About Me

Zain Rizvi

I build the infrastructure used by millions of developers around the world.

I’ve helped build Google Cloud Platform’s AI Platform Notebooks and Microsoft’s Azure App Platform, and nowadays I'm building Stripe. I even worked on Windows when I was a wee lad.

You can also find me on Twitter or co-hosting The Nonintuitive Bits podcast.

Why I Write

I read a lot. And I mean a LOT. Like, the-librarian-knows-me-by-name a lot. But the cool insights I'd learnt often trickled out of my brain by the next morning.

Then I  discovered one trick which kept those ideas fresh:  Writing them down

When I wrote them down, not only were the ideas easier to remember but I was also forced think about them more deeply: "I believe A because B is true....wait, am I sure B is actually true?"

As I wrote them down, it seemed a shame to keep 'em locked away to myself. So I decided to start a newsletter summarizing the best of what I learn.

But isn't everything already on the internet,  you ask? There's a funny thing about information:

"Most secrets about how the world works aren’t secrets, they’re just knowledge unevenly distributed." --Patrick McKenzie

Here's to playing a tiny part in distributing knowledge a little more evenly.

So what kinds of knowledge do I write about?

I love to read about software engineering, business, and psychology, and how they relate to each other. I send a weekly newsletter which highlights the most insightful material I read that week along with any essay I write.

More specifically, I'm passionate about:

Software Engineering

  • Techniques for Engineering Effectively
  • Practicing Rapid Experimentation

Personal Psychology

  • Introspective Analysis
  • Productivity Hacking

Business & Startups

  • Business Strategy
  • Seeing things from the customer’s point of view and solving their actual problems
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Popular Essays