Thursday Extras

Thursday Extra: An online community for peer-supported learning of computer science

On Thursday, September 8, Terian Koscik 2012 will give a talk in the "Thursday Extra" series:

For many children, computer science is seen as mysterious, difficult and inaccessible. Even for those who want to study computer science, there are very few resources for learning available until college. Without a program that kids can use to learn on their own, all but the most privileged are prevented from getting started on computer science before they are scared away. The goal of the Looking Glass IDE is to provide a fun, self-directed environment for 8-16 year olds without access to formal computer science classes to learn basic programming concepts by creating movies and games. This summer, I helped to design and implement an online community for users of Looking Glass to share projects, collaborate, compete, and support one another's programming efforts.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). Ms. Koscik's talk, "An online community for peer-supported learning of computer science," will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Thursday Extra: "Project Zucchini"

On Thursday, May 12, students from Professor Janet Davis's course “Human-computer interaction” will give a talk in the “Thursday Extras” series:

The goal of Project Zucchini is to re-design the Grinnell Local Food Co-op Web site so that it better supports the Co-op's mission of providing the Grinnell community with access to local foods. Students from CSC 232, Human-Computer Interaction, will explain how they applied User Experience Development methods to understand the work context, extract requirements and models, develop new designs, build prototypes, and evaluate user experience.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). The talk, “Project Zucchini: re-designing the Local Food Co-op Web site,” will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Thursday Extra: "Computation in pure hardware with FPGAs"

On Thursday, March 3, Forrest Friesen 2011 will give a talk in the “Thursday Extras” series:

Field-programmable gate arrays are integrated circuits whose internal structure can be configured to create digital logic at the lowest level. With ever-improving semiconductor manufacturing technology and increasingly accessible configuration tools, they are the ultimate in general purpose computational hardware. This talk will present an overview of working with modern FPGAs, with examples taken from my independent study project in the physics department. I will also discuss the devices from a technology studies perspective.

Refreshments will be served at 4:15 p.m. in the Computer Science Commons (Noyce 3817). Mr. Friesen's talk, “Computation in pure hardware with FPGAs,” will follow at 4:30 p.m. in Noyce 3821. Everyone is welcome to attend!

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!

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!

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.

Thursday Extra: "Squeezing the MathLAN"

On Thursday, October 28, in Noyce 3821, Martin Dluhos 2012 will describe one of the major system-administration projects he carried out this summer: configuring and using software that automate the installation of a new version of Debian GNU/Linux on the workstations in the MathLAN, in order to make the entire process less tedious and less repetitive.

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

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