For many years critics have belittled the profuse opportunities to make a living of modern technology, but in recent years computing and IT industries alone have been growing rapidly. Upon learning such information, I began pondering why was modern technology so successful? I sought the answer on numerous platforms. Yet I was still to find a definitive answer. Thus, I decided to look deeper into one section of modern technology, computers. After a couple of days of research, I decided to set myself a goal, to build my first computer. I began purchasing part by part before my parents realised what I was doing and decided to get me the rest of the parts I needed. I began immediately and made cumulative progress as the parts came. Eventually, after days of working through failed boots and unrecognised parts, I completed the construction of my PC. The fulfilment I felt from seeing what I had created inspired me to look into computer science. Only then did I realise that I had only seen one part computing – hardware. There was an entire other element involved in making computers function – software. Since then, I have only scratched the surface on software and hope to discover the rest with you as I make progress toward becoming a software engineer.
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Throughout secondary school and college I was unable to learn computer science as part of my formal lessons. As it wasn’t an option at either of the schools i attended, which meant that if I wanted insight into the topic I had to do it individually. I found that such independent studies were invaluable as they reinforced a self-reliant approach to my studies of computing – this will only prove to be a benefit in university where the responsibility is placed more heavily on the student than the teacher.
Last summer, I participated in an internship at Barclays where I shadowed an investment banker for the most part. However, with my experience with the banker, I noticed that most of the methods that he used to invest in stocks and speculate involved an intricate program created by a software engineer. Despite that, I approached this opportunity looking into finance I left convinced that Computer Science was the subject that I wanted to study. The fact that the influence of computing had even reached the finance sector only consolidated my interest in the topic.
During the Christmas break, I volunteered at Help Yateem, a charity that educated orphans in emerging countries. Throughout my time there I spent time with a website designer, he explained to me that with a computer science degree there are many ways to help those who are less fortunate. For example, he was completing the website design for Help Yateem free of charge. This reinforced my interest in the subject and inspired me to do as much as I could to help during my time there.
Recently, I read the unfinished book The computer and the Brain by John von Neumann – one of the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century. In this book, Neumann explores how the human brain can be perceived as a computing machine. However, he also points out many differences between the human brain and 20th-century computers such as processing speeds and storage capacity. Since then, engineers have managed to create a supercomputer (the K from Fujitsu) that processes four times faster and stores ten times more information than the human brain. But, there is a great downside – it uses enough electricity to power up to 10,000 homes. In the upcoming years, that number will only become smaller and my goal is to be part of the industry that makes such revolutionary technology available to everyone in their own households.
Ultimately, I possess a great fervour to study Computer Science and witness the progress of technology as part of the computing industry. Hopefully, I can do that at your esteemed institute.
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