Hello! My name is Sam McKay and I am a rising senior in GW Community School. I have always been enamored by the Computer Science discipline and throughout my high school career, I have found numerous opportunities that allow me to further hone my interest in CS. Last year, I worked with a company to develop software for a project they were working on and this summer, I have been working with Christopher Vo, Professor Jyh-Ming Lien, and Nikhil Garg, a fellow intern, on the "Tracking and Searching for Multiple Targets" research project. Over the summer, I created an approach called Predictive that uses high level heuristics to track a randomly moving, but cohesive, group of targets. The two core segments of my approach are a grid and an advanced sampling strategy that uses a system of weights. Furthermore, Chris introduced to me another problem which is how to partition a configuration space based on similar information. Because my grid utilizes visibility information, I created a "chunking" method that partitions an environment. If you were to see some pictures of how the partitioning works, you might get a better idea of what "abstract art" is (I think only my fellow team members will get the reference!) I have been working on other parts of the program as well: I have developed several strategies to increase the efficiency of the program as a whole and I worked with Nikhil on developing an algorithm that creates border for any given environment. Although we don't really have any practical use of this technique, we plan on submitting my Predictive approach to the Siemens Science Competition and perhaps we will find its use there.

I have really enjoyed my time here in the Department of Computer Science and I am very proud to see my name be published in a formal paper for the Motion in Games Conference. I am very thankful to Chris and the Professor for giving me such a wonderful opportunity.
Computer Science @ George Mason University