App Inventor is a visual, web-based programming environment that makes it possible for non-programmers to develop apps for their mobile phones. The talk will describe the App Inventor language and how it can be used at the introductory level to teach CS concepts and principles. Sample apps and projects from a college-level CS0 course will be used as examples. The implications for CS education at various levels in the K-14 pipeline will be discussed.
Bio: Ralph Morelli is a Professor of Computer Science at Trinity College in Hartford, CT, where he has been teaching CS since 1985. He currently serves as one of the Principal Investigators of the NSF-funded Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software Project (HFOSS), an attempt to help revitalize undergraduate computing education by getting students engaged in building software that benefits society. He has a Ph.D. in Philosophy and an M.S. in Information and Computer Science from the University of Hawaii. In addition to HFOSS, his research interests include artificial intelligence and computer science education.
Free and open source software (FOSS) is software that is licensed to be shared and remixed freely. The Humanitarian FOSS project (HFOSS) is a collaborative effort among undergraduate computing departments aimed at building FOSS that serves the community in some way. This talk will provide an overview of the HFOSS project, its history and goals, and will focus on several of the projects that HFOSS participates in or has initiated.
An entire generation of engineers is currently being educated exclusively with proprietary software. As a consequence, these students do not get to learn how hardware and software systems really work. For three years we have been working on changing this by offering a college course on Open Source Software Practices. Come to hear about our experiences and help us make this a better course.
Marcus Hanwell participated in the Google Summer of Code program in 2007 as a student, and acted as a mentor in 2008 and 2009. He will present an overview of the Google Summer of Code program, why you should get involved and an overview of what is involved. Student applications are due by April 9.
Copyright developed in the age of the printing press, and was designed to fit with the system of centralized copying imposed by the printing press. But the copyright system does not fit well with computer networks, and only draconian punishments can enforce it.
The global corporations that profit from copyright are lobbying for draconian punishments, and to increase their copyright powers, while suppressing public access to technology. But if we seriously hope to serve the only legitimate purpose of copyright--to promote progress, for the benefit of the public--then we must make changes in the other direction.
Fedora is a Linux-based operating system that showcases the latest in free and open source software. Fedora is always free for anyone to use, modify, and distribute. It is built by people across the globe who work together as an open community that welcomes anyone to join. Mairin Duffy, an RPI CS alum from Red Hat, will talk about what makes Fedora different from other Linux-based operating systems and how you can get involved in Fedora.
The leader of the GNOME Accessibility project, Willie Walker, will provide an introduction to the GNOME project with a focus on the free open source solutions being developed for people with disabilities.
The talk will also include a general discussion of the GNOME project, including how it is sustained and governed and what the community culture is like. Willie will also talk about the tools used to help people collaborate at a distance and how you can become involved.
Higher education institutions routinely deliver technology services to their faculty that are designed, built, owned, and governed by others, whether enterprise IT professionals, academic technologists, computational scientists, or outside vendors. Would scholars work differently, and perhaps better, if scholarly technology services were designed.and owned, and governed.collaboratively, across institutions, by and for those they were intended to serve? What institutional and scholarly resources and commitments would such projects entail? Over the past decade, the Program in Research in Information Technology (RIT) of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has conducted an intensive philanthropic effort to explore these and other, related questions, resulting in more than 50 funded open source software projects which have grown to an aggregate capitalization of approximately $250m, achieving a current user-base of thousands of higher education institutions and tens of millions of faculty, staff, and students worldwide, supported by more than a dozen commercial vendors ranging from IBM to small, higher-education-specific firms. Mackie will provide an overview of RIT.s activities and methodologies and review selected, currently funded projects, focusing particularly on projects directly supporting the delivery of shared technology services in support of research, teaching, and learning. His analysis will focus on two issues: the strategic importance of institutionally sustained, shared technology services in an era of scientific .cyberinfrastructure. projects; and the implications of open source models for ensuring and sustaining faculty ownership and governance of their supporting technologies.
Christopher J. Mackie is Associate Program Officer in Research in Information Technology at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. He holds Ph.D. and Masters degrees from Princeton University, a Masters degree from the University of Michigan, and an A.B. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A computational modeler by training, he has also published in the fields of regulatory theory, social research methods, and energy, education, and health policy. His most recent academic work involved the application of advances in social and affective neuroscience and psycholinguistics in order to model the emergence of human identity; in the furtherance of that project, he spent several years teaching computers how to feel. Earlier, Mackie held management positions in corporate healthcare as well as non-profit information technology, and served as an I.T. consultant to domestic and international NGOs
Hosted by the Rensselaer Center for Open Source Software.