CPSC 350

Applications of Databases

Congratulations, Demo Dayers!

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Congratulations, everybody, for their hard work this semester which culminated in a set of sensational final projects! And for those who didn’t get theirs working very well, just keep this in mind: the real world is an XP system. You almost never get a “zero” on an assignment that you can’t recover from, and you can always earn more XP! Make it a New Year’s resolution to turn things around for you, work ethic -wise.

On the Demo Day award winners, I decided in a few cases to spread the love from “the top vote getter” to “the top vote getter not named Rachel or Lauren,” so there’s a bonus Christmas goodie on the scoreboard for some folks.

Thanks for the great semester: you’re a special bunch and I’ll never forget you! Good luck on the rest of your finals, and have a great (and safe, and healthy) holiday.

Demo Day links

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Demo Day — morning section
Demo Day — afternoon section

Demo Day Eve: send me your link!

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When you read this message — and no later than midnight tonight — please send me an email with subject line “CPSC 350: Demo Day link,” in the body of which you paste the working link to your website. I promise that neither I nor anyone else besides you will access this link before Demo Day actually starts tomorrow. But I would like the links now just so I can go ahead and organize my website that we will all use to access them.

Also: we will be voting on, and awarding, the following prizes tomorrow:

  • +3XP for the student with the “coolest overall database theme”
  • +3XP for the student with the “coolest MariaDB data set”
  • +3XP for the student with the “coolest Redis data set”
  • +3XP for the student with the “coolest MongoDB data set”
  • +3XP for the student with the “best site aesthetics (i.e., the most pleasing-looking website)”
  • +3XP for the student with the “best integration of various data sets”

There will be a separate group of prizes for each of the two Demo periods (8:30am and 12pm).

See everybody tomorrow!

Join us for Advent of Code 2022! ๐ŸŽ„

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Looking to keep your programming skills sharp over winter break?

๐ŸŽ Join us for 25 days of fun programming challenges during 2022’s Advent of Code!ย 

  • Keep in touch with your peers!
  • Make new friends within the department!
  • Solve daily programming challenges with a cute holiday theme!
  • Compete against other UMW students for bragging rights!
  • Help others!

Starting 12:00am December 1st through Christmas day, a two part programming challenge will drop each day. Solve the day’s easy challenge to earn a silver star. Once you’ve earned your silver star, earn a gold star for that day by solving a harder challenge.

The student who earns the first silver or gold star on a given day will earn the most points, followed by the second student, then third, and so on. If you want to place highest on the scoreboard, you’ll have to solve both parts of each problem before others do!

Students are encouraged to try to solve each problem on their own first. If you get stuck or just want to talk to others about the problem each day, join our Discord server (link below) where you can talk to fellow students who are also taking part in the competition. If you think your solution is really cool and want to share it with others, feel free to!

Interested in participating? Sign up for an Advent of Code account, then join the UMW leaderboard by entering our leaderboard code (1652544-28d712c7) on the leaderboard page. Once you’ve joined the private leaderboard, you’ll be able to see how many stars you’ve earned and compare yourself to your peers!

Please also join our Discord server where we will beย talking about the problems, sharing tips, and posting our solutions each day!

If you have any questions, please reach out to Lauren Knight on Discord.

Quiz #8 posted!

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The last quiz of the year has been posted to Canvas. It’s due midnight the last day of finals week. Good luck!

Stephen’s neo4j query solutions (Star Wars activity)

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Here are my solutions to today’s activity. Also, here’s the code needed to recreate the database yourself if you’re interested.

Possible workaround for unresponsive VM instances

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Lauren shared this link with the class yesterday, which she says helped her with the “VM instance constantly crashing” or “VM instance becomes unresponsive after a while” problems some are experiencing. (This link is about Amazon Lightsail instances, but those are also Linux instances just like Google Cloud has, so these instructions theoretically should have the same effect.)

I have not executed these instructions myself (never had to) so I personally can neither guarantee that they work nor that they won’t do something bad to your system. But Lauren’s a pretty sharp cookie about these things, so I feel comfortable sharing them.

Printer-friendly cheat sheets posted

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I’ve posted printer-friendly versions of the semester’s six “cheat sheets” for your use on Friday, if you wish.

Reminder: Friday’s mini-final is open-printed-notes (and basically open-anything-on-paper) but closed-computer and closed-Websites. So print anything you want! (and recycle)!

Okay, here’s da sitch

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Okay, we’re approaching the end-of-semester runway, and here’s how the plane will land.

  1. Our final exam will be in-class Friday Dec. 2nd, not Monday Dec. 5th as originally scheduled. It will be a (much) shorter final to fit into a 50-minute time block.
  2. If you would like to road-trip with other fans to see UMW Men’s Soccer play Salem in the NCAA Final Four on Thursday Dec 1st, you may do so, and arrange to take the final exam some other day during finals week instead. If you want this option, send me an email with subject line “Demo Day Final Four request” as soon as possible. (Note that this option is only open to students who are traveling to the soccer tournament, not students who want to take the final exam on a later date “just because.”)
  3. The final exam periods on Monday Dec. 5th will be used for Demo Day! As described in class, you’ll have a fast and furious five minutes to show your semester’s website on the big screen, briefly demonstrate its functionality, and give your classmates a chance to take it for a spin.  If you are officially enrolled (in Banner) in the morning section of our class, I will assume you’ll be in time slot 1 (8:30-11am). If you’re in the afternoon section, I’ll assume you’ll be in time slot 2 (12-2:30am). However, if you’d prefer the other time slot for whatever reason, just send me an email with subject line “CPSC 350 Demo Day time slot 1 (or 2) request” before midnight Monday Nov. 28. Note that you do not need to send me this email unless you want a different Demo Day time slot than the default, described above.
  4. Your Demo Day presentation will in fact “be” your “assignment #9” (worth up to +40XP). It won’t include any Neo4j stuff (unless you want to do that; let me know and I can give you pointers as to how). I’ll judge you based on your overall website concept, how interesting and sophisticated your data is, how intuitive and easily laid out the site is to use, and how well you explain your site in your up-to-2-minute talk. (Don’t overstress about the points for this; the bar isn’t super high for any of it.)  On the one hand, I won’t deduct many (if any) points for minor bugs that are apparent when the class uses your site. However, if it’s painfully obvious from the class’s usage that your site is brittle and broken and error-prone, that will lead to a lower score.
  5. Also: Demo Day would normally feature a buffet of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavors, courtesy moi. However, I’m a bit freaked out about the recent Covid numbers rising, and worried about sharing spoons and bowls and space. So I’ve decided not to do it this year. ๐Ÿ™ I’m sorry. I do, however, encourage you to eat as much Ben & Jerry’s ice cream as you can in your lifetime, and to try all their flavors at least twice.
  6. Finally, the last quiz (Quiz #8, mostly on Neo4j) will be due at the end of finals week, midnight, Friday Dec. 9th. (Yes, this is due after you take the final exam, but who cares.)

Okay, I think that’s it! Send questions if I’ve missed anything!

Quiz #7 posted!

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Quiz #7 has been posted to Canvas, and is due November 28th at midnight. It is 45 minutes long, and is open-book, open-notes, closed-Python, and of course closed-other-humans. Good luck!