Published: April 2016, Issue: Vol. 28/No.4, Download as PDF


CRA-E Selects Graduate Student Fellows

The CRA Education (CRA-E) Committee has recently selected two Ph.D. students, Keith Feldman and Max Grossman, to serve as CRA-E Graduate Fellows. The Graduate Fellows Program was established last year to give graduate students the opportunity to contribute to CRA-E projects, engage in advocacy for mentoring undergraduate students, and promote computer science research and undergraduate education at the national level.

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Factors that Increase Students’ Interest in Becoming a Middle or High School Computing Teacher

CERP asked undergraduate computing majors what would increase their interest in becoming a middle or high school computing teacher. This infographic shows that financial incentive in the form of a higher teaching salary, free tuition for teacher training, and forgiven student loans were the top factors increasing students’ interest in becoming a middle or high school computing teacher. These findings provide insights into how to generate more computing educators for the K-12 school system, which is becoming increasingly important, given recent efforts to promote widespread K-12 computing education.


Theoretical Foundations for Social Computing Workshop Report

The organizing committee for the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) sponsored Theoretical Foundations for Social Computing Workshop has released their workshop report. Social computing encompasses the mechanisms through which people interact with computational systems. It has blossomed into a rich research area of its own, with contributions from diverse disciplines including computer science, economics, and other social sciences. Yet a broad mathematical foundation for social computing is yet to be established, with a plethora of under-explored opportunities for mathematical research to impact social computing.

Revisiting the Human-Machine Symbiosis

“The hope is that, in not too many years, human brains and computing machines will be coupled together very tightly, and that the resulting partnership will think as no human brain has ever thought and process data in a way not approached by the information-handling machines we know today.”
J. C. R. Licklider, “Man-Computer Symbiosis,” 1960

Fifty-six years ago, J. C. R. Licklider outlined a prescient vision for computing machines coupled with human brains and, together, thinking thoughts previously unattainable by human beings thinking on their own. This vision influenced a generation of scientists and engineers and is largely the basis for our experience of computing today. Yet, I don’t feel a partnership with my current machines, and I often find myself bending my brain, and subjugating my will, to adapt to them. Shouldn’t it be vice versa? Did I miss the symbiosis?


New CRA RSS Subscription Center

CRA has several RSS feeds available, and now you can view them all on a single webpage. Visit this page to view and subscribe to resources that interest you most. When you subscribe to a resource, you will receive an email when new content is posted. CRA will add more customized email options in the future, so stay tuned.

New Coalition to Push for Computer Science in K-12

By Brian Mosley, CRA Policy Analyst

A new coalition, the Computer Science Education Coalition, whose mission is to focus on securing federal funds to provide computer science education to all K-12 students, recently launched. The coalition is, “a non-profit organization that will encourage Congress to invest $250 million in funding for a crucially needed investment in K-12 computer science education.” At launch, the coalition is composed of 43 members, ranging from industry (Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and IBM, to name a few) to NGOs (CRA, ACM, NCWIT, etc); the membership is a venerable who’s-who of the CS community.

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In Memoriam: David S. Johnson

CRA regrets to report that former CRA board member David S. Johnson, 70, passed away on March 8. He was a leader and advocate for algorithms and all of theoretical computer science. David wrote the NP-completeness column for the Journal on Algorithms and later the ACM Transactions on Algorithms, as well as “A Catalog of Complexity Classes” for the 1990 Handbook of Theoretical Computer Science. He founded the Symposium on Discrete Algorithms (SODA), a conference that is now often mentioned with STOC and FOCS as a top theory venue. He also created the DIMACS algorithms challenges, and led SIGACT from 1987-1991, during which time he transformed the organization. David also served as its face for many years thereafter.

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Join ACM and Shape the Future of Computing!

Join ACM and Shape the Future of Computing! For over 50 years, ACM has helped computing professionals to be their most creative, connect to peers, and see what’s next. Joining ACM means you dare to be the best computing professional you can be. Join ACM today and save 25% at ACM-W supports, celebrates, and advocates internationally for the full engagement of women in all aspects of the computing field.