Engineer by day, Superhero by night — Amazing all the time

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Today I received an email from Debbie Ruse, the assistant director of BYU’s MBA program. In the email, she notified me that I am in the top 10% of my MBA class! Here’s a copy of that email:

Travis: It is my pleasure to notify you at the end of your first semester (end of fall 2011) you are in the top 10% of the class of 2013. Congratulations on this very impressive accomplishment. This will not be posted anywhere and we will not communicate this to anyone but you. However, by receiving this notification you can put this on your resume.
Congratulations and thank you for choosing BYU to pursue your MBA.


Debra A. Ruse
Brigham Young University
MBA Assistant Director

Written by Travis Anderson on January 20th, 2012 , MBA Tags: , , ,

Publication in the Journal of Mechanical DesignThis month, ASME’s Journal of Mechanical Design published a technical paper I wrote as part of my mechanical engineering master’s research.

This peer-reviewed paper is about error propagation through design models. The formula typically used to analytically propagate error is based on a first-order Taylor series expansion, and consequently, it can be wrong by one or more orders of magnitude for nonlinear systems. Using a higher-order Taylor series does improve the accuracy of the approximation, but this comes at higher and higher computational cost. This paper presents a technique for error propagation that achieves higher-order accuracy but without the additional higher-order cost. This is accomplished by predicting the Taylor series truncation error and applying a “correction factor” to the lower-order model.

Title Efficient Propagation of Error Through System Models for Functions Common in Engineering
Abstract System modeling can help designers make and verify design decisions early in the design process if the model’s accuracy can be determined. The formula typically more
Journal Journal of Mechanical Design
Publication Date January 4, 2012
Volume 134
Issue 1
Publication URL

2012 Iowa GOP Caucus ResultsWhile watching the results from the nail-biting 2012 Iowa GOP Caucus come in, I became frustrated with how long it took news sites to update their tallies after the state GOP updated their results with the latest counts.

Doing some research, I discovered the Iowa state GOP released their results to the public by updating a Google Fusion table. Unfortunately, especially in such a close race, there was a pretty significant delay (at some points, as long as 20 minutes) before news sites wouldn’t update the tallies they were reporting. So half-way through the evening, I decided to build a quick website that would pull the results straight from the source—The Iowa GOP—in real time (well, I guess it would refresh every 10 seconds). Here is the result. It’s not much to look at, but I only had about an hour to do it, and it was my first forray into the Google Fusion Tables API.

Written by Travis Anderson on January 4th, 2012 , Software Development Tags: , ,