Reviews

Black Mirror Season 4 Review: USS Callister

Black Mirror Season 4 Review: USS Callister // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie

Every time I watch Black Mirror, I’m left with a feeling of extreme bleakness and slight nausea.

As any seasoned watcher will tell you, that’s the exact feeling you’re supposed to have when tuning in. The series is set in a futuristic world where various devices have the ability to record memories down to the finest detail, create lifelike approximations of deceased loved ones from their social media feeds, and store our consciousnesses in the cloud, among other things. Black Mirror doesn’t focus on the positives of such groundbreaking tech, though — it knows we get enough of that from Apple keynotes and startup advertisements. Instead, through a collection of discrete episodes about an hour long, the show explores how fucked up advanced technology can be when circumstances go very, very wrong.

Note: I will be discussing the first episode in the fourth season of Black Mirror below in detail, so this post will contain spoilers on spoilers on spoilers. It’ll basically be like a gigantic double-decker spoiler sundae, with colorful spoiler sprinkles and sweet spoiler cherries on top. You have thus been warned. Also, I am not a paid reviewer, nor am I a professional critic of any sort. I am just another opinionated kid on the Internet, and everything written below consists of my thoughts and my thoughts alone.

(more…)

My Favorite Books and Series, Part 1

Mimi's Favorite Books and Series // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie

So many talented, knowledgeable, and powerful people have written down the exact secrets of their accomplishments. The best part? Anybody can have this information, as long as they take the time to really grasp it.

Think about that for a moment. You can, without spending more than $20, obtain the same knowledge that would normally take a person years of hard work to procure. [1]

Isn’t that mind-blowing?

I’ve been fortunate to learn from people who are much wiser and more experienced than I am, without ever having to leave the comfort of my room. This year, I’ve taken advantage of that fact more than ever, and have been reading about five articles and two books a week. The result has been exponential changes in the way I think, approach situations, and solve problems.

My life has gotten so much better since I started doing this. I’m never lonely or bored, and I’m a lot more pleasant to be around in general. It’s incredible.

I don’t believe in keeping knowledge and wisdom to myself — the point of ideas is to share them! Here are some books and series that I have considered fundamental in changing my thinking patterns and contributing to my personal development. [2]

(more…)

Getting Swifty at Big Nerd Ranch: iOS Essentials Bootcamp Review

Big Nerd Ranch iOS Essentials Bootcamp

tl;dr this was the best career and life decision I have ever made.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored review. I was not contacted by Big Nerd Ranch to do any sort of endorsement; all opinions expressed are my own.

That’s not an exaggeration. If you’re determined to be an iOS dev and want to learn both the fundamentals of Swift as language and how to intelligently design iOS applications in the shortest amount of time possible, then Big Nerd Ranch’s iOS Essentials with Swift bootcamp is the program for you.

(more…)

In Defense of the Male Romper

RompHim

RompHim: Your New Favorite Summer Outfit

Rompers for dudes are a thing, and I’m digging it. This shouldn’t be surprising, considering how obsessed I am with Southern prep, gender-non-conforming style, and dressing to express yourself.

If you haven’t heard of them yet, RompHim is a brand of rompers for guys that are set to hit the market sometime this summer. ACED Design, the company selling RompHims, haven’t set an official release date at the time of this post, but seeing as their Kickstarter has already raised over eleven times their set goal and that they’ve guaranteed deliveries of their special edition Fourth of July RompHims by Independence Day, it’s pretty likely that you’ll be seeing the RompHim out and about soon. According to their Kickstarter FAQ page, ACED Design is “committed to getting the 4th of July RompHims to backers in time for the holiday, the Early Bird Specials in July, and the rest of the orders in August.” Get excited.

(more…)

I Tried the Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino So You Don’t Have To

Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino

Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino

Express dress | Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino

This is the first time I’ve stepped into a Starbucks inside a Macy’s inside a mall — and I’m here to try the Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino.

I’m thinking of how the setup is like a configuration of Russian dolls, stores in stores in a giant conglomeration of stores, when the guy behind the counter flashes me a jolly smile. “Good afternoon! What’ll it be today?”

“I’ll have a tall Unicorn Frappuccino,” I reply, cringing a little on the inside. Even I’m judging myself. Last night a good friend of mine who worked at Starbucks had gone on a rant about how much she hated the drink, from its super-sugary contents to the fact that blenders had to be washed out after each use to the grown women who threw tantrums upon finding out that ingredients had run out. I decided to try it out for myself the next day. Why not? I’d received a Starbucks gift card this past Christmas and needed an excuse to use it.

(more…)