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Re^2: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects

by amarquis (Curate)
on Sep 08, 2008 at 15:54 UTC ( #709798=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects
in thread [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects

The encryption idea was my favorite, because based on how fast the base part of the project got done there is a lot of room to spend time making it smarter and faster.

Good points about tic-tac-toe, which was actually the game I had in my head while writing. My worry, I think, might be the difficulty convincing an older science teacher with limited domain knowledge that the problem is hard enough for a science fair project.

My sister mentioned the game of go, because she plays, but I don't think we could come up with an appropriate problem. Even small problems, like for example life and death of stones, are really hard. Limiting the game to a board small enough to be searched, you get into gross ruleset specific distinctions.


Comment on Re^2: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects
Re^3: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects
by MidLifeXis (Prior) on Sep 08, 2008 at 16:01 UTC

    Depending on how your sister implements it, the project could teach basic game theory, recursion, a-b pruning, and other advanced (for high school, and somewhat for early college) topics. Show the teacher some of the classic literature, and how even something as "simple" as the Missionaries and cannibals problem can be mapped into the same problem space.

    Perhaps the game is not the way to present it to the teacher, but the way the game is solved.

    --MidLifeXis

Re^3: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects
by moritz (Cardinal) on Sep 08, 2008 at 16:23 UTC
    Good points about tic-tac-toe, which was actually the game I had in my head while writing. My worry, I think, might be the difficulty convincing an older science teacher with limited domain knowledge that the problem is hard enough for a science fair project.

    I think that shouldn't be a blocker. People can be dealt with, if you know how ;-)

    Some people are easily impressed by numbers. For example the game could have a small counter telling you that there are $n possible game plays left, and $n starts at 300k. That demonstrates that the program does really much work.

    I assume that she has to write some kind of description, and if that nicely illustrates the search trees, that could convince other teachers.

    Again others are impressed by everything that computers do, those should be the easiest to convince.

Re^3: [OT] Perl / Computer Science Science Fair Projects
by DrHyde (Prior) on Sep 09, 2008 at 09:34 UTC

    There are two problems in Go that I would think might be appropriate (assuming that 9th grade == somewhere around about age 14).

    The first, and the easiest to demonstrate because it's quickest, would be figuring out whether a move results in a group that is entirely surrounded and can be removed from the board.

    The second, which builds on that, would be to implement a board on which two people can play, with the computer removing prisoners during play as above, but also spotting and not allowing other illegal moves such as suicide or repetition. Don't worry about the ruleset distinctions - just pick one and go with it.

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