Often Zhan

2 minute read

Generating ideas has never been an issue for me. Rather, I’ve always struggled with (1) creating high-quality writing that I am proud of and (2) organizing my inspiration and ideas in a single, organized place. I use such a wide array of mediums that I quite literally get lost in my own thoughts especially when I try to reference them. How can I easily organize my notes and inspiration into a single manageable place? This blog is one of my attempts. However, I need something else… some thing in between the semi-polished work from my site and my interests (likes, tweets, highlights).

In the recent months, my solution has been Google keep. It’s not a perfect system. I like the Google Keep’s integration with the rest of the Google Ecosystem. And yet, there’s nothing that can replace the utility and convenience of a physical notebook.

Today, at this very moment, I will attempt to bridge these two technological marvels the note book and the cellphone. The old and the new. The analog and the digital. I wrot this article on my new Leuchtturm1917 notebook.

Afterwards, I’ll append my picture of Google keep as well as the raw output from my picture.

Generating ideas has never been an issue tor.
me. Rather, I've always struggled with
• Creating Quality Products. I want to write
and create things that I am proud of
2 olganizing my inspiration and ideas in a
single place. I read, write watch, and
listen in such a wide array of mediums
that I quite literally get lost in my own
thoughts. How can I easily organize them int
a single manageable days? This blog is one.
of my attempts but I need something else...
Some thing in between the semipolished work
and my site and my likes, tweets, highlights
In the recent months, my solution has been
Google keep. It's not a perfect system. For -
and the integrations with other
Fotot, but I like the tagging system
of the
Google ecosystem.. ...
And yet, there's nothing that can replace the
case and convenience and the immeaswable.
joy!) of a physical notebook. I
Today, at this very moment, I will attempt to
bridge these two technological marvels the
note book and the cellphone. The old and
the new. The analog and the digital. I wrot
this article on my new Leuchtorn 1917
notebook. After words, I'll apend a picture a
Google keep.
This page as well as the rau Poco picture
Often Zhan

2 minute read

A Slow Transition

Recently, my workflow has entirely been primarily Google-centric. So much, in fact, that I decided to buy a Chromebook.

Honestly, I don’t remember the last time I used Word, PowerPoint, Excel… Even in my workplace, Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google sheets have become the industry norm.

Taking the Plunge

I bought the Samsung Chromebook Plus primarially because it includes a stylus. The feature I use the most would definitely be the voice-to-text feature on Android phones and Google Docs. While I use this feature more on my phone due to convenience, the built in Google Docs voice-to-text tool is much more robust. You can seamlessly type and talk at the same time. This may not seem so impressive until you try it out for yourself. My fingers go into editing mode while my voice flows freely during free-writing. It’s an odd feeling, but once you get the hang of it, the “writing process”, if you can call it that, is much more enjoyable.

My brother MZ is much more fluent in with the Google ecosystem than I am. He has a pretty good workflow through his implementation of Google keep and Google calendars. I’m still in the process of adopting Calendars and Keep into my own personal workflow.

My Gradual Transition

My slow descent (…ascent? I still don’t know which…) to the Google ecosystem was not an intentional one. When I first started getting into computers in highschool, I got into (1) web-design, (2) Linux (First Debian, then Ubuntu, then Mint), and (3) creative writing. I fully defenestrated from Windows into Linux by the time I reached my senior year of highschool. Over time, I began to use Google products more and more. First was Gmail, then Google Docs. When Android came out which used Linux as its underlying framework, I jumped into Google headfirst.

Head in the Clouds

Hopefully, all these “cloud” products is not a fad. Also, I hope that Google does not bear hidden fangs and turn 180° against their motto of “Don’t be evil.”

I’m excited about the cloud, but like everyone, I am hesitant to share my whole life to a for-profit companies. Part of me always asks, “Am I sacrificing privacy for convenience?”

And deep down, I already know the answer to my question:

“I am.”

Often Zhan

4 minute read

my checklist for a potential mate

get/have your ducks in a row: to be well prepared or well organized for something that is going to happen.”

– Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary Thesaurus


This was the test that I used from 2010–2015 to measure a potential woman’s attractiveness.

I forgot who told me, but an older married man once mentioned, “I made a list of qualities that I wanted for my future spouse so that I would know who I should be looking for when finding my future spouse. Also, I made a list for myself to make sure that all my ducks are in a row when I met my future spouse.” He didn’t say it outright, but his underlying question was “Would my ideal woman be interested in a guy like me?” When pondering this question, I decided to not to spend my time to look for “The One” but rather strive to make myself “The One” for my future spouse.

Funny thing… I lost the list for myself but never lost my list for the “ideal woman”. However, I do think that this list can (and should!) apply to myself. Over time, I’ve used, updated, and adapted this list, and eventually made it into a measuring stick for the attractiveness of a potential mate. I haven’t used this list ever since I got into a serious relationship (for obvious reasons).

The current draft (Version 2.5) is still a little outdated. The last time I updated this list was in 2013.

The Duck Row test still very rough, but that is understandable because I probably spent a total of less than 5 hours working on it including drafting and updating. (Note to self: I should reexamine the test and make a new, updated version in the nearby future.)


Everytime, I showed someone my Duck Row test, they have either been deeply offended or espoused full support. I understand that this test sounds awful. It means that every potential mate I’ve met since making this test has been churned through this list resulting in a numerical value of attractiveness. BUT, I’ve only used this test for 5-6 women. Also, if she had a low score, I don’t dismiss her outright. I’ve never placed this test in high regard. Even so, I still find this test useful in its limited application.

I decided to show it in the blog for:

  • Archival Reason - I don’t want to lose this list.
  • Sentimental Reasons - I occasionally refer to this list because this was my first real list.

The Duck Row Test

In this current version, I organized the test under The 7 Dimensions of Wellness as well as an additional 8th category of personal preference.

The points are added up in the end and measured from a scale of 0-100.

Social Health

Description Score
Conflict Management Skills 3
Involved in Community (Leadership Role) 2
Avoids Drama & Gossip 3
Socially Concious (PDA, Discussing Sensitive Issues in Public) 2

Emotional Health

Description Score
Chill 2
Creative 2
Organized 4
Not a Clean-Freak 2
Time Management 4
Humble 3
Strong Sense of Independence 2
Avoids Gossip 3
Level Headed in Heated Situations 2
No Mood Swings 2
Not Overly Needy 3
Comfortable with her body 3

Spiritual Health

Description Score
Christian 5
Works on Improving Oneself 5
Strong Sense of Moral Code 4

Occupational Health

Description Score
Low Maintanence 4
Low Budget Fashion 2
Minimilstic Makeup 2
FashionSense 2

Intellectual Health

Description Score
Likes Reading 3
Reads Fantasy 1
Reads SciFi 1
Reads Non-Fiction 1

Physical Health

Description Score
Does Not Smoke 4
No Tattoos (or non-visible when wearing clothing) 2
Excercizes Regularly 2
Plays a Sport 2

Enviromental Health

Description Score
Enviromentally Concious in Decision Making 1
Recycles and Composts 1
Metal Water Bottle 0.5
Makes it a Point to Turn off Lights 0.5

Personal Preference

Description Score
Has Short Hair 2
Plays an Instrument 2
Likes Coffee but not Addicted 1
Laughs at my Corny Jokes 2
Pretty 2
Hot Mom 1
Not deathly allergic or against: milk, gluten, fish, meat… 2
Passion for Chinese Ministry 3

Summed Totals

Here is the added values of all of the major categories.

Dimension Summed Value
Social 10
Emotional 32
Spiritual 14
Occupational 10
Intellectual 6
Physical 10
Environmental 3
Personal 15
	Score Interpretation
	0-50   → Do Not Pursue
	51-74  → Unlikely Candidate
	75-100 → Potential Mate

Change Log

Version Description
1.0 Original Draft - Unorganized
2.0 Organized under 7 Dimensions of Wellness and also Personal Preferences.
2.5 Adapted the list to apply to a working adult.