Charles Basenga Kiyanda

I’m now an engineering professor

Well an assistant one at least. I’m already writing grant proposals, so I guess that makes me a real prof nonetheless.


How to improve, as a foreign speaker, your written english.

I really, really, REALLY hope I got the commas right in the title. I’m a native French speaker and struggle to no end when writing documents in English. I’ve been looking for ways to improve my written English. Writing more often on this blog is, in part, an effort to achieve this goal.

My wife recently […]

API design

An interesting post on API design. Not so much technical information as reaffirming the value of being concise, consistent and predictable when designing interfaces.


After neglecting way too much in my life, I’ve finally defended my thesis. Being in the process of making final corrections, I thought I’d post here a couple of tricks I discovered along the way for the list of abbreviations and the list of symbols. If you’re using latex and (for abbreviations) linux, read on.

List […]

Please be aware the content you browse may be visible to passengers around you.

I keep complaining about every little thing around me whenever I travel by plane, but I think I secretly enjoy it. The long lines at security, the overpriced food, the delays (although this time, my first flight is on time), the multiple check points where you have to show every piece of ID you have. […]

Jamendo fun

I’ve been playing with Jamendo lately (anything not to write my thesis). Just found this today. A little bit of a strong autotune effect there and I can’t quite decide if that was intentional or not. Assuming it was, it’s an interesting sound. In the first song of the album “Broken Stereo”, the effect is […]

american healthcare debate

As a canadian citizen living in the US (and given the level of disinformation flying around), I feel it’s a public service to post a link to this blog post from an american woman living in the UK and telling her impression of the UK National Health Service.

wolfram alpha

Wolfram (Mathematica) is trying its hands at the “search engine” market. Essentially, I’d call that a “fact engine”. Basically, you put in something like “strength of hurricane katrina” and it returns all kinds of numbers and plots with the path and strength of the hurricane over time. At least, that’s what I understand it to […]

Travelling for free

The twitchhiker, found this through a news item on cyberpresse [french]. A man travelled for 30 days by leveraging his online contacts. He was following 5 rules, as follows:

can only accept offers from twitter users followign @twitchhiker. Can’t accept offers from a twitterers friend’s dad’s girlfriend
can only plan 3 days in advance
can only spend money […]

Behind-the-scenes pictures

Two very different sets of pictures.

Behind the scenes at netflix

Behind the scenes in Afghanistan.