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The project has two options.
(a) Original Research. The first option is to do some original research in computer architecture (e.g., write a simulator and gather some simple numbers) or to re-validate data found in a published paper. This type of project is especially recommended for students considering a Ph.D. You will be graded on how well you define your problem, survey previous work, design and conduct experiments, and present your results. The goal to shoot for is conference paper, like the ones in your reader. Since time is limited, however, the above goal is hard to reach, and I will reward those that aim high even if they do not completely succeed. The key is insuring that some aspects of your work are completely done; it is very hard to grade a project where the simulator did not quite work. This type of project should use groups of three (preferred) or two.
(b) Survey Paper. In the second option, you may work alone to write a paper that surveys an area within computer architecture. The paper should: summarize work in an area, giving extensive references, present opinions of others for and against various options (with references), and conclude with your opinion of the strengths and weaknesses of arguments presented above. You will be graded on the completeness of your survey, the accuracy of your summaries, the support you give for your opinions, and the quality of your presentation. Since a survey paper is "safer" than a research project, I will hold survey papers to a higher standard of completeness and analysis of the literature.
I normally accept no late assignments. For this project, papers turned up to 24 hours hours late will be accepted with a 25% penalty. Don't avail yourself of this option; your hard work deserves full credit.
I strongly recommend that you come by my office hours (a) before finalizing your project proposal and (b) before writing your progress report. My experience can aid you and not re-discovering many past mistakes.
I strongly recommend that you come by my office hours before finalizing your project proposal. My experience can aid you and not re-discovering many past mistakes.
Proposals should be about two pages long. They should include:
Progress Reports should include a revised version of the proposal plus one page describing accomplishments so far. Concentrate on describing sub-tasks completed, rather than the tasks started. For example, say ``completed simulator modification to watch and fake FOO rather than saying ``started simulator modifications.
We will divide up the last few lectures into 20-minute-ish conference-style talks. Depending on class size, some talk may be scheduled at alternative times. All group members should deliver part of the talk. The talk should give highlights of the final report, including the problem, motivation, results, conclusions, and possible future work. Time limits will be enforced to let everyone present. Please, practice your talk to make it better and see how long it is. Have a plan for what slides to skip if you get behind.
Reports should consist of an abstract, body and optional appendices, much like a conference paper. The abstract should summarize the contributions of the report in one or two paragraphs. The length of the body should be the equivalent of 15-20 pages at double-spaced 10-point. Additional supporting material of any length can be put in appendices. I will read the body and only skim appendices. See your reader for examples.
Put final reports in my mailbox or email with subject: [CS/ECE 757] Project Report.
You are encouraged to come up with your own topic. Ideally, the topic will be related to your current research interests.
There can be value in combining your project with other work in one of two ways. First, if you have active research in a related area (e.g, an RA), you can do a deeper project by combining your current (supported) research with your course project. Second, it is also possible to do a single multi-disciplinary project to satisfy multiple courses (e.g., CS736). However, this must be coordinated with the other instructor(s) and you will be expected to do two (or more) projects worth of work. In all such cases, it is imperative that such overlaps be disclosed at the proposal stage so that we can address the scope of research that will be required.
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