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Going to gradschool in Portland, OR

So for those of you who don’t know, I am planning on going to grad school for Computer Programming Languages. I have been fully accepted to Portland State University in Portland, OR. Also I was concerned that they would make me take undergrad classes because I don’t have an Undergrad CS degree, but it doesn’t look like that will be a problem. I sent them a list of theoretical CS things I have knowledge of and I think they were impressed. The professor I am communicating with said “I believe you are exceptionally well prepared for our MS program.” Which I feel really good about.

I will be moving out to Portland, OR in mid to late August. But I will probably be going to KS for a couple weeks on the way, so I will probably be leaving NYC around the end of July. It’s so soon. I’m scared and excited.

Here is the theoretical computer science bragging document I sent them. It looks pretty impressive and it’s all true! ;-)

These are the buzz-words that I know and understand and that I
think would be applicable. I also have a more complete write up below.

* Turing machines
* The halting problem
* Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem
* Bog-O Notation
* Lambda Calculus
* Church Numeral
* Type-level meta programming
* Kernel development
* System integration
* System programming
* Compilation, assembly and linking as separate steps
* Embedded systems programming (without an OS and with a minimal OS)
* Direct I/O handling
* Interrupt programming
* Object-oriented programming
* Pure and impure functional programming
* Functional-OO-Hybrid programming
* Logic programming
* Functional Logic programming
* JOIN-Calculus and Pi-calculus
* The Actor Model
* Software Transactional Memory

I have learned about Turing machines and the halting problem and
Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem. I have also learned about Lambda
Calculus and Pi-Calculus (to gain a better understanding of languages
based on them). I understand and use the Big-O notation of algorithmic
complexity (and its limitations). I have also dealt with Church
Numerals for the purpose of encoding numbers in Lambda Calculus and in
the type systems of other languages (such as Scala) to allow for type
level metaprogramming.

I have been using Linux for more than 10 years now. Over that time I
have done everything from desktop usage to custom turnkey system
integration and kernel development. I have worked on most parts of an
OS from the kernel to application software. I have also worked on
systems with both no OS (PIC microcontrollers) and a very small OS (TI
calculators), so I have done direct I/O and interrupt programming
(including integration with standardized protocols like USB HID). Also
I have dealt with compilation, assembly and linking as separate steps.

I have learned the new languages on a regular basis not because I need
to program in the languages but because the new languages teach me
things about programming and programming languages in general. For
instance I learn about pure functional programming from Haskell and
about hybrid-OO-functional from Nemerle (and later Scala). Also I
understand monads as both collections, processes and pseudo-containers
like the IO monad (though not the category theory from which they
derive, I must admit). I also spent some time working with
JOIN-calculus (Jocaml) and the actor model (Erland and Scala).
Recently I have been reading about Software Transactional Memory and
how it can be integrated with Actors and how transactions can follow
messages from actor to actor. I have read a lot about JOIN-Calculus
and Pi-Calculus because I am very interested in natively parallel
programming abstractions. I think natively parallel abstractions of
computation will be very important in the future of massively
multi-core computers.

I forgot to mention Object-Oriented programming above because I have
been using it for so long (I first learn OO with C++ when I was around
14). I have also attempted to learn a few logic languages (Mercury and
Prolog and also Curry from PSU), but I admit I have had very little
luck. It has turned out to be the hardest kind of language for me to
grasp. I have a basic understanding of how the languages work and I
know what the syntax means and how variable binding works and all that
and how all these pieces should work together to allow arbitrary
programs. I also read an article Sergio Antoy, et al about
multi-threaded functional logic language implementations. It was very

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