Thank you all for submitting some great questions to my recent post!
First in line is S.Erisson asking:
How can I suggest that Arduinos be introduced into my university computer science curriculum?
Through my teaching I have discovered that one of the most beneficial ways to reinforce your curriculum is through application. I remember in my CS courses at VT we got to do fun and exciting things like sorting football stats…well not so much fun. It wasn’t until after I graduated and needed to teach 600+ high school freshman how to program, that I found the magic in programming micro controllers.
Working with a micro controller, in my opinion, is the perfect method for investigating the fundamentals of programming, and can be done with most programming languages. Arduino happens to be a really elegant solution.
I would suggest to your cohorts that using a platform such as Arduino, which is based on C/C++, can serve as the perfect opportunity to inspire future CEs and EEs through the “real world” interface between software and hardware. In addition to the use of the bountiful shields, mundane coding tasks, such as sorting football stats, could have been replaced with something fun like GPS parsing!
If the professors are opposed to the idea, you might want to suggest working with Processing, which the Arduino IDE is based on. It is a great piece of software that, like Arduino, was “developed to serve as a software sketchbook and to teach fundamentals of computer programming within a visual context.”
I hope this answers your question!
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