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Launching into AI's "October Sky with Robotics and Lisp

AI Magazine

Robotics projects coupled with agent-oriented trends in artificial intelligence education have the potential to make introductory AI courses at liberal arts schools the gateway for a large new generation of AI practitioners. However, this vision's achievement requires programming libraries and low-cost platforms that are readily accessible to undergraduates and easily maintainable by instructors at sites with few dedicated resources. This article presents and evaluates one contribution toward implementing this vision: the RCXLisp library. The library was designed to support programming of the Lego Mindstorms platform in AI courses with the goal of using introductory robotics to motivate undergraduates' understanding of AI concepts within the agent-design paradigm. The library's evaluation reflects four years of student feedback on its use in a liberal-arts AI course whose audience covers a wide variety of majors. To help establish a context for judging RCXLisp's effectiveness this article also provides a sketch of the Mindstormsbased laboratory in which the library is used.


Morocco's colonial heritage in higher education

Al Jazeera

Rabat, Morocco - When Widad Houmaid, 20, earned good marks in high school, she decided to enrol in a biology class at Hassan II University in Casablanca. There was only one problem; Moroccan university professors teach science in French. Houmaid, a graduate of Moroccan public schools where maths and science are taught in Arabic, does not speak French. She is now struggling in her biology class. "You have to speak French to get the professors' respect, and to get their attention," she said.


From high school English teacher to Software Engineer at a Machine Learning company (Podcast)

#artificialintelligence

On today's episode of the podcast, I got to chat with software engineer Jackson Bates who lives and works in Melbourne, Australia. Jackson used to be a high school English teacher, but gradually taught himself to code and landed a pretty sweet gig as a React dev, partly by chance. Today he works part time as a developer, part time as a stay at home dad, and volunteers his time with various open source projects. Jackson grew up in England, and studied English in school. Although going into education seemed a logical choice, he dabbled in other fields - like working at a prison cafeteria - for a while before landing a teaching job.


Using Artificial Intelligence to Help Bridge Students from High School to College

AAAI Conferences

This paper describes work from the Bridges to Computing project at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. This project focuses on the transition from high school to college with the intention of encouraging more students to study some aspect of computer science. The Bridges project has both introduced new undergraduate courses into our computer science curriculum and revised existing courses, as well as developed activities for high school students to help better prepare them for college-level computer science. Here, we report on the use of ideas from artificial intelligence implemented within several of these interventions.


Can Online Learning Be Better This Fall? These Educators Think So

NPR Technology

Wayne Banks is a middle school math teacher and principal in residence for KIPP charter schools. These days, like many teachers around the country, the 29-year-old is working from his apartment in Brooklyn, New York. Banks has never been formally trained to teach online, but that hasn't stopped him from trying to make his classes as engaging and challenging as possible. "I really took the opportunity in March to be like, 'I just have to figure this out.' [It was] a do or die for me," Banks says. Now, with many of the nation's largest school districts beginning the fall semester online-only, Banks is part of a national effort to improve the quality of distance learning.