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egsmith

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First a quick background: I am currently a computer programmer specializing in distributed computing and I have always been more interested in math. I loaded up on calculus, differential equations, and numerical analysis electives as an undergraduate. I have continued studying these areas informally even though they are not related to my work per se.

Now the problem: Ideally I would like to work with physicists, theoretical or experimental, and write the computer programs they need to perform their simulations, data analysis and/or experiments.

Do these types of positions even exist? Perhaps they require a PhD? Given the quality of tools and libraries these days I imagine most physicists are able to write their own programs in all but the most extreme cases. (So it is at least possible to work for a tool or library vendor. However, I prefer to be closer to the actual result.)

Supposing that such positions were available. Do you think it would be more beneficial to pursue a master's in applied math or computer science with a concentration in numerical techniques?

Thanks for your time.