Hello and welcome to my blog!

I’m Michael Shilman, a 37-year-old computer science researcher turned entrepreneur. After a six month mega-honeymoon, I landed in Seoul, where I’m working on a technology-heavy finance startup project. I also drink a lot of coffee and worry about globalization in my spare time. As a student of life, I am always looking for inspiration and learnings wherever I can find them. Sitting at the site of the Han River Miracle, among the most aggressive industrializations in history, I don’t have to look far. This is my place to noodle on all these things.

Before this, I built software to make sense of the collective intelligence in user-generated content in forums, blogs, and online product reviews. My first attempt, ChatterPop, generated dashboards of consumer sentiment for product managers inside consumer electronics companies. We were a couple years early – before Twitter and Facebook were household names – and couldn’t figure out how to make a business out of it. I pivoted and applied the same techniques to Wize, which set out to be the user-generated Consumer Reports for the web. Wize was acquired by comparison shopping leader Nextag before it could come anywhere close to reaching that goal. Along the way I became very interested in analytics, agile product development, product design, crowdsourcing, game mechanics, personal metrics, and lots of other concepts that are also buzzwords.

Earlier in my career, during my PhD at UC Berkeley and for five years Microsoft Research I developed a variety of software and techniques for recognizing, interpreting, and interacting with handwritten text, freeform notes, mathematical equations, diagrams, document annotations, and various other sketched content. I was obsessed with the idea of a digital replacement for my clipboard. If the iPad had a faster sampling rate, I’d be tempted to pick up where I left off.


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