We are learning in this course how computers talk to each other. At present there must always be a set of rules (protocol or formatting rules) that govern the data sent so that a protocol layer or application can understand the messages it receives. In a protocol PDU every bit has to be correct and in exactly the right order. The homework submission protocol is far more "free form", but it is still far from accepting as wide a range of formatting as a human being.
Copy the HW Problems document from the Web Page, or save it from your email program, as a "text" file.
Do not "Save as Source" from a Web Browser if you can avoid it (you get a lot of HTML commands, like <Title>). Instead use "Save as Text", which is available in most browsers and works well.
Edit it in a word processor to add the answers into the square brackets after each question. Use a non-proportional type font in your word processor (Courier or Monaco) to make things line up.
Save it as a "text" file, and email it back to me: (firstname.lastname@example.org) before time and day it is due. Email the completed document as the body of a message (not as an attached document) with the Subject simply "HW-n", where "n: is the appropriate number. Including quotes or extra spaces will prevent your homework submission from being automatically graded. There is a 20% grade reduction if I have to hand edit your homework submission.
Please send questions or comments in a separate message. Twenty per cent of the grade is based on successfully using the network (including using the exact Subject stated above). I will not accept paper returns. If you can not complete the assignment on time, tell me why and turn it in as soon as possible for partial credit. Remember, home work grades count as 10% of the final grade.
Numerical answers must be in a normal decimal format (e.g., 0.015, 1.5e-2, 1.5%) and must be accurate to within 5%. You may use fractions (1/2 for 0.5 or 50%).
Do not use letter multipliers (e.g., 30k, 80M). All letters after a number are ignored so do not use letter multipliers (e.g., M, m, k, etc.) All spaces and commas are ignored, all letters are converted to lower case (case does not matter).
If the answer is a percentage, the format may be 0.52 or 52% (52 is assumed to mean 5200%). You must include the % or use a decimal fraction if the answer requires a fractional value.
Each problem has the same value (5 problems, 20% each). Each answer in a problem has an equal weight ( 4 answers, 5% each - 2 answers 10% each)).
If a error in the first answer causes following answers to be wrong, all wrong answers are counted off. There will be no recalulation of answers based on previous wrong values, so be careful. This is the way things work in real life. If a bridge collapses, no one cares that the designer did all steps but one correctly.
Please avoid using "HW-x" for the subject on any messages except your homework return. If you do a "Reply" to my message with the problems, your email program prefixes the subject with "Re: ", perhaps without you knowing it. Paste the test into a new message. Do not send your answers as an attachment.
Some people send several returns. I delete all but the latest message submitted before the deadline with the subject "HW-x".
Please do not be tempted to submit a copy of someone else's work. The grading program computes correlations and identifies returns that are highly similar.
In order to parse your submission, certain unique "flags" must be in place in the submission. Do not delete or duplicate these flags, which are shown below. Do not try to delete superfulous text, it does not hurt anything and if you delete something necessary, like a "[" you will miss every remaining answer in the question.
In the example above, the square backets should contain:
You do have to delete anything from the homework file. I recommend deleting the lines above the line:
--------- (You may delete all above this line) ------------------
but leaving the additional text (questions)
TEXT files have lines that are separated by a Linefeed character (LF, control-J, UNIX), a carriage return (CR, control-M, Macintosh) or by a combination of both (DOS). HTML files (called "source" files by browsers) ignore these control characters and create a new line (or "line break" based on the HTML commands <BR> and <P>.
The AWK program that grades your homework depends on the characteristics of a TEXT file to parse the questions and answers. Question 5 must begin with "#5. " at the beginning of a line as defined by a CR, LF , or both (a "> " added at the beginning when you "reply" to email is accepted). The answers and the surrounding square brackets must be on a single line (no embedded LF's or CR's).
The most recent Web Browsers will let you edit HTML files (like the "hw3.html" on the Web and then email the edited HTML file. My email program Eudora 3.01 will display an HTML file properly, so I can tell at that point whether the file you sent was a TEXT file or an HTML file, but the HTML files may not be graded, or may be given a low grade because questions and answers are not recognized.
Even if you are going to simply Copy and Paste into your email program, saving first as the right type of file may prevent carrying unwanted formatting information unseen into your email document.
The Professor or Teaching Assistants will not manually edit the homework grading files because a student did not follow the above instuctions. For example, manual intervention will not be done for:
The Professor or Teaching Assistants will rerun the grading program if any of the key answers are wrong, or if there are additional valid answers to a question. Late submissions will be grading, but the score used for final-grade calculation will be lower than the grade produced by the program.