (more…)
January 29, 2013 10:00 am by Jesse Chen
Most awesome year ever
Would be the shortest way to describe 2012. It has been a while since the last post, which was an analysis of how the launch of my first Android app InstaWifi went. For 2013, my resolution is to post more content than in 2012, and to continue to write meaningful and helpful content for android developers as well as some other various random thoughts I may have specifically on tech, entrepreneurship, or on life after college.
In the year 2012, I wrote six posts:
- Getting out of the Consumer Mindset - I thought about how much information I consume on a daily basis and it made me aware that I no longer want to solely be a consumer of information but to also be a producer of information. Since then, I have stopped my addiction with Google Reader, and over the course of the year have become more productive by attending a lot of competitions/hackathons, building cool stuff, and in general, doing a lot more write actions instead of reads.
Protip: Bash Autocomplete for Android ADB - Android development can be a little frustrating at times, but finding little gems such as autocompletion of adb commands, or debugging your app without a cable makes it much better.
Playing the Student Card - I got so much free crap because I was a student that it would be wrong not to share. Getting a free github micro plan, amazon prime, and discounted Google I/O tickets are some of the most notable ones.
Protip: How to be a Good Boss - This was a more personal post of mine that I wrote to reflect on my experiences being a lead for 3 years for a small technical team. It’s possible that I don’t actually really know what it’s like to be a good boss, but it’s out there for people to digest.
Freeing Your Online Graduation Pictures - This was a fun tutorial that I co-wrote with Jonathan Tien. The both of us being CS nerds having just graduated, we wanted to save our grad pictures only to find out they disabled right-click > save as, and put an ugly watermark all over our beautiful bodies. We weren’t going to have any of that, so we wrote this lengthy, but ultimately useful, tutorial on how to nab those pictures, and to use photoshop to remove the watermark. It went viral on Facebook and was a huge hit among our class.
Post-hoc Analysis of InstaWifi’s Launch - InstaWifi was my first Android app ever released to the market, and I remember being blown away by the positive reception that I received from the online community. I decided to share with other developers the hard numbers of my launch and some of the reasoning that I put into the app and what worked and what didn’t.
Looking back, I’m happy with the blog posts I’ve written. My goal for 2013 is to force myself to write more and be more comfortable in my voice in writing. Also, possibly time to do an entire redesign of this website.
July 27, 2012 9:00 am by Jesse Chen
Launching My First Android App Ever
On July 24th, I launched InstaWifi, my first Android app into the market. InstaWifi enables you to connect and share wifi networks instantly with the people who you care about. It was my first Android app that I released in the market, and I was pretty excited to see how it would turn out. It’s quite amazing if you think about it, that a random guy (like me) behind a computer screen today in 2012, can reach out to an audience of thousands of people on the Internet to announce a new product. It’s a random thought but a powerful one — a thought that reminds us of how closely connected we are to other people in this world.
My marketing strategy was simple for InstaWifi, generate viral growth on social networks, and reach out to several news sources online to get some big pageviews so that it will trickle down to smaller blogs, news sources, and social networks. The best strategy, however, is to just make a solid polished app and one that actually solves a problem for users. Without a good implementation, it doesn’t matter how big your budget or effective your marketing strategy is.
This article will be doing a deep dive on the numbers and stats of InstaWifi’s launch for those people out there who are curious on what it’s like to launch an Android app and how successful InstaWifi was.