Archive of Old Announcements
Important announcements related to the course will be posted in the class CMSC 131 home page. Old announcements will be moved here.
The, Dec 16:
- Final grades are now available (visit the grades page). If you have a question about your final grade, please see the information given there.
Mon, Dec 13:
- Homework #8 scores are now posted (visit the grades page). Because we need to get grades finalized soon, please try to file your regrade requests by noon on Tuesday, Dec 14.
Fri, Dec 10:
- We have set up a special Final Exam Discussion Wiki for your questions about the final. If you pose a good problem there, we may use it on the exam.
- Are you willing to participate in a CS research study on how student's learn to program? (For more information click here). You do not need to do anything. (It is all based on your code, which is already on the CVS server.) In order to use your code for the study, it is necessary for you to fill out a consent form. (You can pick one up from Jaime Spacco, the grad student doing the study, in AVW 4176.) Participation is completely optional, and will not affect your grade in any way.
- The folks running the study also want to collect demographic data on the people involved. If you would like provide this information, please sign on to the submit server and enter your data. Again this is optional, and will not affect your grade in any way.
Thu, Dec 9:
- The Final Exam will be on Tue, Dec 14, from 4:00-6:00pm in TYD 0130 (Tydings Hall) (All sections of cmsc131 will take the exam in this room.)
- Visit the following link for Final Information including a list of topics, readings, and sample questions.
- There will be two Review Sessions to help you prepare for the final exam.
- Sunday 3-4pm, in CSIC 3117 (hosted by Dave Mount)
- Monday 7-8pm, in CSIC 3117 (hosted by Ryan Farrell)
- Office hours will be cancelled during finals week. If you need to speak to a TA, please send him/her email to set up a meeting time. TA email addresses can be found on the Staff Contacts page.
Wed, Dec 8:
- Homework #7 scores are now posted (visit the grades page). Because we need to get grades finalized soon, regrade requests must be submitted by this Friday, Dec 10.
Fri, Dec 3:
- Are you annoyed by seeing commas in your long results from your scientific calculator? (E.g. "12,345,678.8") If you want to get rid of them, the HW#8 description has been updated to explain how to do this. You are allowed to implement your calculator either way for full credit.
Wed, Dec 1:
- The homework 8 Wiki is working again!
Tue, Nov 30:
- Part of the period in Wednesday's discussions will be devoted to doing a survey of the course. This is very important for us, and to encourage full participation, rather than giving a quiz, we are giving quiz credit to everyone just for filling out the survey. (This is the easiest quiz you'll ever take!) There is also an online survey given by the university. It can be accessed through the following link: https://www.courses.umd.edu/online_evaluation. You will receive 10 points for doing the survey in discussion and 10 additional point for doing the online survey. To get quiz credit, please have the online suvey completed by the end of this weekend.
- Homework #6 scores are now posted (visit the grades page). Regrade requests must be submitted by next Wednesday, Dec 8.
Mon, Nov 29:
- We have posted a minor correction to the HW#8 description
- Due to a schedule conflict, Nelson will not be available for his 4:00pm office hours this Wednesday.
Sun, Nov 28:
- We have posted a major revision to the Homework #8 description on the homeworks page. The project specification is the same, but the new writeup has much more explanation about how the calculator operates.
Wed, Nov 24:
- Homework #8 is now posted on the homeworks page. It is due Dec 7 at 6:00pm. As with with previous homeworks, we will be making some tests available through the submit server, but they are not there yet.
- The CMSC department will be performing maintenance from 9:00am-1:00pm on Thanksgiving Day. During that time it will not be possible to access CVS or submit your program. The CVS and submit servers will be down later in the weekend (but we don't exactly when or for how long) in order to upgrade the software.
Mon, Nov 15:
- Homework #7 is now posted on the homeworks page. As with with previous homeworks, we will be making some tests available through the submit server, but this may not be set up until after this weekend.
- Homework #5 scores are now posted (visit the grades page). Regrade requests must be submitted by next Monday, Nov 22.
Thu, Nov 11:
- There will be a review session for the midterm this Sunday from 3:00-4:00pm. Because the class is so large, we will be meeting in two rooms: CSIC 2117 and 3117. You may come to whichever you like. There will be no set agenda; we will just answer as many questions as we can in 1 hour.
Wed, Nov 10:
- The second midterm will be on Monday 11/15 in the discussion sessions. Visit the following link for Midterm Information including a list of topics, readings, and old exams. (Monday lectures will take place as usual.)
- Some people have asked us about generating Javadoc documentation for HW#6. We have added a note in the HW#6 description about this. In particular, note that you should not submit the javadoc html files or even store them in your project workspace. We will generate all the files ourselves.
Mon, Nov 8:
- (Correction) There is a rather small but irritating bug in our original implementation of HW#6. There was an extra space added at the end of the line "Movies (rented): " (in line 39 of Test2Results.txt). We removed this extra space on Friday, but people who checked out the files early may still have this. If you see this space, simply check remove it. Please download the latest HW#6 description for more details.
Sun, Nov 7:
- An alert student spotted an error on Quiz 7 Worksheet. In the stack problem the result of the print statements should be "Everybody/Hello" rather than the other way around. I have posted a corrected version on the homeworks page.
Sat, Nov 6:
- A few students asked us to provide more information about what we want in the design.txt file for HW#6. We have added a special section on this to the HW#6 description.
Thu, Nov 4:
- Since this Monday, Nov 8 is the last drop date, we have posted updated midsemester grades on the grades page. Before you panic, please read the information there about how the grades were computed, and what you should do if your grade is in the D-F range.
- Homework #6 is now posted on the homeworks page. As with with the last homework, we will be making some tests available through the submit server, but this may not be set up until after this weekend.
Mon, Nov 1:
- A clarification regarding HW#5. In the Requirements section of the description, appears the following line: "You must use character arrays for storing the current word and solution word in your Jumble class." This means that you must use "char[ ]" for storing these instance variables, not "String[ ]".
Sat, Oct 30:
- We have discovered an anomaly in our submit server testing software, which can cause your program to fail the submission test, even though it passes the PuzzleTests. To avoid this problem, please declare all instance variables to be nonstatic and initialize them explicitly in the generatePuzzle method. Download the latest HW5 description for further information.
Wed, Oct 27:
- Homework #5 is now posted on the homeworks page. As with with the last homework, we will be making some tests available through the submit server, but this may not be set up until this weekend.
Tue, Oct 26:
- Correction to Worksheet for Quiz#5: The quiz will be 20 minutes long, not 25 minutes.
- There will be a quiz (Quiz#6) this coming Monday. The Worksheet is posted on the homework page.
Fri, Oct 22:
- There will be a quiz (Quiz#5) this coming Wednesday in your discussion session. (Note the change of day.) The Worksheet is posted on the homework page.
- We have installed a new online testing system, which will allow you to test your program against our test data. First, submit your project from Eclipse using the "Submit Project" feature. Then, to access the testing system, visit the Submit Server. After logging in, find your current project and click "view submissions". Then, go to your latest submission select "view test results". You will see a series of tests. The key is to check the "Outcome" column. You will either see "Passed" or "Failed". The name of the test gives you a hint as to what we are testing. There is a lot of other information there (e.g. the "long result", which you do not need to understand). Warning: just because your program passes our tests, it does not imply that your program is now "correct". We will generally apply our own "secret" tests when grading, and so it is still your responsibility to perform your own testing.
Wed, Oct 20:
- Homework #3 scores are now posted (visit the grades page). Due to an data entry error, it appears that some people's HW#3 score were erroneously entered over their HW#2 scores. If this happened to you, please send email to Ping Chen. We will try to straighten out the error quickly.
Fri, Oct 15:
- We will have Quiz #4 in discussion on Monday. The worksheet can be found in the homework page.
Thu, Oct 14:
- Homework 4 is now posted. It is due Monday, Oct 25, but please plan carefully. There are no TA office hours over the weekend, so try your best to get it working before the weekend of Oct 23.
Fri, Oct 8:
- We will have Quiz #3 in discussion on Monday. The worksheet can be found in the homework page.
Sat, Oct 2:
- We have made a few more updates to the Homework 3 Description. The changes reflect further clarifications to the specifications. Also please check the class Wiki for other clarifications.
- HW#1 grades have now been posted and can be viewed using the online grading system. If you received a 0 or if you have questions about your grade, please see the information about regrads given on the CMSC 131 grades page.
Thu, Sep 30:
- We have made a few updates to the Homework 3 Description. The updates involve information about (1) getLasPicDisplayed(), (2) requirements, and (3) a clarification of the challenge problem. Also, because we are using automated testing software, we ask that you adhere closely to the functional specifications. (This does not affect how you implement the program, just the user interaction when the program runs.)
- Because we are now using an automatic testing system, it is important the you adhere closely to the specifications for HW#3. In particular, use the same dialog boxes that we use and the same prompts.
- Try your best to use the Eclipse/CVS submit option for your homework submissions. If you are having problems with this, please contact us. Use the submit server only as a last resort for submitting your program. (The reason is that it is much harder for us to process submissions made through submit server, and we have seen many improperly formatted submissions.) If you find it necessary to use the submit server, please see the following page for information on jar creation for submission. The reasons is that we have had to deal with many improperly formatted submissions from the submit server.
Mon, Sep 27:
- Homework 3 has been posted on the homeworks page. It is due on Thursday, Oct 7, at 6:00pm.
- There is a career fair in the Stamp Union tomorrow (Tues) from 10:00-3:00 and on Wed. Employers will be there to answer questions about career opportunities in CS. Microsoft will make a presentation on Tues, from 7-8pm in CSI 1115, and will be raffling off prizes (xbox, pocket PC, games, etc)!
Thu, Sep 23:
- Because of a prior appointment, Nelson will need to cancel his Friday afternoon office hours.
Wed, Sep 22:
- The first midterm will be on Monday 9/27 in the discussion sessions. Visit the following link for Midterm Information including a list of topics, readings, and old exams. (Monday lectures will take place as usual.)
- TA office hours will end at 4:45 tomorrow (Thursday). If you are having problems with your program, please try to get to office hours early.
Sat, Sep 18:
- Dave Mount will be out of town this Monday. Nelson will be lecturing in his place.
Thu, Sep 16:
- There will be another quiz this Monday, Sep 20. The worksheet is posted on the homeworks page.
- You still haven't seen the Wiki? People are now posting their questions (and we are posting our answers) regularly to the class Wiki. Don't miss out on all this good information. The answer to your question may already be there.
Mon, Sep 13:
- It is now possible to submit your homework. To do so, go to the "Dr. Java" perspective, be sure that the project is open. Then right click on the project folder (p1) and select "Submit Project" from the pull-down menu. You may submit many times (we grade only the last submission). You can check the status of your submissions by visiting the Submit Server Home Page and entering your University Directory ID and password.
Sat, Sep 11:
- An alert student spotted a typo in the HW#1 description. The second credit card number should be "1212 3434 4545". The page has been updated.
Thu, Sep 09:
- The first quiz will be in discussion session this coming Monday, Sep 13. Please visit the homeworks page to download a worksheet, which will help prepare you for the quiz.
- Homework 1 has been posted on the homeworks page. It is officially due Sat, Sep 18, but you should try to finish it no later than Thu, Sep 16, in case you need any last minute help. Submission information will be coming early next week in discussion sessions. (Although there is a "Submit" link in Eclipse, please to not try to use it. We still have some setting up to do first.)
- Nelson's office hours from 4-5pm will be cancelled for tomorrow (Friday, Sep 10).
Wed, Sep 08:
- We have updated the Managing Homeworks section of the Eclipse tutorial, with information that corresponds to this semester. This will help you in the process of setting up your CVS repository.
- In discussion sessions today the general method for connecting to the CVS repository was covered. Some of the details were omitted. Please check out the CVS setup information for more detailed instructions on how to get your class account and connect to the repository. As always, if you have any questions, please visit any of the TAs during office hours.
- TA office hours are now posted. They can be found on the Contact we page.
Tue, Sep 07:
- If you have installed Eclipse on your PC, there is an upgrade in the Eclipse plugin that is used for accessing homework files and is used for homework submission. You will need to install this plugin before you can start working on the first homework, which will be handed out soon. For instructions on how to install the new plugin, visit the UMD CS Eclipse plugin update site. Note that if you are working from the WAM labs, you do not need to do anything. We have already installed it for you.
Fri, Sep 03:
- Classes (both discussion and lecture) and office hours are cancelled this Monday for Labor Day. Enjoy the long weekend!
Wed, Aug 25:
- Discussion sessions will be cancelled this Mon, Aug 30. The lectures will still take place. The first discussion sessions will be meeting Wed, Sep 1.