Yao is currently a Ph.D. student at the Polyhedral Structures Laboratory, Weitzman School of Design, University of Pennsylvania. He is a design researcher with a great interest in generative design, robotic fabrication, 3D printing, and computer graphics. Before joining PSL, he graduated from Cornell University with a Master of Science in Matter Design Computation advised by Prof. Jenny Sabin, Prof. Christopher Hernandez, and Prof. Steve Marschner. His primary research focus was on the generation of bio-inspired load-bearing lattice structures in various scales. He also holds a Master of Architecture and a Bachelor in Engineering degrees and from Tongji University, advised by Prof. Ming Zhang.