Computer Science Teacher
Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information from Alfred Thompson

November, 2010

  • Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information from Alfred Thompson

    XNA and Game Development and Expression Web and Web Design Talks

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    Last summer I helped present two talks at the CSTA CS & IT Symposium. In both cases I had small rolls with Pat Philips doing almost all of the talking on the talk about the Expression Web course. Steve Scanlan, an wonderful classroom teacher, did most of the talking after my introduction of game development on the XNA talk. The recordings of both of these talks are available through the CSTA web site. If you are thinking at all about adopting a game development computer science course or a new web development course you will find these talks interesting.

    Computer Science, Game Development and the XNA Game Studio Platform
    Presented by Alfred Thompson & Steve Scanlan
    This presentation talks about creating and implementing a high school game development curriculum using the (free) XNA Game Studio. We present the reasoning behind this type of course, show screenshots and a video introduction to student projects, as well as show examples of the sort of code students can create. We also talk about how freely available curriculum has been used and modified with real students. We present a collection of helpful resources including websites, tutorials and videos from Microsoft and independent web sites.

    Download presentation as PDF (2 zipped files)
    View streaming video of session

    Web Design and Development—A Key to a Growing Program
    Presented by Pat Phillips & Alfred Thompson
    It's quick and easy for students to create interactive websites using the professional Web design software from Microsoft—Expression Studio 3. Learn how your secondary schools can receive Expression Studio at no cost! Explore the free teaching and learning resources that will enable you to add Web design to your students' toolbox of communication tools and explore deeper Web development techniques. The free curriculum materials range from 2-hour tutorials, to 2-week multi-disciplinary units, to a full semester of comprehensive Web design concepts. All of the materials were created by teachers and tested by students. Students can install the software free of charge on their personal computer making this a valuable software option for many schools challenged with providing professional design and developer software to students.

    Download presentation as PDF
    View streaming video of session



  • Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information from Alfred Thompson

    Three New Chances to Get Involved in the Imagine Cup

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    I talked about these new Imagine Cup events briefly on my links post on Monday but I wanted to pull them out and highlight them on their own today. The following is from the latest Imagine Cup Insider email that goes to people signed up to compete. There are many ways to compete in the Imagine Cup. These are great opportunities for students to really show what they know and what they can do.

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    Not an Imagine Cup competitor yet? Take a look at these 3 new chances to learn new skills, meet new friends and quite possibly change the world. Plus you can win cash, prizes or a trip to the Worldwide Finals in New York!

    We have added 1 more exciting competition to the line-up – Windows Phone 7.
    It’s all about originality, appeal and being unique. Be one of the first developers – ever – to build a XAP Application for the revolutionary Windows Phone 7 platform. Create an XAP Application the world cannot wait to get their hands on. Your Team’s XAP Application needs to scream originality, have major consumer XAP appeal and integrate unique mobile-oriented features. So… what are you waiting for? Develop a Windows Phone 7 application that people will love having on their phone today!
    For the complete rules and regulations visit the Windows Phone 7 competition and while you’re at it sign up and start competing today!
    Already signed up for a competition but you still want to do more to help solve the worlds’ toughest problems? Sign up to compete in a Challenge. Challenges are cool because they offer two different ways to compete - either incorporate the Challenge requirements into your current Imagine Cup project or build the Challenge solution from scratch.

    Interoperability Challenge - Think outside-of-the box.
    Are you ready to take on this Challenge? It’s about building technical bridges and blending out-of-the-box Microsoft technologies with other technologies to create applications that connect people, data and diverse systems in new ways. Use it all, including free and open source software. Bring it all together in one groundbreaking application.
    Don’t be the last one of your friends to sign up for this Challenge! For the complete rules and regulations visit the Interoperability Challenge.

    Orchard Challenge - Grow your developer skills.
    Change the world, one website at a time. Innovate and be the first to define an indispensible module that everyone needs! Orchard is an up-and-coming open source CMS platform based on ASP.NET MVC that is designed from the ground up to support modular extensibility.
    A module can add new features to an Orchard-based website – for example, a shopping cart and checkout system, a media gallery, maps/geolocation, or social interactivity. Orchard users will be able to easily discover and download your extension in the online gallery and incorporate it into their own sites. Not only will you be the first to use this new CMS platform, you might just see your module used on websites around the world!
    Pick your smartest friends and start competing today. For the complete rules and regulations visit the Orchard Challenge.

    Get Connected!

    • Join the Imagine Cup 2011 Facebook community.
    • Follow the Imagine Cup on Twitter.
    • Read up-to-date news on the Imagine Cup blog.
    • Watch the newest videos on the Imagine Cup YouTube channel.
    Check out the Imagine Cup photo gallery and video gallery.


  • Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information from Alfred Thompson

    Imagine Cup Insider–Announcing IC Solve This

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    Turn Your Ideas Into Action!

    Imagine a world where global Inter-Governmental Organizations (IGO’s), Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) and non-profits partner with brilliant and passionate student developers - like you - to solve some of the world’s toughest problems. We are launching a new program called Imagine Cup Solve This where you can to do just that!

    Through the Imagine Cup Solve This program, you can work on real-world problems submitted by IGOs, NGOs and non-profits as part of your Imagine Cup Competition or Challenge. This marketplace of real-world problems will grow over time as more IGOs, NGOs and non-profits get involved, but you can search through a library of Imagine Cup Solve This problems today on Imaginecup.com to find the issues that matter most to you. Then put your ideas into action as you create solutions that have potential to change the world in Core Competitions including: Software Design, Embedded Development, Game Design, Digital Media, Windows Phone 7 and the Challenges.

    Need an idea for your Imagine Cup entry? Looking to work on a project that may have real-world impact? Or maybe you’ve already started your Imagine Cup project and you want to see how it might impact a specific problem from an IGO, NGO or non-profit? Check out the Imagine Cup Solve This Library today.

    The Imagine Cup Solve This connects ideas to problems so everybody wins.

    Learning Center & Student Resources

    Need more resources to help you with your Imagine Cup project? Visit the Learning Center & Student Resources page for trainings, free ebooks, seminars, tools and more. New resources are added all of the time so check back often for the latest information. Recently added resources include:

    Windows 7 Touch Challenge launches on 30 November!

    The Window 7 Touch technology was developed to help people use their computer in a more natural, accessible, and interactive way. How can Touch allow people to better achieve what they want to accomplish? How can touch remove barriers to accessibility? How can YOU create a Touch experience that is so natural that users don’t even think about the implementation but focus only on the experience? Visit Imaginecup.com on 30 November to sign-up!

    Get Connected!

    • Join the Imagine Cup 2011 Facebook community.
    • Follow the Imagine Cup on Twitter.
    • Read up-to-date news on the Imagine Cup blog.
    • Watch the newest videos on the Imagine Cup YouTube channel.

    Check out the Imagine Cup photo gallery and video gallery.

    Yeah I cut and pasted this from the newsletter that goes to people who signed up. With permission though.



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