Final Assignment
Paper or Parser.


Paper
Due Tuesday 12/10/2002 -- hard deadline

You have observed Larry in class -- a unique and hopefully fun experience. You have helped him construct many semantic models.

Now is the time to do it on your own. Write up an analysis a la Larry.

There are very few constraints on this paper, and I do not care about the usual ones.

  1. No research. You are smart, think!
  2. Pick a topic that is small enough that you can handle it. Pick a topic that smart lay people can understand or , even better, one that stupid lay people can understand.

    Good Examples: Comparison of a still and a rocket engine, How to break a habit, How to hide. (You can't do any of those).

    Bad Examples: TCP-IP stacks -- too technical, Linguistics -- too broad, Interpersonal communication -- too broad (but a particular kind of interpersonal communication would be good), A description of your favorite strategy game -- too technical, and probably too simple. What makes a good video game could be a good topic, but not if you just list the features. Actually one aspect of video games would be better.

  3. Pick a topic that is intriguing to you and that you know something about.
  4. This paper has to be insightful. If you are bored writing it, I will be bored reading it. Bored Ayman --> bad grades. Well, not really, but bored Ayman is a bad thing in itself.
  5. This is a very important assignment because here you have the opportunity to show what you have learned. And, it is a lot.
  6. Finish writing when you are done. Ok, 15-30 pages. It is really easy to write 15 pages, just start. Diagrams are encouraged.
  7. If you are unsure about your topic, clear it with me. For prompt responses, visit me or email me. If you want to ask me about margins or a title page, please come in person so that I can hit you with my stapler.
  8. This posting is probably going to leave many of you mildly frustrated. I understand, but there is nothing I can do about it. What did you expect? An outline? On the other hand, if you follow the instructions, you will do very well. You'd be impressed how interesting students can be when they try.
  9. Look at it this way: this paper is a great opportunity to think on a topic of your choosing. If this much freedom scares you, think: Which of your early childhood experiences made you so prone to require precise instructions? It will make for a good paper.

A sure way to fail this assignment is to assume that I did not really mean any of the above, and just turn in a standard research paper.


Parser
Due Wednesday 12/11/2002 -- hard deadline

We spent plenty of time running through recipies and breaking down the order and sequence. By doing this we found alot of things about recipies that you can write a parser to find.

You should be able to pick out the following:

  1. Ingrediants. What is needed and how much.
  2. Dependancy. What steps require what previous steps.
  3. Semantic Parts. What general parts are there to this particular recipe. We said in class this should focus on:
  4. Hard Parts. Try to identify what might be considered a difficult step.

If you want to write say a "Pie Parser" or a "Baking Parser" you are welcome to. Just remember, if you pick a specific type of recipe, make sure you pull out the important features of that type.

On top of this, you can work with a partner if you like, and use the language of your choice -- just make sure I can run it when you are done. I feel this is much easier and much more fun than the paper, particulary for me to grade so I hope some of you choose this option.


Happy writing/hacking,

-ayman.