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Many Cores Are Here: Creating the Curriculum
Academic Community Webinar Series, Fall 2008

Sequential programming is no more: Why are we still teaching it?

Since at least 1995, urgent voices have been calling for the introduction of parallel programming into the undergraduate curriculum, yet most academic institutions are still teaching sequential programming.  This is true despite the fact that all major manufacturers have moved to a many core architecture, and these current generation CPU, GPU, or ASIC designs cannot be efficiently programmed without knowledge of parallel programming. What will this curriculum look like, and how will it best support the next generation of engineers and computer scientists?

Please join your colleagues to discuss and debate this question in a webinar series led by members of the Academic Community.

Register for this free seminar series today.

 

Multicore breaks a fundamental link in how we prepare our current and future developers – teach them to break a problem down into pieces and find a nice logical progression to solve each individual piece sequentially. A normal CS curriculum gets around to telling people about the idea of concurrent execution only as they have one foot out the door (senior-level systems courses, if then). Unfortunately, the current and forth-coming generations of multicore don't allow us that luxury.
Date Topic Speaker Abstract

Sept 25

(available from repository)

Introducing a Curriculum for Concurrency: a Holistic Approach Professor Daniel Ernst, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire Our current undergraduate students will likely spend their entire career working on multiprocessor machines. Our approach is to give students practice with the concepts behind parallel programming early and often by integrating them into our existing course work. We have developed modules for CS1, CS2, and an algorithms course which introduce students to some of the basic concepts of parallelism in a way which is straightforward, interesting, and interwoven into other course topics.

 

Oct 30

(available from repository)

Multicore in the Classroom – the view from Georgia Tech. Professor Matthew Wolf, Research Scientist CERCS Center Computational Science and Engineering College of Computing Georgia Institute of Technology Multicore breaks a fundamental link in how we prepare our current and future developers – teach them to break a problem down into pieces and find a nice logical progression to solve each individual piece sequentially. A normal CS curriculum gets around to telling people about the idea of concurrent execution only as they have one foot out the door (senior-level systems courses, if then). At Georgia Tech we've been trying to tackle this by trying to integrate bits of multi-core throughout the curriculum – introduced gently into the entry classes as "my isn't it interesting when that happens", and getting increasingly more focused as time goes on. This admittedly means we have to forgo teaching some things to make space in the curriculum, but so far it has been surprisingly little.

 

Nov 20 Live from Super Computing 08 in Austin, Texas - There Is No more Sequential Programming: So why are we still teaching it! Professor Charlie Peck, Associate Professor of Computer Science, Earlham College Professor Peck leads a discussion with Industry and Academic experts from the showfloor of Super Computing 08 on the topic of supporting many cores within the classroom and the enterprise.

 

Dec 18 The Multi-Core Computer Science Curriculum in the People's Republic of China. Professor JianFeng Yang, Wuhan University Curriculum development in China tends to be quite different than in US, Europe and other parts of Asia.  China is now educating many engineers.  Learn how Chinese universities are teaching  engineers how to take advantage of modern multi and many core platforms.  What lessons can be learned by Academics in rest of the world.

 

Register for this free seminar series today.

This series is led by the academic community.  If you have an idea for a webinar topic, or if you would like to suggest yourself or a colleague as a host, please contact Paul Steinberg.


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