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Best-first search in life | Report

06 Jun 2021 . category: report . Comments
#radicali #startup #singapore #fitness #math

Welcome to June, welcome to another two week recap of my life. Sometimes when i get a little philosophical, i realize how there are so many stories running inside people’s heads. i imagine my life, it has so many ups and downs, and so many people, emotions, ambitions, embarassments, fears, and all of that is just me - extrapolating that to all human beings makes my head whirl on the amount of data stored in the collective human hive. Makes me feel insignificant, and i don’t even have to follow the Carl Sagan pale blue dot line of thinking - there is so much complexity in the 10 people living around me in itself.

A few people around me had a few health problems recently, and whenever this happens, it hits me hard and makes me take stock of my health. As they say, a healthy man has a thousand problems, a sick man has only one.

i have been studying a bit of math and algorithms recently to revise my fundamentals. When studying graph traversal, i came across best-first search - which is an informed search algorithm as a heuristic counter to BFS and DFS. i feel like Best-first search is a good way to live life as well, considering the assumption that the cost of evaluating a node is close to constant time complexity. This ensures that we don’t waste time going down rabbit holes(as in DFS), and don’t sit around computing all options till the end(as in BFS). Obviously, the problem statement matters - and what i’m thinking about here is more along the lines of taking the right career steps or decisions around relationships.

At work, we have been spending some time thinking through our strategy for the pivot - validating and invalidating our assumptions through the past couple weeks. This is a good evolution in our working style, as we can save development time by invalidating ideas earlier on. i am learning how to make better prioritization & resource allocation decisions to align with overall strategy, and trying to make my calendar work for everyone(including me!). One thing i’ve learnt over the last couple years is how to not get married to any idea or project, because everything is eventually gonna change - until we hit proven product-market fit. We also launched our redesigned website recently, go check it out!

Last week, i got in touch with a NGO called NavGurukul who’s now building an app called Meraki to teach software engineering to underprivileged students in India. i have signed up as a volunteer to design their curriculum and have committed for about 6-8 hours per week to this cause. i talked to a few of their team members and sat through the weekly team meeting to get a sense of their dynamics - quite excited to work on something larger than me. John Danaher’s idea about making your life’s purpose bigger than yourself resonates somewhere deep within - and volunteering here will give me an idea of how i want to live my future.

Last weekend, i got jabbed with the first dose of the Covid vaccine at a community centre nearby. i should expect this from Singapore by now, but everytime i visit one of their public health centers, i am just blown away by the efficiency of the systems. i got jabbed and out of the building inside 35 minutes of my entry. Had a bit of pain in my arm for a day, but no other real side effects. My left eye got a bit swole(lymph nodes?) on the same day, but i’m not really sure if it’s caused by the vax shot or is unrelated. Anyway, i’m not worried at all - i’m juiced up on way too many vitamins for this.

i have been getting my meals delivered for the last couple weeks, and it’s such a life-saver. It reduces the mental fatigue of getting food everyday or cooking or getting groceries - getting a lot of meat in my body nowadays :)

One thing that i’m not getting enough of is sunlight - since i’m getting all my meals home delivered, and i only get out of my house for runs or Jiujitsu classes in the night. i’m planning to include swimming as my morning workout from this week - hopefully, i can stick to my commitment!

i completed 6 days on my last NoFap streak, similar as to the attempt before this as well. i have promised 100$ as punishment to one of my friends if i don’t get to at least 15 days this time round.

i have been watching a bunch of math videos recently, and got hooked to a few about Godel’s incompleteness theorem and then moving to other open problems like the Twim Prime conjecture and the Goldbach’s conjecture. Algorithms, Physics and Maths are a good way to destress from a heavy day at work :)

JiuJitsu classes, although done with masks, are coming along really well because i have completely one-on-one time with my coach and we go over most drills at the white belt level. There are so many movements, that my mind goes into overdrive after class just trying to remember everything. i think i’ll start documenting my movements on these blogs or on my notebooks, at the least.

On the fitness front, i’ve been managing things well in the last couple weeks. I put in a 9K run last to last Sunday, and have been getting after mobility and dumbbell workouts at home.

May 2021

Earlier today morning, i headed out to the Chestnut Nature Park for a quick hike with a college friend - had a good time discussing life and society. This Friday, i got a monitor installed in my bedroom - so now i have two screens in my living room and one screen in my bedroom. Makes life easier, as i can take calls in my bedroom without hurting my eyes looking at the small mac. However, there is a point where we stop adding screens to our lives, today’s not that day :)

Keep hammerin’


Shubhankar is an awesome person. He's Co-Founder & CTO of Radicali, building the first digital assistant for compliance. In his spare time, he likes to go out on runs!