I In search of ways to familiarize myself

I have always had a penchant to break and poke things with stick just to
figure out how they work. But after a couple of beatings and bodily harm, I decided
to pursue safer and less painful interests to satiate my curiosity- thus my fascination
with algorithms, and logical puzzles. My current objective is to poke at a
specific class of algorithms: machine
learning algorithms and it is for this that I am applying to IISc’s doctoral
program in Intelligent Systems.

My bachelor’s degree project piqued my interest in learning-systems.
Therein, I developed a motion and noise detection application, but had
difficulty at deciding what threshold to raise these events due to the factors
(environmental, subjective definition of noise and motion) that were at play. I
subsequently found that it was better to leave such decisions to a system that
could learn from experience.

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In search of ways to familiarize myself with these systems, I enrolled
into a master’s degree course in Computer Applications (I stand fifth in
Bangalore University’s rank list) that included courses such as Advanced Algorithms,
whose module on approximate algorithms weaned me off the notion of optimal solutions;
Theory of Computation, wherein I was taught that attempting to solve some
problems is generally considered a wild goose chase; Statistical methods of
testing hypotheses; Artificial Intelligence with a focus on knowledge
representation and automated reasoning. As an autodidact, most of my knowledge
about neural networks and pattern recognition in general is from reading,
especially, Tom M. Mitchell’s Machine Learning.

But learning systems isn’t the only field for which I have developed a
scholar’s keenness. I am an avid computer programmer and have won a few
intercollegiate coding contests. I believe this is a testament to my ability to
think logically about problems, and to clearly express these thoughts in a
formal way.

Though I remain cautious about
committing myself prematurely to a specific research topic, I am eager to work
on ways to decrease the training time of neural networks.

In my own quest for a suitable graduate
program, I was thrilled to learn about IISc’s research training programme.

Overall, I am convinced that your institute is precisely what I need in
acquiring the depth of knowledge and sophistication of research methodology to
attain my goal.