Blog Newsletters

Weekly top 5 #69 – The last newsletter for now (With a lot of interesting links)


As much as I enjoy writing these email newsletters to, as helpful as it as been as an exercise in processing and write down my thinkings, curating content and journals my weeks. There is something now much more important for me to focus my energy on, my daughter.
This little “angel/monster” is now my everything, I’ve got to cut out anything not essential, I’ve got to focus on learning to be a good Dad. I will start this newsletter again, I’m not sure when.
Here’s an uber list of interesting products and articles I’ve been saving since the last email, in no particular order:

Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #68 – Apple Cider Vinegar, Privacy and Death


One Concern: On Privacy

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Do you pay any attention to your own privacy and security? Well, I think you should even if you feel you have nothing to hide. I rather like this quote “If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him.” Cardinal Richelieu

One Article: On Death

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We don’t talk about death very often, I wonder if it’s because we fear it so much, so because we know so little about it. This article on Dr B.J Miller is beautiful, yet emotionally complicated. His story on running a special kind of hospice despite being a triple amputee himself is just so incredible. I HIGHLY recommend reading this.

One show: Westworld

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I hope this is boring news to you because if you haven’t watched this amazing show by now you are missing out. The twists and details to the futuristic AI cowboy “theme park” story were absolutely incredible. What an amazing ride! Go check it out and suffer with me in having to wait for tens of months for season 2 (Please let there be a season 2!)

One Great Idea: Give Back Box

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How often do you shop online? Ever wonder what else you can do with those empty aside from the recycle bin? How about using that same box to give away something of yours to those in need for Free? I think this is a great idea it’s making donation almost frictionless. I still prefer charity shops, but this could be a fantastic start for a lot of people.

One Cure: Apple Cider Vinegar

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I don’t normally talk about food and nutrition here, but bear with me on this. I’ve been suffering from really bad nasal allergy for years, it would get so bad I would barely be able to function, and that’s with the aid of nose sprays, eye drops and antihistamines. I was pleasantly surprised to see 2 simple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar mixed in a glass of water a day is all it took to improve my condition 🙂 I can’t believe how magical it was! There’s also heaps of other benefits.

My Week

[The Good] Started a bit of exercise again, I was gaining weight far too frighteningly
[The Bad] Financial woes, same as everyone else I guess
[The Goal] Get one more project ticked off

Blog Newsletters

Weekly Top 5 #67 – Reality, I told you so and Reflexology


One Product: Everlasting Paper

Have you heard of the notebook that you can MICROWAVE to erase and start fresh? Well, this is an even cooler product from the same folks, simply wipe everything off with wet wipes and you have a fresh notebook. Pretty clever stuff, currently on Kickstarter with just 12 days to go!

One Question: Is what we see reality?

Do we really see what’s real? Thinking in terms of evolution, every part of us is about survival, we are biologically developed to avoid danger and live as long as possible. Is it better for our brains to interpret what we see as what it is with every single tiny detail, or just as a simple signal for “danger, run”? A fascinating read!

One Article: Beginners Guide to Chinese fonts

I confess, although I’m fluent in Cantonese and can read Chinese pretty well, I actually know very little about designing with Chinese fonts, this was a really helpful article for an upcoming project of mine. JustFont and early access Google Webfont looks rather interesting too (Thanks, Judy and Anthony) will start testing soon.

One Podcast: Avoiding “I told you so”

This episode from the Developer Tea podcast is for anyone who needs to work in a team. We all hate to be told we are wrong, we instinctively get defensive and start fighting once we feel like we are being attacked. That is exactly why telling your teammates “I told you so” is so counterproductive, if you want to do what’s best for the long run instead of rubbing one’s ego, listen to this short podcast!

One Proof: Reflexology freaking works

Last week I had the worse case of food poisoning ever! It lasted over 3 days and the medicine was not helping at all, I was constantly in crippling pain with very very little energy. Just our of consequence I was massaging the bottom of my sole because my feet were aching, what surprised me is that it actually eased the pain A LOT! I later discovered the sore part of my feet represented my digestive system and the massage was helping my body recover. I can’t say I understand the reasoning, but it freaking worked!*
*I may be biased since I did create an app about acupressure a while ago, but all of the above is absolutely true!

My Week

The past week has been between heaven and hell for me, Christmas, boxing day and the majority of my birthday (27/12) was really nice, seeing friends and families, enjoying a lot of food. Then I got really ill with a nasty case of food poisoning, not exactly the way I planned to start my 33rd year on this earth. I was barely able to function and extremely weak, finally starting to feel better today
[The Good] I think I might have actually caught up with my sleep 🙂
[The Bad] Was out of action due to food poisoning, the backlog of work is crazy
[The Goal] I HAVE to look after myself better, being ill is not only bad for me, it can also be dangerous for those around me and really bad for my productivity

Blog Newsletters

#66 – Anxiety, Hong Kong and Fake News



One Product: Modular kids bike

Infento is a modular lego like kits for making an assortment of bikes, scooters and tricycle for various ages. I love the idea it is something that can change and adapt with a child. Space is so limited in HK and this provides one type of solution. I also imagine it can provide a lot of bonding opportunities too. This is as much of a toy for kids as it is for adults.

One Plugin: RealDonaldContext

I’m glad there is now so much attention on fake news and click-bait sites. Some companies and individuals will happily cheat and lie to attract an audience, unfortunately, it works because most people don’t fact check! This awesome plugin from the Washington PostFix team is fantastic for seeing when Trump is making stuff up.

One article: How to Keep Going

When times get tough and it will, we all need reminders. “Giving up completely isn’t a real option. Shutting down is just delaying the inevitable. Feeling helpless is valid, until you need to get your s*** together again… ” –Adam J. Kurtz

One Question: What if money was no object

I love Zen pencils comics, this one was no exception. I just wish I could agree with it. I wish life was so simple and direct, that we are free to pursue our dreams without having to worry about our responsibilities at every single turn.

One Video: Hong Kong Hyperlapse

An absolutely stunning Hyperlapse video of Hong Kong from BBC One’s Planet Earth tv show. The amazing level of details and awesome transitions is almost hypnotising. Hong Kong definitely has its problems but it is still a stunner.

My Week Month

I can’t even remember how many weeks it has been since I sent my last newsletter. The past several weeks has been some of the most frustrating time I have experienced, between shingles, tight project deadlines and getting ready to be a Dad my anxiety has been pretty hard. I’m not remotely sleeping enough and I’ve been getting incredibly forgetful. The hustle is absolutely real and not an easy game to balance.
[The Good] I managed to survive on 9.5 hours of sleep over 5 days…
[The Bad] I’m still incredibly tired even after sleeping 22+ hours over the weekend. It’s like my body is failing me
[The Bad] I have never been as out of shape as I am now, yet I’m struggling to find the time to do otherwise

Blog Newsletters

#65 – Cognitive Bias, Survival and Read it later


One Infographic: Cognitive Bias

What an awesome, informative and beautifully designed infographic on cognitive bias. I want this on my studio wall. You can read much much more on the Coach.Me blog

One Studio: Differently

I love this French studio’s style so much. the fluidity and simplicity being able to see the essence of an object and so beautifully craft it out so smoothly. I would love to learn this.

One App: Instapaper

I was originally a pocket user, but has taken an another look at Instapaper after Pinterest bought out, The UI isn’t as slick and modern as Pocket, but I like the ability to sync with Kindle and the progress preview on the listing view is pretty useful too.

One Dilemma: Survival vs Investment

I believer in the importance of learning and improving one self, but lately I have had to put that on hold, it is currently about survival. I no longer have the luxury of 7 hours of sleep nor keep up with learning and exercising. Its now about doing as much work as I can in and out of the office to earn enough. I can’t go in to the details right now, but I fear this will go on for sometime, what hurts most is I know this is really bad but I’m kinda stuck.

One Quote: “I am learning everyday to allow the space between where I am and where I want to be”

For me, this quote actually revealed a lot about fear. It’s about knowing I’m not where I want to be but that is ok because I am getting there, it might be slow but it’s positive progress.

My Week

The past 2 weeks is really frustrating, mostly because I’ve got shingles. It meant I had to cancel plans for both weekend to make sure I didn’t infect others if they haven’t had chicken pox already. The drugs meant I’ve been pretty drowsy, it’s get so bad I sometime have difficulties comprehending causal conversations. Which obviously meant work has been incredibly difficult, that plus freelance work and little sleep is not a productive combo.
[The Good] Despite everything, I’ve came up with at least 3 good solutions this week that I am proud of:

  • One UI design work
  • Getting WordPress to do what I want
  • One huge UX piece

[The Bad] The lack of rest and being in survival mode is really effecting my mood

Blog Newsletters

#64 – F**ks, Money and Happiness


One Cartoon: Average Manager vs Great Manager

So simple yet wonderfully illustration on what a great manager does, I’m fortunate enough to seen a few in my career. I’m not saying it’s an easy job at all, I just think it’s really important to know the difference.

Creating a Happy Office

People matters, especially relationships between your staff, being willing to listen to your team and actually care about them makes such a huge difference. I was fortunate enough to see what happens in a business when you put the people first and the result is incredible! Thanks Business 3.0 for opening my eyes.

One Podcast: Why are we still using Money?

Bad people like cash, it facilitates crime, bribery, and tax evasion… etc. So with all the technology available why haven’t we gone fully digital cash yet? I love Freakonomics podcasts, and this was is especially cool.

One article: F**k You Startup

Anyone who has remotely been in contact with the startup world will be laughing out loud when they read this. So funny, yet full of truth “You should celebrate any day that you don’t have to sell off another part of your company.

One App: Airtable

I’ve only just started playing with this app, so can’t say I have a lot of experience yet, but it’s basically a really smart and well laid out spreadsheet app. My main problem is I don’t have a need yet, look forward to trying it out.

My Week

I’ve had some really positive feedback since the last email, thank you so much everyone. The last 2 weeks has been a little hectic, have picked up a few freelance gigs and its keeping me pretty busy, but I think I am getting better at finding the moment to chill a little more.
[The Good] The Walking Dead is back!
[The Good] I’m enjoying getting creative with my 22 push ups, check out this video 🙂 Was regretting when I got to 3, so chuffed pretty surprised I managed to do all 22
[The Bad] Down with another man-flu. Useful Fact: Zinc is great for fighting and defending against cold

Blog Newsletters

#63 – Bartender Theory, Umbrella design and 5 Hour Rule


The Bartender Theory

Not sure if this is funny or a fantastic creativity exercise. Throw in any word with “theory” and make up a business strategy or management policy around it. “The Hulk Theory” anyone?

How To Take Restful Breaks

I am annoying bad at taking proper breaks, specially recently with a lot of personal issues happening around me. Even my sleep at night has become restless, this article has served as a much appreciated reminder on what is actually resting and what isn’t. Such as “Reading websites taxes many of the same mental processes that we use when we’re working.”

The Five Hour Rule

Learning never stops, it didn’t start at school and it definitely should not end the day you left formal education. Having a growth mindset is only the beginning, it’s also about giving yourself the time and space to read, learn and apply new found knowledge. The five hour rule outline how some of the most successful individuals learn and grow.

Fantastic Umbrella Start up

Innovation really is everywhere, think umbrella’s are boring? Think again and check out this Japanese company and their panoramic photo umbrellas.

Who do I want to be?

I almost got in a fight on the bus over the weekend and it was actually a very insightful experience. It wasn’t just the typical shoulder bump or stare down. This guy was actively shouting abuses at me, my instinct reaction was to get ready to throw punches, “I’m gonna show I am the alpha here”. He even deliberately sat opposite me to continue the aggression. I was ready to get physical, I was angry and wanted to hurt him. Even thinking about it now, I can feel the adrenaline pumping through me.
Nothing happened in the end, but it did make me think much more about who do I actually want to be, do I want to be thug like that guy? Or do I want to be the type of guy who can stay calm and handle guys like that without actual violence? Do I really want to waste time at the police station? Do I want to risk getting my wife hurt in the process if a fight did break out?
I have a friend who I imagine would be able to perfectly handle that situation, and that is who I now aspire to be. It’s not about trying to prove who is the stronger / bigger / harder man. That’s instinctive and the easy path. Being a good person doing the right thing against my own aggressive instincts is what I should challenge.

My Week

[The Good] I’ve started doing the 22 push up challenge to raise awareness for PTSD, it both keeps me moving and help a good cause
[The Good] Someone has been in touch with me regarding possible partnership / buying
[The Bad] The commute to work is still the biggest time waster for me, it’s really hard to read when the bus moves so much

Blog Newsletters

#62 – Get a Life, Legos mutated and Problem Solving



One message: Stop Touting Your Crazy Hours

Stop touting, lead by example, you are making your team feel bad and forcing yourself to pretend to be productive is different than actually being productive, so stop it!

One kickstarter campaign: Edo – Giant cardboard Legos

Like legos but huge and made with cardboard boxes, cheap and perfect for kids to build castles. BONUS: Bouncy, flexible Legos: Flexo

One Simple Innovative: Thinking outside the box

My conclusion either delivery people cares more about TV than bikes, or just have more faith in the sturdiness of bikes? Absolute genius!

One infographic: Neuroplasticity and Cognitive Therapy

Our Brains are complicated but not impossible to understand some of the very basic concepts, it also explains why we do what we do.

One set of toys, army man yoga

I remember playing with little green soldiers as kid, talk about peace over war. I want a set.

My Week

Very busy this week, so posts are much shorter than usual. Hope you don’t mind, maybe you actually like this format better? Let me know

Blog Newsletters

61 – Cockroach Theory, Tricking Yourself & Helicopter Money



One Trick: For being nice to yourself

It’s actually surprisingly hard to be kind to ourselves, specially when we are talking about our future selves. “Whenever you can, do something kind for Future You.” Try think of the future you as a close friend whom you care about. What advice would you give that close friend? Would you tell them to skip the gym and eat more junk food?

One must read speech: The cockroach Theory

Before reading about this speech, I had no idea on the differences between “Responding” vs “Reacting” to life. This is so incredibly elegant story reminding us we shouldn’t let life happen to us, but instead we should be responding purposefully to what’s around us. Please read it, I don’t think my explanation can do it any justice.

One Kickstarter Campaign: Smart Running with STEPP

Running is easy, running efficiently and injury free is pretty hard (believe me, I’ve had my fair share of knee and ankle injuries) These tiny device currently on Kickstarter for just 12 more days could be the best running coach you could hope for. It promises real time feedback on your running, tracking and giving you feedback on your form and fatigue level. I so want one, but I don’t run enough to justify the $129 USD price tag.

One New Concept: Helicopter Money

Free money is surely a good thing right? How about free money for everyone but you? And what about free money for absolutely everyone? The term “Helicopter Money” is kinda like Quantitive Easing to the extreme. It could be a good thing for the short term, but it’s effect for the long term is pretty unclear. Also big thumbs up to The Memo‘s newsletter for their “What the Heck…” section

One Website for Illustrators: Society 6

If you are an illustrator and is interested in selling your designs, this is a fantastic website. You upload your artwork (preferably vector) and it allows you to sell it as t-shirts, phone cases, cushion covers or even hats. Some amazingly beautiful designs


My Week

What an eventful week! So much happening I’ve also started to look my internally at the problems I have been facing. Asking myself why I do certain things or why do I fear certain things (my greatest fear is that I am not smart and/or incapable, that I don’t deserve success).
[The Good] Finally got myself back into some muay thai training, I almost fainted half way in the class but it felt so good when I realised I actually survived (shocking how much my fitness level has dropped)
[The Good] Side project is moving along, no idea if it’s worth the time at this point
[The Bad] There’s some stress financially at the moment, which adds to the pressure for the side project to move quickly
[The Bad]  The 3.5 hours of commuting is pretty annoying and huge waste of time, trying to be more productive with podcasts and writing this email
P.S. Thanks Jay for reminding me how shocking my first ever newsletter was.

Blog Newsletters

#60 – Friends, Prioritisation and Hacking your old cameras


One Question: Do your friends like you

“Show me your friends and I will show you who you are.” How many “close friends” do you have? It’s definitely about the quality over quantity here, and the shocking thing is not having enough could mean you die younger #SeriousStuff

One App: One Big Thing

I think it show be obvious to be productive, having a todo list is critical. What this little app does is help you focus on getting one key thing done a day first, then you can look at smaller tasks. I would also recommend you write down your todos for the next day at the end of the day, it lets you get started quicker the next day and allows you to remove yourself from it to enjoy the rest of the evening.

One Kickstarter Project: Digital life to old cameras

I LOVE old film cameras, I love how they look as much as the quality of you the photos it self. As we are moving more toward smartphone photography (which I both appreciate and detest) These beautiful designs are being discarded and forgotten, this amazing project is bringing them back to life.

One Article: The Psychology of Pricing

Tips and tricks used by startups and large corporation to make you spend more. Its really surprising how many ways they can come up with to psychologically detach you from your perspective of “money”. Does anyone remember facebook coins?

One Wakeup call: Gymnastic Bodies Mobility

I’ve been suffering from an alarming number of back, shoulders and ankle issues lately. Its worrying and a hell of a wake up call to better look after my body. If you are interested in improving your general mobility level I highly recommend this Tim Ferriss podcast with Gymnastic Bodies

My Week
Bonjour everyone!
What’s been happening? The last 2 weeks has been absolutely crazy, mainly due to a number of minor family issues and side projects. Finally things are looking as if it’s moving in the right direction again, it’s very tiring but I hope things will work out. fingers crossed!
[The Good] Found a much nicer way to commute to work, allowing more time and space to read or relax
[The Bad] Struggling with being ok with the unknown much more than usual
[The Bad] Screwed up my ankle, it feels like it’s jammed and not in the right position a lot of the times