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 Post subject: Computer programming opportunity at graduate school?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:37 pm 
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am

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Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am
Posts: 52
Honestly my BSc and MSc study in physics at India didn't teach me the right computing skill set for graduate research at United States. However, I should admit that in the 4th semester of my MSc, there was a course called computer programming and numerical methods in computing. So, I could learn a little bit of Fotran programming, but it wasn't enough. On the practical side(hands on experience), I can say I didn't get the chance to learn at all. May be its because Indian education is not research based, but exam oriented(rote memory based). I am also of the opinion that most of Indian students(98%)albeit some IIT products, do not get to learn Metlab or mathematica before entering graduate schools.

My area of interest being experimental HEP demands heavy computing skill set and right technological know-how. So, will my graduate study at States give me opportunity to make up this deficit in computing skill? As I don't know properly how graduate school works in States, can someone throw some light on how I may learn computer programming skills like Metlab, mathematica, Latex, etc? And what can I do to improve myself in these few months before coming to US?


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 Post subject: Re: Computer programming opportunity at graduate school?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2012 5:07 pm 
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 11:44 am

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Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 11:44 am
Posts: 1133
Programming skills in physics unfortunately* is mostly self-taught. So, grab a textbook on your favorite programming language, learn the syntax, and play around. Getting to know your way around a unix OS is also pretty important; make a linux boot on your laptop and force yourself to navigate/open files via terminal. Good programming languages to learn in experimental HEP are C++ and the ROOT extension, Java, and Python.

*unfortunately because it means most physics software packages are poorly programmed, difficult to compile, and impossible to modify.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer programming opportunity at graduate school?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2012 11:31 pm 
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am

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Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am
Posts: 52
Thank you bfollinprn so much for your reply.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer programming opportunity at graduate school?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:15 pm 
Joined: Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:44 am

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Joined: Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:44 am
Posts: 8
yes. you need to learn it by yourself. get a book on C++ & start learning. you should be able to learn the essential stuff within a couple months. matlab syntax is v.similar to c.

even if ur at iit, you would mostly have to learn it yourself.
only the chem engg dept here at iitb have a course on matlab for UGs.
the physics dept has the fortan course u were talkin about for the MSc's.


Last edited by spin1/2 on Thu Apr 05, 2012 7:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Computer programming opportunity at graduate school?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:30 am 
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am

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Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:57 am
Posts: 52
Thanks Spin1/2. I just started learning C language. I am expecting to take up C++ and JaVA one after another once I know C language thoroughly. I hope this experience will be fulfilling.


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