Monthly Archives: November 2017

Reflections — William

My independent project for this semester aims to create a report which compares several of the usual deep learning architecture using a set of grocery pictures. I started by watching and reading through open course materials and videos, which I found on the website of Stanford University, course CS231n. I also get in touch with a mentor from my hometown and sought his guidance on this topic. He is a graduate student at Fudan University, Shanghai. We arranged meetings every other week via Zoom and he would be helping me to better understand open course materials.

After a week of introduction, he encouraged me to set up a computational environment so I could run the machine learning code in it. With his advice, I rent a cloud computing host offered by Alibaba, a Chinese cloud service provider. The set-up process took me quite some time: the install procedures require me to download and install numerous related programs and customize the environment specifically for my cloud host. At the same time, I obtained the image resource I need under the direction of my mentor from a public image database.

Then, I started to experiment with what I have learnt and put them into practice. Tensorflow is the programming language I use to build deep learning model. Though based on Python, one of my familiar computer programming language, Tensorflow took me quite amount of time to get used to, especially for me to understand the underlying structure and concepts. I have just started to implement basic machine learning models with Tensorflow, and I am looking forward to using it in my research.

I am currently consistent with my timeline, but the initial learning part, especially when I learn to use Tensorflow, took a bit too long. I did not expect to meet such difficulties putting what I have learnt from open courses into practice. Also, there are other issues: the connection to and from the cloud server, for example, is frequently disturbed. I had to figure out a way to keep my working session intact without being disturbed by the interruptions in the connections to my cloud host. Still, I learnt much from the progress I have made. I learnt about many basic tactics when setting up a cloud host in another operating system I am not familiar with. Moreover, I learnt about where to look for when I faced a new challenge. Before working on this project, I was limited to consulting my mentor or looking around on the Internet aimlessly. Now, I will join online communities to solve problems I face and read through open source projects documentation.

To achieve my goal over the rest of the semester, to produce a research report that is, I will keep working on my timeline planed. Starting from the Thanksgiving break, I will move away from how to implement deep learning models to the actual process of experiment and comparison among different deep learning models.

Works Cited

Brokaw, Alex. “Google’s TensorFlow is now available for iOS.” The Verge, The Verge, 8 June 2016,

Reflections – Natalie

I’ve done a fair amount of reflection in my past few blog posts, but I suppose there’s always room for more. Over the course of this semester I’ve both achieved and not achieved my goals. I actually have a much clearer and more long-term view of the trajectory of my work, and a vision for what I want to achieve not only in this semester, but further on in college. Continue reading

My Project So Far -Gwyneth




MedievalMonk  During my time doing independent research this semester, I have learned a great deal about just how challenging it is to conduct research on my own. At the same time, I think I have accomplished a lot in spite of the difficulties of adjusting to this new structure of learning and working. Continue reading

What’s my goal?

This week’s blog will focus on my reflection on my project and what I have learned thus far. In addition to this, I will also talk about my goals for the remaining time of my project.

I think one of the biggest challenges I faced so far is the efficiency in moving my project forward. One of the unique parts of my project is that I am able to work with governing officials, but this has also posed problems for me since I am not able to control the pace of my project. The people I am working with generally take time to contact, and I cannot text them and expect an immediate response since they are all busy people.

As a result, I have developed patience and…subtle ways to remind them to respond to my emails. I think it’s also interesting to learn to work with different people.

In terms of how I am doing with my timeline, I think I am not following the timeline directly. Instead, I am incorporating various unplanned things into my timeline. For example, my original plan was to build a relationship with Chester County and Yanqing County. However, along the way, I also learned other interesting things such as the help desk and am working to see if I can do anything to help them.

Another important lesson I learned is how to best use my time. I think doing an independent project allows me to manage my time base on what I need and I have found ways to make my independent study efficient and effective. One of the ways I do this is through time management. Click here to learn more about time management!
In the last third of the semester, I would like to continue to work on the connection between Yanqing County and Chester County. Good news I have received this week is that there is a special person in the County that works on China Initiative, and I am already in contact with her. I hope we can move forward together.


Reflection blog – Perline

During my summer trips to Shimenkan, I was able to explore and view the current state of the village from my own perspective. The experience was definitely special and seeing the actual village made it easier to learn about the history. For a large portion of the semester, I’ve been studying the history of Shimenkan and I explored topics like poverty, the value of charity, charity and more. Continue reading

Celebration! – Tray

Hello everyone! This week’s post will be focused on reflection. It’s hard to believe that it’s been more than two months since the school year began. Here’s a brief overview of what has been accomplished to date:

  • Read and presented on Uta Hagen’s Respect for Acting
  • Performed a comedic monologue from Molly Sweeney in preparation for future auditions
  • Cast as Nikos in Big Love, which received high praises from the community and the Greater-Philadelphia Cappies
  • Became a performing member of the Elements Dance Ensemble
  • Performed “Don’t Touch My Hair” at the Arts Festival
  • Currently working on a dramatic monologue in Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue
  • Voice Lessons with T. Rebecca Field
  • Pending Independent Project Proposal for chance to act in Seattle with my aunt
  • Reading Constantin Stanislavski’s An Actor Prepares
  • Cast as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof (to be performed in February)

Continue reading

Final Stage! – Cleo

Yesterday was the arts festival, which means that the dance section has been put to rest. Last night T. Will, in introducing the performance, laid out everything that I have done thus far. That conveyed the gravity of it all to me. I hadn’t even considered it up until that point. In my mind I was just making art. It’s what I do. Continue reading


Before Thanksgiving break, I would like to reflect on what I have done so for during the two months since September. It was a unique experience for me to search for scarce resources related to Korean traditional folk painting in the U.S. university libraries with Teacher Betsy. Also, for the first time in long period, I drew outlines, mixed colors, and painted without my Minhwa teacher or advisor standing next to me, helping and editing. I really enjoyed reading my classmates’ weekly posts and commenting on their articles. Although writing the blog was challenging to me at first as you can see from this first blog, as I was used to writing more formally, I became confident in writing blogs with a friendly tone. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to share what I am interested in and passionate about. I feel I have learned more about the culture from the country I came from through this experience. I feel most satisfied when people, impressed with my blogs, commented on them.

Timeline wise, since it is already Thanksgiving break, only a month and half or the last third of the semester is left, I am going to focus more on finishing my three products. I have done one painting and I am almost done with the second one. I did not accomplish my goal to finish two products since I was busy preparing for college applications, but I developed deep gratitude for my advisor, who helped me through Skype and chats, advising on the color and depth of my painting and answering my questions. Also, I noticed the importance of preparation, specifically bringing several pieces of paper for painting called Hanji, as I made several mistakes in outlines and colors, but with the spare paper, I could draw again with no worry.

Until mid-December, I will focus more on completing my last paintings. As Thanksgiving break is short, I am going to Korea during the Winter break, so I will create another timeline to use my time efficiently before, during, and after Winter break. I am looking forward to receiving the final advice during Winter break in Korea with my mentor physically present. I will also prepare for methods of display for my exhibition when I finish the three paintings.

Then, have a good Thanksgiving break!

Picture Citation:

Game Theory in the Norman Conquest–Summer

In my last post, I introduced you to a new form of game called Sequential Games. Today, I’m going to explore with you a historical application of Sequential Game, the Battle of Hastings during the Norman Conquest. Continue reading

Researching AFA(Asociación de Futból Argentino) corruption

This week to open up corruption in South America I did some investigating on some of the biggest, most powerful, and well known officials and leaders in soccer. I came across a man named Julio Grondona, the late former president of soccer in Argentina. Grondona died in 2011, marked as a sad day in Argentinian soccer across the world. Two of the most recognizable Argentinian world soccer stars of all time, Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi, spoke about the greatness of Grondona for Argentinian soccer’s growth and well being, as well as wishing his family and friends well in their time of mourning. Even while he was celebrated in death by his countrymen, many people around world soccer could not help note the shadiness of his reign as Argentinian soccer president for nine terms in a row unaposed. Along with rumors and allegations of corruption and money laundering. This was brushed aside for the most part in 2011 upon his death. 

News surfaced very recently this past year with more detailed and revealing reports of Grondona pocketing up to fifteen million dollars of AFA(Associación de Futból Argentino) money. This was stolen through money made with televion rights for games, AFA propaganda such as jerseys, and deals with the government and other soccer associations across the world. Many people suspected him of such activity, partly due to his 9 term, 35 year long tenure at the helm of Argintean soccer. One piece of information Dan brought to my attention after I shared these articles about Grondona was the 1978 World Cup and it’s controversy.

Held in Argentina two years after the military coup and Guerra Sucia(Dirty War), there was initial controversy over whether or not teams should participate in the tournament. This was eventually ended and everyone who qualified participated. However cries of the Argentinian government and AFA’s corruption were once again thrust out when in the final qualifying game of the group stage, Argentina needed to beat Peru by a margin of at least four goals. This would need to be a grand feat due to Peru winning their first round group as well as drawing eventual runners up Holland, 0-0. Peru was not a weak side, yet the scoreline did not reflect that in the slightest. Argentina won 6-0, sending them to the World Cup finals on their home turf, which they went on to win over Holland, 3-1. Many people thought Argentina bought that victory, partly due to money already being in question and loaned between Peru and Argentina, using central banks of each country. Grondona was elected president immediately following his predecessor Hurucán David Bracuto’s, resignment following the World Cup. While still unconfirmed, the reports of Grondona’s other corrupt activity in the AFA make this hard to ignore.

This epidemic of corruption in South American government’s is something we studied in Spanish 5/6 last year, so I am familiar with the dirty war of Argentina aforementioned for this weeks study, as well as many other wars and dictatorships across the 20th century. Because of the far more mysterious nature of soccer corruption pre 1970’s, I am going to use my knowledge of government corruption during that time to try to possibly find some conspiracy theories or ideas connecting government corruption to soccer corruption. Dan and I have agreed upon making this the topic of my next research paper. Using all of the information of cultural identity in Spain and ideas from my first paper, as well as the information in this upcoming paper, I will begin to work on my final project paper once we return from break.