Hi, my name is Mike and I'm an engineer.

About Mike

No, really. I started working as an electronics engineer designing semi-custom ASICs for the F15E/F14D radar signal processor. I designed and fielded two chips designed for these radars then went on to start working an even larger design for what turned out to be the F22 signal processor. For that I designed a 16 bit purpose built processor using logic gates, specified the instruction set and led the team to implement the microcode. Then built an assembler and coded with that to get the behaviors I needed.

Over the years, I migrated up the layers into more of a software role and have been involved in all types of developments, from defense industry to financial industry applications. I created a complex event processor to derive interesting information directly from financial data streams. I defined the initial architecture for an open source implementation of the OMG DDS specification.

These days, I am attempting to create useful applications of data science using cloud based tools. This involves an entire suite of open source tools — including the hadoop ecosystem — to provide a data to user interface application, including analytics. Both descriptive statistical models to describe data as well as machine learning algorithms to characterize the data and make predictions about what happens next.

This blog contains my technical notes. I use this to hold details about how to do useful things for various different topics. If the contents are useful for anyone else, so much for the better.

In addition to straight technical techniques and code, I include information about topics and subjects that are of interest to me and possibly to others. I provide some reviews of courses, books, and meetings that may be of interest as well.

About Brillouin Zones

Léon Brillouin was a founder of modern solid state physics and 'discovered' the zones in that field.

These zones are cells in reciprocal space (also known as k space). The first zone is uniquely defined primitive cell in the space. The boundaries of the cell are given by planes defined by points on the reciprocal lattice. The zones are useful in crystallography and how it applies to semiconductor physics.

Cool, eh.

I've always been fascinated by the concept of reciprocal space. While the Brillouin zone is defined in a lattice reciprocal space, the simplest reciprocal space is on the number line: take the reciprocal of every number on the line and you will create the space. It is very useful for finding roots (zero crossings) of functions, since the interval from between -1 and 1 in reciprocal space includes all locations on the line everywhere (except for between -1 and 1, of course).

In essence, this means that the entire infinite set of numbers is held in that small interval between -1 and 1 in reciprocal space.

The whole contained within the part.

About Brillozon

Brillozon is a D&D character I played a few years ago. A simple bard not harming anyone, killed mercilessly by a ruthless DM. I liked him while he lasted: all 6 levels. I can't feel to bad about it since almost all adventures with that DM ended in total party wipes.