Backpropagation inspired learning

If there is one thing we could learn from back propagation method in neural net is reverse engineering our daily learning process.

For example, if you are going to learn a complex topic. You could start with reading the technical (like Wikipedia) and so on. The problem is, that kind of materials are often messy and jumbled with even more technical (uh) and jargons. It will be overwhelmed before you reach an understanding of that particular topic.

Let’s take into more drilled example;

Say I would like to grasp a concept about Convolutional Neural Network; and I know the father of CNN is the Facebook AI Research director, Yann LeCun. Normally, I could go deep dive through his scholar page or his group publication site. But, that could take more time than I imagine just to understand a general concept and perhaps some comparisons. One easiest way I could do is browse to YouTube, and watch all of his interview or presentation about CNN. Usually, these presentations are present to a less technical audience (unless you watch academic one, still, it is simpler than reaching his papers from the beginning). Certainly, he will tone down the technicalities (and people friendly touch) so the audience could understand what the message tried to convey.

Usually, you will be able to learn the lower gradient of the complexity by his presentation or interview. Next, I will go to discussion site like Quora for more details before finally lead to his publications.

This way, you could learn faster and better. Remember the key here is FAST. I’m not saying that you do not need to learn the nitty-gritty or the bits and bobs of that particular topic, but these would like to push you in some way to get the better understanding and faster.

Elon Musk, also uses similar method becoming an expert-generalists in many, many fields. He starts first with the knowledge tree and gets the details later on. The structure is the most important part when you try to understand one substantial concept.

This easy hack is inspired by the same back propagation training method in the neural network. Learn the result or general picture first, and work backwards under its curtains.


Want to feel wealthy? Keep those small winnings grow!

Pat Flynn and Tim Ferriss is among of my fave productive people out there. They’re smart and productive. It made me think how high achieving individuals like them keeping everything productive and hit their goals every year.

What is actually they do differently from rest of us? What’s the most essential and practical thing they do that keeping their momentum up?

— They journal, daily.

Reflect on the wins

The first thing to keep feel fulfilled is to have a routine to record your little winnings every day. You’d finished summarising that 20 pages long research paper? Record that. You completed 5 miles jog today? Make it into an accomplished list. Small winnings psychologically keep you happy. It is also the act of gratitude. Tony Robbins call this as the magic moments. Journalling helps to capture accomplishments and magic moments.

At the end of the year, you could reflect on what you have done and accomplish from the past, that usually we might be forgotten what we have done in the past. Journal is a practical tool to reconnect to the right track if found yourself lousy and lost. Many high achievers that I knew recommends doing this. It is an efficient system to help them to track accomplishments. This small hack helps to be more appreciative of what you have done.

Keep small winnings recorded also helps you to consistently stick with big goals. Many times, I found keeping to one goal is very hard to do. I regularly change my goal frequently once my priority or schedule change. #IFailed

Why? I easily excited (distracted) whenever I saw bright objects. This bright object syndrome happens all the time because I failed to track my own goal and stick to it. I easily lost focuses on what I should do, rather than I want to do. I also found that I didn’t appreciate little things even though I knew that one way to feel wealthy is enjoy small things around you logically, emotionally and spiritually. This need has daily deposit that means, you need a ritual or time to make this happen and reflect.

The fix

Though I’ve been making my list, still failed and undoubtedly unfound. Why? Because I don’t have one particular place that collects all those. It was because the chain is broken. Usually, I excited about one thing, and it won’t last as it should be. Now, I’ve started to record what I have done into a list using an app called iDoneThis as part to help my five minutes daily ritual. It’s still not perfect, but at least this is one channel that helps me to overview by accomplishments.
High achievers keep tracks almost everything to maintain the goal accountable.

High achiever like Jeff Walker told he does this by “reviewing all the wins for the prior year. Too often we don’t recognise all the progress we have made and all the great stuff we have to accomplish”. By focusing on the wins, it puts us in a positive state of mine forward and plans next year.

Schedule the year ahead

Seeing the big picture in advance allow work with more purpose throughout the year. A year worth of plan. Last year, one important lesson that I’ve learnt was that; to counter the fear of imperfection. At this stage, we shouldn’t worry about perfection. At least, I know where I am going/need to do. The plan always changing along the progress making process. That’s normal. Planning ahead will spare me time on the things I should spending/focusing with.

Failed to plan is plan to fail.

I learnt from the past. I’d be on many, many projects before. However, the number of done are lesser than the number of completion. I couldn’t hit my bigger goals as I planned because of the bright light syndrome. I failed to meet my datelines because of endless of new things coming.

The fix

Limit only three big goals per year. Break it down into four quarter goals – which are good-sized wins on their own! And break it down into monthly goals. This enables me to focus on the long-term goals, while at the same time enjoying being in the moment of achieving my short term, monthly goals.

Translating goal in reversal is practical. Map out of the entire year and work backwards from the end goal. Let’s be backwards, asks this question: what do the most I want to be thankful for one year from now? Pen that down and it becomes a focus for at the new year.

While reverse-engineering end goals is a very practical and tactical advice; another reasonable goal has to be a specific and measurable goal. The XPrize founder, Peter Diamandis echoed, “you can’t improve anything if unmeasurable”. This will help to begin the year with purpose and clear direction by providing specific outcomes and timeline to achieve it. Outlines those what that means on a quarterly basis, monthly basis and weekly basis.

Trim that fat!

I need to refrain myself from getting into the new project. Starting new projects is fun, but could poisonous to productivity. I need to eliminate the excess, so could focus the things that give the bigger turnaround, and better in beneficial. Maybe shortly, I should start a “no-list” for 2017. I need to block out calendar time for my most important outcomes; e.g. vacations, fun and time of major business and creative projects.

So the game for this year is to record and track. I will start fresh – to journal my progress. This is the way that would help me to have the sense of fulfilling even more in the shorter term, in which, contribute to pushing to longer term goals. This journalling practice brings positivity to what I do and elevates the stamina and momentum to keep going. Journaling allows me to express gratitude and being thankful.

Let’s hope this is not the outcome


Multiple Git remotes repositories

Let say, you would like to make back up code to multiple repositories. For the example; one is Github and another is self hosted Gitlab.

git remote set-url --add --push origin git@git.nazreen.my:rained23/yosh.git
git remote set-url --add --push origin git@github.com:invoture/yosh.git

So when you push to origin, it will push to both repositories.

A git remote -v should reveal the actual URLs for all remotes.

git remote set-url --add --push all git://another/repo.git

How to change app icon in OSX

So I changed my Scrivener app icon. I found Scrivener icon is heavy and emotionally absurb to me, in which put mental state which I don’t fancy to get starting to write.

So how do we change an icon in OS X?

First, you need the icon file or image that you would like to use as logo. Apple have it own standard for icon, they called it as Apple Icon Image format or .icns.

I used an online converter to convert the icon into specific format; http://iconverticons.com/online/

Right click and Get info on the application (you have to do this on the Applications directory).

Drag the icon to the top left of the Window.

Change icon Scrinever OSX app.

Restart the application, or you can killall Dock with Terminal. The new icon will the there.

After change icon

How to restore the original icon? If you found this as mistake, you can click and delete the icon in Get Info.

Disclaimer; I found the icon online, on DeviantArt specifically. Credit icon to Smyf.