Zheng Hao Tan


Hi! I'm a software engineer at Cruise and currently live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I like tinkering with new technologies and figuring out how things work. My current hobbies include working on open source software, reading and spending too much time studying mechanical watches.

I was born in Penang, Malaysia on November 22, 1994 and was then raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from the age of 5. After high school, I furthered my studies at the University of Michigan and majored in Computer Engineering. I was part of the Michigan Hackers club and the Malaysian Student Association (MiMSA).

I liked pulling things apart and reassembling new versions of other things as a kid. I guess I was also fortunate to have Legos, Beyblades, Gameboys and Tamiya circuit cars to play with. I remember assembling a Tamiya car motor onto a tiny Lego helicopter's rotor blades with lots of tape. Of course the thing couldn't take off due to the laws of gravity. The underpowered motors + weight of the battery pack weren't gonna fly (pun intended). I was 8 then and only understood the word Physics few years later.

I wouldn't go as far as to say that these childhood instances were the main reasons why I decided to pursue engineering as a career. Heck, I remember wanting to be a Formula 1 driver or a pilot when I was younger. I have a strong obsession with things that move fast; things that are well engineered, so maybe this was weakly correlated to what I do today. Google and Facebook were (and still are?) the hot companies in ~2011, so I was definitely drawn to the whole tech phenomenon. I picked up a C++ for Dummies book shortly after graduating from high school, and the rest just fell into place.

I've since spent almost all of my career working in tech startups solving problems ranging from next generation connectivity solutions to autonomous vehicles.