Why I do engineering, II. college
topic: A scholarship application
The difference between what is possible and what is commonly available frustrtes me. I want to apply technology to find excellent solutions.
formats: HTML (2.2kB) 1995-01-01 quality 2
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Brief Description of Zak

circa 1995

The difference between what is possible and what is commonly available frustrtes me. I want to apply technology to find excellent solutions.

I see elegant solutions to all problems, and programming is one realm where truly elegant solutions are possible,. I independantly learn what is required to create better colutions.

The best way to learn is to do somehting that requires new knowledge. I wanted to learn UNIX, so I configured a UNIX machine for public-access email and ran it from my house. Now I am increasing my knowledge of networks at my job at CAE by doing network programming.

I like using optimal solutions. In Chemistry class in high school, I was doing a lab which required taking hundreds of data points from a spectrophotometer. The meter had an I/O port on it. I made a hardware interface netween the meter and the HP48 calculator and wrote a data-acquisition program for it to analyze the data by calculator. I bridged the hardware and software hap to get the job done.

Sometimes my prmary purpose in a project is not the final product, but the knowledge I will gain along the way. Near the end of my Jr Year in high school I wanted to make something interesting and challanging for my electronics lab, so I made a working microcomputer. The final result was not novel or elegant by today's standards, but I learned a lot along the way.

I try to excel in everyting I do, and I'm very competitive. I enjoy snowbowboarding and soccer. I've spent a lot of time getting good at them.

I read a lot from a broad range for both pleasure and knowledge. A few of my favorites are: Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand; The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, by J.R.R. Toklien; and Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein. Reading a wide variety gives me many perspectives and helps me see interrelatedness between different subjects.

A practical result of my self-directed interests is that after one semester at the Universiy of Wisconsin, Madison, I have junior standing in ECE. I am eager to gain knowledge from advanced technical courses and my job at CAE that will help me create and apply exciting technology.


[Zak Smith] [zak@computer.org] [/~zak/documents/college/brief-description-of-zak/html]
$Id: documents,v 1.5 2000/09/28 21:20:39 zak Exp zak $
documents was last modified Mon 07 Apr 2014 0:16:32
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