Lim H.

Professional engineer by day. Standup comedian wanna be by night. Aspiring writer when in transit.

About

My name is Lim. Just Lim. Well, my real name is Nghia but someone decided to call me Lim as a joke when I was very little, so it’s been the name I identify with. I’m limdauto pretty much everywhere. It means Lim Big Head in Vietnamese.

Professionally, I am a full-stack software engineer. My stack covers the web frontend, backend as well as cloud infrastructure (AWS). I work with a few different programming languages on a daily basis, including Python, Scala, JavaScript (TypeScript), Go and Ruby, while committed to learning new ones from time to time. I identify as a cloud-native engineer. What that means is I try to build distributed systems using cloud primitives first, e.g. container orchestration, object storage, serverless function, etc., before going with bare metal solution. I could also work on data science (both statistical modeling and reasonably modern ML development), low-level system programming (OS, webserver) and mobile apps, but nobody has paid me any money to do any of that stuff before, so you will have to be patient with me here. I’m currently working at @deliveroo in London as a Growth engineer. Previously, I was a team lead at @memrise and a senior Python engineer at @growthstreet.

Technically, I’m interested in cloud-native distributed system, programming languages, AI/ML, product engineering, growth engineering, digital marketing and organisational dynamic. My general strategy to keep up with new technologies, besides reading books, blogs and code, is to complete one Coursera Specialisation or another program of similar size per quarter. That translates to about 12-week worth of learning content per 3 months. It’s been working well for me. So far I have completed the Deep Learning Specialisation and the Functional Programming in Scala Specialisation. In terms of side projects, by the time I retire in 30 years, I would like to have built a programming language (I have gotten a basic Lisp done, working on a compiled language next), a text editor (also in progress), an OS (haven’t started) and perhaps a few other undecided projects. After all, 30 years is a very long time.

I suppose here is where I should make my disclaimer: I am neither a hacker, ninja nor a rockstar dev, so if you are looking for one, you might have better luck elsewhere. In fact, I barely identify as a software engineer. This stems from my love-hate relationship with computer and technology in general. I was never a computer whiz growing up – quite the opposite, actually – and much preferred spending my time with pen and paper. Didn’t really help that I grew up with a bunch of exceptionally talented people who would normally be found around IOI and ACM competitions. About 8 years ago, I completely lost all confidence in my ability to make it as an engineer and tried to quit university and switched to a number of other jobs (English teacher, social worker, designer, etc.) before accidentally ending up writing HTML sites again for $5 each. “Accidentally” here means I needed money for food. I am very proud of how far I have come since and determined to go further, but I’m also a bit tired of trying to appear cooler than I actually am. Software engineering is extremely interesting but difficult for me, so I try very hard to keep up. That’s about it really. N.B: I don’t think I’m alone in feeling this way though.

Personally, you can either find me around London pub scene performing standup comedy or in a cafe writing random stuff. The most private thing I’m willing to admit is there might or might not have been a picture of me competing in a World Memory Championship in the Telegraph. That’s another long story :) Below is a review of my gig by the guy running Basic Comedy. Granted that I’m still grinding the stereotype a little bit, but hey! We have got to start somewhere, don’t we?

There were a few good acts that night, but in particular Lim Hoang really stood out with his angle on being a bemused foreigner in the UK. He got down to the final two of the clap-off, so the audience clearly loved him too.

A review of my gig by the guy running Basic Comedy

This is the 32432498th time I’m attempting to keep a website. Let’s see how long it lasts.