CS Table

CS Table 8/30: Meet and Greet; Content Planning

Tuesday we’ll begin CS Table anew for the semester! For those that are unaware, CS Table is the department’s weekly lunch-and-reading-group where we discuss current issues in technology and society. Everyone, irrespective of major, is invited to attend!

Our initial CS Table meeting will be a meet-and-greet along with content planning for the semester. If you have any hot topics that you’d like to discuss this semester, feel free to volunteer them up on Tuesday or email Charlie Curtsinger and Peter-Michael Osera with your suggestion.

This semester, CS Tables will be on Tuesdays, 12:00–1:00 pm, in JRC 224 B. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 5/10: End-of-year discussion

This week we'll look back at some of the topics we've covered this academic year, think about topics we would like to include next year, and open the table up for general discussion. (No reading)

CS Table 5/3: Property and Ownership of Digital Media

We'll explore how our notion of property and ownership is changing in the presence of digital media through three separate topics.

  • As the World of Warcraft evolved, private instances have sprung up attempting to reproduce the original game before the introduction of new features that alienated some gamers. The most famous of these, Nostalrius, was issued a cease and desist order by Blizzard Entertainment. Announcements from the Nostalrius team and Blizzard; a Change.org petition.
  • After Keurig's K-cup patents expired in 2012, third parties developed coffee packets to fit Keurig machines. Keurig's updated system featured a DRM scheme so only packets manufactured by Keurig would be accepted by their latest machines. Read about the technology and the pushback from customers in 2015.
  • A recent CACM article by Jason Schultz opines on the decline of ownership in the advent of the digital age, in particular, the internet of things.

Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 3/15: E2E-VIV

This week's topic is End-to-end Verifiable Internet Voting (E2E-VIV), and we'll consider the following questions:

  1. Why do we care about Internet voting?
  2. What do we require of an Internet voting system?
  3. How does end-to-end verified internet voting systems address these issues?

We'll discuss the US Vote Foundations recent technical report on E2E-VIV. For Tuesday, please read:

Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 3/8: Encryption

In light of the recent announcement of Whitfield Diffie and Martin E. Hellman as the winners of the annual ACM Turing Award, we will be discussing their contribution to encryption. We'll also discuss the RSA encryption algorithm, which introduced asymmetric public key cryptography shortly after Diffie–Hellman. The "assigned" readings are the original academic papers on both subjects, which are surprisingly approachable for non-experts. Do your best to work through the technical details, and we'll spend much of the discussion Tuesday making sense of the rest, as well as the implications for this work. Printed copies of these two papers are on the bench outside Curtsinger's office.

  • Whitfield Diffie, and Martin E. Hellman. "New directions in cryptography."Information Theory, IEEE Transactions on 22.6 (1976): 644-654.
  • Ronald LRivest., Adi Shamir, and Len Adleman. "A method for obtaining digital signatures and public-key cryptosystems." Communications of the ACM 21.2 (1978): 120-126.

Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 3/1: FBI and Apple

We'll be discussing the controversy behind the FBI's court order to Apple for assistance in recovering data from the phone of the San Bernadino gunmen. Below are some readings for this week. Reading packets are also outside of Sam/Charlie's office on the 3rd floor of Science.

Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 2/23: Software patents

Join the discussion on February 23, 2016. The broad reach and ambiguity of many software patents has had a significant effect on computer-related industry and academia. Many argue that this process stifles innovation, while others see this as a natural extension of the patent mechanism: to reward innovation and promote openness. Instead of readings, you are encouraged to listen to the two *excellent* This American Life episodes on software patents: Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 2/16: What is Data Science?

In honor of Hillary Mason '00 giving convocation this Thursday at 11 am (go!), we will be talking about Data Science in table this week. In particular, we'll be answering the basic questions about data sciences—"what?" and "how?". If you are curious about the field, I recommend checking out these two optional readings as well: Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table 2/9: US copyright duration and fair use

While many CS students may be aware of copyleft, DRM, and related issues, there are other interesting aspects of copyright law and practice that should generate vigorous discussion. The readings for this week includes three short articles, along with two brief background papers on fair use and copyright duration.

One good source of background material for our discussion this week is the overview of US copyright law at bitlaw.com. These brief descriptions of copyright law should be helpful: Duration of Copyrights; Fair Use in Copyright Law.

The primary articles (all short) are available here:

Computer science table (CS Table) is a weekly meeting of Grinnell College community members (students, faculty, staff, etc.) interested in discussing topics related to computing and computer science. CS Table meets Tuesdays from 12:00-12:45 in JRC 224C. Students on meal plans, faculty, and staff are expected to cover the cost of their meals. Visitors to the College and students not on meal plans can charge their meals to the department.

CS Table on 12/8: Comics

CHANGES: BRING YOUR OWN LUNCH. MEET IN NOYCE-3821.

Instead of discussing deep technical topics, political issues, and the downfall of society, we’ll be reading (and discussing) comics about technical topics, political issues, and the downfall of society. There is no “assigned” reading this week, but please bring or email Prof. Curtsinger a link to a web comic. A good starting point for your comics search is XKCD (www.xkcd.com), but other comics are welcome.

Discussion starts at noon on Tuesday, December 8, 2015.

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