what to do with a physics degree But the dirty truth is that I was leaving a job at the time working in physics at Harvard Studying low metallicity stars which are the oldest stars in the universe and don’t have very many heavy metals because there were no Supernovas yet to make heavy metals .
But I digress and I was starting a job at General Electric making iPad apps working as a software engineer So why did I leave physics? To be honest when I was working the research job the thing that I had liked most about it was .
The coding part because that was the most problem solving a creative puzzle part And the only thing I like more than a puzzle is a board game You can’t take that home, Dianna! So why is a woman who runs a channel called physics girl making a video about software engineering Well because that’s where the jobs are I often think about going back to software engineering so recently
I went to interview some of the Top engineering leads at YouTube to figure out what my software career could have been like what it could still be like Do you sit in a basement? Nope do you fix computers um no except in my house? Do you have to work alone to work best? These are the misconceptions about software engineers, there’s some good them all out of the way .
So what is it that really makes these people passionate about writing code? Freshman year I didn’t know what a computer programming language was took my first computer programming Language course and everything else had been about memorization right you remember as much stuff, and you regurgitate it But this for me wasn’t about memorization and for the first time. I was like wow like I’m solving puzzles .
Yeah, that’s what it is You’re solving puzzles Imagine that you’re writing a New York Times bestselling book called The Martian and you have to figure out how long it’s gonna take your ion drive to take you from Earth to Mars And back now you could write down your set of constraints on a piece of paper like gravity Exists and Earth’s has this much of it And then take those constraints and write down all your instructions like leave with your ion drive at this velocity going in this direction And then solve the equation on paper but it would take a really long time you can do the same thing on a computer write your constraints and
write your instructions and you have a computer program and the computer can solve it all a lot faster than you can and you can just get as Complicated as you want with computer programs like writing anything in virtual reality There was a virtual reality programming class that was when for the very first time I learned about 3d graphic rendering and could sort of create these objects in space this technology was becoming more consumer-friendly .
That’s when I realized this now’s probably the right time for VR Now’s a good time virtual reality is coming granted. I’ve only ever used VR Goggles to fly in an indoor skydiving tunnel to see the video of somebody else Skydiving and in a zero g plane to see space while I was floating in microgravity not to brag or anything about my PR experiences Point is somebody coated all of that good Can I feel me?
That’s true, yeah So the software that we use with him is the thing that allows him to multiply his voice He sings one note and then he can play lots of extra notes, but instead of the notes coming out like piano It’s extra copies of his voice Yeah, well it’s it’s a lot of different things that we had to get to work together and so a lot of what I wrote For that was actually we call it glue code Which glues a lot of things together so that they all work you can make up to 12 note harmonies all at once?
Software is everything so how does one get into software engineering my mom had been taking programming? She also taught me basic. I made this program That would draw this green alligator because the a year was Green My babysitter came over because my parents are going out, and she said oh, could you make the alligator red?
Yeah? And I was like oh she wants something from me, but I want something from her I want to stay up till nine o’clock so I can watch The Love Boat And that was past my bedtime rate, so I said well if I make the alligator red Will you let me stay up to watch left? Oh, and she was like okay?
This is like painter this Burgamy thing is the best thing since sliced bread so basically Get it Basically basic get it No you start with a problem that you want to solve it could be anything You know like right now think about what problem you have I bet you can think of a program or an app that can solve That problem okay next in the interviews I wanted to ask the women what got them, so passionate about what they do what gets you excited?
Yeah at the tip top of the list is the power that Immersion has in terms of life one of the things I’m passionate about Socially specifically being a woman being a black woman and this environment is around diversity inclusion But what drives that is empathy and compassion?
Right and so how can I be more inclusive if I can’t really understand or empathize what it’s like to be the only One in a room so it’s like you know you can’t really give someone a pill all right like hey take this pill and now Empathize with my experience like you can’t really do that but you can put on VR Goggles, and know what it’s like to be someone who owns the greatest game ever made.
I’m going to play another woodcutter plus you have something concrete by the time you’re finished making a program something that can be applicable to the real world so if You look at pure math Which I was very good at but I never really felt for it because what do all these numbers mean What do they mean right like I feel softer But with software you are taking math And you are making it something concrete
for example when I edit these videos I can do some kind of blend of two different images, and if you’ve ever used Photoshop or video editors You’ve done this before there are a bunch of different blend options And what those are literally doing is they are taking? Individual pixels and storing them as numbers and then for example if you’re using The add blend you are adding the numbers you were literally doing math so people who will have done this a lot They just have an intuition for what the different names like add lighten color dodge linear dodge overlay screen difference exclusion
But what’s actually going on is you are doing math to the pixels of the two pictures and using some kind of? formula to combine them and give you numbers for the pixels of your new picture math to application there in the software So I hope this gives some small insight into why I liked software engineering so much clears up some of the misconceptions About what it’s like to be a software engineer and lastly since I was talking to some engineers at YouTube I wanted to let them know that they had made this incredible platform that gave a place for cat videos and ridiculous vlog challenges
So I made them do a challenge with me the whisper challenge The idea is you put on headphones and is playing really loud music and then someone else whispers a term And you have to try to guess what they’re saying so want to show you how that went with the engineers But first I’d like to thank YouTube careers for supporting me in this video and supporting PBS Digital Studios YouTube is working on projects across the landscape of media music and technology and there are Opportunities for people with a passion for media and technology to help make a difference to learn more about the career possibilities available at youtube visit this link and Happy physics thing singularity Engineering no SodaStream Theory really close mantra P entropy
To slow no I Like it here Statistics Recommendations It looks like you’re saying graham crackers I was saying recommendations I have no Recommendations Parts of the nation Quicksort and heapsort So glad I’m doing the talking here question and rescue Quicksort and heapsort