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Matthew Hiller
Works at Dropbox, Inc.
Attended Yale University
Lives in New York, NY
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Matthew Hiller

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Shots taken on my hike yesterday from the top of Wildcat Peak in Tilden Park, to the north, south, east, and west. Also down to the plaque there, and a look back to Wildcat Peak from the paved trail leading back to the parking area. +Ting Chang​: I am taking you this way next time we are all in town. It was astonishing.

+faye steiner​
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I lived right there in Kensington while I was at Berkeley. Great running trails there too in the valleys. Kid's farm, swimming lake, etc too!!
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Dragon selfie!
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Happy new year !
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Protest appears to be on Bowery now. They were on 6th midafternoonish. I tried to get a Santa broette in the foreground of one shot; it's just so incongruous...
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General+Misc.  - 
 
My modes of transportation the last 7 days:

* bicycle
* NYC taxi
* airplane
* Uber car
* BART
* walking
* rental car
* SFO airtrain
* JFK airtrain
* Long Island Railroad
* NYC subway
* Metro North Railroad
* Private car

Flights covered the most distance, unsurprisingly, but cycling comes in second.

Even if you group all rail travel together, and, separately, all car travel together, cycling is still firmly in second place.
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Matthew Hiller

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I was out for a ride with my family midday today, with destinations in New Jersey; our usual route to the bridge is up Riverside Drive. We got to see a pretty righteous red light bust.

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Some context: RSD is the major on-road cycling route on the west side of Manhattan. Most of the intersections are T-intersections, with the drive overlooking a sharp downslope to the west. There are even some service roads alongside to the east, with pocket parks separating the service and main road. So in some spots, though not all, you get less than the 20 intersection-per-mile density that's typical of a north/south road in Manhattan.

Anyway, it's pretty standard cyclist practice to cautiously run red lights on RSD. It's especially prevalent southbound, where the only conflicting cars would be making west-to-south left turns and are easy to see coming. It's not so nice to do it badly, though; especially if it involves failure to yield to a pedestrian with right-of-way.

The intersection with West 145th Street merits more careful handling, though. Street View screenshot is below. 145th Street is two-way, and there are actually cars that can come from the west here, as this is the access drive for the bridge to Riverbank State Park, which sits atop a large sewage processing plant. Sight lines to and from the park road are particularly off-kilter. I'll tend to run it only if it's clearly deserted of cross-traffic, and even then only southbound, usually.

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So on our way uptown, we notice increased police cycling enforcement presence on the drive. This has been a thing lately, and there's also a century ride routing that way today, so that may have something to do with it. We get to the intersection of 145th, and happen to hit a fresh red light, with a line of westbound cars starting off through the intersection as we get there. Peeking around the corner, I see a manned NYPD cruiser surveying the intersection from 145th street, near the southeast corner.

Another guy -- wearing bike shorts, I think, riding a mountain bike, no helmet, and with at least one earbud in -- comes up on the intersection behind us. We'd passed him a couple of blocks back. Just before he crosses into the crosswalk, I shout "Police!", but he doesn't register it. Probably the earbud(s). He slows down, weaves gently between the westbound cars, and I see the cruiser's lights go on. Sure enough, they pull him over a couple of blocks ahead.

Yeah, that's pretty much dead-to-rights. It wasn't as though the intersection was empty and nobody was inconvenienced or potentially angered by this. I should figure out which precinct this was and send along kudos, 'cause it was totally a righteous bust. Way far from the ticky-tacky end of the spectrum.

+Ting Chang 
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Matthew Hiller

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恐怖!
 ·  Translate
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Getting up to some snow construction in Riverside Park slightly before sunset.

We couldn't find a second acorn cap, so read the snowman's expression as a wink.
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Dear +LegalZoom :

You wrote the following in a customer service email from October 22:

"Your Legal Advantage Plus membership has been canceled. We hope you were satisfied with the service and were able to take advantage of all your member benefits."

Oh, you mean the service that I was auto-opted-in to and specifically called to cancel within weeks after using LegalZoom to prepare a will? That I had to call to cancel because, cynically, you offer no online way to cancel it? The service that I have not logged in to once, or that you have even emailed me about once to remind me of its existence? The service that I only noticed was active by reviewing credit card transactions, and tracking them back historically? That I called my credit card company to charge back against you for recent months, and to block any further charges?

No, I was not satisfied with this service. As far as I'm concerned, LegalZoom, your business practices are deceptive, and this service can go die in a tire fire.
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Hi +LegalZoom ,

I will contact you by e-mail with more details about what went wrong in my particular case.

However that's resolved, though, I'm much more interested in the general problem. It appears that many of your customers (not necessarily all, but a significant number) are automatically enrolled in a program with a recurring monthly charge with no easy way to cancel. This is what I have a beef with.

Do you know the scene in Bowling for Columbine where Michael Moore, the director, brings a couple of survivors of the Columbine shootings along to Kmart headquarters to ask for a refund on the bullets still inside their bodies? That wasn't really about getting a refund; that was about changing corporate policy. Not that the magnitude of my victimization is in any way similar, but the same thinking applies here.
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Matthew Hiller

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Do you notice when apparently able-bodied people exit from the front door of an MTA bus rather than the rear?

I'll do it myself sometimes, but only if I've already seen that my stop is empty or there are otherwise extenuating circumstances. (The bus is jam-packed and I'm much closer to the front door, for example.)
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This is infuriating
20%
This is a slight annoyance
20%
I've never really noticed
60%
Nobody should find it questionable
0%
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I go with option 2 here, and I try to temper the annoyance by bearing in mind that not all disabilities are readily apparent and I shouldn't assume.
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Riding Safety  - 
 
A thought:

Let's say that you're riding along on a MUP, and you pass another rider a bit on the close side.

The other rider says "hey, [your pass was] a little bit close there."

If your response is "ride further to the right, you prick," well, my conclusion is that you're projecting. (Psychological sense of the term intended.)

Ftr, I was 2/3rds to the right of my lane, and a bollard to my left ended up requiring that the pass be either very close, or alternately, generously far. Even if I had been riding entirely mid-lane on this part of the MUP, though, it would have been completely reasonable.
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My response would be "my bad, sorry" on the way to work and "#@$! U" in the way back :-)
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People
In his circles
239 people
Have him in circles
240 people
Tomás Morgado's profile photo
Jacky Schuler's profile photo
Vlad Schogol's profile photo
Cynthia Jung's profile photo
Mike Epstein's profile photo
DimitrisFarm's profile photo
Buğra Kara's profile photo
Sam Reisner's profile photo
Elan Dekel's profile photo
Education
  • Yale University
    BSCS, 1996 - 2000
  • Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
    MSCS, 2003 - 2004
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Relationship
Married
Other names
If Ting has made a hotel reservation for us, I go by Mr. Chang
Story
Tagline
Software Engineer, Dad, and Bicycle Adventurer
Work
Occupation
Software Engineer
Employment
  • Dropbox, Inc.
    Software Engineer, 2015 - present
    (note that my start date is imminent - like, 3 days in the future - as of when I made this edit)
  • Google
    Software Engineer, 2005 - 2015
  • Intel
    Contractor, 2003 - 2003
  • Red Hat
    GCC Engineer, 2000 - 2002
  • IBM
    Summer Intern, 1999 - 1999
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
New York, NY
Previously
Croton, NY - New Haven, CT - Sunnyvale, CA
Links
I went here as part of an office outing with colleagues visiting from out of town, knowing that the restaurant had a reputation for being interesting, New York-ey (though not in an actual Chinatown sort of way), and good for groups. Service was fine and the decor is very striking. The food itself -- with the possible exception of Joe Ng's dim sum dishes, though -- does not aim for authentic Chinese flavors. Rather, it takes American/Americanized Chinese Restaurant recipes and executes them in an upscale setting. Generally, execution and ingredients are good, but it's American Chinese food executed reasonably well, and comes across as somewhat subdued overall. When we sat down, a colleague asked me if the restaurant is at all like a P.F. Chang's. I said "no, not really", and I stand by that, but the at the same time the experience isn't totally dissimilar to P.F. Chang's either.
• • •
Food: GoodDecor: Very GoodService: Very Good
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago
I grew up in Croton and visit my parents here on a pretty frequent basis. The Black Cow is a quality establishment and something interesting to go to/to do in a town that has a shortage of places to just hang out. Quality of the coffee is generally pretty good (certainly much better than Starbucks, probably not as good as, say, Oren's Daily Roast), atmosphere is good, chances of running into an acquaintance (for townies like me, at least) very good, etc. Full disclosure -- a friend from high school is one of the managers there.
• • •
Public - 7 years ago
reviewed 7 years ago
2 reviews
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