Sunday, December 30, 2007

End of year review

IMG_0054, originally uploaded by eesley.

The photo is one of the quirky spots at MIT where this creature is on the floor in one of the hallways. No explanation....

I've been updating some of the people I consider mentors on my progress and thought I might as well post it hear as it's one take on the year 2007 in review for me - at least from a career point of view.

My long term goal is still to be an entrepreneur and I'm now in the middle of the 3rd year of the PhD at MIT Sloan. Last January I started working part-time with Lux Capital, a nanotech focused VC firm.

In June I went to China for a month as part of my dissertation research on technology entrepreneurship in China.

At the end of the summer an opportunity arose to work part-time with Flagship Ventures concentrating in the medical devices and life science area so I've been working with them on due diligence on medical device deals since then. I've really been enjoying it. I am hoping to move to the West Coast at some point if I can.

I'll keep this short for now.

All the best for the New Year!


Christmastime fun

IMG_0014, originally uploaded by eesley.

Look carefully, in the photo we managed to catch this soap bubble that somehow formed on the top of my glass mug (how does that happen?)!

I went back to Marietta, OH for Christmas last week and in the process managed to finish the book Making PCR which is a fascinating account of the invention and commercialization of Polymerase Chain Reaction technology. I also got half way through Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut ... hoping to finish that one over the next couple days. I also ate lots of good food, caught up with a few friends at the Marietta Brewing Co., saw my parents, and had lunch with Terri Morris who used to work for Gerald Chan who I met in Shanghai back in June.

I'm headed out to the Silicon Valley area New Year's day. Hopefully the snow we're supposed to get in Boston over the next couple of days won't pose a problem. Not too much other news except that I got a new office with a window at work, woo-hoo!

Happy New Year everyone!

Sunday, December 16, 2007


I have learned, that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.

– Henry David Thoreau

Game on! Hackers play with MIT - MIT News Office

Game on! Hackers play with MIT - MIT News Office

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Connor Desai - SEATTLE, Washington - Jazz / Indie / Folk - Connor Desai - SEATTLE, Washington - Jazz / Indie / Folk -

I recently reconnected (via Facebook) with a good friend from my freshman year at Duke, Connor Briggs (now Desai). I had always known her as having an amazing voice and great guitar skills from the impromptu performances she would put on in dorm rooms and at open mic nights in Durham. Now she has recorded an album!

I jumped at the chance to buy it from the iTunes Music Store and have been listening to it almost non-stop (alternating with the amazing Diana Krall Christmas Album). Check it out! or iTunes. Those with Rhapsody accounts, you can now find her on their roster.

She won a 2007 Top CD award from and they describe the album below:

This smoky-voiced jazz/pop siren stayed in my CD player for months. My toes melted into the floor each time I heard that croon drift out of my speakers. She gets edgy and raw sometimes, not adverse to dropping an F bomb here and there, but she can also slide into Radio-Friendly Land without compromising that spirited attitude. A must for anyone with a soul. (Reviewed by Jennifer Layton)

Friday, December 7, 2007


Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes!

It was great to hear from you all! Hope to see everyone in person and catch up sometime soon.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Thanksgiving weekend thoughts

DSC03212, originally uploaded by eesley.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Emily Dickinson

Yesterday I went to Amherst, MA and visited the Eric Carle Museum and also the home (and now museum of) Emily Dickinson.

In case (like me) it's been many years since reading Emily Dickinson in school, below is one of her 1800+ poems.

If I can stop one Heart from breaking
I shall not live in vain
If I can ease one Life the Aching
Or cool one Pain

Or help one fainting Robin
Unto his Nest again
I shall not live in Vain.
- Emily Dickinson

Thursday, November 22, 2007


I'm going to start sounding like a Tim Ferriss groupie or something, which I am really not. But he does have a nice post up on appreciation vs. achievement. Excerpt below.

Thich Nhat Hanh, the Buddhist monk and zen teacher once nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Martin Luther King, Jr., has a knack for making the esoteric understandable.

In discussing what some call “present state awareness”–experiencing and savoring the present—he offers a simple parable:

Let’s say that you want to eat a peach for dessert one evening, but you decide to only allow yourself this luxury after washing the dishes. If, while washing the dishes, all you think of is eating the peach, what will you be thinking of when you eat the peach?

The clogged inbox, that difficult conversation you’ve been putting off, tomorrow’s to-do list?

The peach is eaten but not enjoyed, and so on we continue through life, victims of a progressively lopsided culture that values achievement over appreciation. But let’s get specific.

If we define “achievement” as obtaining things we desire (whether raises, relationships, cars, pets, or otherwise) that have the potential to give us pleasure, let’s define “appreciation” as our ability to get pleasure out of those things. To focus on the former to the exclusion of the latter is like valuing cooking over eating.

� Don’t Like Meditation? Try Gratitude Training. (Plus: Follow-up to “Testing Friends” Firestorm)


Instead of V for Vendetta, I watched a Frontline PBS documentary on the Darfur genocide last night. Especially after having recently watched Hotel Rwanda, it was very moving. Having spent time there, I'm usually not as stridently critical of China as many are, however, I have to say that it does seem that China should really be doing much more to end the genocide. The campaign against the Beijing Olympics seems to be the only thing that can influence them on this issue.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Holiday blogging

The holiday break is a good time to blog.

The part of Thanksgiving that I like is mainly the food, but also the idea of remembering what you're grateful for and I think cultivating appreciation is definitely a good thing to try to do.

I'm grateful for all the friends that I have been able to keep up with over the years. Also, for the opportunity to be in grad school. It's a great experience to be done with classes and have time to focus on research and other activities with independence to decide how to spend my time.

I have a few upcoming trips which I'm looking forward to:

Dec. 20-26th - back to Marietta for Christmas
Jan. 1-6th - San Francisco to visit start-ups and friends there.
Jan. 24-29th - Duke, to be on the entrepreneurship panel of the Alumni Career Conference.

Now to take a break and watch "V for Vendetta".

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Power of Maniacal Determination

Achieving the Impossible

This is a great post.


Connecting the article in the last post and the link to the happiness article above I ask the simple question:

What kind of life would an obsession with finding/generating real happiness create?

Thursday, November 8, 2007


Bright Atlanta, originally uploaded by Nrbelex.

I'm headed to GA Tech this weekend for a conference there. Apparently Atlanta is having a bad drought so I'm going to stick a bottle of water in my checked bag to try to help them out a bit. :)

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Red Sox

Photo_102507_001, originally uploaded by eesley.

The Prudential building the other night when the Red Sox were playing. I was on my way to the Boston Symphony Orchestra when I looked up and saw this.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Photo_101107_001, originally uploaded by eesley.

I haven't had much time to blog recently between writing my dissertation, being teaching assistant for a class, trying to have a bit of computer-free time every day and my new part-time job . . .

. . . with Flagship Ventures.

The photo is of my desk there. Here's a bit about Flagship below. I'm focusing on medical devices there and hoping to identify some market opportunities of my own.

Flagship Ventures is an early-stage venture capital firm focused on creating, financing, and building innovative companies in the Life Science and Technology sectors. Headquartered in Cambridge, MA, Flagship Ventures was founded in 1999 and manages $700 million in capital. Prior to its founding, Flagship's principals were involved as founders or investors in over 100 firms including: Adolor, AltaVista, Anesta, Antigenics, Aspect Medical, Astral Point, Celera Genomics, ChemGenics Pharmaceuticals, Color Kinetics, Chantry Networks, Cytyc, DataSage, Exact Sciences, IDEXX, PerSeptive Biosystems, Somatogen, Telecorp PCS and TripAdvisor.

The Flagship investment team consists of 10 professionals and is led by co-founders Noubar Afeyan and Ed Kania. Complementing our internal team is our extensive network of academic and industrial advisors who are actively engaged in evaluating and helping develop our new ventures. Extending over a period of 20 years, our entrepreneurship and investment experience comes from founding over 30 successful new ventures while funding and building over 100 more.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

if you're on fire..., originally uploaded by superlocal.

a stolen moment of leisure, originally uploaded by GooseGoddessS.


I got an email this morning for a "stress-reduction class at MIT" (contradiction in terms, anyone?). That combined with the talk by Dan Gilbert (whose book Stumbling into Happiness is a must read) and the excellent talk on "how to achieve your childhood dreams" which I posted above gave me a great chance to think (yet again) about the choices we make about how to live our lives.

I have often expressed that I feel there is some tension between cultivating the kind of calm, content, peaceful, synthetic happiness, happy with the way things are . . . school of thought and the "life-hacker", squeeze every moment out of life, really change the world, burn ever brighter, life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all . . . school of thought. I find my life alternating at moments between the two and when I'm at either extreme, often idealizing the other pole. I do really think there is something to both. On the one hand, I can look back at times when I can really relate to how it's only when you're doing so much that you go through each day scared to death that you really grow and learn and push your boundaries. There is an exhilaration and a real sense of accomplishment once coming through a time like that. On the other hand, while there is a certain high from the adrenalin and sense of self-importance of being busy, I see the results in myself and friends of constant stress over a long period of time. So while there are advantages to each side, there are also drawbacks. If generated for too long, peace and calm, at least for me, quickly lead to boredom. Being stressed though leads to burnout, colds/flu, and lack of real fulfillment regardless of external accomplishment. Finding a razor's edge of balance between the two is not easy though.

Now that I am done with classes and have perhaps the largest amount of independence and control over my time ever, I have a lot of freedom to determine how my day is spent. It does seem though that drifting back and forth across these poles and reserving certain parts of the day or of the week for calm/peace is the way to go rather than the conventional wisdom of finding some kind of balance or going all towards one pole or the other...

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Devendra Banhart

Devendra Banhart, originally uploaded by Tim Broddin.

I saw Devendra Barnhart play last night at the Roxy in Boston. Unlike Spangley, I don't get to see much live music these days.

I enjoyed the show overall. Devendra's music is very beautiful at times and has been labeled "freak folk". To me it was somewhat like putting Bob Dylan and The Doors in a blender. His voice has such character I only wish that the acoustics had been different to make it easier to hear his lyrics. More acoustic and less of the high energy, loud guitars would have suited my tastes better.

His lyrics tend towards the poetic . . . there was an interview with a poet on TV tonight who said he was teaching a class and a student asked:

"What is the purpose of poetry?" A young woman in the front raised her hand and when called on responded simply . . .

"To remind us of our humanity . . . "

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Boston Skyline

DSC06196, originally uploaded by eesley.

From a recent trip to the Boston Harbor Islands.

Boston/Cambridge in the summertime is really fantastic . . . I'm starting to dread the approaching winter while simultaneously trying to enjoy the fall and start of a new semester where I get to focus on my research rather than spending a lot of time on coursework.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

War Story: Ian Jennings

Ian's a good friend of mine from high school who I haven't seen in a few years.

War Story: Ian Jennings: " Aug. 3, 2007 01:14 PM"

The images come in bits and pieces, snippets of time in a place far, far away. "I see snapshots, like if you looked at a film strip," says Ian Jennings. "Some parts feel very vivid, some parts i don't think about it at all."

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Too Many Chefs: Thai-influenced Tofu and Basil with Coconut Rice

Too Many Chefs: Thai-influenced Tofu and Basil with Coconut Rice Thai-influenced Tofu and Basil with Coconut Rice 1 pound firm tofu (not silken) 2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided 1 tablespoon nam pla (fish sauce) 2 tablepoon soy sauce, divided 1 tablespoon "Rooster" hot sauce (Huy Fong Sriracha Garlic Hot Sauce) 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon lime juice 2 cans coconut milk, divided 1/2 can medium grain rice (about a cup) 1/2 pound mushrooms, sliced 1 medium white or yellow onion 5 jalapenos 1 red bell pepper 6 cloves garlic 10-12 basil leaves, chopped rough 1/4 cup chopped clilantro

Monday, August 13, 2007

Feeling Rich?

, originally uploaded by -gadgetgirl-.

Millionaires Who Don't Feel Rich

This New York Times article has created quite a buzz recently. It touches on some very interesting issues I think even though much has already been written on these topics for ages.

The article is written in such a way that I think most readers probably read the article and scoffed at these spoiled brats who can't seem to be satisfied despite having more than most of us dream about. Probably some people then made the connection that I think the author intended to extend this to their own lives. Even the average American has way more wealth than the average human being, yet is still in the "rat race", far from being satisfied or content.

A book that I read recently Stumbling on Happiness by Harvard professor Daniel Gilbert discusses the happiness research within psychology. The article however doesn't mention any of the psychological reasons why this is likely to happen. Things like habituation - the tendency to become accustomed to our experiences so that with time they no longer provide as much happiness as they once did (like eating 7 apple pies in a row). Or as Gilbert points out, our inability to accurately predict what will make us happy in the future.

However I think the deeper issue is that the article (or most people's responses to it) doesn't really question whether, or in what sense, happiness should be the ultimate goal of life. I'm not trying to advocate some dreary type of work ethic. I'm just saying that it seemed to me that if we imagine these poor unsatisfied millionaires working 70-80 hours and making tens of millions more, then perhaps at least some of them will give some of their money either to worthy causes or to their families which . . . in the end . . . may lead to a more satisfying, fulfilling life, perhaps even to more happiness, than if they had retired to Montana and gone sailing or on cruises with their 5 million for the remainder of their lives.

Sunday, August 5, 2007


DSC04542.JPG, originally uploaded by Michael Sieburg.

Mike has been in Istanbul and posting some great photos.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Home Page

I learned how to make Tub Tim Krob today thanks to the Thai Students at MIT club.

Sunday, July 22, 2007


#28_sunset, originally uploaded by eesley.

The photo is one that I took a couple of years ago, but I was reminded of it yesterday evening as I decided to take a walk across the Mass Ave. bridge to check out the sunset.

When I was spending a semester in India for a while we made it a point to try to see the sunset everyday.

I think I'm going to try to make this a daily event again (at least over the summer) since the sunset really was spectacular yesterday and it's such a nice way to spend 20 minutes in the evening.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

How to succeed in business: Meditate - July 23, 2007

How to succeed in business: Meditate - July 23, 2007

(Fortune Magazine) -- The crowd of Harvard Business School alums who gathered at their reunion to hear networking expert Keith Ferrazzi speak earlier this summer might have expected to pick up strategies on how to work a room, remember people's names, or identify mentors. But tactical skills, it turns out, aren't what turned Ferrazzi into a bestselling author or sought-after speaker.

Instead Ferrazzi let his fellow alums in on a little secret. The key to connecting, he told the group, is "not being an a**hole." And the most effective path he's found? Meditation. Exercise and prayer work too, he said, but meditation has been so effective that he now spends ten days every year at a silent meditation retreat. In other words, the man whose latest book is "Never Eat Alone" credits much of his success to alone time.
Students meditate at a Goenka center in Massachusetts.
Ferrazzi clears his mind on the terrace of his room at the W hotel in New York City.
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Meditation has been around for thousands of years, but not so long ago extended retreats or programs that banned speech were reserved for aging rock stars or college students on the ten-year plan. And while the practice isn't exactly mainstream in corporate America, more and more executives are open to anything that might help them thrive in - or temporarily disconnect from - today's BlackBerry-addled ADD business climate.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Volunteer Vacations in Vietnam |

Volunteer Vacations in Vietnam |

A Small Gesture: Eyewitness Voluntourism in Vietnam
More than 30 years after the last U.S. helicopter departed from the embassy in Ho Chi Minh City, a young American expatriate does his part to make up for his country’s tragic legacy in Vietnam.

Saturday, July 7, 2007


My apologies to everyone who I spammed with Doostang today.

I logged in to check out the service and tried out their feature to log into your email to see who is already on Doostang. I selected a few people to connect with and instead everyone in my contact list got sent an invitation! Highly annoying!! Sorry!

Picasa Web Albums - Meera - Blum Center I...

Meera has some photos from Uganda up.

Picasa Web Albums - Meera - Blum Center

Small world

PA310003, originally uploaded by eesley.

It's a small world, Sara Jewett, a friend from Duke recently got in touch with my friend Mike Sieburg via linkedin. Here's a photo of Sara and I at a Halloween Party in Durham, NC years ago.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

China photos are posted

IMG_1477, originally uploaded by eesley.

Click here to see the rest of the photos.

Monday, June 25, 2007


Yanbo and I had a great time in X'an. We interviewed a government official at the Xi'an Business Incubation Center / Pioneering Park Development Center. We also interviewed Wu Wang President and Founder of Xi'an Landsea Sci-tech Enterprise Co.

Those were our last interviews together so we spent the rest of the time touring Xi'an. We went to Hua'Qing'Chi or the Beautiful Clear Bath, the most famous concubine's bath-house, the Terra Cotta soldiers of the Qin Dynasty, the Forest of Stone Pillars, the Big Goose Pagoda, and some great restaurants along a Muslim street. We stayed at the Bell Tower Hotel and ended the last night with a dinner with a professor at a local university there.

The Goose Pagoda is in honor of Xuan Zang, a monk. "In 652, Xuan Zang returned from India where he had spent 18 years studying Buddhism. When he returned he brought manuscripts of Buddhist texts to translate into Chinese. He must have had an excellent advance agent, because the emperor sent a huge escort to meet his party and the entire city celebrated his return. The crown prince Li Zhi had built the surrounding temple in 648 and dedicated it to his mother. The Big Goose pagoda was added for the manuscripts brought back by the travelers. When Xuan Zang moved into the temple there was another feast and celebration. Xuan Zang was the equivalent of an astronaut returning to a ticker tape parade. His journey was at least as dangerous and certainly took longer."

Back at Tsinghua

After our trip to Xi'an, (details to follow), I'm now back at Tsinghua University, where my trip began, though staying at a different hotel on campus (the former residence of one of the Tsinghua Presidents.

I just met up with Matt Waters after an email introduction from Mike and we had a good dinner at a Buddhist vegetarian restaurant. Although its still as heavily polluted as when I left it's kind of nice to be back in Beijing where I know my way around a bit. After so much sight-seeing it's nice to be back on a univ. campus. Tomorrow however I'm resuming the touring with a trip to the Forbidden City. Photos will come soon after I return to the US on Weds.

A little trivia for my readers: Tsinghua is the Chinese university where Vice President Al Gore lectured at in China in his documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. It also boasts among its alumni the co-inventor of the birth control pill.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Headed to Xi'an

Tomorrow morning we are leaving Shanghai and heading to Xi'an by plane. I'm amazed that domestic flights in China can be booked a day ahead of time.

Yesterday I met with Gerald Chan. Gerald Chan co-founded Morningside in 1986. As a privately-held investment group, Morningside is active in both private equity and venture capital investments in North America, Europe and Asia. The group began its China investments in 1992 and remains active in China's internet, media and life science sectors.

Dr. Chan is currently a board member of Hang Lung Group as well as several biotechnology companies including Metacure, Critical Biologics, and Vaccine Technologies Inc. He is a trustee of Fudan University in Shanghai and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. He received his BS and MS degrees in Engineering from UCLA, a master's degree in Medical Radiological Physics and a Doctor of Science degree in Radiation Biology from Harvard University. He completed his post-doctoral training at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

Xian, the eternal city, records the great changes of the Chinese nation just like a living history book. Called Chang'an in ancient times, Xian is one of the birthplaces of the ancient civilization in the Yellow River Basin area of the country. During Xian's 3,100 year development, 13 dynasties such as Western Zhou (11th century BC - 771 BC), Qin (221 BC - 206 BC), Western Han (206 BC - 24 AD) and Tang (618 - 907) placed their capitals here. So far, Xian enjoys equal fame with Athens, Cairo, and Rome as one of the four major ancient civilization capitals.

Xian is the capital of Shaanxi province, located in the southern part of the Guanzhong Plain. With the Qinling Mountains to the south and the Weihe River to the north, it is in a favorable geographical location surrounded by water and hills.

Monday, June 18, 2007


Well, I managed to catch my first case of traveler's illness since being here today and had to cancel our last meeting today. I also committed my first social faux pas the day we left Beijing. I had bought several items from the MIT Coop before leaving Cambridge to give as gifts for people helping us out with the interviews and survey. As everything is overpriced at the Coop this wasn't an easy task so one of the more inexpensive items I picked up was a couple of packs of MIT branded pencils. I gave these to 2 of the younger alumni association staff members and then only later found out that pencils are a really crappy gift in China where apparently pencils are extremely inexpensive. Oh well, you live and you learn.

We've been hearing some very funny analogies and sayings from some of the Chinese investors and entrepreneurs. I'll try to remember and recount some of them here. Probably the most ironic meeting we had was the day before we left Beijing when we met with a Haidan District government official who is also a Venture Capital investor! Again today we met with a VC firm that was initially funded by the government.

Friday, June 15, 2007


I made it to Shanghai late last night. We took the fast train from Beijing to Shanghai to see some of the countryside and other cities on the way. My first impressions of Shanghai are its impressive size, number of skyscrapers and busy nightlife. However I've only seen a tiny slice of the city so far.

Sunday night we're going to a tea house where a lot of Tsinghua alumni are gathering to talk about entrepreneurship - perfect for us!

From Destination 360:
Fifteen million people call Shanghai China home. For years it was the country's biggest and busiest port, the gateway to and from the West - not to mention the Yangtze River, which meets the ocean in the outskirts of the city. Because of this, the city is the chief metropolitan base in the country, its aging streets greeting millions of travelers per year just as they have done decade after decade.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Hooking folks up

Today Yanbo is headed to meet an entrepreneur in automotive design and I am headed to lunch with Josh Ding who I met yesterday fromt he Larson Group and an American professor who I met here my 2nd day. The professor has been teaching at Tsinghua and having the students develop a mobile application for guiding foreign visitors around Beijing during the Olympics. It's something that I think will be badly needed even though I'm not sure of its prospects for making money. Anyway, David asked me for advice and told me about what he'd developed and it seemed that Josh had made similar investments before so I introduced the two of them and we're all meeting for lunch at a Beijing restaurant today.

In the afternoon Yanbo and I meet up again to meet with a Tsinghua alum who has started a chip company here.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

More of Beijing

Sunday evening I went to a restaurant on the East Bank of the Qianhai lake in Beijing, close to the trendy Hao Hai area. I had a great dinner but learned an important lesson in eating Chinese cuisine . . . when eating really spicy food with you hands, you must wash your hands FIRST before using the facilities and then again after . . . whoops, lesson learned.

Today we had a morning meeting with Jun Lu, the entrepreneur behind Tongcard, a card-based loyalty kind of program for stores here in China. At noon we had lunch with a female entrepreneur named Echo who started "Build-a-Bear" and got acquired. She's the first successful woman entrepreneur we met. In the afternoon we met with the founder of a real estate and consulting firm BA Consulting who was particularly insightful about business venturing in China. Tomorrow we meet with a couple of investors in Beijing.

Sunday, June 10, 2007


It's been a busy week of meetings, too many to report on in particular. We met with Charles Zhang, founder of on Friday and with a Chinese VC investing in clean energy. On Friday night I went with an American professor to the Hou Hai area for dinner and a couple drinks. Saturday two students took me to the Summer Palace which was a really amazing place. In the evening we went for Peking duck with Harold Chen, a good friend from Duke. He took me back to the migrant worker community that Dream Corps is setting up a library in this summer.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


Today we had two meetings. One in the morning with Chen Cheng founder of UPS Technologies, a software outsourcing firm. The one in the afternoon was in southern Beijing and with the founder of PacLanta, the #1 firm in terms of market share for children's clothing in China. Both are pretty successful entrepreneurs.

Tomorrow we have a busy day with 4 meetings scheduled including a dinner meeting with a Beijing VC.

The pollution was pretty bad today and it was very hot so I am countering that by eating lots of ice cream and great watermelon!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007


Today we met with two successful internet entrepreneurs and had lunch with the second at a very good restaurant. In the afternoon we met with the Director of the Tsinghua Science Park and Venture Capital firm.

Tomorrow we have another very full day of several interviews with Tsinghua alumni. China is really booming and its inspirational to hear the stories of these entrepreneurs. It really seems that in recent years entrepreneurship in China is very similar to that in the US with more and more high tech entrepreneurs.

Monday, June 4, 2007


I've been in Beijing 3 days now。 Great so far, but very polluted。 We met with the
Tech. Licensing office and 2 alumni entrepreneurs today. 6 meetings tomorrow!


It's not too flattering but here is a BW article。

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Grandma and a trip to China

Went back to Marietta this past weekend for Grandma Eesley's funeral.

I haven't blogged much recently since I've been preparing for General Exams. Fortunately I passed them last week so I'm done with classes and can focus on research now and getting the thesis done!

I'm headed to China (Beijing, Shanghai, Kunming, and Xi'an) tomorrow morning until June 27th. I'll be blogging the trip here.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Blogging Uganda

Meera's blogging from Uganda . . . great stuff.

Before I start with ICT information, I must digress into talking about my visit to my old village-- I found that it, too, relates to our project...The 8 hour bus ride to Bunena quickly squelched the utopian vision I had of Uganda-- after two hours of waiting in the bus park, we finally ambled off for the dusty ride, complete with the requisite snake oil salesman peddling his wares and giving his (apparently convincing) salespitch for the first 20 minutes of the ride (he had at least 10 takers!) However, arriving in the village erased all memories of the bus ride-- I was greeted by Stella (my best friend in the village from Peace Corps) and her (now enlarged) crew of about 15 kids! It was great. The neighbors came over and we ate all of my favorites-- matooke, beans, groundnut sauce, millet, rice... the even baked a cake! (Surely a double gesture, for I had taught them how to bake cakes during my stay there.) That night, after a warm bucket bath under the stars, I slept well.

Blum Center Fellows in Uganda!

Blogged with Flock

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Map of Online Communities

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Duke 2002 Reunion

IMG_1229.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.

I went back to Duke last weekend for my 5-year reunion. It was fun . . . probably the last fun I will have until General Exams are over at the end of next month!!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Paris - March 2007 Spring Break

IMG_1171.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.


Since last year I spent Spring Break exploring Boston and Baker Library, this year I decided to visit my good friends Sylvain and Colette in Paris, France. After an overnight flight, Sylvain picked me up at the airport and took me to his flat. We stopped on the way to pick up the first of many pastries I would eat in the days to come.

I spent my first 4 hours in Paris sleeping off the jet lag and lack of sleep from the overnight flight. Then Colette met me at the closest Metro stop and we walked in the drizzle down to Le Siene river and over to one of the islands in the middle. We had a tea to warm up in the St. German area before returning to meet Sylvain at his apartment. The three of us went to a restaurant serving food characteristic of Leon, which is the area of France Colette is from. After a nice three course French meal I was ready to go back and sleep for the night.

Sunday morning I met up with Colette and her friend Remi for a jog around one of the large parks in Western Paris. We met at the Metro stop right by the Eiffel Tower. After lunch we met up again and toured the Rodin museum, afterwards stopping at a bakery owned by Colette’s friend for some macaroons (not the french spelling). Sunday evening I went with Sylvain to the Le Train Bleu, Gare de Lyon train station restaurant for a glass of wine. We went from there to a Middle Eastern restaurant.

The next day I decided to take a walk around the city. I started from a Metro stop near the Louvre and walked around the courtyards there then up to the Arc de Trimphe, an arc that is one of many landmarks in Paris often seen in movies. From there I caught the Metro to Montmartre, an area that both Sylvain and Corinne had recommended as one of their favorite parts of Paris. I walked up the hill to the Sacré Cœur and then just around all the shops and had lunch in an off-the-beaten-path restaurant.

Montmartre is famous for painters, artists, and the adjacent red light district and sex shops, so after lunch I wandered around that area a little bit. Next it was time to meet Sylvain at the opera. I decided to sell the tickets since Yoojin wasn’t there to accompany me and joined Sylvain for a surprise birthday party for his friend.

On Tuesday I went to Colette and Remi’s lab and after searching Wikipedia to read about all the places I had been visiting went out for another walk around that section of the city. We went to lunch at a nice café and then to get tea at a mosque. From there it was on to get what Sylvain says is the best ice cream in the city. Next we went to Notre Dame and from there past Sorbonne and the Pantheon. Finally we stopped at a bar near their lab for a glass of wine and I went back to Sylvain’s apartment to make dinner and rest a bit.

Wednesday I took the train to visit Kevin Boudreau at HEC. He's a friend from my department at MIT and we had a nice chat about research and his life in France. He drove me to Versailles to the Château de Versailles and I walked around there for a couple of hours. They were cleaning the outside so it looked nice, but lots of scaffolding. Then I walked around Versailles a bit and sampled some of the pastries there before heading on the train back to Paris for a very nice dinner at Colette's apartment with a couple of her friends. As you can see from the photos, she has an amazing view of the Eiffel Tower. In addition to the food, wine and cheese, we also got to sample some strong liquor that her grandparents made.

Thursday Colette's friend Alexi gave me a tour of some areas of Paris I hadn't visited yet including the Modern Art Museum. We had some crepes and apple cider, spotted a famous French actor and then I headed to Sylvain's office to meet up with him for dinner. His brother met up with us and we walked up to the park in Belleville. Sylvain organized a very nice dinner with several of his friends, Corinne, and Colette. It was a nice last evening in Paris before I caught a flight back Friday morning.

Photos are here.
I didn't take too many since Flickr has a nice collection of Paris photos already.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


IMG_1169.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.

I visited Mike and Alison at their place in Brooklyn the other weekend. Mike just got into grad school at Columbia.

Thursday, March 15, 2007



Anoopa Sharma - Two years since, Anoopa's website is still active with posts and comments, a girls school has been built in her honor in Atrauli, and I will remember her fondly when I return to Duke in April.

Photo Album

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Thursday, March 1, 2007

Beijing - Temple of Heaven

Beijing - Temple of Heaven, originally uploaded by Night-Shade.

Today I booked a ticket to Beijing to visit Tsinghua May 31st - June 27th, 2007.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

MIT grad student party

DSC_3945, originally uploaded by dayvidday.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Sanders Theatre - where I saw the Boston Chamber Music Society last night with Yoojin.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

MIT from the prudential tower

New Semester

Well, spring semester starts here next week (already started last week for my HBS classes) so I'll get super busy once again. Plus, I am taking my General Exams in May so I'll be preparing for that. But I'm looking forward to it since it's my last semester of classes (ever!) and assuming I pass Generals . . . I'll finally be a 'Master'.

Just have to survive the freezing cold here for now . . .

Blogged with Flock

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Pizza making

IMG_1136.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.

Lynn hosted a pizza-making party the other weekend with home-made dough.

Thursday, January 18, 2007


ball, originally uploaded by bobbyd579.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Filmed at Menlo Park Circus Club by Bambi Francisco.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Cocoa Beach

IMG_1120.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.


Cinderella Castle at Dusk

Orlando was very nice.  Great vacation from winter.  The Kauffman Foundation put us up at Disney's Coronado Springs.  Fri. we went to Kennedy Space Center and Cocoa beach and then there was a reception for the 15 Kauffman Dissertation Award winners.  It's awarded to the best dissertation proposals in the area of entrepreneurship.  The next day we had a breakfast meeting with Toby Stuart, prof. of my entrep. class at HBS, then a meeting where previous winners talked about their research, then a fancy lunch in front of the USASBE conference attendees where we were recognized for winning the award.  Then we had the rest of the day off so we went to the big pool at the Coronado springs and just relaxed, swam and I went on the water slide there.  In the evening we had dinner in Downtown Disney and went to another Disney hotel overlooking the Magic Kingdom for dessert.  Sunday we got one final swim at the hotel pool in.  The weather was warm and sunny the whole time, great break from Boston!

Blogged with Flock

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Carnelian Room

IMG_1094.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.

San Francisco. That's the Golden Gate Bridge off in the distance.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Anoopa Hall

DSC08719.jpg, originally uploaded by eesley.

From Anita Sharma:

The Hall is named "Anoopa Hall", and Uttama did the ribbon cutting ceremony and unveiled the marble plaque that read "In Memory of Anoopa Sharma, 7/9/1980-3/14/2005. Dennis' older sister performed the pooja and havan in front of the fire.

The hall is huge and will be divided into three: a computer lab, a library, and an all purpose meeting room. The collapsible dividers are yet to be put as well as library books and computers and associated furniture is to be acquired. That would be the next phase of the project.

We were welcomed by 690 young female students and staff eager to participate in the day's events. I was happy to see addition of a four faucet sink area for drinking water near the previously existing handpump in the school compound.

Most important, we want to thank all of you who helped us in this endeavor via prayers, well wishes, suggestions, time, efforts and generous donations.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007


The cover article in ADVANCE is the one on blogging that I was a panelist for recently.

Check it out.