Sarv's HomePage🏠

Inspired by Club Penguin, I thought- what if my personal website didn't feel like a piece of paper, but a home filled with artifacts and stories I could invite someone to? This is a tiny experiment as the result of that thought. Everything here is hand drawn!

Looks like you're checking this out on an iPhone! The site was designed to be checked out on larger devices. You might find the handdrawn image above a bit pixelated. Proceed at your own discretion

Also if you've been scrolling on that phone for a while, you should probably go get up and get water or sunlight 😉



True fans of Minecraft will notice this door inspired by the spruce door in Minecraft!

A statue of Notch alongside my mountain mansion

A sphinx I made as the entry to a theme park (with a rollercoaster that brings us from the mansion)

Pixel art inside the theme park

Minecraft is probably my favourite video game ever. I spend hundreds of hours making stuff on it in middle school. It's also where I first learnt about logic gates.

It really is the digital lego of this generation. You can start with a bunch of simple concepts, and people can build immense complexity out of it. Houses and functioning computers and statues and art, you name it.

Add multiplayer to that, and it's even more beautiful. I have so many memories of making world on Minecraft with my friends, and they stay with me the way the memory of a childhood home stays with someone.

Minecraft, and Club Penguin before it, is an inspiration for this HomePage project. This is a place, with stuff in it, with *ambient context*, as opposed to a bullet pointed list.




There's something about movies that feels almost primitive. Especially in the 21st century, there aren't many mediums that bring us all together like that any more. It's the modern equivalent of a tribe sitting around the fireplace and hearing the shaman tell stories.

More than that, it's an amalgamation of mediums. It's writing and photography and movement and music all coming together to make something that's greater than the sum of their parts. What's not to love.

I have a pretty wide taste in movies.



Ah origami, one of my first true creative loves. I had a few origami and paper plane folding books when I was 6. And I was obsessed. I remember going to a friend's house and folding every single paper plane described in a book I had.

By the time I was in 4th grade, my desk in school used to be overflowing with folded paper. I'd obsessively watch YouTube tutorials on different origami designs, an interest that eventually led me to find channels talking about electronics, which eventually got me interested in computer science!

Probably the funniest anecdote I have about paper planes is that in 6th grade, my school decided to put my obsession to good use and signed me up for a paper plane competition at Singapore's Science Center. I ended up breaking the record at the time for longest distance paper airplane flight.



Electronics were my gateway drug into computing. The channels that did origami/craft tutorials also sometimes did stuff with electronics (click on the origami to learn more).

Seeing an Arduino power some blinky lights, or a cute little servo robot, and realizing that I could do that? That was a revelation.

I got my dad to get me this super basic electronics kit and a subpar soldering iron, and oh boy, the things I made.

I wish I'd documented these more, but over the years I built:

Here's one of the few things I documented on Twitter:



I'm a piano player, but something about guitars is just so cool to me. I guess string instruments are naturally more versatile - you can do bends and vibratos and all sorts of things you can't do with a piano. And let's admit it, there's something just cool about guitars.

I also love how beautiful guitars can be. Or that you can make your own guitar from scratch. Or that you can make your own guitar amps (I remember watching Make: tutorials on making guitar amps and having no idea what that meant). Something just feels personal about them in a way other instruments aren't.

I picked up a guitar for the first time during the pandemic, and I've been borrowing my friends' guitars over the last 2 years and teaching myself basic chords. I still mess up barre chords at times, but I'm getting somewhere. Unlike the piano, guitars are purely for fucking around and having fun.



Okay, I think I only realized this recently, but I've always loved plants. In 5th grade, I was part of a few students who helped start our school's garden. One set of my grandparents has a wonderful garden where, as a kid, I'd help the farmer with tasks around the place.

I always find it strange how little nature has to do with a lot of technologists' vision for the future. It's always about pushing boundaries, about reaching for the stars (which I am totally for, let's get to Mars etc.), but what about where we are right now?

I guess I've only realized how important feeling connected to nature is in college. It might sound overly earnest or "kumbaya-y" (I know I used to think that), but we truly need to feel connected to our environment.

Technologists say they're for life, for human growth and expansion, but how much life do they cultivate in their daily lives? So many people saying this stuff don't have kids, or maybe even pets, or maybe even a plant. If we care about life, we should start by cultivating our own garden.



I started learning the piano when I was 7, and I was always not very dedicated to it. By that, I mean that I never really practiced other than when I had a lesson with a teacher (or when I was overly stressed for a piano exam).

I have a 5th grade ABRSM in practical and 6th in theory, but by 10th grade, I'd had enough. I didn't want to learn obscure pieces just to go up the ranks in a grading system I didn't care about. So I stopped learning for the grades and started learning what I found interesting.

And in a year, I'd learned more interesting and challenging pieces than ever before. Pathetique, Liebestraum, Rachmaninoff's Prelude in C, Claire de Lune. (I haven't really practiced in college, but I'll get back up there). It's a perfect example of how the right motivators unlock learning.

But a recent development - the first time I walked into a piano class, I remember asking when I'd get to make my own music, and they said that 'that comes much later'. I think that was so stupid. For years, I haven't been able to put on paper what I hear in my head, but hopefully that'll change soon. I've started playing original stuff just for myself, but at some point, maybe I'll put it online for people to see.



A recent video of mine

YouTube, YouTube, YouTube. In 6th grade, I was obsessed with Ryan Higa and YouTube in general. I'd watch tutorials on origami, electronics, DIY stuff, skits, and Minecraft gaming videos. So, in 7th grade, I decided to start my own YouTube channel.

Over the next 1.5 years, I published 2-3 videos almost every week. In retrospect, the videos are so cringey (I've turned them all private to protect myself from the sheer embarrassment), but there was something kind of beautiful about making them.

I'd get to involve a friend in something almost every week. My friends, their siblings, and sometimes even their parents would ask me about when my next video would be out. Making something that often was such a thrill.

exclusive look at a few videos I made in 8th grade

And then, I stopped. I'm not even sure why. I guess I had moved to a new school, just turned into a teenager, and it didn't feel so cool anymore. Also, I had just gotten braces, felt strange, and yeah, it just petered out.

Throughout high school, I attempted to "restart" several times, but all I have to show for that is a graveyard of incomplete, half-edited videos. Finally, when COVID hit, I decided to go for it again, and I've had my YouTube channel up ever since!

Sometimes, I wonder why I'm still on there, and I'm much more self-conscious than I was when I first started. But something has made me stay. Maybe it's the opportunity to self-express. I don't know, but I'm rolling with it.

Single Purpose Devices


So I haven't actually ever owned a Switch, but to me, it represents a huge interest of mine - hardware and single-purpose devices.

I can say I love my e-scooter, I love my camera, and people love their switches. But do I love my iPhone? Not really. It's more of a love-hate relationship. I couldn't live without it, but it also constantly distracts me, and it's like an uphill battle to make sure I'm not checking out from what I'm supposed to be doing when I'm stressed.

The Switch is an example of what good device design can be. On an iPhone, the default position is hunched over - closed-off body language, a kinda sad-looking aura. With the Switch, it's designed to be social. When I see people using a Switch, they're almost always excited, looking up at the screen, with open body language.

How can we design devices that keep our vibe open, playful, and happy as opposed to stressed, closed off, and tense? That's the big question.



The computer I used to play Minecraft (see the door on the left), make my first videos on, watch movies on, and more.

In a way, Apple really is responsible for so many of those creative pursuits. Sometimes I wonder if they're "just" a technology company, but I think the story Steve Jobs wove around them, a story about individualism, creativity, and thinking differently, really did reflect in the products they made.

Steve once described Apple as "technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the results that make our heart sing." Technology was easy to get, but how the liberal arts, humanities, and making the heart sing connect has slowly been dawning on me.



I used to tear through books as a kid. I would read encyclopedias lying around the house for fun from when I was 6. I finished reading all the Harry Potter books in 3rd grade, all the LOTR books in 6th grade, and read all 5 Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy books in 5 days during a no-internet spell when I was visiting my grandparents in India.

Recently, I've been broadly interested in:

I'm also trying to read more biographies and fiction.

Physical making


I have a certain obsession with organized chaos. Like knolling, or a well-organized grocery cart, Casey Neistat's studio, or the organization of a circuit board. Pegboards are the most accessible version of that I know.

Another interest that intersects with organized chaos is hardware. I think it's a fundamentally human thing to make things with our hands, and we're so cushioned by our abstractions that most people don't do anything that requires fine motor skills anymore. We rely so heavily on our devices that we're disconnected from our own bodies.

And so, I like making things in the real world! I enjoy working with wood, drawing, or folding things (see the origami on the left).



I've been interested in teaching and education since forever (though likely heavily influenced by watching 3 idiots at a pivotal age).

HomePage: an experiment in what websites can be


For some reason, we've collectively decided that a website is a digital version of a printed sheet of paper. Personal websites are almost all just variations on the same thing - a bullet pointed list.

This makes sense for practicality, but why have we all just accepted this? I don't think a plain bullet pointed list of where someone works and what school they go to can sum up anyone. What do they like? What's their vibe? What if your homepage on the internet actually felt like a home?

You know what did show my personality and who I was? My club penguin igloo. Or my minecraft hut. It was a place. It told stories about who I was.

And so this is a basic experiment in making my homepage feel like a place I invite you to vs. a sheet of paper I hand to you. The internet can be more mystical, expansive, and homely than we think. It doesn't need to be a distribution mechanism for an outdated metaphor, it's a place, and we should start acting as such. It's ridiculous that we're talking about Web 3 and all this newfangled stuff when the basic potential of the internet hasn't been touched yet.

Move your mouse over objects in the room to see what's clickable

Click items to get a tiny blurb about how they relate to me!

Anyway, spiel over. Everything in my room is handdrawn! Hover over objects and click them to read tiny stories or blurbs about how they relate to me!

Love and vibes and all that- Sarv