Shu Uesugi

Shu Uesugi

About Me

I’m a designer/developer based in San Francisco Bay Area. As of February 2015, I work for EdSurge, an education technology company.

Besides that, I would struggle to say anything interesting about myself. I’ve suffered from varying levels of depression since early 2012, which made it challenging to do meaningful activities outside of work. I do think it’s important to be vulnerable and share this information publicly though, and for those of you who disagree, you should watch this TED talk.

Surprisingly, it’s still possible to help others while you’re in plight. 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.

Recently, I’ve begun to recover and started some side projects. I currently develop a beginner-friendly programming curriculum at ElectiveCode and share my knowledge on comparative education history at Edo (written in Japanese).

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.

If you’d like to hear from me when I release something interesting, you can sign up for my mailing list. I’ll send at most one email per month.

Contact Me

Feel free to follow me on Twitter at @chibicode or email me at I love random emails, and I’ll always reply.

You can also find me on:

My Old Blog

I write occasionally. My old blog can be found here.