Hello! I’m Justin! I’m just a run-of-the-mill data scientist/software engineer who likes learning things in his free time. Specifically, my interests generally fall into Open source/emacs, applied mathematics/statistics, programming language design, Catholic history, poetry, and general pop-culture/anime/manga/-inserty nerdy thing here-. I would also note that I’m not a venture capitalist, despite said domain name. I dunno, thought it sounded neat. I’m honestly baffled that Justin Kan didn’t own the domain. But if you wander into this and you’re a VC who’s hiring, I wouldn’t be opposed, just ‘sayin

I draw inspiration from Gwern, in design, not content (mostly, I’m not rewriting this into Haskell), but maybe I’ll grow the writing chops eventually, but I also do not necessarily have the want to engage in survive-the-end-times-canticle-of-st-leibowitz type of writing. I plan to focus more on general notes and learnings. I would like to venture into longform writing more, but that remains a future goal. If you can’t tell by now I’m pretty freeform-thought-of-conciousness in my thoughts. Hoping the more I write the better I get about it. I was good at writing papers in college, but that was when I -had- to. Those skills have kind of lapsed a decade later.

Right now I’m basically vibing in the rural United States, having been on sabbatical for a year. I mean, I call it a sabbatical but it’s more of a weird covid break combined with wanting to randomly tinker around with other things. Dealing with corporate dashboards gets a bit soul draining after awhile. Would like to eventually move to a more walkable urban environment as the kick-in-the-pants to be (more) social. Difficult to want to do things when you have to drive 30 minutes.

This site is created with a fork of PaperModX, which I’m calling PaperModulo. Everything is written as org-mode documents that I parse with ox-hugo. Hoping that having -everything- as org mode documents makes it easier to write in general, since I use org-mode for my agenda/todo lists, reading (org-noter + pdf-tools) and Okay, sometimes I still use Jupyter and VSCode. Sue me.

In my day-to-day when working I’m generally using Python, at home I’ve started to use Julia for more projects but I don’t see as much non-research employment opportunities in it yet. I admire the beauty of correctness in Rust/Haskell/Idris, etc. but that’s more of a side-hobby. If you can’t tell I tend to get nerd-sniped pretty easily, it’s been something I’ve been working on. It’s honestly interesting how useful a plain linear regression is in the age of deep learning. I think even new-entrants to the field could find enough low-hanging-fruit to keep themselves busy with classical statistical methods and rudimentary machine learning.

That being said, I’m mostly self-educated when it comes to mathematics and coding. My undergraduate degree was in business and real estate. I actually was doing a double major with religion but didn’t finish it. (Not so fun) fact, I originally wanted to be a priest. I did a graduate-degree in decision sciences, but there’s only so much you can cover in two years. I primarily focused on optimization and information systems at that time with my “capstone” focus on education system turnouts in Bolivia.

I have my own little battlestation that I do my work on, I’ve never been a big laptop person. This is probably (one of the many reasons) I’d do poorly as a consultant. I like using Linux because See my dotfiles. Outside of not being able to (easily) do VR, I don’t particularly miss Windows, and I’ve never been a fan of MacOS. I’m just waiting for the day they put Asahi Linux on the ARM chips.

Beep

I think the linktree style svg’s of all your associated links are a bit gauche. Give me a good ‘ole table-of-contents-style of list.

Subdomains

Sites that are part of this site, generally things that are separated off and built using different technologies. Generally all hosted on github.

  • https://quotes.justin.vc - There’s a neat extension called Quotebacks for chrome/firefox that lets you record snippets of text. It’s useful for display, but it also saves things as JSON, which I parse and just toss into this site. Not the prettiest thing, but it gives a breakdown of things I’m randomly reading or have seen other people say. I think they’ve since stopped updating it, but it still works, so, eh. Might write a parser to put them into a table and make as a section of this site.

  • https://zk.justin.vc - The original top-level of this site, a zettelkasten written in TiddlyWiki. It has its own about page, but a lot of it I need to rewrite. I’m working on some pandoc filters to move my “general notes” programatically to it. Effectively a brain dump and more meant for my own uses.

Social Media/Following

Outside of things listed on blogroll, I don’t tend to like social media and talk to most friends via signal / matrix / Yeah, yeah, I know. The bots are neat and it’s mostly spamming stickers to my friends. Probably falling on deaf ears, but most social media is a waste of time outside of finding friends. Once you’ve found said friends, what’s the point, really? I get existential ennui, but, like, go read a book or get involved in your community (unless you’re getting paid to post, I guess, then continue on).

  • LinkedIn - I try to keep up with (job) roles and such in this. I keep descriptions blank because it’s basically just used to datamine. I figure if someone’s -really- interested in someone as a candidate they’d be Hi recruiters / hiring managers! If you read this feel free to mention it. You'd be surprised how often people don’t do a cursory reading of something other than their resume. Usually garners more points from my side.
  • Github - Keep most coding stuff here. I’m not a -huge- fan of Microsoft, but I like the UI better than Gitlab, and now that they have actions, there’s not really a killer feature differentiating the two.

Books/Reading

I like to read. Generally non-fiction (technical / history / religion) and then science fiction / fantasy.

  • Goodreads - I try to keep books I read up to date / suggestions, etc. All reviews/notes are generally hosted locally, but I’d like to venture into book review type of writing. I do find the Goodreads API useful for marking things from Calibre so it’s generally used to just to keep track of things in a way people can see.

Media/Watching

I like to watch things. I usually try to watch anything thats critically acclaimed in some way. I should probably cut back on it though. I’ve noticed that even highly rated stuff nowadays doesn’t really compare to written works.

  • Trakt - television/movies watched, programatically updated/scrobbled. May duplicate things if I fall asleep watching them, and I tend to watch things at x2-4 speed unless high-art/prestige.
  • Anilist - similar to Trakt, but anime/manga, programatically updated for anime. Might make a myanimelist also to sync between later. Truthfully only chose one over the other because there was easier syncing for the former.

Music/Listening

Music doesn’t really tend to do much for me unless paired with visuals I can see. Trying to get more into it, but I generally only use music as a distraction in noisy environments. On the rare occasions I’m listening to things I like ambient post-rock / doom/sludge/stoner metal with occasional euro-dance / jazz. I feel like I would also have to turn in my southerner card if I didn’t admit to liking bluegrass and gospel.

  • last.fm - music scrobbled from Spotify
  • rateyourmusic - rating albums, manually updated (rarely - a note to do this more)