About me

Hi there! I'm Ian Fare, currently a third-year undergraduate student at McMaster University. I'm in the Integrated Science program, with a concentration in physics, which pretty much means that I spend most of my time staring fruitlessly at quantum wave-functions (hence the physics), alongside a blend of biochemistry and neuroscience and whatever the flavour of the day is (hence the "Integrated Science").


I do astronomy research with Dr. Welch at McMaster University's Department of Physics and Astronomy. We're studing variable stars in globular clusters, using new telescope data to produce an accurate set of atlases and colour-magnitude diagrams for a number of globular clusters, and characterizing their variable stars.


I have a number of personal projects going on, at the same time! I'm a part of McMaster's iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) team, where I am programming an agent-based model for quorum sensing. I am trying to model populations of bacteria by simulating each individual bacterium's behaviour separately, including secretion and reception of bacterial communication chemicals ("signals"), and hopefully patterns will emerge in populations which mirror those that are observed in laboratory settings.

I also like to program video games - you can find my finished ones on itch.io. Right now I'm working on a platformer-rpg called Sophie's Story (a working title), which is on Github.

Why "Piconaut"?

I use Piconaut as my internet handle because it neatly summarizes my perception of my place in the world. "Piconaut" is composed of two elements: "pico", which is an SI prefix denoting a power of 10-12 ‒ so, something very, very small. "Naut" is the same as in "astronaut", and derives from the Latin nauta, for "sailor". A lot of the time I feel like an tiny voyager, trying to make its way through a breathtakingly enormous universe. Hence, I am a Piconaut.