Welcome and Introductions

Welcome, everyone. We thought it would be a good idea to briefly introduce ourselves, and the WWS/MAE 353 team is taking the lead here. Please write a two or three sentence introduction about yourself and why you are taking this course. You can also note any questions you have after reviewing the syllabus and highlight topics that particularly stand out for you. We’d like your interests to help determine what we emphasize this semester.

29 thoughts on “Welcome and Introductions

  1. Hi there. My name is Alex (Glaser). I work on arms-control verification technologies and related policy questions. At Princeton, I co-direct the Program on Science and Global Security, which has been around for more than forty years now. Our team of students, postdocs, faculty works on a broad range of security issues, mostly in the nuclear field. Some of our current projects include nuclear archaeology, zero-knowledge protocols, virtual proofs of reality, robot inspections, disco verification, and open-source information barriers for warhead inspections. FYI, here’s a little story about our zero-knowledge work. Perhaps more interesting than what we tend to publish in those science journals.

  2. Hi everyone, my name is Tamara. I’m a PhD student in WWS working on nonproliferation, arms control and disarmament issues. I’ll be with you in precepts as you discuss/debate the course material and create superb things in the way of team projects. Along with Alex and our team, I focus on treaty verification issues — a space I like for the way that technology and policy questions collide and connect. Here’s an example of the kind of work we do on arms control using virtual reality, which we’ll tell you a bit more about tomorrow. Looking forward to meeting all of you! – Tamara Patton (tpatton@princeton.edu)

  3. Hello! I’m Moritz, working as a PostDoc at the Program on Science and Global Security since last fall. I will be around in some of the lectures and projects during the course, helping out Alex and Tamara. In my research, I try to bring ideas from the maker scene and hacker culture to help us with challenges in nuclear disarmament and arms control. This involves building verification technologies as well as assessing their possible policy implications. An example of a recent talk on vintage verification.

  4. Hi everyone, my name is Sergei. I am a junior in the WWS department, also pursuing a certificate in French Language. I have been interested in global security for the past year or so, but have not yet taken any academic course in the field. This is why I am taking this class. I am fascinated by nuclear weapons and their role in the Cold War and today. In particular, I am looking forward to Week 8’s lecture on nuclear strategy, deterrence, and modernization.

  5. I’m Connor, a senior in the history department with a certificate in history and the practice of diplomacy. I have interests in both diplomatic history and U.S. foreign policy, so I am taking this course to better understand the scientific and technological side of many of the weapons the U.S. depends on for its security, as well as the strategic implications of this technology.

  6. Hello everyone! My name is Jay, and I’m a senior in the Philosophy department, where I focus on philosophy of warfare. I’ve been involved with the Center for International Security Studies at WWS all four years, working on their crisis simulations. I worked in the Office of Regional Security and Arms Transfers at the State Department after sophomore year, and I’ve since written a few JPs on arms control and end-use monitoring. I’m eager to learn more about the issues in this class, especially as I hope to pursue a career in defense.

  7. I’m Sarah, I’m a sophomore planning on majoring in Near Eastern Studies. I hope to specialize and pursue a career in the intelligence community and counterterrorism, so I am most excited to be in this class in order to gain necessary scientific background in many of the weapons used by radicalized groups around the world and what current United States policy looks like to control the use of such dangerous weapons.

  8. Hi! I’m Marion, and I am a senior in the Woodrow Wilson School with a certificate in Technology and Society. I find the intersection between AI and public policy to be particularly fascinating and relevant in today’s world. That said, I am really looking forward to weeks 10 and 11 on machine learning and superintelligence.

  9. Hi, I’m Stew, a junior in Woody Woo hoping to get a Certificate in Applications of Computing too. I usually focus on security studies, so a class mixing that and technology seemed like a good fit, and I’m looking forward to the cyberwarfare topics right before midterms.

  10. Hi, I’m Kenan, a senior in the Computer Science Department with a certificate in Statistics and Machine Learning. I am interested in how technology advances translate to new policy in the context of the pace of technological innovation. I am looking forward to cyberwarfare and machine learning topics in class.

  11. Hi all,

    I’m Grace, a senior in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department. As an aspiring engineer, I am interested in learning more about the social and political effects of technology. I am particularly excited about the biological weapons unit.

  12. Hi, my name is William and I’m a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School. I am really interested in learning about the emergence of security threats and the science behind them. The subject matter really fascinates me- I took Causes of War last semester, which I really enjoyed and I chose to write my JP was on counterterrorism.

  13. Hello everyone!

    I’m Kabbas, a senior in Politics with a certificate in Values and Public Life. I’ve always been interested in technology and its general interaction with society, and this course seems to be somewhat in that domain.

  14. Hello everyone,

    My name is Juston and I’m a sophomore hoping to major in the Woodrow Wilson School. I’m interested in learning more about security and we respond to potentially dangerous advancements in technology. I’m looking forward to the units on cyberwarfare and biological weapons.

  15. Hi all,
    My name is Adrienne and I’m a sophomore planning to major in the Woodrow Wilson School. I’m taking this course because I took a Freshman Seminar entitled “Life in a Nuclear Armed World” and thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m interested in nuclear weapons and arms control in general, and am especially excited to learn more about cyberwarfare and machine learning.

  16. Hello Everyone,

    My name is Patrick Cha and I’m a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School with a certificate in Statistic and Machine Learning. Over the summer, I read Seventh Sense: Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks by Joshua Cooper Ramo, and became interested in the intersection of technology, security, and public policy. I am particularly looking forward to the units on cyber warfare and nuclear strategy.

  17. Hi, I’m Ella and I’m a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School with a certificate in American Studies. I’m interested in the intersections between science and policy, and I think it is very important for policymakers to have some level of comprehension of the technologies that they are dealing with. I’m fascinated by global security measures, especially in today’s political climate, and I’m looking forward to learning more about the science and technology behind these prevalent issues.

  18. Hi, I’m Wesley, a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School planning on getting a certificate in the American Studies department. Up to this point, I have had very little academic exposure to issues of global security, so I saw this STN as the perfect opportunity to broaden my horizons while also fulfilling a distribution requirement.

  19. Hello, my name is Jordan, and I’m a junior in the History Department, planning on obtaining a certificate in Urban Studies. I’m interested in taking this course, in part, because of its relevance to current event topics such as nuclear weapons, and cyber security. I am hoping to develop a better working knowledge of these security issues, so I can become a better informed citizen. In addition, I’m a member of the policy team for PAVE, the self-driving cars club on campus, and look forward to learning more about AI and public policy and how AI relates to global security issues.

  20. Hi all, my name is Charlotte and I’m a sophomore planning to major in History. I took this course because I’m interested in US military policy and want to develop a better understanding of the relevant technologies. I am especially looking forward to the Arms Control unit.

  21. Hi All, my name is Jenny and I’m a senior in the history department. I’m minoring in archaeology and in the history and practice of diplomacy. I decided to take this course because it meets the HPD requirements and is an STN, but after reading through the syllabus, I am quite excited for this course and what is to come. I am very much looking forward to being a part of the VR verification sim at the end of the semester.

  22. Hi, I’m Ethan, a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School. I am interested in taking this course because of the relevance of technology and other scientific issues in the current security environment. I especially look forward to learning about nuclear and cyber warfare.

  23. Hi everyone! I’m Angela, a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School focusing on conflict and cooperation. I am taking this course because I am interested in how to formulate sound public policy in response to advances in technology. I am especially interested in the units on cybersecurity and the ban on nuclear weapons.

  24. Hi! I’m Nikhil, a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School. I’m taking this course because it seems like a really interesting way to learn about some of the new technology and scientific issues facing policy makers. I am particularly excited to learn more about the VR verification simulation at the end of the semester.

  25. My name is Christine! I’m a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School, pursuing certificates in Statistics and Machine Learning, French, and Linguistics. Growing up in South Korea, I always heard about the threats of cyberwarfare (not surprising, coming from the country with the fastest average internet speed) and our neighbor’s nuclear weapons. Through this class, I hope to better evaluate the threats that my country is facing, as well as understand the laws and norms that surround them. I’m looking forward to the weeks concerning Nuclear Weapons, Cyberwarfare, Nuclear Strategy, and Ballistic Missile Defense.

  26. Hi everyone, my name is Jack and I’m a senior in the English department. I’m particularly interested in the strategies/negotiation tactics that come into play in instances of mutually assured destruction (nuclear or otherwise). I’m particularly interested in cyberwarfare and am excited for the simulation at the end of the semester.

  27. Hello, My name is Dean Rodan, and I am a junior in WWS who’s also pursuing a certificate in the Slavic department. I am interested in strategic weaponry and, most importantly, the extreme parameters for the usage of these weapons outside of great-power conflict and the appropriate responses for cyber warfare.

  28. My name is Sam Rasmussen and I am a junior in the Wilson School. I’d like to become a foreign service officer some day, so I’m taking this class so I can have a better idea of the challenges facing the world and how to think about them.

  29. Hi, my name is Maria, and I’m a junior in the Woodrow Wilson School hoping to get a certificate in Latin American studies. I had very brief exposure to issues of global security in my International Relations course, but most of the topics on the syllabus are pretty new to me. One of the things I’d like to achieve through this STN is an awareness of the ways in which these difficult issues are portrayed under different circumstances, and how ‘true’ these portrayals really are – what are the realistic risks and potentials of these technologies? Should we be less, just as, or more scared than we are led to believe? I also just think it’s important to have at least some understanding of the science underlying these issues to have credibility in policymaking, which is relevant for anyone interested in policymaking around these issues.

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