Research, Projects, Topics, and Presentations
Prepared by Professor Gita Alaghband

The purpose of our seminar series is to familiarize ourselves with recent and important research topics and advances in the field. This research oriented study has numerous advantages. To name only a few would be the ability to use your background knowledge for further study in an area, preparation for graduate level research, familiarity with recent advances in the field, self study in an interest area, and the opportunity to communicate research ideas to others.

Projects and their implementations will be carried out either individually or in teams (size to be determined depending on class size.) You will be graded based on your work, organization, and clarity of your presentation.

You may select a research topic to investigate and present to class in preparation for your project implementation. You must try to choose your research topic so that your studies will enhance your knowledge in support of your selected project. 

Your proposals (both for the research and for the project) should be one typed page long describing the research/project briefly complete with references. It should describe what will be covered in your research/project. If you work in teams, then submit one proposal with your team-member names. Describe as much as possible the areas of responsibilities.

Research Paper and Related Project:
Propose a topic to study in depth. You may investigate any area within the scope of computer architectures.  Plan ahead so you can select a topic in conjunction with your project implementation. This will allow you to study a topic, propose a related experiment and design, implement and analyze your results which will give you and your classmates a more in-depth understanding of your topic of interest. I strongly recommend that you talk to me about your project ideas early. Following are a few suggested topics for you to look into:

Project (Related to your Research Topic):
Propose a project related to your research topic that you will implement. You may choose to simulate an architectural feature, model a system, compare different strategies on the same or different machines, measure performance of different implementations, develop a set of bench marks, study system affects of specific architecture on performance such as caching, paging, latency, simulate execution pipelines, simulate arithmetic pipelines, etc.

A report in your own wording on the final project is needed.  I would need an electronic copy of your completed report including motivation, background, complete description,  flowcharts, copy of the program, test data sets, and instructions for running the program. The report must include proof of correctness and a demonstration of the working of your project. It is important to be able to explain your methods, findings, comparisons, analysis of your results and your learning experience. An adequate list of references should be included with each project. Keep all formats simple, use MS Word for you documentation. The electronic form may be via Dropbox folder that you can invite me to share and download your completed report or a flash drive.

Computer Equipments:

We will organize and schedule the presentations by topics. Be sure to present proof of correctness and a demonstration of the working of your project. It is important to be able to explain and anlyze your results for the class.

Use the seminar preparation guide (included in this hand out) to help prepare your presentation.

Seminar Preparation Guide

While preparing for your presentation, keep the following questions in mind. These are provided to give guidance for your presentation effectiveness. After you are prepared, grade yourself with a number between 0-10 on each question and give an overall letter grade (A-F) on each of the 3 areas.

I. Communication [Letter Grade =}

 1. Is the “problem” defined clearly?
 2. Are explanations clear?
 3. Is it clear how the system was developed?
             (i.e.: Language, Architecture, Commercial Software, Algorithms,....)
 4. Is the material well organized? (Both individual and team work)
 5. Effective visual aids?
 6. Creative and interesting?

II. Research
[Letter Grade=]

 1. Good knowledge of the field?
 2. Clear comparison between well known related systems or topics?
 3. Has clearly identified the technical successes, failures, and limitations of their system?
 4. Relates clearly and precisely to Parallel Processing problems?
 5. Specific references to material discussed in class?
 6. Appropriate and accurate use of technical words?

III. Analysis 
  [Letter Grade=]

 1. Problem is well analyzed, bringing out the critical issues?
 2. Use of graphs, charts, statistics, equations, examples, etc.?
 3. Logical structure of the problem is well analyzed?
 4. Distinction made clearly between the use of logic versus the use of probability?

For each presentation complete a review form and submit within a week from each presentation.