Need help starting a Comp. Sci. Project :(

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Need help starting a Comp. Sci. Project :(

Postby CompSciT » Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:53 am

Hi guys,
I've just joined Science Buddies. My name is David and I'm really interested in Math and Computer Science. I taught my self C and am now learning C++. I would say that my C level is adequate but not advance; I've learn all the basics but haven't learn data structure yet - but I'm really willing to. I have until February,2013 to complete this project and I'm willing to spend +15 hours on it every week.

My problem is that I couldn't find a computer science project online- some are either too advanced or too expensive for me. I have conducted serious research at Stanford before with a mentor, however, he's not in a Comp. Sci major. I have also look around online and I don't know what to say but I didn't like some of the projects like "Making a Calculator" or "Program a game". Can you guys please point me toward the right direction in conducting a serious computer science research or engineering.

I know some of you think that I'm asking way too much but I'm very serious in making it to ISEF. I will dedicate hours and hours of my time to learning comp. sci. and conducting the projects. I'm willing to learn anything. Because I don't have Comp. Sci mentors or Software engineering dads like others, I really hope you guys can help me out, mentor me toward the right path.

Thank you for your time.

-Dave
CompSciT
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:30 am
Occupation: Student:11th Grade
Project Question: I really need an idea to get me started.
Project Due Date: n/a
Project Status: I am just starting

Re: Need help starting a Comp. Sci. Project :(

Postby Vijay Pillarisetti » Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:05 pm

Not just your goals, but your willingness to put in the effort needed are very impressive.

Here are some links/ideas for a little more advanced, non-standard computer science projects:

Science Buddies Page:
http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-f ... PAodOW0A4Q

New Mexico Super computing challenge project proposals from High School Students:
http://mode.lanl.k12.nm.us/view_proposals.php

Google's Computer Science Projects for High School
http://www.cs4hs.com/projects/index.html

Any interesting computer science project tries to solve an unsolved problem or tries to improve on a current solution. I guess the reason why a game, calculator, etc. may seem less interesting for you is that the result is very predictable. That doesn't reduce its value in terms of creative logic you can put into it. Coming up with a computer chess program that can defeat a good chess human player is quite complex and challenging. Even solving an every day problem like how to come up with a school time-table to meet all student needs and minimizes idle time among teachers can be a great project by itself.

Also don't let the lack of full expertise in a language prevent you from starting the project. Data structures (lists, sorting, indexing, etc.), algorithims etc. are essential for a good quality computer science project, but you can always acquire these skills during your project.

Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions.

- Vijay Pillarisetti
Vijay Pillarisetti
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:43 am
Occupation: Software Developer
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Project Status: Not applicable

Re: Need help starting a Comp. Sci. Project :(

Postby CompSciT » Fri Oct 19, 2012 2:22 am

Thanks you so much for your help! I'm sorry that I couldn't reply faster because I've been busy with PSAT. Originally, my heart was set out to look for "novel" projects that haven't been done before. Now, after I thought about what you said, I feel like I should do a project that is new to me and that I have no knowledge in and am interested to learn about - not new and novel ideas. I looked around and I thought that maybe I'll write a Go program with a good algorithm to vs against good go players. I hope that in the process, I'll be able to learn about algorithms and data structure - and maybe how to a build an interface in C++ ;D. I want to thank you for your help.

Also, I'm a bit unclear about this, can you help me:
1) Do I need to be a Go master in order to write an algorithm or code one? Like how should I predict the "best" move
2) If I engage in this project, will the math of the algorithm exceed my level of knowledge right now? I"m in Calculus AB :(

Thank you for your help again! I really appreciate it.
CompSciT
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:30 am
Occupation: Student:11th Grade
Project Question: I really need an idea to get me started.
Project Due Date: n/a
Project Status: I am just starting


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