I survey my classes on the first day of the quarter, to get a little information about who the students are as people. Here are my answers to the questions on the survey.
Matthew Michael Conroy
I tell my students they are welcome to call me Matt, or Dr. Conroy. Most choose the latter: I assume the former is too informal. I really don't like being called simply Conroy. It reminds me of being yelled at in P.E. class.
I was a math major as an undergraduate, then I got a Masters in mathematics, then a PhD in mathematics (at the University of Colorado, in Boulder), with a dissertation in analytic number theory.
I was born in Massachusetts, and I lived there until I was 10. My family then moved to Oxnard in Southern California where I lived until I went to college in Lowell, Massachusetts. I then went to graduate school in Boulder, Colorado. After I got my PhD, I lived for two years in Hanover, New Hampshire, then two years in Illinois, and finally moved to Seattle in 2001 and I've been here since.
I usually think of Oxnard as my hometown, since that's where my parents still live, but I've lived in Seattle longer than anywhere else.
The first thing I did any programming on was a calculator. Radio Shack sold its own versions of these programmable TI calculators. I got one in seventh or eighth grade and I remember writing simple games on it. The programming language was essentially machine language.
The first computer I wrote a lot of programs on, in a flavor of BASIC, was an Apple II plus.
I am a cyclist. In my good years, I have ridden over 7000 km. I ride a custom steel frame made by Independent Fabrication.
I play guitar. I have an old electric guitar, and an old Ovation Matrix acoustic that I play a lot. I also have a bass, and a 12-string acoustic, but I don't play those as often.
I draw. I studied drawing at Gage Academy, and often go there to draw in their open studio figure drawing sessions.
I spend a lot of time creating digital visual and sound art. I have some sounds on my Bandcamp page and videos on my Video page.
I've read all of Charles Dickens' novels, and like them quite a bit. Other authors I like include: Richard Brautigan, Janet Frame, Pyotr Kropotkin, Dostoevsky, John Steinbeck, Oliver Sacks, John Cage, Emma Goldman.
Some of my favorite movies are: The Seventh Seal, Wings of Desire, It's a Wonderful Life, Diva, The Miracle Worker, The Elephant Man, Man with a Movie Camera, Night of the Hunter, Kings of the Road.
Some of my favorite musical things: Einsturzende Neubauten, The Mountain Goats, Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Joy Division.
I like the divisor function (i.e., τ(n) = the number of positive integer divisors of a positive integer n). I've spent a lot of time thinking about it.