Concepts familiar from grade-school algebra have broad ramifications in computer science.
A group of 28 MIT freshmen spent spring break in Alaska to learn firsthand about the benefits and pitfalls of drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (see MIT Tech Talk, March 4).
One of the students, Matthew R. Zedler, documented the experience by taking photos and keeping an online journal. In it, he describes what the group learned about the oil-drilling debate and native cultures, sculptures and a hotel made of ice, and animals, including reindeer, caribou and sled dogs.
For more photos and excerpts from Zedler's journal, see the News Office web site at http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/nr/2004/alaska-log.html.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on March 31, 2004.