Wednesday, April 15, 2009

M366: An update

It has been sometime since my last entry so I thought I would give an update on how my M366 studies are going.

  • Block 1 and 2 have been completed;
  • TMA 01 was submitted yesterday (13.Apr.09);
  • Attended 4 tutorials (1 official one at Croydon College and 3 region 1 tutorials at the University of Westminster).

4 tutorials might seem a bit excessive but I have found them (except for 1) to be of great benefit, and for this course any additional help is certainly needed.

TMA 01 has been a nightmare.  I have probably spent double the amount of time of this TMA than I have previously spent on any other level 3 TMA.  One of the major problems was that a number of the questions required us to document our understanding of a particular subject but with a set word count.  For me this proved very time consuming especially when trying to fit an answer in to say 150 words without plagiarising the course text.

AI is a subject that has interested me for a long time, and the course material is both extensive and interesting, but the course text itself is dire.  The authors of the course have tried to cram to a broad range materials into a limited space, with some subjects only being briefly covered.  For example Block 2 has a section about logic and “rules of inference”, yet without having previously studied these subjects in M263 I wouldn’t have stood a hope in hell of understanding them from the course text alone.  This is not being an isolated example.  Block 2 also covers “developing good heuristics” in a page and a half, yet the subject was a major part of TMA 01 question 4.  And don’t talk to me about “alpha-beta pruning”, without a flash based app developed by one of last years student’s I would not have stood a chance of fully understanding this particular concept.

At present my opinion of this course is DON’T DO IT, unless AI really does interest you and then make it your very last course.

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