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


Major: Biology

College/Employer: Stanford

Year of Graduation: G

Picture of Michael McLaren

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Not Available.

Past Classes

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

B2474: Game theory and the Evolution of Cooperation in Splash! Fall 2012
Would you risk your own life to save your brother or sister? How about to save a person you never met? While certainly an extreme example, such altruistic, or selfless, acts are common throughout the tree of life, from bacteria to humans. Yet the prevalence of altruism, and cooperation more generally, is puzzling from an evolutionary point of view. Selfish individuals can get help from others without having to give anything back; shouldn't natural selection then favor selfish behavior, ultimately leading to the loss of cooperation? We will use evolutionary game theory as a framework for understanding the evolution of cooperation, and discuss some possible solutions to this famous evolutionary puzzle.

B2169: Game Theory and the Evolution of Cooperation in Splash! Spring 2012
You are arrested with a conspirator for commiting a crime. The police tell you that if you rat your partner out, you can go free, but your partner will have to serve the full sentence of 5 years. They make your partner the same offer. What do you do? This classic game theory problem has been used by evolutionary biologists for decades to study the evolution of cooperation, or how behavior that helps others at the expense of the person doing the helping could evolve by natural selection. We will explore these ideas by playing games and through mathematical models of how behavioral strategies can evolve.

M1808: An Introduction to Mathematical Logic in Splash! Fall 2011
This course will introduce students to the field of mathematical logic. Because history is cool, the first part of the course will be an historical overview of how the field came to be. The second part of the course will be an introduction to the methods, notation, and concepts of mathematical logic. In the third part of the course, we will examine several major theorems from across the field to give a glimpse into the breadth, complexity, and beauty of modern mathematical logic.

H1828: Overhauling a Bicycle Hub in Splash! Fall 2011
I will give a hands-on demonstration of how to overhaul the hub on the rear wheel of a bicycle, and discuss how the hub works to allow a bicycle wheel to spin smoothly. If there is still time, I will discuss other basic bike repairs, such as replacing a wheel spoke or replacing a bike chain.