“The Economist” Cover

This past Thursday, I did a quick 2-hour design job at Harvard Business School for a conference they were holding on Integrated Reporting.  Basically, the participants (comprised of leading business professionals from around the world) were split into groups and asked to design a cover for The Economist magazine that might run in ten years about the progress that the business world had made in Integrated Reporting.  I worked with a group of industry leaders to craft a cohesive design plan and then proceeded to generate the final product in Photoshop.  The designs will be published in an ebook about the workshop to be released in mid-November.


A Malthusian Study of 20th Century Korean Economic Development

This paper was written for Economics 1339: Generating Wealth of Nations, a Harvard undergraduate course taught by visiting professor Jeffrey Borland.


While there exists substantial literature regarding the application of Malthus’s economic model to European countries prior to and following the Industrial Revolution, little effort has been spent applying the model to Europe’s neighbors in the east. South Korea in particular seems to be a compelling subject, insofar as its meteoric rise to economic power in the 20th century remains largely unprecedented and a fairly complete data set exists for many of its economic indicators. Dubbed the “Miracle on the Han River” by some economists, South Korea’s recent history has seen the country’s per capita national income increase 80-fold from US $125 in 1966 to over US $10,000 in 1995. Like Europe prior to the Industrial Revolution, Korea prior to the Korean War followed the Malthusian economic hypothesis of rising populations preventing sustained increases in standards of living. Statistics from the post-Korean War era up to the present day, however, indicate that South Korea (hereinafter as “Korea”) has since broken free of the Malthusian trap, thanks in large part to a series of government-endorsed economic development plans and also to cultural shifts like the rise in family planning.

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More Syntax Highlighting for Coda

Coda ships with syntax highlighting support for a lot of great languages, but some are noticeably left out of the mix. I was recently helping a buddy set up an environment to develop C programs on an external server, and while Coda seemed a clear better alternative to using Nano (particularly since we could still compile and run the programs from Coda’s built-in terminal), the program lacked syntax highlighting for the C language.

Adding highlighting for C (and a host of other languages) turned out to be pretty easy.

To add support for other languages, download this zip file, unzip, and copy the Modes folder into Contents > Resources of the Coda package distribution. To access the contents of the package, right click on the Coda application and select “Show Package Contents”. Then navigate to Contents > Resources.


If you are asked, overwrite existing folders and files. Note that if you only want to install certain syntax highlighting modes, just copy and paste what you need (of the .mode files in the downloaded Modes folder) into the Modes folder in the Coda package. I forgot which languages were standard to Coda so I’ve just included all of the ones I have in the download.
Continue reading…

Office 2007 MIME Types

Here’s a list of MIME Types for Office 2007 files (those pesky files extensions that end with an x). Useful for file type checking in web applications and the like.

  • .docm – application/vnd.ms-word.document.macroEnabled.12
  • .docx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document
  • .dotm – application/vnd.ms-word.template.macroEnabled.12
  • .dotx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.template
  • .potm – application/vnd.ms-powerpoint.template.macroEnabled.12
  • .potx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.presentationml.template
  • .ppam – application/vnd.ms-powerpoint.addin.macroEnabled.12
  • .ppsm – application/vnd.ms-powerpoint.slideshow.macroEnabled.12
  • .ppsx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.presentationml.slideshow
  • .pptm – application/vnd.ms-powerpoint.presentation.macroEnabled.12
  • .pptx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.presentationml.presentation
  • .xlam – application/vnd.ms-excel.addin.macroEnabled.12
  • .xlsb – application/vnd.ms-excel.sheet.binary.macroEnabled.12
  • .xlsm – application/vnd.ms-excel.sheet.macroEnabled.12
  • .xlsx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.sheet
  • .xltm – application/vnd.ms-excel.template.macroEnabled.12
  • .xltx – application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.template

How to Remove the Top Border from Drupal Tables

I’ve been very busy developing a couple projects over the past couple days, but here is a quick little trick to get around one of Drupal’s quirks. If you’re unfamiliar with Drupal, it’s a fantastic CMS (content management system) built on PHP and MySQL. For those blog-savvy among us, it is to general websites what WordPress is to blogs. I use Drupal to get sites up quickly and with great functionality, and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to build powerful, custom websites without “re-inventing the wheel.”

Anyway, Drupal has this strange quirk in its source that creates a small grey border on the top of tables inserted in a page’s content.  A quick trip to my inspector revealed how to remove the top border from Drupal tables.  Simply add the following line to your CSS.

body tbody { border-top: none; }

All there is to it. 🙂

Ruan Lingyu: An Artist’s Profile

I created a website this past spring for my final project in Chinese Literature 130: Screening Modern China. It was an interesting class that surveyed a great deal of Chinese cinematography, ranging from the first silent films up to modern day talkies. The site was created from the perspective of Ruan Lingyu, a Chinese silent film star of the 1920s and early ’30s. Check out my personal statement for a detailed description of the project.

» Personal Statement
» Live Website

Ruan Lingyu Website Screenshot

How to Display Russian and Other Languages with PHP MySQL

I recently had to code a little web application that would interface with a MySQL database and display data on a webpage via PHP MySQL queries. The application had to support many international languages – the most difficult of which to deal with was Russian. Many forums suggested changing my character encoding to CP-1251, which is a standard Russian encoding in Windows. I needed support for all international languages, though, and using multiple character encodings wasn’t a headache I wanted to get myself into. It turns out that you can display all these characters using a UTF-8 encoding, provided you get the PHP and MySQL right.  Read on to find out how to display Russian and other languages with PHP and MySQL. Continue reading…