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Yet Another Site Redesign

November 24, 2017

This is like, my fourth site redesign, but hopefully it'll be my last one for a while. After many years of reluctant PHP use because I didn't want to refactor my entire site, I finally decided to bite the bullet and completely replace the backend. This site is now uses Flask with a SQLite database and loads much faster than before. I've also taken the liberty of redesigning the frontend to something more pleasing to the eye—bright orange on white as a color scheme definitely stood out but was difficult to look at for extended periods of time. This time I've decided to reference (read: copy) the user interface design from the game Nier: Automata; I'm a big fan of its aesthetic and was inspired by a blog post from the game's UI designer. They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, after all. (Basically, please don't sue me, Yoko Taro!)

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One down, seven more to go!

January 29, 2017

It’s been almost a month since the semester has ended, and I figured that now was a good enough time as any to write a reflection about my first semester at MIT.

I’m basically just looking through my diary for interesting things to write about, since college is a busy time and I certainly can’t list everything I’ve done off the top of my head. Also, keeping a diary and going through old entries is never a bad thing; it’s not a huge time commitment and it does wonders for your mental health.

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TI6 Reflections

August 15, 2016

Just got back from a brief excursion to the west coast, and boy was it amazing. Seattle weather was a nice change of pace from the humidity and heat of northern Virginia. It didn’t rain at all during the week of TI, and the city itself was clean too. Apart from the homelessness problem in Seattle, I had no issues with the city. Right when I arrived at Key Arena during Monday, I saw Arteezy and Aui_2000 walking out of the stadium, and my mind went blank. Meeting the personalities was an unreal experience; bumping into people like WinteR and GoDz in the hallways, or talking players like Dendi and PPD was incredible. There was a lot of standing in lines to meet the more popular personalities, but it was all worth it. The games were spectacular too – the Secret vs LGD match on the first day left my voice extremely hoarse after the very first day, and EHOME vs EG was another epic game that also resulted in my favored team letting me down. Despite relatively disappointing performances from the teams I supported, there was always a match up to be hyped about every day. In addition, the production value was seamless. Not a second of downtime, the weatherman Purge segments were great, the panelists were great, and the event was a very smooth experience.

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A Prefrosh’s thoughts on Campus Preview Weekend

April 24, 2016

It’s been two weeks since MIT’s Campus Preview Weekend ended, but I haven’t had a chance to sit down and collect my thoughts until now. It was a really great experience; it was my first taste of college and also my first time in Boston.

Thursday was actually quite underwhelming for me. It was raining pretty heavily for almost the entire day, and walking outside was a dreadful experience. Sure, I packed an umbrella and my jacket protected me from the elements, but my shoes didn’t keep my feet dry. Walking around with soggy socks was awful – I did pack a change of socks but it didn’t take too long for those to get wet too, even though I was extra careful not to step into any puddles. The best part of Thursday for me would be the Speed Friending event: it was a lot of fun meeting new people, even if I’ve probably forgotten the names of all the people I talked to there. Also had my first taste of liquid nitrogen ice cream, and it tasted pretty good.

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LASACTF, and a problem writeup

April 2, 2016

Last week, I participated in LASACTF, a national high school CTF competition. Unfortunately, the competition ended half a week earlier than it should have because a hacker released the flags for all the problems. I was on team Second Semester Seniors, and we placed first.

Since I’ll inevitably be doing more CTFs in the future, I figured that I should put problem writeups on my blog. So, here goes. I chose to cover this problem because I thought it was a nice little web exploitation problem, and web exploitation is one of my few strong suits.

Coffee Maker
Category: Web Exploitation
Description: Make an Espresso.

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