Assignment (2)
CSEMS Seminar
Due Date: Individual Part Feb. 6, Group Part: Feb. 13

Monte Carlo Simulation technique is widely used to solve problems in science, mathematics, economy, medicine, engineering, and many other fields.  As you may have already guessed from its name, this technique allows us make decisions on the solution to a problem solely based on the results obtained from a limited number of random cases.  To better explain this, look at the polling that is done throughout the world.  For example, you always hear on TV or read in the newspaper that 46% of people voted for something, 30% voted against it, and 24% didn’t care.  Does that mean that everyone in the U.S. was asked the question?  Of course, the answer is no.  But how were these polls done? How this simple yet undoubtfully powerful technique can be used in finding cancer cells, predicting the behavior of stock market, etc…  The truth is that this technique involves mathematics, statistics, and computer science to simulate real world problems to come up with a solution that we can live with.  Some of these problems have no solution or have a very hard one.  But there are many things we need to look into when we use this technique.  I hope by doing this assignment, you learn some of the basic concepts used in Monte Carlo method.

Here is what you are required to do.

Individual Work (Due at the next seminar) – 1 week
Individually search for some Monte Carlo papers, articles, web pages, chapter of a book, etc.  You may ask your mentor to help you with this part.  Find a problem that interests you in a field in where the technique is used to solve a problem.  Write a page about the problem that is solved and discuss briefly how the method was used to solve the problem. Once you decide about a problem individually, meet as a group to make sure no two group members have the same problem. In other words, four group members have to discuss four different problems.  As part of your assignment, you are to find one problem for which you might be able to use this method to solve it and write a question that you think might be answered using this method.  Include your reference(s).

Group leaders; make sure to submit your group meeting form for the group meeting in this part.

Group Work (Due at the seminar after the next) – 2 weeks
As a group meet and discuss all the problems that you have found.  Write a 2 page report on your findings and address all the problems that were found by each individual member.  As a group select two problems that might be solved using Monte Carlo method.