2014-15 Winter Intern: Michael

Intern-MichaelM

Michael Moore, a 3rd-year computer science major from Luther College, has had an extremely productive IT internship at AllSet Learning. Despite his unfamiliarity with PHP, he helped a lot with both the Chinese Grammar Wiki and the Chinese Pronunciation Wiki. He was also able to apply his Python programming skills to both audio manipulation scripts as well as Chinese textual analysis (NLP) scripts. And he even got to work on a video game! We were extremely impressed with all he was able to accomplish in such a short time.

Michael’s account:

At just one and half months, I think I’m one of AllSet Learning’s shortest term interns. The time has really flown and I wish I could stay longer. The small office environment provided me with a lot of practical experience that is not available in an academic setting, for both Mandarin and computer science.

I worked on several IT projects during my short time here, ranging from text processing to computer games. One of my biggest projects was helping set up the new Pronunciation Wiki, and in particular its pinyin chart. AllSet’s need to provide a consistent user experience pushed me to write programs that were not just usable, but a pleasure to use.

The most fun project I worked on was the “Chinese RL Lab,” a browser-based video game for learning Chinese. The graphics may be simple, but underneath I got to experiment with features such as data-driven programming, AI, and procedural generation. AllSet [will soon be making] the project open source, so I look forward to continuing to contribute.

I want to thank all the staff at AllSet learning, who were all very welcoming. John even invited me to Christmas Eve dinner at his home. Yu Cui, Weiwei, and Yang Renjun, who all made sure I stayed well-fed and taught me not to always greet with “nihao.” I’ll be sure to stop by whenever I’m in Shanghai!

Michael really did some amazing work, and we’re all greatly benefiting from his contributions. We can’t wait to release the “Chinese RL Lab” (this name will change), so stay tuned for news on that. (And Michael, don’t forget to keep contributing!)