perm filename RESUME[1,LMM] blob sn#025709
filedate 1973-02-18 generic text, type T, neo UTF8
00100 Statement of Purpose / Resume
00300 Between my junior and senior years of high school, I attended a NSF
00400 summer science institute at Stevens Institute of Technology, where I
00500 took two courses: abstract algebra and computer programming. I did
00600 well in the algebra course, but --- I'd stay up all night in the
00700 computer lab.
00900 At Rice, I can say quite modestly, I was one of the top math students
01000 in my class. My general education wasn't very well-rounded (or as
01100 much as I would like it to have been), but I did manage to take
01200 non-science courses that I enjoyed. Meanwhile, starting my sophmore
01300 year, I began working as a part time computer operator and programmer
01400 for a chemistry prof, writing a program for solving Shroedinger's
01500 equation for certain n-dimensional regions. Between my junior and
01600 senior year, I took off for the summer and wound up in New York
01700 working for the Manhattan Court district programming their jury
01800 selection system in COBOL. My senior year, I worked for a computer
01900 service bureau doing things like writing recursive accounting
02000 programs. (recursive because one day the guy told me to add a
02100 sub-record feature; the next day, sub-sub-records too -- so I just
02200 did it recursively).
02400 In addition to my regular Math program, I took what few computer
02500 courses Rice offered and even organised one (on A.I). I applied to
02600 two schools for graduate work in math. One was Princeton, the other
02700 Stanford. Fortunately, I suppose, Princeton didn't admit me. In any
02800 case, I came to Stanford. I want to confess that one of the reasons
02900 I chose Stanford was the computer science department -- I didn't
03000 realize that, unlike Rice, the Computer Science and Math departments
03100 were as divergent and separate as they are.
03300 Well, my draft board intervened, and as I was/am a Conscientous
03400 Objector, I was requred to work two years at a job "in the interest
03500 of national health, safety, or welfare." I asked Dr. Buchanan (from
03600 whom I was taking CS 226) about programming jobs "for the medical
03700 center", and eventually came to work for DENDRAL as a "lab assistant"
04000 It was one of the more fortunate things that ever happened to me. I
04100 think somewhere I had been subtly brainwashed that computer science
04200 "wasn't a science", and felt resistant to the idea that I might
04300 really be more interested in CS than math. I know better now.
04500 I began as a programmer, spent a while trying to debug the LISP
04600 system and writing miscelaneous system features. I sort of fell into
04700 an independant research problem that had been kicking around DENDRAL
04800 for a while -- that of "cyclic structure generation" (see papers).
04900 The problem suited me since it had "mathematical content" and yet was
05000 "immediatly applicable". I think this is the beuuty of much of CS
05100 research that appeals to me. The program has come to the first
05200 stage of completion (i.e., first working version), we have three
05300 papers written and I am still working on a fourth. (I must admit
05400 that for papers 1 and 2, although I did both the design and
05500 implementation of the algorithms, Prof Harold Brown wrote the papers
05600 and proved the correctness of the algorithms.
05800 In the course of working for DENDRAL, I've learned a lot -- I've sat
05900 in on many classes in the CS Dept (mainly Combinatorics seminars,
06000 Knuth's data structures); read up on current A.I. research, learned a
06100 lot of programming languages, common programming techniques; I've
06200 learned a lot about graph theory, Polya enumeration, chemistry...
06300 Currently I am an R.A. for DENDRAL (although I am registered in the
06400 math department). I am also a part time (8 hrs/week) employee of
06500 Xerox Research Center, working on the developement of BBN LISP.
06700 PLANS FOR THE FUTURE:
06900 I'd like to explore more within computer science (I really know very
07000 little about NA, for example.) The field of greatest interest to me
07100 now is combinatorics, or combinatorial algorithms. Almost as
07200 important, I am interested in the theory and techniques of A.I.
07300 (rather a broad statement, but then so is A.I). I'd like to stay an
07400 R.A. for DENDRAL, try to close off my work in the next year (much
07500 documentation to be done) & learn a lot more than I know now. I'd
07600 also like to get a degree in Computer Science -- hopefully without
07700 taking too long about it. It's true that I haven't decided in what
07800 area I will finally write my thesis, but I have a few interesting
07900 projects still on the shelf.