ESP Biography

TONY ZHAO, Quirky MIT Sophomore studying CompSci

Major: 6

College/Employer: MIT

Year of Graduation: 2015

Picture of Tony Zhao

Brief Biographical Sketch:

In west Philadelphia, born and raised... actually I was born in Texas and spent most of my life in California.

I got into MIT by some miracle, and I've been doing pretty well in my computer science classes.

You'd be hard pressed to find me teaching about that though. I'm a self-described "casual-hardcore gamer," which means that I play casual and single-player games in a hardcore manner while playing hardcore games in a casual manner.

Classes I have taught:
Monty Python for Spark, in which we put a bunch of monty python clips on a projector.
Dungeons and Dragons for Spark, in which we fought a calzone golem

Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

X7280: Intro to Competitive Pokemon Battling in HSSP Summer 2013 (Jul. 07, 2013)
Remember that game you played (or maybe still play) about catching them all and becoming a master? Turns out there's a lot more to the game than you might have imagined. This course is intended for people who have little or no experience with competitive battling. I'm only middle-of-the-road as far as competitive battlers go, so if you frequent Smogon, there's a very good chance that you know more than I do. But, if you do have that kind of experience, you're definitely welcome to take the class and display your knowledge; I'd be very interested in learning from you. Ideally, by the end of this class, you will have the knowledge to create a team and acquire it in-game. If you don't own a game, you're still welcome to come and learn; there are online battle simulators that you can use. Students are encouraged to bring a laptop to class, but it is not required. You will almost certainly have to consult references during lecture. Take the blue pokeball, and wake up and believe whatever you want to believe. Take the red pokeball, and find out just how far down the diglett hole goes. This class will primarily focus on the standard OU metagame (if you don't know what this means, it's the most common form of competitive battling), but other formats (including UU, Little Cup, Battle Tower, and VGC) will be covered briefly. Tentative lesson subjects: Overview of the Metagame(s) Building (and tweaking) a Team EV Training and Breeding Techniques Common threats How to pick your moves and items Reading your opponent (Psychology of battling) Brief overview of other rule sets Battle Tower Strategies Pokemon World Tournament Strategies

X5169: How to play D&D (And convince your friends it's harmless) in Splash! 2011 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2011)
In this class, we will go over the history and design of the classic game of Dungeons and Dragons, including its relevance to pop culture, the controversy that surrounded it in the 80's, and where D&D will be going in the future. Oh, and we'll be playing D&D too. That's probably the most important part.

W5282: Monty Python in Splash! 2011 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2011)
"One of the things we tried to do with the show was to try and do something that was so unpredictable that it had no shape and you could never say what the kind of humor was. And I think that the fact that "pythonesque" is now a word in the Oxford English Dictionary shows the extent to which we failed." Watch classic clips from Monty Python, including "How not to be seen," the Dead Parrot Sketch, and "What have the Romans done for us?"