C S C I 8 3 1 4
- Projects are due on Monday May 6th at 6:00pm
You can bring projects to the last class or drop them in my office
before the deadline set above. [Penatlies for late
Information and suggested projects
- This will be revised/expanded later with additional suggestions and references
What to submit
- You will need to submit a paper copy of your report. The paper
will include sections such as (1) motivation; (2) methods used,
relation to specific linear algebra problems seen in class;
(3) experiments; and (4) optionally short computer codes.
Page limit: no more than 12 pages.
[Note~: this is not a hard limit - but try your best not to exceed it.
Longer papers are not necessarily better]
- It is not essential (and not recommended) to include
comprehensive (long) computer codes. The page length is not a criterion
for grading (level completeness is important but length by itself
is not -- see grading criteria below).
Short matlab/octave scripts to show illustrations are OK.
- There is no specific format required as the projects vary a lot
in their type and objectives (applications-oriented, survey,
new algorithms; ...)
- The first criterion used is originality and overall intrinsic
quality of the technical contents of the report.
This boils down to the questions I ask myself after reading the
report ``Is this an interesting report which can make it into a viable
publication after some work''? ``Did I learn something in reading it?"
``Did the student show originality in his writing or did s/he just rush to
put something together just to get some work done?"
- Clarity and overall presentation is the second criterion.
It is absolutely essential that your report be geared to
non-specialists Any symbol used must be defined. Any equation
must be explained. A big turn off is when someone just puts equations
from a paper and states the equations are ....
If I do not understand the paper it will get a low grade.
I highly recommend that you find a partner with whom you can exchange
proof-reading of the reports [The partner will proof-read your report
and you will proof-read his/hers. I will discuss this after
the Spring break].
- The 3rd criterion I use for grading is based on the level of effort
that seems to have been put toward the report. If you write a one-page
report and think it is brilliant you will have to convince me in that one
page that the content is indeed brilliant. If you write a 30 page report
but clearly the effort to produce the report is minimal, it can be guessed
and this will lower your grade. Remember that I expect the effort of
project to correspond roughly to double the effort of a single-student
- The 4th and final criterion is relevance to the material
taught in the course. It is not sufficient to say ``In the application
I am dealing with, we need to solve a Riccatti equation. It is an important
problem in control..." You will need to tie this to, e.g.,
other matrix equations and the QR and other factorizations,
- In the past many reports received a good grade and virtually all
received a grade exceeding 70%. I assign a specific grade for each of the
above criteria and then add them. All 4 measures list above are
equally weighted. So you can have a perfectly written and presented
(25 points for second criterion)
paper but if it not too relevant and not too original you may get a low grade.
How to get a good grade
The reports that obtain the best grades have one or more of the following
- They illustrate some interesting behavior of known methods -- e.g.,
NMF and SVD for real life examples
- They show how some original method learned from the class has been
deployed and successfully tested on a real research problem
- They present something to the reader that will provide a nice view
of a given topic.. Here the originality is putting together a viewpoint,
or a pedagogically well-crafted document.
- They implement something nontrivial from scratch and show real interest
in the method developed --
How to get a poor grade
- Present poorly. If it takes me a long time to grade a report
because I do not understand it, it will get a low score in
``presentation'' and possibly the other areas.
- Just discuss your own specialized research problem without
much effort in adapting it to the need of the class.. There is a
tendency to do a minimum if you have a paper ready (example:
on something like target tracking and estimation) to just make minimal
changes and give this as a term project report. Often this will get a low
grade: Effort and originilaty will get a low score.
- Present a poor survey of a topic.. If you write a survey, it has
to be reasonably exhaustive. Do a literature survey, present methods,
compare pros and cons (according to what you read), ...