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Q: If I have not taken other graduate courses in databases but I have some experience with web design and data management, would I be qualified to take cs4440?
A: Yes. If you have worked as web master or have some good working experience with Internet application systems, you are qualified to take this course.
Q: What are the specific topics that will be elaborated more in depth in cs4440?
A: I will discuss emerging database and data management technologies and new challenges. See course Introduction for more info.
What this course is NOT?
A: There are many issues involved in Emerging Database Technologies. This course emphasizes on emerging database and data management technologies not on technologies of conventional database management systems. In particular, the following are not the goal of this course:
Q: Do you use any specific textbook for this coming term?
A: I haven't found a good text book for this coming term. So I will select a set of papers to be distributed in the class, in addition to course notes.
Q: What policy and marking scheme do you use for cs4440?
A: Policy: I will have reading summary assignments (20%), class participation (10%), a course project (50%), and a technology review paper (10 pages). Class participation is an important component of grading. At the end of the term, I will organize a workshop where students will have a chance to present their projects in front of the entire class.
Grading scheme: The grading scheme will consist of the following aspects:
Q: Where to get the papers?
A: Most of the papers are accessible online from CS4440 home page at least two weeks in advance.
Q: How do I turn in the assignment?
Critique should be sent to me through email in either HTML or ASCII.
Project proposal and final project report and code should be sent to instructor by email or handed in at the demo time.
Q: What's the late homework hand-in policy?
A: No late reading summaries are accepted. For late project, 50% discount is applied per day and in this way the project expires in 2 days after the designated date.
Q: What should I do if I have to miss some classes?
A: Don't panic. Class attendance is not mandatory. You should have good participation in the classes that you do attend. For reading summaries, you can send them in through email wherever you are. Or you can send them in early.
Q: What should I do if I cannot make it for the project presentation on the assigned date or time?
A: You should inform the instructor at the earliest convenience or find someone else to swap with you in advance.
Q: I have no idea what kind of projects I can do.
A: No problem. I will discuss some example projects in class during the first week and discuss different possibilities. There is no fixed project, but there are some "standard" ideas. You are welcome to discuss with me to work out a suitable project topic.
Q: Is the project proposal very important?
A: Indeed it is. Timely and concrete proposals are the best predictors of the project success. Very few good projects were completed in time without a good early proposal.
Q: How much work do I have to do for the project for it to be considered "good"?
A: For the project, I consider cleverness more important than hard work. Of course I recognize hard work, but a clever project doesn't have to be hard work. A simple project that illustrates a smart idea is likely to get a good grade.
Q: What's the grading curve?
A: I don't grade on the curve. Each student is considered individually. Therefore, you are encouraged to cooperate and collaborate since there is no intra-class competition. However assignments are expected to be independent homework. Direct copying of others will be given grade zero. I estimate a grade of A for people who reach 70% out of 100%.
Q: How is class participation graded?
A: You should help me know you and be impressed by you. Some preparation for each class (e.g., good questions or good answers) will go a long way. If you are shy and don't feel comfortable speaking up in a group frequently, find time to talk to me individually. In either case, it is the quality of participation that's important, not quantity.