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Top 10 Last Fav Subjects to Lecture in


[Top 10 united]
[Top 10 sayings]
[Top 10 no's]
[Top 10 yes's]


I've writen books on Java, but I really would not like to give a lecture on it. What would I say? I much prefer having subjects which have a practical elements and then have a taught part.


While both these languages are useful, especially COBOL, I would really have to question their relavence to today's programming environment.


The WWW has moved fast. A few years ago I was using basic text editors in which I would manually insert HTML tags (such as <B> and <I>), but these days it is all done with a proper design package, such as Macromedia Dreamweaver or Microsoft FrontPage. The actual tags are still important, but it is better to design a proper page, and then look at the tags that it generates.


Assembly Language
I really would struggle with this one, as you must define the aims of why you are teaching the subject. Many times it is taught for the sake of it, which, I think, misses the point, in that what you're actually teaching is the operation of a computer. This allows better debugging and design. Very few programs are now written using Assembly Language, as they tend to be in-line statements. So, possibly a better way to teach it would be to use C++, and then integrate Assembly Lanugage into it. The C++ can handle all the messy stuff, such as character input and output, while the Assembly Language can do the fine tuning.


Professional Studies
While I think that this is totally interesting and relavent, it's not really the sort of think that I really think that you could really get excited about, after-all I'm a technologist, and not a business person (although I've started up a few companies in my time).


Integrated Circuit Design
Well I taught this one for a while, and I think that I eventually made it sound interesting, as we would use a simple IC design package to look at the layout of a chip, and then derive the high-level design from it. This is known as reverse engineering, and can be extremely enjoyable, especially when you finally simulate your high-level design, and it works. It's amazing in education that most of the time is spent on design, and a lot less on reverse engineering. In general though I really wouldn't like to teach this again, as it involves laying out little rectangles of different colours, which represent the different layers of an integrated circuit. Oh, and don't get me started on ASIC. They really are quite boring.


Visual Basic
No one, not even the best lecturer in the World could ever make Visual Basic interesting.


Software Engineering
This is one of the most important subject areas, but it is as dull as dish water to teach. I tried for many years to make it sound interesting, using case studies, but it just never worked.


Microsoft Office
Office tools, such as spreadsheets and word processing, are really important but I wouldn't really like to teach these tools either in a lecture or in a lab.


Design packages
The big problem with any design package is that you spend more time actually teaching students how to use the package that there's very little time left to actually learn the principles of design and simulation.