Computer Science students need a project- ideas, please?
January 7, 2011 10:44 PM   Subscribe

Got any ideas for a senior design project for Computer Science students?

I'm asking on behalf of a friend, who says thus (paraphrased for the MeFi audience):

"Four of us Computer Science students are doing a Senior Design design class. We need to finish a complete project over 2 quarters. Only problem is the suggested projects seem uninteresting, and we can't think of anything exciting either. The sky is limit when it comes to projects, mobile, web, app, whatever we want we can do.

Please give us some project ideas! Oh and we'll do a combined 4 person tell-all about it when the project is over and done with!

2 have worked lightly in graphics, nothing very advanced, just light work with OpenGL, and know the Qt toolkit.
2 have built a DBMS from near scratch.
1 has work experience in social media.
2 have work experience in QA/QC.
1 studies econ.
1 has a more Comp Eng. background with computer architecture, circuits, etc.
1 is a rare CS girl :O

We've all finished most of our required classes, so we've touched things like OSes, algorithms, various programming languages, computer architecture.

On top of it all we rarely see sunlight... they like to keep us CS students in a dark dingy basement, with no wifi or cell phone reception."
posted by Apocryphon to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Visualize the traversal of a complex graph in real time, then reveal the infographic that the graph provides a framework for. Tie everything in to either the developing world or re-imagining rustbelt industry in a modern world.
posted by b1tr0t at 10:59 PM on January 7, 2011

I'm trying to get one of my CS faculty to pitch this as a senior project to some of his students:

A mobile (iphone/android) app which can be used to navigate the interior of large/multi-floor building complexes such as hospitals, convention centers, shopping malls, etc. Could use QR code stickers at intersections, bluetooth/wifi beacon triangulation, or any other method you can think of for positioning. Routefinding could be done onboard or by calls to a web service.

Alternately, a tool for creating the maps for a mobile app to be written later, and a web site for collaboration on mapping projects.

I'd pay money for either of those.
posted by hades at 1:07 AM on January 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

My suggestion is a little more traditional. Did any or all of the four already take a class in compiler construction? If not, or if the class didn't have a large project, then implementing a compiler or interpreter for a real programming language would be an interesting project you might consider.

The compiler construction class I took as an undergrad was effectively a quarter long solo project to implement a compiler for a subset of the Ada language. They gave us about 30 small Ada programs at the beginning of the quarter, and our grade was based on how many of those programs we could successfully compile and run at the end of the quarter. I found that to be the most rewarding and useful class I took -- it made learning new programming languages after that a snap.

Since there are four of you and the project runs over two quarters, if you went this route needed to tack on some additional scope to the project, you could also implement a debugger, graphics library, or I/O library. If you want to make it a little more topical, your target platform could be Dalvik, the Android Java VM so that you are essentially porting a new language to Android. Wishing your friend good luck, that sounds like it could be a lot of fun.
posted by kovacs at 4:43 AM on January 8, 2011

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