Student work for "Computing and the laws of physics"
award official Princeton "grades" and "undergraduate credits," since it is
a "seminar" rather than a "course." Therefore, there will be no "pressure." :)
But there will nevertheless be
homework assignments, which I will grade (anyhow: read and comment on);
and interested participants can write a term paper. I would strongly
recommend doing the homeworks since that is going to be a major learning
experience, and also since you'll get near-infinite fame and glory
if you have the best homework solution, since then you'll get to present
that solution in class.
- Homework sets will be due roughly every 2 weeks. The homeworks will
include some very difficult problems as well as some easier ones.
The problems each will be annotated with some estimated difficulty level
(e.g. "points" you get by solving
them). If you cannot solve a problem, try
to take it as far as you can and you'll get partially infinite fame. Students
with the best solutions will present them in class. You are allowed to
consult all manner of books and journals when doing homework, but they
should be properly cited and credited if so. Collaborations on
homework problems will also be permitted, but all such collaborations should
be stated up front ("joint solution by X.Q.Frob and T.Y.Grump").
- There will also be a term paper. About midway through the semester
students will give me short proposals for topics and aims of their
paper. These proposals can include choices for me. I will tell you which of
the choices you gave me are satisfactory proposals... and hopefully offer
some useful advice. In the unlikely
event you can't come up with any proposal that satisfies me, then no
problem, since I'll have a list of proposals of my own you can choose
from. Term papers should have enough of an original component that
they are telling me
something interesting I don't know. Even better, something nobody knew.
(Possibly such term papers could evolve into genuine scientific papers later
- or your PhD thesis, but this is perhaps too optimistic...)