Describe your personality in 3 words!
“Too many interests.” – Stephan M. Unter, 2018
I am one of those guys who fulfilled their childhood dreams – in my case: becoming an Egyptologist. I have studied the ancient Egyptian culture for several years at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich (Germany). This discipline involves so many different aspects: architecture, social studies, geography, geology, religion, history, languages (yes, plural!). I finished my studies in 2013 with a detailed master’s thesis on layouts and graphical structuring of Egyptian papyri – as the Egyptian writing system did not know any spaces between words or sentences, they needed other instruments to structure their texts. You can imagine that after 3000 years there is a huge mass of material to be studied! However, this approach gave me interesting new insights into Egyptian texts as a whole.
My second home has always been the Egyptian museum in Munich – this has been the place where I had gotten in touch with Ancient Egypt, this is the place where I still have friends and so many memories. For more than ten years I participated in the museum’s programmes for children, later I myself worked as a guide for five years, sharing my knowledge I had gathered over the years.
Indiana Jones, Lara Croft – those are popular fictional characters coming to people’s mind when talking about archaeology. After having been part of an excavation project in Tuna el-Gebel (middle Egypt; a project by the LMU Munich) and now being part of an interdisciplinary archaeological project in Sheikh ‘Abd el-Qurna (Luxor; a project at the University of Basel) I can promise: archaeology does not work like that. But archaeology is exciting, outstanding, and an important part of the present, not the past. As a student I have learned how to do the excavation part, how to document ancient structures, how to preserve our cultural heritage, how to interpret the findings. Today, I try to combine modern technology with archaeology, working with photogrammetric methods and mathematical models to gain new insights.
In 2011 I started my “second life” – at the same time while being on my path to become an Egyptologist, I began my second studies in media informatics, again at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich. This variant of computer science is more dedicated to multimedia and how to apply them in software. Or psychological studies how people interact with devices and interfaces, such that we can optimise them and create new and improved user experiences. Think about the large software companies these days – they try to do that all the time. In 2015 I finished these studies with a bachelor’s thesis, designing and writing a little programme to analyse the EXIF information of photographies, showing graphically the relations between specific settings like shutter speed, ISO values or focal length.
Since 2016 I do my master’s degree in computer science, this time at the University of Basel (Switzerland). This department is specialised on both machine learning and distributed systems. With some luck and a lot of discipline (and coffee!) I will finish my studies this year (2018), concentrating on machine learning.
- Master student in Computer Science (specialisation: machine learning/artificial intelligence) at the University of Basel (2016-2018?)
- Master Thesis: “Deep Networks for Analyzing Aerial Images”
- Bachelor Degree in Media Informatics (specialisation: human-computer-interaction) at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich (2011-2015)
- Bachelor Thesis: “Visualisierung von Foto-Metadaten” (German)
- Master Degree in Egyptology (minors: ancient history and mass communications) at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich (2008-2013)
- Master Thesis: “Grafische Aufbereitung und Layout ägyptischer Texte auf Papyrus. Studien anhand repräsentativer Quellen” (German)