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Splash Spring 2016 is April 9-10

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For Splash Students

  • Registration opens on 3/16 at 7:30pm.
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  • Student Guide

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ESP Biography



EMMA PIERSON, Stanford sophomore studying physics and AI




Major: Physics, Artificial Intelligence

College/Employer: Stanford

Year of Graduation: 2013

Picture of Emma Pierson

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Not Available.



Past Classes

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

B2004: Cancer, the Clever Killer in Splash! Spring 2012
Cancer kills more people than anything else in the developed world. Ironically, this deadly disease usually comes not from an external invader, but from our own cells' betrayal. We will discuss the elegant principles behind cancer: how it develops, how it kills, and how it might be cured. We will also practice being cancer researchers, interpreting results of real experiments.


L2005: Kissing: Past, Present, and Future in Splash! Spring 2012
Kissing: what is it? Why do people do it? How ought it be done? We will examine these and other profound questions in a 45 minute class studying the history and development of the kiss, the top 10 kisses in cinema and literature, and good kissing technique.


M1300: Bayes' Rule in Splash! Spring 2011
How will robots take over the world? Why might you not really have cancer? Why is Google such an awesome search engine? The answer to all three questions is found in Bayes' Rule, a phenomenally important and simple mathematical law that they never teach you in high school. We will learn about its derivation, its meaning, and its applications; come join us to learn about life, death, and probability.


L776: The Philosophy of The Matrix in Splash! Spring 2010
We will watch scenes from The Matrix and then have a debate about the film's major philosophical question: what is the good life? Is it best to pursue a life of sensual pleasures, or to pursue higher things, like truth or love? Is it more important to be free or happy? We will consider these questions in light of the teachings of major philosophers, including Plato, Aristotle, and Descartes.


S778: God is Lazy: Lagrangian Mechanics in Splash! Spring 2010
Lagrangian mechanics may make you believe in God. It begins with the principle that everything in the universe chooses the cheapest action--objects, for example, somehow choose the shortest path through spacetime. It's as though they're guided by a very lazy God. How do they know how to do this? The answer is elegant, spooky, and astonishingly useful, a principle that unifies many different areas and forms the basis for much of modern physics. We will look at its applications in Newtonian mechanics and discuss its applications in modern physics.