Keily, the Bookworm Part-21
Keily opened the first PDF file which Professor Mili had indicated that it would help to find something regarding her thesis topic.
From previous knowledge, Keily knew that Databases and Data Mining were related. The latter meant finding patterns in data from a Database.
She went over the research paper. She saw several algorithms for approximate string matching. Strings in a database would be a list of data patterns. And the database can be queried with a pattern of our choice, and the result should show the patterns from the database that approximately matched the pattern in question. For this method, there existed several algorithms as shown in the research paper that could be applied in the string database, and they could be analyzed for performances and probably other measures. Approximate string matching fell under the category of Data Mining in that it dealt with data pattern matching.
Keily started to form ideas. If there could be approximate string matching algorithms, how about algorithms which matched database strings exactly?
Accordingly, Keily gave a search on Google for finding exact string matching algorithms. And much to her luck, she found several.
She knew she was close to a thesis topic. She played in her mind with several titles and finally wrote down as below:
“The Discrete Surveys and Comparisons of Exact and Approximate String Matching Algorithms.”
Keily was satisfied and wanted to contact Professor Mili as soon as possible. She asked for an appointment the next day, and Professor Mili emailed her back, giving the time 10 a.m the next day.
Keily met Professor Mili at her office. She gradually started talking about the first research paper and her thoughts and understanding. Then she said, “I have come across a thesis topic, which I think you would like.” She produced a piece of paper on which she had previously written the thesis topic that she had in mind.
Professor Mili looked at it and met her eyes with a grave face. Then she smiled and said, “Why not? It’s a good thesis topic. I hope you will be productive.”
Keily burst out smiling. She promised her, “I will try my very best.” They shook hands, and Keily came out of the complex, beaming smiles.
Ahead lay two semesters where she had to give the majority of her time to her newly found thesis.
Four days later, Keily was going to restart a new semester. So she took her time to enjoy these days, spending time with Lucy and Grace. They met together, went shopping, cooked together and ate together. They called in the guys with Keily’s permission, and they had loads of fun. They visited the nearby museum and took photographs. They uploaded them to their Facebook accounts. Life felt great. Soon time passed away, and it was a new semester to begin.
It was Lucy’s final semester for an MSc in Computer Science while for Grace, it was her first semester for a Ph.D. in Computer Science. Lucy was going to continue with Ph.D. So they were going to be long-lasting friends for Keily.
The new semester started with a Software Engineering class for Keily. It seemed making friends in this course was easier for her as many were friendly from the first day. Furthermore, they were asked to form teams of four for the class projects. Keily had a lot of interaction in the class before she made a team of four. She loved this class.
She was back in her apartment. She cooked rice and chicken together with curry powder- her favorite menu. She had it all by herself, and then she sat down with her research paper and started reading it. She patiently read it twice. It was Keily’s understanding that she had to convert the algorithms into programs and execute them on a string database. She came up with a question: Where would she find a string database?
This was the first question she asked Professor Mili when they met again. Professor Mili replied that she could just create strings from A’s and B’s arbitrarily and save them in a text file that would serve as the string database. Keily worked in the lab for the next few days building a text database of strings containing A’s and B’s only and converted the first algorithm into a program until it was finally working well.
She had the liberty to choose algorithms in her sequence and convert them into programs. After her first program was working, she showed it to Professor Mili, and she was okay with it. In her work, whenever Keily had a doubt or question, she cleared it up by consulting her thesis supervisor, Professor Mili.
She tried going through exact string matching algorithms as well. She tried converting three exact and three approximate string matching algorithms into programs, and they were up and running when she contacted Professor Mili again. Keily asked her what the best way would be to measure the performance of programs. She asked Keily to research it herself and let her know what she came up with.
Keily researched about it and found a function for measuring the execution time of every program that she executed on the string database. The different programs of the sets based on exact and approximate string matches showed different execution times, and she could soon analyze the performance of the programs on the string database. She wrote a report on it and showed it to Professor Mili. She asked her to take snapshots of each program output on the same string and show the execution time.
Yes, Keily was learning to research better and better. The next semester she would be busy documenting her thesis.
This semester she had to further optimize all the programs, and then she would be done for the semester.
Apart from the thesis this semester, Keily had also to give time to quizzes, term exams and projects in the course Software Engineering. The projects were fun to complete, and she and another tall guy mainly consulted with each other before dividing their work among other team members.
To Be Continued …
Do you think Keily would enjoy documenting her thesis the next semester?
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Keily takes several actions to improve her concepts in the Algorithm course. At the end of the semester, she gets A's in all three courses. She calls back home and talks with her family to celebrate. She decides to work on her thesis on Databases, and accordingly, she meets the Professor and talks to her about it. To read more, click the title above.
© 2020 Rosina S Khan