A lifelong fascination with the language of mathematics has led Ryan Mickler around the world, and to the cutting edge of machine intelligence. Born in Perth, Australia, Mickler studied Math, Physics and Computer Science in his undergraduate years at the University of Western Australia. After spending a few years in software engineering, he completed his Masters at the University of Adelaide, where his focus shifted more and more to pure mathematical research. “Pure mathematics is a beautiful thing to study,” says Ryan, “a pursuit of sheer intellectual knowledge and a contribution to the totality of human understanding.”.
“After completing my masters, I realized I wanted to do more advanced mathematics, and Australia was lacking in the exact field specializations that I wanted to go into…I wanted to come to Northeastern because the faculty was really relevant and had a lot of expertise in what I was interested in.”
Mickler’s area of focus has always resided at the crossroads of math and physics, and at Northeastern, his work with Associate Professor of Mathematics Chris Beasley has focused on the mathematics of low-dimensional quantum systems. “I think the most important thing for a PhD researcher is to be really inspired and intrigued by the project you’re working on,” says Mickler, “so I was lucky to have that.”
Mickler has published two papers, “Twisted Analytic Torsion and Adiabatic Limits” in 2015, and “Localization for Chern-Simons on Circle Bundles via Loop Groups” in 2018, and is preparing to publish a joint paper with Professor Beasley in the near future. His passion for mathematical theory aside, Mickler has also kept one foot in the world of software engineering – after completing his doctorate later in 2019, he intends to return to the industry, specifically to Artificial Intelligence research and development in his native Australia.