Igor Tolkov
Software Engineer, Facebook
Co-founder and Lead Developer, taiLib
University of Washington, Class of 2013
B.Sc. Mathematics, Physics; B.Sc. Computer Science; B.A. Linguistics


I am a STEM quadruple major and a recent University of Washington graduate. Since 2014 I have been employed as a Software Engineer at Facebook. In my spare time, I explore on bicycle, travel with a backpack, and bring my DSLR wherever I go.

I keep a blog, mirrored here, of my adventures. Here is the latest, in brief:

These are minutes from today’s meeting in Kirkland regarding the three Sound Transit proposals that traverse Kirkland. While all three proposals were discussed, most people came in opposition to the proposal to put high-capacity transit, especially buses, on the Cross-Kirkland Corridor.

Our goal for tonight is to provide education and to hear from you so we can pass on your concerns to the Kirkland City Council and to the Sound Transit Board.

This stems from the citizen survey collected every two years that ranks services according to their importance and performance. Services which are the most important but the least performant provide the biggest opportunities for improvement. Traffic has consistenly placed among the biggest improvement opportunities. (Others are: Maintaining Streets, Businesses, People in Need, Preparedness.)

Kirkland’s history with the corridor goes back all the way to 2009 when the council asked the transportation commission for things we should care about in corridor ownership. The city’s interest statement, approved on April 19, 2011, called for a “welcoming, transportation-oriented facility for pedestrians and bicyclists, coupled with a high capacity transit system that connects Kirkland to the region.” It was also important to put the corridor to use as quickly as possible.

Sound Transit also has easement on the corridor. The easement was intended to be perpetual, with ST reserving the right to determine the precise location of easement areas; the easement taking priority over any encumbrances or other interests in the property after the date of transfer of ownership.

With this in mind, the City of Kirkland launched the Cross-Kirkland Corridor Master Plan with intent to:

The city is committed to delivering on the entire master plan.

Q: I lived here since 1956. None of the pictures in the Master Plan showed a single bus flying by a reading place or a wetland or Google. Is there even room in Google for 30 ft of buses?
A: There is an entire appendix on the transit envelope on the corridor. Because we’re not the transit agency, we didn’t know when or if transit would come. We instead focused on our part, which is the trail. So, the vast majority of the plan focused on the trail part, but we do have transit sections throughout. We’ll have to wait for ST to come along and provide more information.
Q: The whole premise with the corridor was light rail. Now, we’re told there would be buses with 2-3 minute interval during peak hours? That’s a whole lot different than what we voted for in the first place!
A: Let Kathy finish her section, where she will explain the plan in more detail. ST legislation was for HCT, of which there are several possible modes. Their easement allows any mode. While we talked about light rail in the past, it is ultimately not up to us.
Q: Right now, the parking lots are loaded by 7:30 AM. There is not enough time for people to walk on the trail, let alone take a bus. Where will you put parking, access?
A: That’s exactly what we would like to hear.

Audience is asked to find a seat if seated in the aisles as it is against fire code to sit in the aisles.

We have a congestion problem in Kirkland and we need a way to solve that. Transit is the key.


Our strategy is a multimodal approach. We’re focusing on bicycles, pedestrians, and HCT. We’re also working on installing intelligent transportation system for signalizing intersections - that will help, but it will not solve the problem.

Our stakeholders:

Kirkland is growing. See, for instance, the new development at Totem Lake. State Growth Management Act requires cities to set targets for growth. City will be held accountable to its targets. Aside from that, Kirkland is a livable, beautiful city, and people want to come here.

Can we build our way out of congestion? No: putting more lanes on freeways and roads to accommodate the additional cars would require $500M over 20 years, available revenue is only $250M. And no one wants to. More lanes do not solve the problem.

A note about the CKC: I know we love our corridor, but it’s just a 5 mile segment of 42 mile Eastside Rail Corridor (ERC) that was set aside to serve the region. There are policies in place for HCT on the ERC. I encourage everyone to engage with process and shape how HTC on the ERC will look.

Current jobs and housing near HTC:

Planning for both ST3 and the King County Long Range Plan (Metro) is underway. The timeline for ST3 is particularly tight, as projects need to be finalized in time for a ballot measure next November:

Dec 15: Metro Draft Network and Plan
Feb 16: ST Draft system plan
Apr 16: ST Public input on draft system plan
Jun 16: Metro transmit to Council, ST approval of final system plan
Nov 16: ST3 ballot measure

Kirkland’s goal is to keep our projects on the list for the ST3 ballot measure.

The projects are:

“None of these projects will wreck the trail.” (Boos) There is a worry that buses will be blasting across corridor at high speed. BRT is a tool box with dedicated corridors, frequent service, full-featured stations. It does not mean buses move at high speeds. In considering BRT over other modes, an advantage of BRT is that it allows for flexibility over rail: the road surface can be reused, and other bus routes can utilize the Corridor.




Upcoming public outreach events:

Nov 23: At Heritage Hall, 7 PM
Nov 30: CKC Brown Bag Lunch at City Hall
Jan 11: Juanita neighborhood meeting


Here is what we have heard from you:

There are additional concerns about noise, contamination of wetlands, that the process needs more transparency. Some say they will use the bus. Some doubt whether we can achieve the grand CKC master plan vision. One person suggested an elevated monorail with a trail below. Some say buses ever 2-3 minutes is too much. Some support transit on corridor, but others advocate for the need to preserve open space.

Q: How do you intend on the trail remaining open during construction?
A: We’re a long way away from construction, which would have to be staged. There will be times when the trail must be closed. Actual logistics will vary greatly depending on what’s on the corridor (BRT vs. light rail). We will try to keep as much of it open as possible.

Q: Can we just avoid the whole thing and put it on the freeway and let the corridor be?
A: That’s one option.

Q: I want people to actually use the transit. If buses run on I-405, who will use them?
A: That’s one of the reasons we should consider transit on the CKC. On I-405, there would be limited access points, perhaps as few as one.

Q: Is there any kind of easement or rights reserved for heavy rail?
A: Because this was a former freight line, when we purchased it from BNSF, it does have a freight easement. It is possible that freight could return someday, and if a financially viable proposal would come around, we would have to provide that. This is a federal requirement. However, what is considered financially viable is not well-defined. It could include construction cost, for example.

Q: Are there places where the corridor crosses East/West streets, and how will we manage traffic?
A: We had discussions with Metro regarding East/West service lines, and there’s a ST option from Overake to Redmond. ST candidate projects mostly focus on North/South.

Q: On the map for light rail, there is no stop in Downtown Kirkland, and it doesn’t go to Seattle.
A: It’s harder to build light rail stations and stop trains, so there are fewer stops. BRT will have new service from Bellevue to Totem Lake with more stope, and other routes can be routed along the CKC.
A: ST’s intent is that you would transfer in Bellevue to go to Seattle.

Q: I would like to know about the residents who live along the corridor. What is going to happen to their properties?
A: None of the work would be done on their properties. Input from people is that transit that is available close to properties generally increases property values.
Q: Would any construction intrude on existing property?
A: Not unless it is in railroad right of way. For example, if you extended your yard into the CKC, it would be impacted.

Q: Viable freight: does investing in a bus add value that the freight viability has to take into account?
A: As long as there is a freight easement, other uses do not affect freight. What really determines whether freight is viable is whether there is anything to haul on freight. When BNSF sold us the property, freight appeared to not be viable.

Q: If this passes in November, will zoning change on adjacent properties?
A: Not on the corridor. Some small changes were already made (e.g. breweries), and there are zoning changes in Totem Lake. There are no further zoning changes being considered, but the council may consider them in the future.

Q: You calculated ridership using the number of residents within ½ mile of the route, but stations are sparse. As a result, some people within ½ mile of route will not have a station near them. What is your thinking on this?
A: We’ve discussed bus circulation to get people to those stations, which will help. The solution depends on what mode we will end up with.

Q: We are a new, growing town, looking forward to 2035, but using buses? In Amsterdam, the light rail is so quiet we don’t even hear it, and it is very integrated into the community? Why aren’t we looking into these kinds of opportunities?
A: This is input we could give to ST.

Q: What does ST3 actually get us? Who will build the trail paths, and is the timing the same for both?
A: The city’s answer is “yes”. ST will probably answer less than that. On the extreme, the trail is our responsibility, but we will be working with ST for mitigation and to lay foundation for investments. Will have a conversation with ST3 on how much they will implement, and we will have to pay for the rest.
A: It will only make sense to do all construction at the same time.

Q: We are discussing two options. One is a 19th century fixed rail option, one is a 20th century bus option. Will there be more advanced vehicles in the 21st century that we can consider?
A: Is there a perfect transit option?
A: Part of the challenge is that this is not Kirkland’s decision. ST has certain modes they would like to build. An expressway can evolve over time.

Q: I love the idea of buses not stuck in traffic. How do we as a city make sure that if we put HCT on the corridor that we will get a beautiful, green corridor and not an ugly road?
A: We want your input so the Council can advocate, and also you can advocate. ST is very open to that kind of feedback.
A: The City Council works for you, and so does the Sound Transit Board.
A: In terms of constructability, we have done the preliminary analysis. It can be done - there are designs that work, and ST / Metro welcome our concept as it will bring ridership. Please provide your input to the Board.

Q: I’m interested in how you will achieve the interest of protecting the neighborhood feel and atmosphere. With the trail, atmosphere, aesthetics was maintained. The sound of footsteps of people on the trail was new, but I was willing to hear that change. We live right on the trail, and buses will come right into our backyard. There will be a noise / aesthetic impact. There is also a drainage issue. Finally, how will you protect neighborhood feel / atmosphere? A typical way of dealing with noise is installing a sound barrier, and that is bad for aesthetics.
A: Drainage: anything that gets built will have adequate stormwater detention and treatment. Your drainage will probably improve. Noise: please give that feedback to the Transit Board. Aesthetics: we don’t want something like a wall that divides the city.

Q: Kirkland has two large P&Rs that are underserved. The 70th is mostly empty, while Kingsgate is full before the buses even start coming. What are we doing to improve Kingsgate, where all plans include a stop? What makes your plan different?
A: Kingsgate is not a candidate project, but we are working with ST / Metro on redeveloping it. We would have to improve that facility. In general, we try to serve major employment / residential centers so people can walk to the buses and don’t have to drive.

Q: Please consider the real footprint of buses in the master plan. Bus riders trample vegetation, buses beep. Is the plan as realistic as you think? We would like a quiet, green trail.
A: We have to make it work. Consultants (BRT international) are experienced with these kinds of projects.

Q: Outcome of HTC on the CKC. Who wants which proposal, assuming ST builds on the easement and we have to choose one of the CKC options.
A: It’s a trick question. [Show of hands is about equal for either option, but few hands go up.]

Q: It’s not clear that there’s been a decision analysis weighing cost / benefit for putting line on the trail rather than other options such as I-405 in terms of hard issues such as utilization. The fundamental question is: will this proposal really affect traffic?
A: There is a lot of analysis that will need to go into this.
A: ST staff are currently going through a process analyzing each of the candidate projects.

Q: The sales pitch of this meeting is that the trail will be enhanced with beautification. What has the Council done to improve the trail so far? If ST3 does not go through, will Council keep moving on developing the trail?
A: The Council made a dramatic commitment to keep developing the Corridor, including $10M in CIP improvements. The trail will be developed regardless of whether the ST3 proposal goes through.

We are running short of time, only 10 minutes left to ask questions. If we don’t answer your question, we have comment forms, and you can write on the wall.
One person notes that the comment forms are all used up.

Q: I don’t think you should be cutting this off in 10 minutes.
A: We will be around afterwards to answer more questions.

One question I got is how imminent is this. If voter approval in 2016, there will be 5-8 year approval process, and construction will take another 5-8 years.

Q: We used to have three buses on 108th in Houghton. Then we lost one, then another. Traffic increased. We have only one bus going past several schools, and we’re being told we might lose it to the CKC. Why not instead put more buses on 108th?
A: Yes.

Q: Seems that there are a lot of questions that are not answered. You’re saying that we really need to focus on this and make a decision now and fill in the blanks later. But we have no guarantee that we will even have a trail because of heavy rail. How can we guarantee that we will have a trail.
A: The only thing that protects the corridor is that there must be a trail on it per federal law.
Q: How will we separate bicycles from pedestrians?

Q: Everybody here is interested that this works for Kirkland. When you provided your presentations, you showed the stakeholders. What are the relative sizes of the stakeholder populations? ST is trying to get people from other areas through our town: stakeholders are Redmond, Bellevue, Seattle, etc. One similar disaster is the HOT lanes that are affecting Kirkland benefiting mostly other communities. How do we not get hosed by a decision made essentially by other people? How can we push back on ST?
A: Engage - the ST board will listen.
Q: Engaging didn’t matter with the DOT and what they did to the 405.

Q: How are we represented on the Sound Transit Board?
A: 18-member board, three Eastside representatives: Balducci, mayor of Redmond, mayor of Issaquah. They represent the entire district, though.
Q: No Kirkland representative?
A: Not at this time.

Q: We live in NorKirk right behind Peter Kirk elementary. You are underestimating the impact of bus connections anywhere you want to put in a stop. All of us will see people parking in our neighborhoods to get to the bus. Kirkland does not have a position on parking on public streets or a way to prevent people from parking on our streets.
A: Agree, we need more analysis. Looking at circulators, but parking needs work.

Q: Earlier we had a show of hands for two options, but “none of the above” was not an option. Who supports that option.
A: [Show of hands - A large majority do not want any HTC on the CKC.]

Q: This is the input session to form the opinion that the city will ultimately give to ST. When our business came to the CKC, it was because of its vision. With HTC on the East side of the tracks, our business will be cut off. The community spot we built is very popular, and it will be affected by transit on the corridor. (J Line Brewery)

Q: There is a fundamental conflict that has barely been surfaced: we can support being a flyover. In that case, let’s put buses on 405. If you put something on the Corridor - a nice, revealing, quiet place - I would hate to lose that just to be a drive-through for other commuters. The plans we have favor Kirkland as flyover country instead of the vision of using the corridor for Kirkland.

We do have more comment cards.

Q: The plan says the trail is 100 ft wide. In some places like the Highlands, the trail doesn’t even get to 60 ft. How will we put buses and a trail there?
A: We did bring design consultants for areas where it is tricky, such as a steep slope or a wetland.

A note to people worried about heavy rail and freight: we probably don’t need to worry about that.

Q: This is a great opportunity to provide input from Kirkland’s perspective. Our neighboring communities are also providing input. What are they advocating for, and are they behind / ahead of us?
A: All three counties are advocating for different projects.
Q: Are we the only ones advocating for BRT on a corridor.
A: Yes on the corridor, which also includes Bellevue.

Q: Writing to the ST board: could you say how to do that?
A: It’s in the FAQ handout.

To contact the City of Kirkland,

To contact South Transit,

The past Saturday I joined my first Saturday Morning Ride in Snohomish County - in general, they meet weekly somewhere in Snohomish County, and the routes increase in distance each time, resetting every month. The meeting location and route varies.

The meeting time was 9:30. I bike to and from the starting location, so my journey began earlier - at 7:00, that is: it was dark and cold, I put on a lot of clothes, put them away an hour later, and mostly kept them stowed, which is why my back compartment was extended throughout the ride.

At 8:50, I arrived in Snohomish and had my usual breakfast at Bakery Creations (it opens at 8:30). Pilchuck Community Park, the starting location of the organized ride, was just outside the city center, so only three minutes away. We had an extensive security briefing and left in groups.


It was still cold and cloudy. The early part of the ride was hilly with not much of a view at the top of the hill.


Occasionally, though, we came across some clearings, and I asserted my right to stop and take pictures (although it seems like I gave our sweep a hard time).


Our rest stop was at a coffee shop in Sultan, which was decorated with a harvest theme (pumpkins, hay, corn stalks, etc.).


The next part of the ride was the back road from Sultan to Monroe, which I think is the most beautiful part of the ride. Interestingly, that’s the only section that I rode before, but it was many years ago. One day, I took my Marin hybrid from Kirkland, descended into Monroe, took this road to Sultan, and called for a lift back. This was my all-time second longer ride, and I was not disciplined back then about bringing food. In Sultan, I went to a sandwich shop and realized I only had enough cash for a basic half-sandwich, but they still gave me a full one. But enough of that story…


In Monroe, we took a detour, crossing US-2, going up and down some hills then crossing US-2 again and returning to Monroe.


There was a short stop at a park, and a not-so-pleasant (due to traffic, and also I was tired) direct return to Snohomish. Back at the park:


My favorite quote from the ride was from a local resident in his truck: “Yes, well, I pay taxes, and you don’t.” He seemed cheerful, and we returned the cheer although, of course, he had no idea what he was talking about.

Back on my own, I had breakfast for lunch. In retrospect, I should probably have had lunch for lunch - the pancakes were huge and didn’t taste like much.


After all this, I still had 25 miles ahead. Luckily, the sun finally came out. The thick fog, which covered the Snohomish River valley in the morning was finally gone, and the row of trees / mountains in the distance was visible. The grass was bright green. It was a pleasure.


Track: https://www.strava.com/activities/419604962/. The outline of out ride resembles somewhat the outline of Seattle. Because I also biked there and back, I call this ride “Seattle on a String”.

The Farce of the 'Global Rally For Humanity':

Looks like I’m in the Huffington Post… or, at least, my picture is. I met the author, Eric Elnes, at the Bremerton rally.

I often bike on weekends, but sometimes conscience calls otherwise. Recently I heard that some people were organizing an anti-Muslim demonstration in Bremerton and decided to join the counter-protest to support a neighboring Muslim community.

The weather forecast called for up to 1.5 cubic inches of rain, which picked up early that day. This was great news - after all, I figured, between tolerance and intolerance, the former is morally superior, and thus we will have more courage to stand in the rain.

I joined a small group of supporters an hour early, and the group grew very quickly. At 1:25 PM, there were 11 of us - by 1:42, that number rose to 20. The number on the other side of the street? Zero. Perhaps the rain was too much, or perhaps the organizers realized that the “Islamic Center of Kitsap County” had not existed at this location for years and canceled. We were joined by a representative of the local Muslim community, who thanked us for coming and called some other people. We passed time - the rain was picking up, so the favorite topic of conversation was Seattleites and umbrellas. (The conversation went along the lines of how in Seattle you get laughed at for carrying an umbrella. The rule maybe doesn’t apply to this side of the Sound - after all, a number of people brought umbrellas, and we, Seattleites, were thankful for that.)

Then, in what seemed like the peak of the downpour, a group of mostly women and small children came bringing us water and cookies. As the rain poured , the atmosphere on the ground was overwhelmingly positive. What did I say about tolerance and courage?

The best thing we all can do to help, we were told, is to be as loud as those who preach intolerance. Perhaps, writing this is a step forward. But I’m also glad that we avoided a confrontation today.

Fall colors are appearing in Seattle. The city anticipates a cold, wet winter, yet so far it is sunny and warm. On Saturday, I slept late, ate breakfast, and didn’t start until 1:15 PM. There was no fixed route for the day, except to descend into Carnation. The ride would prove that it is possible to start the day late and still have fun.

I started by taking the Burke-Gilman trail to Woodinville, then going straight East, climbing to the top of Hollywood Hill (a 6% climb of 156 m), then cruising down all the way to Avondale Road. Then, another climb to Trilogy where I stopped for a snack.

After Trilogy and Redmond Ridge is a very inefficient 15% descent into the Snoqualmie Valley, but that’s where the real scenery begins.

This is Sikes Lake. The land here used to belong to Nestle, Carnation Farms. Now it’s occupied by Camp Korey and horselands.

Snoqualmie River’s Chinook Bend. The land on the left bank is protected.

In Carnation, I had a croissant sandwich and chocolate / oat bar with tea lunch.

After lunch, I crossed the river again and followed West River Road South.

There was still enough time to detour to Issaquah, so began the climb out of the valley along Issaquah-Fall City road and Highlands Drive. On my left was the urban village known as Issaquah Highlands, and on my right was the flattened artificial hill that stood bare.

Tiger Mountain, which shadows the town of Issaquah, was straight ahead.

I then endured the gravel path along Lake Sammammish. They paved part of it, and I didn’t want to miss the start of the fresh pavement. Of course, it would have been faster to just take the road, but this way I also got to see more of the lake. (Wish they would pave the whole thing already.)

The sun set a few minutes after this, and I was almost home at my parents’ house, so the timing was perfect.

Track: https://www.strava.com/activities/405770115

Every time I go to the Bay Area on business, I borrow a bicycle for transportation. This time, my workplace bike shop did not have any spare bikes, so I rented a road bike from the Campus Bike Shop in Stanford. This let me keep the bike into Saturday, and thus I had time for a long weekend trip.

I always wanted to bike across the hills behind Palo Alto to the ocean coast and back, and I did that. It was a relatively short ride (about 50 miles), but with the same elevation gain as my typical century - the two long climbs into the hills were what made this the most challenging ride I’ve done so far. My bike was a rented older carbon-frame Fuji Team with standard pedals and no bags - the camera had to ride in the backpack, which was not fun, but it did mean the bike was very light. Here it is traveling on the Caltrain the evening prior:


My hotel was very close to Sand Hill Road, so I just rolled along that road into the hills. I found myself among plenty other bicyclists, all of whom seemed more experienced and better than me - at least, I was the slowest. There was a right turn onto Old La Honda Road, and that’s where the climb began.

The road kept climbing and climbing. This was a small paved one-lane road leading to houses on the mountain. I didn’t stop, except for a rest break near the top. The climb is rated category 2 with a length of 5.2 km (3.2 mi) and an average grade of 7%.

At the top, I was out of water (I only brought a small bottle that the hotel gave me for free), and I asked about convenience stores nearby. I was told of one downhill in La Honda and another one just a little to the North. I decided to go to the closer one.


That put me only slightly off-track, though I did miss the viewpoint further down Old La Honda road. Fortunately, I was doing well on time - the bike had to be returned by 3 PM. It took 35 minutes to do the climb, but it was downhill from here. Passing La Honda, I noticed a funny bar.


I was on highway 84, which lead directly to the ocean, although there was a lot of headwind.


I took a snack break at the San Gregorio State Beach. A lagoon was blocking access to the ocean, except by scrambling along the side of a cliff. My bike and I enjoyed the view from the top of the rock.


It would be fun to just ride up the coast all the way North to San Francisco - or South to Santa Cruz, or even all the way to Monterey. The beaches are beautiful, sand / rock formations exciting.


Another curious observation: in Washington, we have corn mazes during harvest season, but in California there is apparently not enough water to grow corn, so there are hay mazes instead.


I was reentering the hills now.


Soon the climb started again. This one is along Tunitas Road, and it’s also rated category 2. Compared to Old La Honda, it’s longer (11.4 km / 7.1 mi) and less steep (5%), but ultimately a bigger climb.


It took me over an hour to reach the top, and by the time I got there I was running out of food. Now, I still had a bar left, and that would have been enough to keep me awake going downhill, but there was an organized ride at the same time with a food stop at the top of the hills, and they let me have some food. They had bananas, oranges, and lots of other good stuff.



The downhill was steep and windy, meaning we couldn’t go fast. For some reason, there were also a fairly large (non-zero) number of cars going the other way up the mountain, which means cutting across to the other side of the road in anticipation of a sharp right turn was out of the question. The good thing about this downhill was that we actually got a view of the valley.

Straight ahead was Cañada College in Redwood City. Further right is the Dumbarton Bridge and the Facebook campus. Even further right is, I think, Stanford.


The right was almost over, except there was a short downhill along 84, and its new pavement that ended precisely where the shoulder / bike lane began.

Dear drivers: you should know that bicycles have every right under the law to be in your lane, even if there is a bicycle lane there. And if the pavement on your lane is that much better than the pavement on my lane, then I will ride in your lane. If you don’t like this, please tell the state to pave and re-stripe the whole road next time.

Then I got lost in Stanford a little. And that was that. Track: https://www.strava.com/activities/400821079

Tonight’s full moon marks the mid-Autumn festival, celebrated in China with moon cakes. What makes this year’s mid-Autumn moon special is its alignment with the Earth and the Sun - more specifically, there was a total lunar eclipse, which is a matter for everyone to talk about over morning tea but not much more than that.

We happened to be in Leavenworth that day and ventured into the hills to photograph the eclipse. The venue was the Peshastin Pinnacles State Park, which is an interesting park in itself, with its rock formations and herds of deer roaming freely around.

There was a nice view to the valley where we expected the moon to rise. (Top: looking East awaiting the moonrise; bottom: looking West passing the sunset.)

And here are the deer:

Eventually it got dark, we realized that our estimations were wrong (we didn’t actually calculate anything, and nobody had even a compass, so we were total noobs at this). Instead of the moon rising over the valley at the start of the total eclipse, it rose some 20 minutes later over the tall hill with the power lines right in front of us.

Still, we enjoyed this and the multitude of stars from the countryside before returning to Seattle, occasionally glancing back at the moon.

I’m in California this week, so here are some photos of the Golden Gate Bridge! Taken at Fort Point, San Francisco with my D90 at 25-30″, f/8. (No stealing.)

Feel free to e-mail at --- or contact me securely with any questions. Enjoy!

About Me

MathematicsRead more
I am most specialized in mathematics, particularly in algebraic number theory. Read about my early math days, my trip to Budapest, my graduate coursework, and see some of my course papers for math classes.

PhysicsRead more
Read about how I completed my physics degree upside down, browse through my quantum mechanics notes, and look at some of my seminar slides.

Computer ScienceRead more
Explore the fruits of my early computer science experiments, my computer science coursework and research, and my web start-up. Watch videos of projects I designed in the hardware lab.

Linguistics and ChineseRead more
Learn why I like linguistics so much, browse pictures of my trip to China, and read my course papers for linguistics and Chinese classes. Practice your traditional character recognition on a writing sample.

ActivitiesRead more
See what I do in my spare time. I used to lead a student organization, and that's no easy task. Read about that and my other leadership activities.

Websites and Profiles

Old Site http://igor.tolkov.com/archive
No longer maintained, but still interesting.
China Blog Stories and memories from July 2012
And any future China travel plans.
Tumblr Song of a thistle
My present blog, mostly with photos. Mirrored on this site.
Google+ "Not all those who wander are lost"
I occasionally post photos here.
LinkedIn My LinkedIn Profile
taiLib My taiLib Profile
A service I co-founded and run. We aim to connect students who have textbooks with students who need them.

Former class schedules

I graduated in the summer of 2013, but my six years of course schedules are still up, and I have no plans to take them down.