Entries with tag us education.

IBM Watson Goes to School

Computer science students attending seven US universities will be able to work with IBM's Watson cognitive-computing system in classes starting this fall. The participants, primarily seniors and graduate students, will access the supercomputer via the cloud and use it to develop cognitive computing applications, which could include an application for consumer shopping personalization, for one of several possible industries, such as retail, travel or healthcare. These cognitive-computing applications will be built on data students gather, which they will then use with Watson’s existing knowledge base and its learning technologies, such as natural language processing and machine learning. This program is part of IBM’s $1 billion investment in expanding Watson’s profile. Participating schools will include New York University; the University of Michigan; Carnegie Mellon University; Ohio State University; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; the University of Texas at Austin; and the University of California, Berkeley. (The Associated Press)(IBM)

Evaluation Shows US College Computer-Science Enrollment Rising

Enrollment in US college computer science programs now appears to be increasing, according to preliminary findings by the Computing Research Association. The organization publishes an annual report on college computer science enrollment and graduation and released early findings, showing a 22 percent increase in bachelor’s degree enrollment from 49,564 students in 2011-2012 to 60,453 in 2012-2013. The organization also reports that from 2012 to 2013, the number of doctoral degrees in computer science increased by 6.8 percent, although enrollment in PhD programs was down 1.2 percent. In the US, universities awarded 1,991 computer-science doctoral degrees, the highest number ever reported. The full 2013 Taulbee Report is scheduled for publication in the May 2014 issue of Computing Research News, which the organization publishes. (SD Times)(Computing Research Association)

Tech Giants Pledge US$9 Million for School Broadband Access

Digital learning is increasingly the norm in classrooms across the US; however, many schools do not have the backbone capability that would allow classrooms to have sufficient data transmission or bandwidth. Foundations started by Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates contributed a combined $9 million to the nonprofit EducationSuperHighway, a San Francisco-based nonprofit designed to address connectivity issues. The US government has a goal of ensuring 99 percent of students have high-speed Internet connections within five years. Now, about 80 percent of schools in the US have connections that are too slow or are isolated with connections prone to crashing. It costs between $30,000 to $50,000 per school to install broadband, with additional costs associated with installing fiber optics into the school. What’s driving the push? Lower cost of tablet computers and increased funding for digital learning, plus the advent of computer-based testing to meet Common Core academic standards. Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, told the Associated Press the challenges run much deeper than having broadband access. Roughly half of American children live in poverty and many students don't have technology at home. (The Associated Press)(Tech Crunch)

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