Shu Uesugi

I'm a designer/developer based in San Francisco Bay Area. I currently work for EdSurge, an education technology company. My twitter account is @chibicode.

I consider myself mediocre at designing, coding, and writing, but I do enjoy them. I like to chat with people about CSS (attended CSSConf in 2013 and CSSConf.EU in 2014) and about Ruby (attended RubyKaigi in 2012, RubyConf in 2012, and GoGaRuCo in 2014). I don't have anything novel to say in English, but in Japanese, I've written several articles that got 20K+ pageviews each.

Since early 2012, I've personally advised a lot of people from Japan (where I'm originally from) who aspire to pursue a career outside of Japan. Most notably, since early 2013, I've been mentoring my girlfriend in coding and design. In under 2 years, she's transformed her career from being a salesperson in Tokyo to being a UI designer/developer in Canada.

If I were to describe the characteristics of my work, I'd say that I'm obsessed about the "failure cases". For example, I love writing about historical events where poor judgements lead to disaster, more so than writing about breakthroughs in politics/technology/etc. When designing user interfaces, I like to ponder on the most pathological steps users could possibly take. When developing educational materials, the persona I use is someone who's extremely confused about the subject. (Maybe that's why I won the best TA award at Carnegie Mellon's CS department). I'm in the bottom quartile for almost everything I do, and I believe that the world needs more innovators who solve the needs of someone like me.


Feel free to email me at I love random emails, and I'll always reply.

You can also find me on:


I also blog on Tumblr. Updated more frequently but with less substance - more like a collection of blurbs.

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japanese essays