I am originally from Valley Center, Kansas, which is about twenty minutes north of Wichita, Kansas. I chose Kansas State University over the other colleges on my list thanks to the open option (undeclared major) program, which is how I started my freshman year. The friendliness of the campus and the interest shown in each high school recruit also played a major part in my decision.
Although this is my third computer science course my major is actually mathematics. My interest with programming stems from the logic found in both programming and mathematics. In CIS111 a year ago when we started programming and learning the different parts of a program I realized that programming is based in logic much the same way as mathematics. This gave me the idea to investigate the possibility of adding an emphasis in cryptology to my mathematics degree.
A couple of the areas that I’m looking forward to learning more about in this class are “The Whole Internet” (*Tubes) and “Public Key Cryptography” (*9 Algorithms). I am also looking forward to reading the 9 Algorithms book as this subject (algorithms) has been a fascinating area to me for quite a while now. I have heard great things about CIS115. One of my roommates from last year took the course and developed his own website on the KSU server.
Some of the hobbies or activities I like to do in my spare time are playing music, baking bread, playing chess, reading, biking, and being with friends and family. When people ask what instruments I play, I answer with a list: oboe, bagpipes (or the bagpipers’ shorten term “pipes”), marching band pit area (front ensemble/non-marching percussion), and marching symbols. I realize that the clarinet is normally learned before the oboe but I have no idea on how to play a clarinet. As for the bagpipes, they are still and will forever be a work in progress, since every new tune must be learned on the practice chanter before being played on the pipes. Every new tune must also be memorized before being played on the pipes- something which certainly increases the learning time.
I started baking bread just before my freshman year and I have found it nice as a stress reliever from class. It is an activity that takes little skill to start but a lot to master. The mastery of bread baking is hard due to so many factors including the environment, climate, and the baker’s own touch (*Pizza, Bread and More).These lead to stress while one is trying to make bread, but it is a different stress than from classes and homework.
An interesting job that I currently do during summer breaks is being a lifeguard. Just from being a lifeguard for two summers I have developed a much thicker skin. People getting mad and chewing me out for something I have no control over have much less of an effect on me than it did when I started. Having had different supervisors the past two summers has also shown me two very different styles of management and how differently two people can do the same job.
I am told being a mathematics major I should find the job market is quite large. Since I still don’t know what I want to do with a mathematics degree, I have no idea what I want to do after graduation. Since I declared mathematics I have discovered an interest in cryptology and have added it as an emphasis. I have also discovered an interest in the classics and have added it as a minor. These two additions further complicate determining the type of job I might be interested in, let alone the market in which I might find it.
logicum est quam mea semita statui. (Logic is how I have decided my degree path.)
“Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet” by Andrew Blum.
“Nine Algorithms That Changed the Future: The Ingenious Ideas That Drive Today’s Computers” by John MacCormick.
“Pizza, Bread & More: delicious recipes for more than 100 Italian favorites” by Academia Barilla