Imagine yourself as a software engineer, a decade and a half from now. You are called upon to help solve the world energy crisis by programming nano-organisms (NANORGs) to extract energy from industrial sludge. Your program must be small enough to fit in the NANORGs' tiny processors, yet at the same time meet several challenges. First and foremost, your NANORGs need to navigate on their own, extract energy from the sludge, and find collection points to deliver the harvested energy. Second,…
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CompSci_p021

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Time Required

Long (2-4 weeks)

Prerequisites

Previous computer programming experience, familiarity with assembly language programming is helpful.

This is a challenging first computer science project. You'll learn the basics of how digital devices can represent numbers using only 0's and 1's, and you'll write a JavaScript program to convert numbers between binary, decimal and hexadecimal notation.
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CompSci_p005

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Time Required

Short (2-5 days)

Prerequisites

You should be able to:

write a basic HTML file with a text editing program (like Notepad);

create HTML <FORM> elements for user input;

write basic JavaScript functions using Arrays, Strings and simple flow control statements (e.g., if...else, and for or while loops).

Help is available for each of these topics. See the Introduction section for details.

Is your PC an energy hog? Check out this science fair project to determine how much power your PC really uses, and if it is an energy hog, how you can reduce its appetite for energy. You'll learn how to profile and streamline your computer's power usage, while still enjoying every feature of your machine.
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Energy_p024

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Time Required

Average (6-10 days)

Prerequisites

None

Material Availability

You must have a Kill-A-Watt^{TM} meter to do this science project. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.

Cost

Low ($20 - $50)

Safety

Adult supervision is required when configuring the power cords on your computer system for testing.

Here is a project that combines Computer Science and Mathematics. The semicircle has two tangent lines that meet at point T. You need to prove that a line drawn from A to T bisects CD. You'll also learn how to create an interactive diagram to illustrate your proof, using an applet that runs in your Web browser. If you like solving problems and thinking logically, you'll like this project.
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CompSci_p009

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Time Required

Short (2-5 days)

Prerequisites

You should either currently be taking or have already completed a first course in geometry. You must understand the concept and method of a mathematical proof.

Material Availability

Readily available (laptop computer helpful for live demonstration)

Here is a project that combines Computer Science and Mathematics. The two circles are tangent to one another at point A. Their diameters are parallel. Prove that points A, D and F are co-linear. You'll also learn how to create an interactive diagram to illustrate your proof, using an applet that runs in your Web browser. If you like solving problems and thinking logically, you'll like this project.
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CompSci_p008

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Time Required

Short (2-5 days)

Prerequisites

You should either currently be taking or have already completed a first course in geometry. You must understand the concept and method of a mathematical proof.

Material Availability

Readily available (laptop computer helpful for live demonstration)

How big a ruler would you need to measure the circumference of the Earth? Did you know that you can do it with a yardstick? (And you won't have to travel all the way around the world!)
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Astro_p018

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Time Required

Short (2-5 days)

Prerequisites

You will need to understand some basic principles of geometry for this project. You will need a friend or relative in a distant city to make a shadow measurement for you on the same day you make yours. Both of you will need clear weather.

Some people have a photographic memory and can memorize anything they see almost instantly! Wouldn't that make homework easy? Other people can remember almost anything they hear. Try this experiment to see which type of memory you have.
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If you've ever so much as watched a news clip about a hurricane, you probably know that hurricanes draw their power from warm ocean waters. If that is true, does it mean that hurricanes actually cool the ocean down when they pass through? Can the amount of cooling be measured? Is it proportional to the strength of the hurricane? Find out using data that you can collect yourself using online archives. This project shows you how.
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The arbelos is the white-shaded region between the three semicircles in the illustration at right. In this project, you'll prove an interesting method for determining the area of the arbelos.
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Math_p012

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Time Required

Short (2-5 days)

Prerequisites

Must understand the concept and method of a mathematical proof

Are you good at remembering addresses and phone numbers? How many numbers do you think you can remember? Try this experiment to test your digit span, the maximum number of digits that you can remember.
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