ESP Biography
MICHAEL AXIAK, MIT junior studying math
Major: Mathematics College/Employer: Not available. Year of Graduation: Not available. 

Brief Biographical Sketch:
Michael Axiak is a junior studying mathematics at MIT. He has experience in web development, business, hydrodynamics and open source projects. Past Classes(Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)C3216: Introduction to Python for Beginners in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
No, we will not be learning zoology or watching Flying Circus. Python is a very expressive computer language that can be used to make your computer do just about anything.
This class will first introduce you to basic syntax. Then we will explore all of the packages available to you, and we will hopefully look at creating a simple game using pygame.
C3217: Advanced Python in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
Python is a very extensive language that has support for many idioms. Even though you may think you know Python, there are many features of the language that are subtle and not used often enough. Given the breadth of knowledge, this will be more of a survey of the advanced topics.
A brief list of things we will try to learn:
 Variadic functions
 Partial, decorators, higher order procedures, closures, reduce
 Generators and the iteration protocol
 Threading (and implications of GIL)
 Metaclasses
 Coroutines
 Tail call optimization
H3218: Introduction to Mandarin Chinese in Spark! 2010 (Mar. 13, 2010)
你好！
Have you ever wondered how to order General Gau's chicken in a (Mandarin) Chinese restaurant? Does Chinese sound like gibberish to you?
In this class, we will learn the very basics of Chinese. We will learn the elements of the system of writing, pronunciation systems, and basic vocabulary. If nothing else, this class should get you on your way to parsing the different sounds into a language.
M2235: Optimization Theory in Spark! Spring 2009 (Mar. 07, 2009)
Optimization is all about solving complex problems. For example, how many flavors of ice cream should your ice cream parlor carry in order to maximize profit? How would you cut a piece of yarn into four pieces to maximize the area of the quadrilateral formed? Where should you locate an emergency facility in order to minimize transportation costs? How should you drive in order to minimize gas usage?
We will show you how to model reallife problems and find optimal solutions of your own!
M1821: The Theory of Optimization I in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22  23, 2008)
Optimization is all about solving complex problems. For example, how many flavors of ice cream should your ice cream parlor carry in order to maximize profit? How would you cut a piece of yarn into four pieces to maximize the area of the quadrilateral formed? Where should you locate an emergency facility in order to minimize transportation costs? How should you drive in order to minimize gas usage?
We will show you how to model reallife problems and find optimal solutions of your own!
Familiarity with algebra is required.
If you are planning on taking Theory of Optimization II, sign up for this class as well.
M1822: The Theory of Optimization II in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22  23, 2008)
This course is a followup to The Theory of Optimization I.
In this class, we will explore the mathematical basis for optimization. We will discover the rich math of Hilbert spaces, dual spaces, and Fourier analysis. We will be able to use these concepts to solve a broader class of optimization problems, such as finding the path of least time (useful in relativistic mechanics), finding the optimal strategy to play Age of Empires, and deriving the equation entropy in statistical mechanics.
Some knowledge in Calculus is recommended.
C2032: Information Retrieval in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22  23, 2008)
You've been Googling for information since you could spell, but how does Google get the information for you?
In this class we'll explore the concepts behind retrieving relevant information given keywords, web pages, nodes, or any other subspaces. We'll be able to use the results to answer questions like: Which person on Facebook is most like me? Given an unsorted pile of my classwork, how can I categorize them into my class subjects? And of course we'll explain the theory behind Google's PageRank algorithm and some of the interesting modifications they've had to make in due to the everchanging web.
Some of the concepts that are explored in this class include projection, Markov chains, cosine similarity, tfidf, and some probability.
Physics Power in JUNCTION (2007)
A great study in physics gives us keen insights into the beauty of the world, but doing stuff with the ...
Real Mechanics in JUNCTION (2006)
Ever wonder how celestial bodies move? I didn't think so. They move in elliptical paths, following from the inversesquared law ...
Functional Analysis in FIREHOSE (2006)
You are taking/have taken 18.03, tired of all the transforms and series and such. What's actually happening? Why does it ...
Physics and Rocketry in HSSP (2006)
Rockets are cool, right? In this class, we'll take an indepth look at how they operate. The challenges in rocketry ...
Applied Photonics in SPLASHONWHEELS (2006)
Photonics is the study of light. Since the Greeks, the properties of light have been studied so that light can ...
Understanding Quantum Mechanics in SPLASHONWHEELS (2006)
What is quantum mechanics? I'm sure you've heard of it some point. Sure, you might have even seen some of ...
Ask Mike and Nelson Computer Questions in SPLASH (2006)
Ever wondered how computers work? Maybe you have some idea, but there are things you *just* *don't* *know*? Show up, ...
Functions as Vectors in SPLASH (2006)
Functions are just a mapping from an input number to an output, right? But how are we to compare how ...
Introduction to Quantum Mechanics in SPLASH (2006)
What is this mysterious subject called Quantum Mechanics? You've probably heard about it, perhaps even seen some of it in ...
Introduction to Variational Mechanics in SPLASH (2006)
Does F really equal MA? Do things really travel in straight lines? What is a straight line? In this class, ...
Practical Networking with Computers in SPLASH (2006)
You just paid $$$ for a router and it broke. You tried running a ton of games on it and ...
Quantum Mechanics 2 in SPLASH (2006)
This course will be a continuation of Introduction to Quantum Mechanics. We will explore some of the formulations of Quantum ...
Text Parsing with Regular Expressions in SPLASH (2006)
Have you ever needed to gather a list of names that were convoluted on a web document? How about convert ...
Ask Mike and Nelson Computer Questions in SPLASH (2005)
Come ask us anything about how computers work! Routing, filesharing, compression, 3D rendering, anything you're curious about. We just won't ...
Practical Networking in SPLASH (2005)
Ever wondered how you can configure more than one computer to do things effectively together? In this class, we will ...
The Theoretical Side Of Networking in SPLASH (2005)
So we have computers that can talk to each other. We have complex instant messanging systems that allow us to ...
