Design Accomplishments

I selected three very unique design experiences as my biggest design accomplishments. They are unique in that they provide three different perspectives.

The first design is a program that visual depicts of binary search during execution. I mainly chose this to showcase my strong program design principles. I consider myself average in everything except programming where I would humbly submit that I am at least above average. I was first exposed to Computer Science in grade 11 in an introductory course. I became stimulated after I struggled through printing ‘Hello, world’ and I remember absolute thrill and excitement the first time I accepted input from a user. I read ahead in the textbook and quickly finished the curriculum (not as amazing as it sounds – at least in Ontario).
I turned to a online course a friend recommended called cs106a ‘Introduction to Computer Science: Programming Methodology’ taught by Dr. Mehran Sahami of Stanford University. I consider this to be my first real computer science course and Professor Sahami to be my first University Professor. I watched all the lectures and did all the assignments (excluding the section assignments). It is in this course that I attained a fundamental knowledge of object-orientated programming and how to program well. In particular I adopted the ‘top-down’ design philosophy (I discuss this in the actual post). The course is amazing and the Professor is even better and I strongly recommend any engsci or young student to take the course even if you are currently doing CS180 or another computer science course. I had the luxury of doing both and I cannot even begin to explain how much better cs106a exactly is. Take my word for it.

The second design I chose is a 3D RGB LED Matrix/Cube. The LED matrix was a complete disaster and it is everything contra to ‘good design,’ but that does not mean it is worthless. Many of my biggest design accomplishments were in fact design failures because I learn the most by doing things wrong than I do by doing them right. What Praxis did for me was give me the ability to reflect. In the section discussing the Matrix I will relate my current design process to what I did when I built the cube, why deviating from the process made the cube worse, and how it could have been improved if I had my design process then.

Finally, the last design I chose is the Praxis Concept Design. The Praxis Concept Design project embodies everything I have learned in Praxis about good design and the design process. I will discuss how the design process helped in conceiving designs, expanding and iterating on designs, narrowing to a design and furthering and refining that design.


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