Saturday, April 24, 2010

The right-brained computer science fair

Dissatisfaction with the results of programming contest events has led to the development of a new type of competitive event, a computer science fair. The computer science fair, a combination art show/science fair, is designed to attract a wider diversity of participants, to encourage creativity, and to reinforce good project development practices. Students are asked to creatively use technology to express themselves, to design new inventions, and to solve problems by submitting projects in the following categories: 1) computers and the arts and humanities --- computer music, computer art, multimedia projects; 2) computer programs --- entertainment, education, scientific, business, modeling and simulation; and 3) computer or electronically controlled inventions.
--Sue Fitzgerald and Mary Lou Hines, The computer science fair: an alternative to the computer programming contest.

In the case of the Philadelphia Computer Science Fair, categories now include:
Graphic Design
Desktop Publishing
But what about the left-brained computer programmer, the linear coder who can do pointers and recursion but hasn't a clue about graphic design? Is there any way left the best of our true programmers--the kind who write the underlying code for all those "higher level" programs on which non-programmers depend--to distinguish themselves?

Or is the "dissatisfaction with the results of programming contest events" cited above one more instance of revenge against the nerds?

1 comment:

Allan P, Lappin said...

Calling it a The right-brained computer science fair is an oxymoron; there's no science involved...