Recent Posts by Sophia Lin

Online Learning Moves Offline

In the retail world, online brands like Warby Parker have moved offline to establish physical locations. Now we’re seeing this trend in online education. There is a lot of hype around digital learning & online education and various technological improvements. However, completion rates are typically abysmal—and the vast majority of online learners drop off almost…
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3 Major Trends in the Beauty Industry

In general, the beauty industry is bigger than ever, and it’s an exciting time. People are taking our industry more seriously - especially now that Kylie Jenner became the world’s youngest self-made billionaire and made the cover of Forbes magazine. Trend #1  - Plastic surgery no longer taboo There are more soft services than ever,…
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Chocolate’s Darkness Actually Starts from Purple and Pale Hues

All chocolate in the world is made through complex steps that start from fresh cocoa seeds, which, if cut open lengthwise, denote unexpectedly romantic hues, ranging from the deepest purple to the palest pink, up to the purest white. How does color change and evolve from purple and pale cocoa seeds to brown chocolate bars?…
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Complying with US Drug Supply Regulations

The Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) is a federal regulation introduced in 2013 and applicable to nearly ALL entities that buy, sell, produce or wholesale prescription drugs in the United States. This regulation literally touches every point in the cycle of exchange of product, down to the point at which a prescription is given…
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Google’s Data Privacy Crackdown

In late 2018, Google announced that they would begin cracking down on API access to its systems. (See this FAQ provided by Google) Essentially, Google now requires anyone with access to sensitive user information to undergo a third party security review. This review costs anywhere between $15,000 to $75,000. This would lead to better data…
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Future of Data Security

Storing data in the cloud is insecure by design. In the mid-2000s, the world began to transition from on-premise to cloud data storage. As a society, we gave up security and privacy, in return for portability and cost-savings. (ACM) Now, not a month goes by without news of another monstrous data breach. And those are…
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The IATA Airline Cartel

Because airlines are global, it is hard for any one country to regulate them, so they’ve long been governed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The IATA is a self-governing body controlled by the airlines themselves. In this case, who defends the consumer? The IATA is supposed to do this, but their members are…
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Choosing between features and security in software

Software has an unavoidable tradeoff: more features = less security. If your process for selecting software involves comparing products’ feature sets and you don’t choose the product with the smallest feature set, you’re actively selecting for security vulnerabilities.
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Oil spills can hide ‘under the rug’ without actual cleanup

Oil spill cleanup by antiquated methods of chemical dispersants and burning do not eliminate any of the pollution. They just transfer it into the water column, or they convert it into air pollution. But news cameras no longer see a surface oil slick, so the public thinks it’s “cleaned”.
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Full time artist does not mean drawing all day

It might be surprising to know that as a full-time graphic artist, my time is actually spent: 30% of time is working on commissions, 20% of time is improving, and 50% of time is managing all of the social media and digital paperwork. Being a freelance artist as a profession does not mean drawing all…
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Fun fact on fungi – a network spanning miles

Fungi are: 1) not plants, and 2) not just mushrooms. Fungi are closer to animals than anything else and mushrooms = reproductive structure. The actual THING is a network that can span (literally) miles! It’s like pointing to a flower on a tree and saying “here’s the whole plant!”
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