Steven Chan is a resident physician at the University of California, Davis in psychiatry. He's engaged in health, technology, & design.

SARS Coronavirus

Andrew Khemthong and I gave this review talk on Drosten et al.'s "Identification of a Novel Coronavirus in Patients with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome," published in 2003 shortly after the SARS virus scare. Our goal: to simply communicate the main concepts of the paper to the class without getting bogged down in heavy scientific terms. I oversaw almost all of the creation of the information graphics, making sure that they communicated our ideas in a clear, easy-to-understand manner. read more→

Recombinant DNA Techniques: PCR and Restriction Digests

My group and I presented results for the recombinant DNA techniques lab in our Cell Laboratory class (MCB 130L). I generated almost all of the graphics in Illustrator and Keynote and directed the overall design of the slides. This talk was delivered Fall 2005 semester.The background icon was borrowed from Mek en Tosj's application EnzymeX.

Site fixes for better Internet Explorer compatibility

I ended up fixing the quirkiness with Carolen's suggestions and investigations into PNG issues. It seems Internet Explorer chokes if you don't specify a color under the CSS shorthand property "background":

background: url(IMAGEFILE) <color> <repeat> <position>;

After adding those in, and then tweaking the code a little bit so that the masthead was in a more manageable div area, my front page's backgrounds display quite well in Internet Explorer 6. I'm hoping Internet Explorer 7 will be easier to work with. read more→

Quirky Internet Explorer rendering

I have to test out my website quickly on Internet Explorer for Windows on campus machines (since I use a Mac). This is what my page is supposed to look like:

my page has all of its images completely loaded, and the CSS renders properly

But under IE, a lot of things go missing:

My page under Internet Explorer does not have its backgrounds fully loaded, so certain parts of the page are missing.

My head is gone!

I've also noticed some really weird mouse-hover behavior with Internet Explorer 6. I'll have to research this some more. read more→

Poking holes in the server log

I'm still working and working on molding this site into something that's content-rich, and something that's worth visiting. The front page is sorely lacking — it doesn't even match the rest of the website's themes — but I have a good idea of what to create. To the top, I'll put an introduction to myself and what the website is about. To the left, I'll place a single highlighted feature post, and the most recently-updated posts (whether they be blog or publication or image). To the right, I'll put randomly-selected "selections" from the portfolio, and the portfolio index itself. Still in Photoshop mock-up stage; I'll need to code in the PHP. read more→

Facing Ratio shader node in Maya

I originally presented this in Fall 2004 as part of the UCBUGG Masterclass series. It was previously published on

It’s often important to know what’s behind the scenes. That’s why, with Maya, you should always demand the truth. If you’re in a relationship, for example, it’s always good to know what’s going on in your significant other’s life. That way, there won’t be any unpleasant surprises. And just like relationships, knowing how Maya works under the hood helps. ;)

Maya is a node-based system. When you tell Maya, “I want a sphere,” it’ll create several nodes holding different characteristics that altogether combine to form the sphere you see in the viewport. You can manipulate the attributes of each node; these attributes affect how the sphere looks in the end.

In this tutorial, we’ll play with nodes hands-on in the Hypershade, a window in which shaders are constructed. In a later Masterclass, Ben will show you how to do shaders in Renderman. read more→

Motion Design in Maya

I originally presented this in Fall 2004 as part of the UCBUGG Masterclass series. It was previously published on

In this tutorial, you will create a 3D animated logo. You will learn how to:

  • use Maya’s project system.
  • import curves from vector art files.
  • use the Loft and Planar surface modeling tools.
  • use Maya’s Bevel Plus to expand it.
  • set keyframes to make the logo spin.

Animated logos are fairly simple creations that are used in a variety of places: corporate presentations, broadcast design for television, motion design for DVD’s, and intros for motion pictures. In fact, design firms like Troika and Cinemagic exist to create motion designs. For example, Troika crafted ESPN SportsCenter's latest Revolution theme: read more→

7 Oct 2005 • 1:32am

Upsilon Pi Epsilon

Upsilon Pi Epsilon is the computer science honor society at UC Berkeley. I spearheaded a brand-new redesign and reimplementation of the website, creating both the design and the development. The design was based off the group’s needs for areas customized to different levels of users: candidates, members, officers, and the general public. To make the site accessible to everyone, I adhered to XHTML and CSS standards. read more→

7 Oct 2005 • 1:32am

Ma's Restaurant

Ma's Restaurant was the end result of many long weeks of prototyping and database code to serve as a front end to a restaurant menu-ordering and table-reservation system. I primarily directed the site's template system, administered source code control and tools, and kept project management going, seeing it through the entire software design cycle. The website itself was crafted with a flexible two-column XHTML and CSS layout. Much of the back-end was created by Kaisen, Tingting, Nikita, Derek, and Yanting. read more→

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