FAQ

Homework help
I need help with my homework.
Who can I see?
Your first point of contact should be your teaching fellow.
Send an email with your question(s), and you will get a prompt response. You can also visit tutoring hours, at the undergraduate CS lab (EMA 302).
Quizzes
How should I prepare for the quizzes?
The most effective strategy is active recall. Reading the book, notes and examples alone will give you a false sense of familiarity. Instead, you must actively digest the class material, and practice your recall of it in question and answer form.

After each class meeting, review the class notes and examples, and especially points that I spend time elaborating upon. For each of these "main points" -- there are probably about 4-6 of these per class meeting -- you should write out a challenging question about the point, and prepare the answer.

By actively preparing questions that you know you can answer, you will be surprised how many of those show up on the quiz/exam.

Quiz Grades
I think the grader didn't give me correct credit on a quiz question.
or: The points on my quiz were not added up correctly.
What do I do?
You should bring your quiz to your teaching fellow's or instructor's office hours.
Homework Grades
How do I know my homework grades?
Homework grades are available on websubmit.
Log in, and you will see a link for "check my grades."
Homework Grades
How do I get a homework grading error fixed?
Your first point of contact should be your teaching fellow, who is empowered to review and re-grade homeworks.
Send an email which includes your BU username, which homework you are asking about, your question(s), and you will get a response within 3 days. Homework re-grades are NOT an emergency, and we will get to all of them well before the end of the course.
Websubmit
I had a problem with the websubmit today in my Lab section. It would not let me log in to submit today's lab or the homeowork.
If you had an authentication problem (e.g. login screen did not accept username/password), then it is an issue with your university username/id -- and it might get fixed by just closing and restarting the browser.

If the problem was either that you never made it to the authentication screen, or else that you authenticated and then had an error, please let me know more specifically what happened -- maybe by taking a screenshot of it and emailing it to me.

Websubmit
I logged into Websubmit, and tried to upload my file, but it rejected it.
There is a file-size limit for submissions -- 500KB.

The most likely cause of this is that your file is too big, and this generally happens because your screen shots are huge (too high a resolution). Think about the number of pixels... Try editing your screen shot (e.g. in Microsoft Paint or ColorSync Utility on mac) to reduce its quality/number of pixels/size.

Working Remotely
How do I access my Z drive from home?
You can use FTP (file transfer protocol) to access your home directory. You'll need a secure version of FTP to connect to csa.bu.edu or csa2.bu.edu.

On Windows:
I recommend this standalone version http://winscp.net/download/winscp407.exe (if you want multi-language, you'll need the installation version which can be found at http://winscp.net/eng/download.php)

Running winscp is a bit like putty, you enter a host (csa or csa2) and use your account to log in.

  • After you log in, you'll see your local drive on the left, and your home directory on the right.
  • Simply drag the files from right to left if you want to download, or from left to right if you want to upload.

It's also possible to mount your home directory as Z drive on your laptop, but it requires additional setup and I don't know how to do it. If you're interested, please ask the tech people at the computing lab.


On Macintosh:
You should download a program called Fetch, which is a File Transfer Protocol client. Go to the http://fetchsoftworks.com/ website, and "buy" the free academic license.

To connect to the "Z:/" drive, open Fetch and connect to the hostname csa2.bu.edu using the SFTP protocol. After you connect, it looks a lot like a Finder window. You can drag and drop from your desktop/local directory to the remote directory (Z drive) or subdirectories.

Screen Shots
How do I take a screen shot on a Mac?
Try:
command-shift-4 --> this gives you cross-hairs to select an area to copy
command-shift-4, then space --> this will then take a picture of the "current" window.

You can then drag these pictures into a word document.


Created by: Aaron Stevens, azs@bu.edu
http://www.cs.bu.edu/courses/cs108/
Last update: 1 September 2009