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(me) eating punkin pie in the Winona State University's dining hall

Personal Info

Name: Matthias Wood

a mathematician interested in education and computer science (for kicks). currently enrolled at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO, seeking a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics with a minor in Education (for certification purposes).

Research: working with Dr. Kim Factor and (somewhat) Elias Kehr on a Game theoretic analysis of raising incentives for business to abide by waterway, environmental regulations onset by the EPA and/or local governments. In the process, this research should help individuals know a few targeted characteristics business value concerning waterway regulations and how to limit a business's environmental footprint.

Milestones & Goals

Week 1

  • Review past projects done in this area by Rutgers students
  • Meet with mentor on Tuesday and Thursday
  • Attend talk on Thursday regarding good research practices
  • Post milestones and goals to REU Wiki
  • Write accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 2

  • Travel to Winona State University for a Command, Control, and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis (CCICADA) - sponsored workshop on Game Theory and Security
  • Work all day every day for six days in the workshop; determine
    • Specific topic for REU
    • Scope of topic, as well as possible directions of research
    • Think of expansion into an education module
  • Create a presentation for the end of the workshop
  • Write experiences in the REU Wiki
  • Meet with mentor all week

Week 3

  • Attend talk on presentations and papers on Tuesday
  • Meet with mentor on Tuesday and Thursday
  • Continue on research started at workshop
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 4

  • meet with mentor Tuesday and Thursday
  • list of viable resources (by end of the week)
  • outline for next week’s presentation and example pay-off matrix to mentor by Thursday
  • continue with research and possibly education module
  • write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 5

  • Attend mini presentations on Tuesday
  • Meet with mentor on Tuesday
  • write up background (formal) (due: July 6th)
  • start applying information of utility function on examples
  • Continue with write up, research, and education module
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 6

  • Attend talk on Tuesday regarding poster creation
  • Vacation day on July 4th
  • Continue with write up, research, and education module
  • Meet with mentor on Tuesday
  • have a completed background write-up (due: July 6th)
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 7

  • have a general utility function
    • test it!
  • have a completed, working utility function by the end of the week
  • Meet with mentor Tuesday and Thursday
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 8

  • use utility function to analyze what we want to find out (to do)
  • Have draft of poster (very drafty is fine) by Thursday - look online for template
  • Continue with write up of paper
  • Outline for remainder of paper based upon last week’s plan
  • Meet with mentor Tuesday and Thursday
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 9 (mentor out of state)

  • Proposed poster in electronic form emailed to mentor by Monday at noon; response back from mentor no later than 6 PM Monday
  • Final version of poster due Wednesday—email electronic copy (pdf form is good) to Dennis
  • Outline for final talk emailed to mentor by Friday; response back from mentor no later than Saturday evening
  • Contact Mentor about any concerns
  • Write up accomplishments in REU Wiki

Week 10

  • Slides for final talk emailed to mentor by Tuesday 6 PM (they may not be completely done yet, but should be getting close)
  • Meet with mentor on Tuesday
  • Poster session on Tuesday
  • Redo and/or complete slides for Thursday’s talk
  • Draft of paper to mentor on Wednesday
  • Final form of paper emailed to your mentor (Dr. Kim Factor) and Dr. Dennis Brylow by 11:59 PM Friday

Working Journal

Week 01: Orientation

Tuesday, May 29

  • completed orientation
    • gave introductions, filled out paper work, took written survey
  • explored the campus and its outskirts via multiple tours

Wednesday, May 30

  • read three research papers on applications of Game Theory and Graph Theory
  • discussed key concepts with Elias and collaborated to resolve minor complications

Thursday, May 31

  • further collaborated with Elias about the three articles (read the day before)
  • at 1pm, attended a lecture/discussion session with Dr. Kim Factor
    • learned and experienced the process of conducting research
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor and Elias and previewed the articles
    • discussed strengths and weaknesses of each article
    • went over plans for next week and the CCICADA Reconnect Conference
the entire Reconnect 2012 group, overlooking the city of Winona, MI

Week 02: Conference

Sunday, June 3

Monday, June 4

Tuesday, June 5

Elias Kehr, my research partner, enjoying an ice cream break; behind him, waits the trolly cart, which was quite authentic

Wednesday, June 6

Thursday, June 7

Friday, June 8

  • paid-attention to morning lectures on the history and projects from The Department of Homeland Security
  • during lunch, talked with Dr. Kim Factor about research - exceedingly encouraging and helpful!
  • finalized PowerPoint presentation for Saturday morning
  • wrote an outline and agenda document, which depicts particular aspects of my upcoming research

Saturday, June 9

  • listened to four groups present their possible topics for creating modules and targeting research
  • presented with Elias to faculty members about Game Theory and an application to modify environmental concern
  • rode back to Marquette University with Elias while Dr. Kim Factor drove - THANK YOU, KIM!!!
list of reading materials - possible resources

Week 03: Reading

Monday, June 11

  • went to Raynor Library
    • picked up authorization forms to gain renting privileges

Tuesday, June 12

  • set up Marquette wireless accounts
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor (mentor) and Elias
    • further discuss official milestones and goals
  • attended a talk with the entire REU group
    • learned about good presenting, technical writing, and how the two differ
  • read and collaborated with Elias about Utility Functions (Game Theory)

Wednesday, June 13

Thursday, June 14

  • read anther Game Theory book (history)(a lot of WWII)
  • attended working lunch

Friday, June 15

  • read about definitions of terms in a Game Theory book
  • looked online for more clear definitions
  • organized books from useful, maybe-use, and return
a thought-provoking, brain-hurting game - thanks Ethan Weber

Week 04: (working)

Monday, June 18

  • received an email from Elizabeth Kemajou about a possible source
    • discovered the source concerned CO2 emissions rather than water pollution - interesting mathematics, but not useful for water pollution
  • gathered data for meeting Dr. Kim Factor on Tuesday

Tuesday, June 19

  • read a quick chapter of a book
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor
    • discussed difficulties in finding viable sources
    • talked about next week's presentations
    • discussed the difficulties of Game Theory (no one right answer)
    • Elias changed his topic

Wednesday, June 20

  • attended a LaTeX tutorial meeting, led by Dr. Corliss in the early morning
  • read two volumes of Game Theory (interesting mathematical applications)

Thursday, June 21

an example pay-off matrix, of which I would analyze
  • created an example pay-off matrix
  • did some minor brainstorming about creating a utility function
  • arrived at the working lunch mid-day
    • listened to Dr. Kim Factor give a technical talk on (1, 2)-step domination graphs and applications to food chain graphs
    • spoke briefly with Dr. Kim Factor about objectives due
      • technical talk outline
      • example pay-off matrix for topic (help focus research)
  • created a draft outline and example pay-off matrix

Friday, June 22

  • woke up early to send in presentation outline and pay-off matrix to Dr. Kim Factor
  • completely finished reading all books
    • piled 6 books to return to the library
  • viewed previous technical talk and revised slightly for upcoming talk
the title slide of my presentation

Week 05: Show & Tell

Monday, June 25

  • reviewed over sources before attempting to integrate them into references
  • adjusted example pay-off matrix for better fit a real-world situation
  • fixed wiki page and updated research topic
  • went through old presentation from Reconnect and added in new slides and information
  • looked at Dr. Kim Factor's presentation and modeled my citations after hers
  • conducted minor preparatory work for tomorrow's presentations starting at 10AM.

Tuesday, June 26

  • woke-up entirely too early to prepare for today's presentations
  • listened and learned from other REU participants
  • presented own research by showing and telling my past work, current goals, and hopeful-future product
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor (mentor)
    • discussed current struggles and derived several solution
    • organized a few goals for next week
    • outlined what needs to be included into the background of a professional paper
  • talked to HR about a another late check :(

Wednesday, June 27

Thursday, June 28

  • worked on writing the background to my research paper

Friday, June 29

  • created an outline of my background
  • matched sources to each section and sub-section
  • started the paper

Week 06: Identifying Characteristics

Monday, July 2

  • searched online for characteristics business follow concerning waterway pollution
    • wrote what characteristics came about from which sources
    • saved sources on a text document

Tuesday, July 3

  • surfed the web for more sources
    • documented more characteristics which come from a variety of sources
    • matched information with sources

Wednesday, July 4

Thursday, July 5

  • woke up early to organize data
  • derived three targeted characteristics which most influence a business's decision (to abide or disregard waterway regulation)
  • followed the three characteristics with a detailed list of viable cites and their content (my summarized version)
  • attended to work lunch at 11:30AM
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor (mentor) after the lunch
    • reviewed data, sources, and three 'targeted' characteristics
    • corrected minor verbiage, which was unclear
    • received a new goal for this upcoming Tuesday

Friday, July 6

  • downloaded LaTeX
  • read about related programs to make LaTeX easier to handle
  • began working with example codes in LaTeX

Week 07: Utility Power, weight!

Monday, July 9

  • sick :(
  • preformed a massive make-over on wiki-page (hyperlinks + pictures)

Tuesday, July 10

  • wrote out each form of punishment for environment-law-breakers
  • categorized each object under the three, main, targeted characteristics
    • money, Reputation, and vitality (possessions which a company holds dear: waterway restrictions)
  • from that, weighted a basic utility function
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor at 1PM
    • talked about difficulties with current incentives and weighting
    • discussed the process of editing a utility function and adjusting the weights
    • received new goals for next meeting (Thursday, July 12)

Wednesday, July 11

  • tried to write/ re-write (abstract, introduction, background)
  • decided that I hate writer's block
  • switched gears to utility function and incentives
  • attempted to derive an equation to describe a business's utility
    • major difficulty with relating tangible to intangible objects (money vs reputation)
    • how does one address vitality? is this characteristic an 'on off' switch for the utility function?
    • derive proper values and proportions for a certain company (the arbitrary nature of a utility function)

Thursday, July 12

  • went back to writing
  • decided to work on Microsoft Word and, later, transfer work onto Lyx for pdf and professionalize
  • created a Word cover page
  • re-wrote the abstract
  • went to work lunch at 11:30AM
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor for guidance
    • went over old goals
    • reviewed abstract
    • revised some old work from previous goals
    • discussed new goals

Friday, July 13

  • discussed abstract with Elias and received helpful suggestions
  • made those suggested corrects and emailed abstract to Dr. Kim Factor
  • corrected some minor research flaws (which Dr. Kim Factor pointed out the day before)

Week 08: Writing and Posting

Monday, July 16

  • tweaked the utility function, slightly
  • searched outline for sample case
  • surfed around for awhile, looking for a sample case with values

Tuesday, July 17

  • finally entered an awesome web search
    • found a good case and plenty of sources
    • experiencing difficulty with finding actually monetary amounts (payoffs)
    • decided it would be a good topic to bring up with Dr. Kim Factor later today.
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor
    • talked 9about the poster project - rough drafts before Monday 11AM (7/23)
    • learned that creativity is better than mundane and boring (concerning posters)
    • went over my difficulty with finding actually numbers
    • resolved to KEEP LOOKING!!! :)

Wednesday, July 18

  • looked over webpages
  • searched related topics to discover RELIABLE sources on payoff values for the business(s)
  • read wayyyyy too many blogs and online news articles
  • computer shut down (sad/important part) and lost my browser
  • tried to recover pages from history - failed
  • re-search the same wording to find the same 'good' sources - not so great
  • frustrated.

Thursday, July 19

  • updated wiki...
  • prepared for a meeting with Dr. Kim Factor
  • set-up payoff matrix for players
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor
    • discussed my frustration
    • received ample help and support from my mentor. (THANKS Kim!)
    • devised a method for setting new waits to the utility function
    • lightly touched on poster ideas

Friday, July 20

  • worked on poster layout
  • gathered and summarized works for a draft
the completed, 3' X 4' version of my poster

Week 09: The Poster!

Monday, July 24

  • received a correction email from Dr. Kim Factor concerning my poster
  • reviewed the suggestion corrections
  • adjusted my poster and added in more text
  • sent in poster to mentor

Tuesday, July 25

  • again, received a correction email from Dr. Kim Factor concerning my poster
  • made the suggested corrections
  • printed poster and observed the layout and works
  • added in more text and adjusted working
  • sent in poster to mentor

Wednesday, July 26

  • attempted to compile more content for my sample case
  • found a plethora of information and news articles, but couldn't find anything definitive
  • completed another cycle of receiving an email, re-reading/posting, and sent another poster out

Thursday, July 27

  • received my last correction email from Dr. Kim Factor
  • made corrections and adjusted the layout of my poster (completely changed)
  • changed the flow of my poster and made it more like a story board
  • added a problem and conclusion section
  • emailed my final copy to both Dr. Kim Factor and Dr. Dennis Brylow

Friday, July 28

  • printed final poster product
  • finalized abstract
  • sent abstract to Dr. Kim Factor

Week 10: It All Ends

Monday, July 30

  • gathered several sources on sample case (Malibu)
  • determined methods for setting up the utility function

Tuesday, July 31

  • prepared for poster presentation
  • met with Dr. Kim Factor
    • discussed deadlines
    • explained my difficulties with the sample case
    • got the assignment for presentation and paper due tomorrow
  • worked on research and summed things up
  • put presentation together and sent it in

Wednesday, August 1

  • sent in the correct copy of presentation - oops
  • received revision advice
  • conducted further research with my sample case
  • conducted a lot of research with my sample case (enough for 2 bullets)
  • finalized presentation and practiced before tomorrow morning (presentation day!!!)

Thursday, August 2

  • wrote up early and prepared for presentations.
  • @ 10am, started presentations
    • presented work!
  • wrote more of my final research paper
  • wrote a lot more of my final research paper (it has been a busy week!)
  • sent my draft to Dr. Kim Factor

Friday, August 3

  • finished writing a couple sections of my paper
  • received correction advice from my mentor
  • filled in sections which lacked depth
  • re-wrote a couple sections
  • added more in the conclusion

Saturday, August 4

  • before leaving for home, added a little bit more to the paper
  • wrote and filled in a few missing areas
  • received critiques from my mentor
  • corrected my mistakes and sent the paper in!!!!!
  • !-!-!DONE!-!-!
  • slept for the winter :0)