It's easy to get lost in a class of so many students, and it's easy for the course staff to lose track of motivated and outstanding students. We've instituted two ways of finding and getting to know some of these students: the project contest and A+ letter-and-lunch.
This applies to Project 1 only. We will select the four best projects as contest winners. Admittedly the decision of which projects are "best" is by nature subjective, but we will do our best to select the projects that we believe are the most interesting, novel, challenging, and robust. The benefits of winning are:
Students earning an A+ in the course will receive a personal letter of congratulations from the instructor, along with an invitation to enjoy lunch with the instructor and the other A+ students at the Columbia Faculty House. The A+ students will also be top candidates for cs4111 IA positions in subsequent offerings of the course.