Hello! My name is Joshua Lieber. I am a former junior / future senior at Oyster Bay High School in Nassau County, Long Island. I am very happy that I was accepted into the Simons Summer Research Fellowship program and am incredibly excited to be doing research here in the Laser Teaching Center. To be honest, this is my first foray into actual scientific research. Despite this, I intend to do my best and, if possible, to do something novel.

I have held an interest in science for as long as I can remember. At the age of four, I was already reading books on herpetology (the study of reptiles and amphibians), including classics such as the wonderful magnum opus in the subject, Creepy Crawlies. From there, my interests became more centered around Paleontology.  (I believe that my thought process for this transition was: "Whoa!  Dinosaurs are really cool!"  For quite some time, my love of dinosaurs and the other ancient creatures knew no bounds.  I was perfectly content to repeat my "dinosaurs are cool" mantra without acquiring any knowledge of the laws that governed both our world and that of the dinosaurs.  However, two events coincided to lead to my current love of physics.  These were my increased enjoyment of mathematics and the death of my grandfather.  While the first is self explanatory, the second requires more thorough explanation.  After my grandfather's death (I was 13 at the time), I spiraled into a state of `existential angst.' This led to a desire to more deeply understand the world in which we live.  My interests during this period went from biology to chemistry, to neurology, and finally to physics. I have remained interested in physics ever since.

I am a man of many hobbies (unfortunately, the saying "jack of all trades, master of none" applies here).  These include reading, completing mathematical puzzles, practicing tai-chi chuan, teaching myself calculus and higher mathematics (slowly but surely), folding origami, playing chess when given the opportunity, watching television, playing videogames (although the amount of time that I devote to this has decreased markedly over the course of last year, while the time devoted to math and physics has increased dramatically), reading comics, and practicing the dining side of gastronomy (the art and science of cooking and eating good food).

Josh Lieber
Laser Teaching Center