It would appear that the students taking COMP249, “Web Technology,” at Macquarie University in Sydney, Oz, have an assignment which amounts to writing an RSS aggregator, and have been given ongoing’s as a canonical example. I'd bitch if I were them. (Update: COMP249 Students Set New Record!)
When I was in college, a course whose number began with “2” was in second year. Seems to me that writing an RSS aggregator is a pretty severe challenge at that level, and furthermore it's only worth 20% of their final mark.
I don't know who CS429's prof is, but I'd call him/her tough and stingy. Mind you, they seem to program in Python, which we certainly didn't have in my second year of college, and hey, maybe they're just smarter now.
If anyone has any amusing and defamatory material concerning, Sydney, Macquarie, the CS department, or the CS249 prof, send it on in and I'll keep the RSS feed updated through June 13th (the assignment's due date) to amuse the undergrads.
Update, May 31 from ongoing Sydney correspondent Alex Warren:
COMP249 Students set new record · In the COMP249 lecture on Tuesday, 27th May, students set a new record for Macquarie University. A total of eight students were counted as being soundly asleep. We visited the scene of this momentus achievement to get the inside scoop.
IT seems the subdued lighting and serenely monotonic voice of the lecturer provided the ideal environment for student to decisively smash the previous record of four dozers, set by students of GEOS399 "Soils".
An air of tranquil elation was present as students left the lecture theatre. One student had this to say: "I'm really over the moon with this great result. Everyone has worked really hard to achieve this and I really think the numbers speak for themselves."
One of the "magic eight" as they have been dubbed by their classmates, spoke about the experience. "Im not too sure what to think, we certainly weren't expecting this, it seems greatness has been thrust upon us. A few students can always be counted on to put in the effort, today there must've been some magic in the air."
Was this magic the lecture on Voice XML Concepts? No one can be sure. Regardless, students remain optimistic about the future. "With COMP224 (Database Design) next semester, i think we have a great chance to make the double digits."