Welcome
• Course
– Foundations of Constraint Processing, CSCE 421/821
• Instructor
– Berthe Y. Choueiry (Shu-we-ri), [email protected],
– Office: AVH 360
– Tel: +1(402)472-5444
• GTA
– Shant Karakashian. Office 123D
– Office hours: TBA
• List of names
– Please check your name, email address, and program of study
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
Jan 12, 2009
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Pre-requisites
• Pre-requisites
– CSCE 235 (CSCE 310, 476/876 relaxed)
– If you have any concerns, contact instructor
• Track
– uGrad CS: Foundations, AI
– Grad CS students: theory track
• 3 credit-hours
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
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Meetings
• Regular class
– Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 12:30—1:30
– Friday, March 13, instructor not available
• Recitation
– Wednesday 5:00—5:50 p.m.
– Discuss homework, take quizzes, discuss projects
• Lectures will be given
– By instructor
– By visitors
• Professor Rina Dechter, on April 2nd (1st or 3rd?)
• Dr. Ben Thengval from Optec Systems Omaha, TBD
– Occasionally, presentations by students
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
Jan 12, 2009
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Help
• Office hours
– Instructor: Monday, Wednesday 1:30 p.m.—2:30 p.m.
• Q&A: Send your questions
– Email to [email protected] (will be set up soon)
– Ask your questions during Wednesday’s make-up class
• Share: your ideas and good pointers with class
– Send email to [email protected]
– Message will be broadcast to the entire class (use
sparinglyl!)
– Good pointers will be listed on the web under “Your catch”
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
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Expectations I
• Mastery of pre-requisite's material
• Effort outside classroom
– 9 hours of work outside classroom, if you have prerequisites
– If you spend more time, let me know
• Attendance
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Sign-up sheet circulated for attendance
Attendance of lectures and recitation is mandatory
Absence: maximum 6 sessions (including recitation)
Prior notification (email) for absence is mandatory
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Expectations 2
• Collaboration policy
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Feel free to discuss it with others
But do it on your own
Always acknowledge sources & help received
Wiki page is set up for exchanging information
• Prompt response to notifications
– Sent to your email address at CSE (you must have
one)
– Posted on web: cse.unl.edu/~choueiry/S09-421-821/
• If you drop the class, let me know ASAP
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Grading
• Pretest: 3%
• Quizzes: 37%, cannot not be made up
• Assignments: 25%
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Programming and pen+paper
Turned-in on due date, before lecture
Delay penality: 20% per day, starting first minute after deadline
You may use any programming language acceptable to GTA
• Project: 35%
– Individual (preferred) or in small teams (if really necessary)
• ( mid-term)  (  final)
• Feedback:
– Glossaries and HWK will be rotated for grading, supervised by
instructor
– Grades will be posted on Blackboard
– Need more feedback? Please, let us know how
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Jan 12, 2009
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Projects
• A list of possible projects is forthcoming, will include
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Search competition for solving the GTA assignment problem
Implement and evaluate an algorithm
Model and solve a (simple) practical problem
Investigate an advanced theoretical concept
Conduct a critical literature survey (at least 3 papers), etc.
• Alternatives
– Propose your own project and discuss it with instructor
• At the end of project, you must submit with handin:
– Project report: <lastname>-report.ext
– Slides: <lastname>-defense.ext
– Code: <lastname>-code.tar
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Jan 12, 2009
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Improving your grades*
• Do the glossaries: weekly & final (8% total)
– Must be typewritten, and alphabetically sorted
– Goal: entice you to do required reading
• Collect bonus points
– 100% attendance,
– Find bugs in slides, in lectures,
– Be vocal in class, solve “riddles”, etc.
• Do extra work
– Present a research paper (10% per presentation)
– Write a critical summary of a research paper (5% per
summary)
– Write a chapter of a “textbook” (20% total)
* Restrictions apply
(deadlines, max number per student)
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
Jan 12, 2009
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Important dates
Regularly check schedule on the web (3 times/week)
• Friday, Feb 27
– Project must be chosen, use handin
• Friday, Mar 27
– Progress report on projects due, use handin
• Friday, Apr 10
– First deadline for extra-credit work: 1 presentation, 2
summaries, 1 chapter write-up must be done by this date
• Friday, Apr 24
– Final glossary due
– Project reports due in print and using handin
– Second deadline for extra-credit work: All paper
presentations (Max 2), summaries (Max 4), chapter write-up
(Max 2) must be done by this date.
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Important Dates (cont.)
Regularly check schedule on the web (3 times/week)
• Mon/Wed/Fri, Apr 20/22/24
– Quizzes may be given during class or recitation
• Fri, April 25
– Deadline for final glossary, in print and using handin
– Project reports are due, in print and using handin
• Mon/Wed/Fri, Apr 27/29/ May 1 (dead week)
– Project presentations
– Some presentations could be scheduled in evenings if necessary
• Fri, May 1 (midnight)
– Projects code & defense slides (when applicable) due, use handin
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Jan 12, 2009
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Course material
• Content of the course
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Introduction: definition and practical examples
Foundations and basic mechanisms
Advanced solving techniques
Extensions to the problem definition
Alternative approaches to solving the problem
• Course support
– New textbook by Dechter (available at bookstore). Will not be
followed linearly, but should be used for reference.
– Book by Tsang (on reserve at LL, available on-line, out of print)
– Papers from: WWW, course web-page, library, electronic reserves,
instructor, http://citeseer.ist.psu.edu/, etc.
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Jan 12, 2009
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More resources
• Web
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Check links: www.cse.unl.edu/~choueiry/S09-421-821/
Benchmark problems: www.csplib.org
eLists: [email protected], comp.constraints
CP Online: http://slash.math.unipd.it/cp
• Conferences
– CP, AIOR, IJCAI, ECAI, NCAI (AAAI), FLAIRS...
– Workshops in parallel to conferences
• Journals:
– Constraints, AIJ, JACM, Annals of AI+Math, etc.
Foundations of Constraint Processing, Spring 2009
Jan 12, 2009
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Your future: Jobs!!
• Commercial companies: Ilog, i2 Technologies, Trilogy,
PeopleSoft/Red Pepper, Carmen Systems (Sweden), etc.
• Prestigious research centers: NASA Ames, Microsoft
Research (Cambridget), PARC, JPL, SRI International, BT Labs
(UK), Ilog (IBM?), etc.
• Start your own: Selectica, Seibel, Parc Technologies Ltd, In
Time Systems Inc, Blue Pumpkin, etc.
• Academic:
– Constraint languages
– Modeling, constraint representation, reasoning & propagation
mechanisms
– Dedicated reasoning: diagnosis, planning & scheduling, design,
configuration, Case-Based Reasoning, etc.
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Jan 12, 2009
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