Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Mid-term postponed to Tuesday (In-class); Thursday will be mandatory discussion (+rationale for the decision)

I have decided to postpone the mid-term exam to next Tuesday 10/21. It will be held in class.

On Thursday, 10/16, we will continue your discussion of the google paper. If the discussion runs dry, I will start the
next topic (on clustering).

In addition to the google paper you already read, I highly encourage you to read the following two documents too (both are optional readings
in the "overall search engine" topic)



Here is the rationale for the decision--in the order of importance--if you care:

1. Garrett said he will have the homeworks graded by Thursday. Since some of you wanted graded homeworks in hand, it makes sense to
have the exam after thursday.

2. It would make sense to complete the discussion of the google paper now, before you forget what you read, than next Tuesday. Also, the discussion might also
serve as a review of sorts for most of the topics we have done until now (and thus may help in your exam preparation).

3.  Of the three people who expressed a preference against shift of the exam to Tuesday, two have since changed their mind. One of them did make travel plans 
that would have taken them out of town on Tuesday. I have offered them a make-up exam (it is a wash for me since I had to give a make-up for another person who
would have missed exam if it was on Thursday..)




100. Having thrice as much time to prepare the exam will help me make it a third as easy.


1000. It seems the honorable thing to do is to "suspend" the exam so all of you will have a chance to hear the final Obama-McCain debate tomorrow and see the two
gentlemen viciously tear each other down  (so Ralph Nader will get elected and everyone gets a free membership in CostCo.).


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