Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Education Awards on Google App Engine

Last year we invited proposals for innovative projects built on Google’s infrastructure. Today we are pleased to announce the 11 recipients of a Google App Engine Education Award. Professors and their students are using the award in cloud computing courses to study databases, distributed systems, web mashups and to build educational applications. Each selected project received $1000 in Google App Engine credits.

Awarding computational resources to classroom projects is always gratifying. It is impressive to see the creative ideas students and educators bring to these programs.

Below is a brief introduction to each project. Congratulations to the recipients!

John David N. Dionisio, Loyola Marymount University
Project description: The objective of this undergraduate database systems course is for students to implement one database application in two technology stacks, a traditional relational database and on Google App Engine. Students are asked to study both models and provide concrete comparison points.

Xiaohui (Helen) Gu, North Carolina State University
The goal of the project is to allow the students to learn distributed system concepts by developing real distributed system management systems and testing them on real world cloud computing infrastructures such as Google App Engine.

Shriram Krishnamurthi, Brown University
Project description:  WeScheme is a programming environment that runs in the Web browser and supports interactive development. WeScheme uses App Engine to handle user accounts, serverside compilation, and file management.

Feifei Li, University of Utah
Project description: A graduate-level course that will be offered in Fall 2013 on the design and implementation of large data management system kernels.  The objective is to integrate features from a relational database engine with some of the new features from NoSQL systems to enable efficient and scalable data management over a cluster of commodity machines.

Mark Liffiton, Illinois Wesleyan University
Project description: TeacherTap is a free, simple classroom-response system built on Google App Engine. It lets students give instant, anonymous feedback to teachers about a lecture or discussion from any computer or mobile device with a web browser, facilitating more adaptive class sessions.

Eni Mustafaraj, Wellesley College
Project description: Topics in Computer Science: Web Mashups. A CS2 course that combines Google App Engine and MIT App Inventor. Students will learn to build apps with App Inventor to collect data about their life on campus. They will use Google App Engine to build web services and apps to host the data and remix it to create web mashups. Offered in the 2013 Spring semester.

Manish Parashar, Rutgers University
Project description: Cloud Computing for Scientific Applications -- Autonomic Cloud Computing teaches students how a hybrid HPC/Grid + Cloud cyber infrastructure can be effectively used to support real-world science and engineering applications. The goal of our efforts is to explore application formulations, Cloud and hybrid HPC/Grid + Cloud infrastructure usage modes that are meaningful for various classes of science and engineering application workflows.

Orit Shaer, Wellesley College
Project description: GreenTouch
GreenTouch is a collaborative environment that enables novice users to engage in authentic scientific inquiry. It consists of a mobile user interface for capturing data in the field, a web application for data curation in the cloud, and a tabletop user interface for exploratory analysis of heterogeneous data.

Elliot Soloway, University of Michigan
Project description: WeLearn Mobile Platform: Making Mobile Devices Effective Tools for K-12. The platform makes mobile devices (Android, iOS, WP8) effective, essential tools for all-the-time, everywhere learning.  WeLearn’s suite of productivity and communication apps enable learners to work collaboratively; WeLearn’s portal, hosted on Google App Engine, enables teachers to send assignments, review, and grade student artifacts. WeLearn is available to educators at no charge.

Jonathan White, Harding University
Project description: Teaching Cloud Computing in an Introduction to Engineering class for freshmen.  We explore how well-designed systems are built to withstand unpredictable stresses, whether that system is a building, a piece of software or even the human body.  The grant from Google is allowing us to add an overview of cloud computing as a platform that is robust under diverse loads.

Dr. Jiaofei Zhong, University of Central Missouri
Project description: By building an online Course Management System, students will be able to work on their team projects in the cloud.  The system allows instructors and students to manage the course materials, including course syllabus, slides, assignments and tests in the cloud; the tool can be shared with educational institutions worldwide.

-Posted by Andrea Held, Google University Relations

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