Splash Biography

MICHAEL KIELSTRA, Student mathematician; library enthusiast

Major: Not available.

College/Employer: Not available.

Year of Graduation: 2022

Picture of Michael Kielstra

Brief Biographical Sketch:

I'm a junior at Harvard studying mathematics and working on reinforcement learning under Dr. Susan Murphy. (Google her. Google me too -- I'm much less impressive but it makes me happy to go on the analytics page and see that people clicked on my website.) Ask me about algebra, calculus, Harvard, college admissions, computer science, the Boy Scouts, science fiction, and navigating by the stars.

Past Classes

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

M24: No No No Yes: An Introduction to Reinforcement Learning in Rainstorm Spring 2020 (May. 30 - 31, 2020)
Computers do exactly what we tell them, but sometimes we don't know what to say. Some environments are just too complex or mysterious for a programmer to write down an explicit algorithm. Reinforcement learning is how computers learn to make their own decisions in a human-like way: trying, failing, practicing, and learning. It's used by medical professionals, by data scientists, and by Netflix's recommendation algorithms. In this fast-paced class, split between theory and practice, we will first study the design of, and then build, our own reinforcement learning algorithms. And get your bandanas ready, because we might just have a visit from the Bandit...