Archive for May, 2009

Acceptance into Stanford University

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

The other day I had the pleasure of receiving an email from Stanford University to the effect that I had been admitted to the Masters’ Program in the Computer Science Department beginning Autumn Quarter 2009-2010. I have not written anything about my application on this blog so far, but in fact I applied to some programs of computer science departments at graduate schools in the United States last year. I have been really excited about this result.

Though I have already a master’s degree in Electronic Engineering in Japan, I believe that this masters’ program at Stanford University is quite a good preparation for my long-term goal. Therefore, I made a decision to accept the offer. My family and friends are also very pleased with the admittance, and some of my friends are planning to give me a send-off party.

These days have been very hectic because of some procedures for my transition to the United States. This is the first time that I have experienced studying abroad, and I will prepare for my new life as carefully as possible so as to make a good start this coming September.

Jun Araki

NUMB3RS

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

It is pretty good weather in Tokyo today. You would want to go on a picnic somewhere on such a day. Today I will write about an interesting book, although it has nothing to do with picnics.

Several months ago, someone’s blog article, whose I don’t remember exactly, introduced a Japanese edition of a book. The title of the book is “NUMB3RS.” Wikipedia says that it was made into a television drama in the United States in 2005 and gained popularity among millions of people.

When I read the article, the book looked fascinating because I have never read such a book that conveys concretely the practicability and efficiency of mathematics in the real world. So, I bought the original edition of the book, not the Japanese one, and I have been reading it. As you might know, the book as well as the drama depicts some criminal cases and two brothers who succeed in solving those cases with some applied mathematical methods. The older brother is an FBI investigator, and the younger one is a mathematician.

I like mathematics, and indeed the book is quite interesting. When I was a junior high school student, someone asked a math teacher a question like “What is mathematics useful for?” I don’t remember exactly what he answered, but do remember that he didn’t answer it very well. I suppose that one of the answers is what the book tells us. Mathematics is invisible in the real world because it is abstract by its very nature. However, in light of the fact that some mathematical methods help us solve the cases through criminal profiling and investigation, it is surely of much use in a wide range of fields, in particular behind what we see in daily life.