Lots of thanks go to Brad Rowland and Jessica Garcia for editing, and particularly to Chris Murillo for research, organizational, writing, and energy help all along the way. Thanks to Dave Williams for granting me an interview, and to Rob Valenza and Glenn Looman, for not letting me lose track of the fact that I love math. Thanks to the Burns Crew for late nights and early mornings, thanks to Ethan, who supplied the music and the tech help, and particularly to Josh, has more faith in me than anyone and who kept asking me, “Doesn’t your thesis have to have a thesis?”
Most of all, I need to thank Ali, Kerry, Mica, and Amanda, who’ve provided me with unending support and laughter and woken me up from countless naps. This thesis exists because of you.
This work is dedicated to my thesis rock.