Thursday Extra: "Programming robots"

On Thursday, February 24, Henry Walker will discuss present some of his preliminary work on integrating the programming of robots with the curriculum of CSC 161 (“Imperative problem solving and data structures”):

Introductory computer science courses around the country have utilized robots for a number of years. In recent years, for some courses, robot control has taken advantage of Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs); some other courses provide students with a programming environment designed for beginners. Although these experiences have often been motivating and interesting for students, the use of robots remains a challenge within courses that focus upon imperative problem solving (e.g., with the C programming language), such as Grinnell's CSC 161.

Drawing upon this background, Mr. Walker has devoted part of his current sabbatical leave to explore the use of simple robots, with the long-term goal of possibly using robots in CSC 161. This talk presents a status report on this work. Discussion will include hardware options and capabilities, programming options, available documentation, examples of working programs, challenges, and next steps.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). Mr. Walker's talk, “Programming robots: a status report,” will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Students interested in the topics of this talk are encouraged to contact Mr. Walker about the possibility of working in the field for Summer 2011 and [maybe] beyond.

Thursday Extra: "Multi-agent system simulation in Scala"

On Thursday, February 17, Aaron Todd 2011 will discuss the use of the Scala programming language, and in particular its support for parallelism, in the construction of simulation frameworks for multi-agent systems.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). Mr. Todd's talk, Multi-agent system simulation in Scala, will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Thursday Extra: "Robust text recognition"

On Thursday, February 10, Jerod Weinman will discuss some aspects of his recent work on text recognition:

Is your smart phone smarter than a fifth grader? Not yet. Accurately translating a photograph of text into an intrinsically textual representation has been confounding computational scientists for over a century. Humans (even fifth graders) still outperform computers at reading. In this talk, I review why the problem is difficult and present a model for robustly recognizing small amounts of text in images.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). Mr. Weinman's talk, “Robust text recognition,” will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Thursday Extra: Summer research opportunities in computer science

On Thursday, February 3, faculty in the Department of Computer Science will discuss summer research opportunities, both on and off campus, that are open to our students, including the projects that our faculty will direct this year.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). The discussion will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. We encourage anyone who might be interested in summer research in computer science to attend!

Thursday Extra: "GCal"

At 4:15 on Thursday, December 9, in Noyce 3821, students from CSC 325 (Databases and Web application design) will present their class project, GCal:

GCal is an open calendar: Anyone on campus can view, add, and comment on events. In addition to demonstrating GCal, the students will discuss the technologies that are used in the calendar, the processes and problems involved in the project, and recommendations for others collaboratively building medium-scale Web applications.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). The talk, GCal: a community calendar for the rest of us, will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

CS Table/CSC 295: Rural Education & Networking without a Network

This Friday, Jordan and Alex will lead a discussion on approaches to bringing network resources to education in rural communities. Please read the following: If you want to learn more, the CSC 295 site links to the research articles these stories report on. As usual, we meet a little after noon in JRC 224A. Hope to see you there!

Thursday Extra: "Testing at Microsoft"

At 4:15 on Thursday, December 2, in Noyce 3821, Jordan Shkolnick 2011 will describe her internship experience from last summer:

I will discuss my summer internship as a Software Development Engineer in Test with Microsoft Office. I will discuss the work I did during this internship and present an overview of Microsoft Internships, including the application process and the three job roles.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). The talk, Testing at Microsoft, will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

CS Table/CSC 295: "Free Wifi" and Community Networks

This Friday at CS Table, Isaac and Josh will be leading a discussion on community wireless networks. These articles will form the basis of our discussion:

Thursday Extra: "Introduction to experimental algorithmics" cancelled

The Thursday Extra talk originally scheduled for 4:15 p.m. today has been cancelled. Instead, the Department of Computer Science invites you to come and partake of the usual refreshments in our commons, Noyce 3817, and to stay for informal conversation.

CS Table/CSC 295: Onion Routing and Anonymity

This Friday at CS Table/CSC 295, Max and Martin will be leading a discussion on onion routing and its applications to anonymity. Several readings are suggested: As usual, we'll be meeting at noon on Friday in JRC 224A. Hope to see you there!
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