Continued from Results from the January 2012 Core Skills Course, by Gregory Brown
For our integration exercise we had students build multi-user email based applications. All ten students who completed the course worked on this exercise, and we ended up with everything from an email-based wiki to a system for sharing funny stories and jokes.
For our academic exercise, we asked students to make use of Markov Chains to do something interested. Seven of our students participated in this exercise, and we ended up all sorts of cool results, including a jazz chart generator and a tool which predicts movements in currency exchange rates.
For our modeling exercise, we challenged students to come up with a game strategy helper. While only three students chose to work on this project, we still ended up with some neat tools for helping folks play Gomoku, Risk, and Poker better.
In addition to working on these exercises, through our community service requirement students made contributions to rstat.us, Rubinius, Mission of Mercy, University Web, PuzzleNode, Mendibot and the Ruby documentation project.
If all that wasn't enough, each student also worked on creating their own free software projects. Here's a list of what everyone built during the course:
Marcin Pietraszek started work on a barcode reading gem. This tool still has some kinks that need to be worked out, but a good amount of the foundational work has been completed and it is capable of reading EAN13 barcodes under ideal circumstances.
When you keep in mind that our courses are only 21 days long, and that our students are intermediate Ruby programmers, it's amazing to see what they've been able to accomplish together. I am constantly overwhelmed by just how awesome these courses turn out.