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ESP Biography



AMY LIU, Adventurer and Collector of Interesting Things




Major: Computer Science

College/Employer: Stanford

Year of Graduation: 2018

Picture of Amy Liu

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Hi! My name is Amy, and I like triangles, Doctor Who, and consuming large quantities of tea. I get very excited about ideas that allow me to understand the world in a new way, and I delight in sharing with others whatever fascinating things I stumble upon. To that end, I study some combination of computer science, chemistry, and math though I'm curious about nearly everything, from philosophy to maps to graphic design. I'm so excited to meet you all and engage in a mutual exploration of what happens when we poke at the universe in a certain way.



Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

L6248: Juggling 101 in Splash Spring 2018 (May. 05 - 06, 2018)
Ever dream of running away to join the circus? In this crash course on juggling, you'll make a set of your own juggling balls and learn how to juggle up to three balls by the end of the class!


M6249: Computation from the Ground Up! in Splash Spring 2018 (May. 05 - 06, 2018)
What kind of problems can we solve with a computer? (What even is a computer and what does it mean to solve a problem?) In a whirlwind tour of theoretical computer science, we’ll start from simple models and see how far the limits of computation go. Along the way, we’ll look at applications to protein folding, cryptography, and more, culminating with an unsolved question in computer science with a literal million dollar bounty. The style of this class will be pretty casual - we'll share some ideas we think are cool, solve some puzzles together, discuss philosophy, who knows?


R5948: Geoquest: A Map Themed Puzzle Adventure in Splash Fall 2017 (Nov. 11 - 12, 2017)
Do you feel like an explorer born in the wrong century? Join us for a geography themed adventure where you'll solve puzzles based on a variety of maps, ranging from historical maps of California to subway maps to maps tracking the spread of infectious disease. Learn about the history behind these cartographic artifacts and the stories they tell while using creativity, logic, and spatial reasoning on this modern-day adventure quest!


A5672: Timeless Motions: How to Make Animation out of Everyday Objects in Splash Spring 2017 (Apr. 22 - 23, 2017)
Have you ever wondered what goes on in your brain while watching your favorite animated TV shows or movies? Behind every successful (and unsuccessful) animation, motion and vision are interacting in an intricate way inside your brain. Learn more about the perception of motion and the persistence of vision as we make our own zoetropes and flipbook animations out of objects you can easily find!


R5678: Geoquest: A Map Themed Puzzle Adventure in Splash Spring 2017 (Apr. 22 - 23, 2017)
Do you feel like an explorer born in the wrong century? Join us for a geography themed adventure where you'll solve puzzles based on a variety of maps, ranging from historical maps of California to subway maps to maps tracking the spread of infectious disease. Learn about the history behind these cartographic artifacts and the stories they tell while using creativity, logic, and spatial reasoning on this modern-day adventure quest!


E5151: Squishy Circuits in Splash Fall 2016 (Dec. 03 - 04, 2016)
Explore electronics and create circuits using Play-Doh! We'll investigate the difference between a conductor and an insulator and try our hand at crafting series and parallel circuits. Everyone will get the chance to build their own Play-Doh sculpture and figure out how to light it up with LEDs and a battery. The class will be a playful and creative investigation of electricity and the mechanisms that power our homes and the devices we use in our day-to-day lives.


C5152: Molecular Gastronomy: Chemistry of the Delicious in Splash Fall 2016 (Dec. 03 - 04, 2016)
This class is for anyone who loves food, cooking or chemistry! We will focus on the science behind avant-garde cuisine such as cooking with vacuum chambers, liquid nitrogen, and more. You'll get to try your hand at some spherification, the process of shaping a liquid into spheres, and make (and eat!) your own popping boba!


E4817: Squishy Circuits in Splash Spring 2016 (Apr. 09 - 10, 2016)
Explore electronics and create circuits using Play-Doh! We'll investigate the difference between a conductor and an insulator and try our hand at crafting series and parallel circuits. Everyone will get the chance to build their own Play-Doh sculpture and figure out how to light it up with LEDs and a battery. The class will be a playful and creative investigation of electricity and the mechanisms that power our homes and the devices we use in our day-to-day lives.


B4536: DNA Origami: Exploring the Art and Science of the Double-Helix in Splash Fall 2015 (Nov. 07 - 08, 2015)
Most people know about DNA and its double-helix shape. They know the distinctive shape allows DNA to do cool things to organisms' genetic characteristics. DNA is not just all around us; it IS us. You probably already know how important DNA is. In this class, however, you and I will delve deeper and learn how DNA's unique shape influences the world we live in today. We'll travel through different topics, like genetics, mathematics, arts, architecture, and design. We'll answer cool questions like, where can we see the unique double-helix shape in our society today? Is it true that scientists are exploring the existence of three-stranded DNA?? How about four???? Join our class if you want to answer these questions.... AAAAAAND you get to fold your own DNA origami! We'll also include a 15-minute long Q&A session for you to ask us, the nerdy instructors, about our lives as Stanford students.


E4591: Squishy Circuits in Splash Fall 2015 (Nov. 07 - 08, 2015)
Explore electronics and create circuits using Play-Doh! We'll investigate the difference between a conductor and an insulator and try our hand at crafting series and parallel circuits. Everyone will get the chance to build their own Play-Doh sculpture and figure out how to light it up with LEDs and a battery. The class will be a playful and creative investigation of electricity and the mechanisms that power our homes and the devices we use in our day-to-day lives.


M4109: Cabinet of Mathematical Curiosities in Splash Spring 2015 (Apr. 11 - 12, 2015)
Have you ever wondered how to cut a strip of paper in half into a single piece? Do you spend your evenings pondering how to add up an infinite number of things and arrive at a finite number? Do you aspire to build a bicycle that rolls on square wheels? Behold, the Cabinet of Mathematical Curiosities! In this class, we will take a brief stroll through recreational mathematics, exploring fractals and infinity, "proofs" that 1=0 and other paradoxes, clever new ways of adding and multiplying numbers, and more!


M3772: Optimal Bubbleology in Splash Fall 2014 (Nov. 08 - 09, 2014)
Everyone knows that soap bubbles are spherical, but have you ever wondered why? Come explore the exciting and beautiful connections between soap bubbles and mathematical optimization! Turns out, bubbles assume the shape of least surface area possible to contain a given volume. We will take advantage of this property and apply it to ideas such as the traveling salesman problem and finding the minimal surface area required to span vertices of polyhedra. Come ready to get your hands wet as we build a variety of 3D shapes and observe the surprising results when we dip them in bubble solution.