Welcome to our online newsletter

in which we share news and views about our exciting Computing work. If you have any comments on articles you read here, we'd love to hear from you atnews@cambridgegcsecomputing.org

The arrival of the MOOC...

From demo to live
Back to school: What content's available when?

Industry insight

A byte of Raspberry Pi

From demo to live

The official launch of Cambridge GCSE Computing Online as a MOOC will be on 30th September. Along with brand new videos and resources, you'll be able to log in and review your progress to keep track of your learning. We're also excited to be creating a forum where you'll be able post your questions to our computing experts.

We've been working with some outstanding teachers to get the scripts for the videos written and filmed, as well as having the surrounding resource developed. One of the teachers we've put under the spotlight is Julie Hodgson (below), who's been teaching for seven years and is currently a curriculum leader for ICT and Computing in a secondary school in London. Julie has also run several training sessions across the country for OCR

Back to school: What content's available when?

The videos will be made available in three phases. Here are some details to help with your planning:

Date Number of new videos Sample of topics
September 2013 30–40 -Logic gates AND, OR, NOT
-Truth tables
-High-level code and machine code
-Sequence in an algorithm
December 2013 40–50 -The need for virtual memory
-Cache memory
-The importance of HTML
-The relationship between tables and entities
April 2014 40 -Merits of different types of software
-Network policies
-Practical investigation
-Testing solutions

One thing we're really keen to promote to learners is the variety of roles in the computing industry. We're engaging with some inspirational people in the computing industry and getting an insight into their roles. You can check out the rest of this Q&A conversation online using the link below.

Vivienne Sung is a product owner for the Marks & Spencer Digital Lab. One of her previous roles was as a games product manager/producer for Electronic Arts making free-to-play social games like The Sims Social. We asked her more about what she enjoys about working in this field.

Q: Vivienne, what's the most rewarding part of your job?

"Putting something out in public and then seeing it have an impact on the business almost immediately. The immediacy of the digital world (and how measurable things are) is a really important part of why I love it!"

You can find the full Q&A here

www.cambridgegcsecomputing.org/inspiration

We fired 8-bits at Eben Upton, Executive Director at Raspberry Pi. Here's what he said …

1. What inspired you to start programming?

I had a friend – acquaintance maybe :) – at school who could do a very small bit of programming, of the form

10 PRINT "What is your name"
20 INPUT N$
30 PRINT "Hello ", N$
and I really wanted to be better than him at it. I started typing in listings for games out of Usborne books, and went from there.

2. What's the weirdest thing you have seen someone create with a Raspberry Pi?

Either Dave Akerman with his 39km altitude bear drop (hot off the presses – see www.youtube.com/watch?v=I41ooQQ_RIw) or the BrewPi guys with their toolkit for controlling a brewery with the Pi and an Arduino.

3. What's been your best experience since the start of Raspberry Pi?

Seeing the emails from parents whose (often very, very young) children have started using the Pi.

4. What's been your worst experience since the start of Raspberry Pi?

All those months at the start of the project where we didn't have enough supply and thought that people might get bored and wander off before we got units out to them.

5. What's your favourite computer game?

Hmm. Right now definitely Kerbal Space Program – a space program simulator where you get to build rockets and launch tiny cartoon dudes to the moon.

6. If you could meet anyone in the world dead or alive, who would it be and what would you say to them?

Douglas Adams. One of the annoying things about Pi is that I might have been able to wangle an opportunity to meet him if he was still alive (he was famously keen on tech). I'd just like to tell him how much I enjoyed his novels.

7. If you were a biscuit, what type would you be?

Hard to separate this question in my mind from my great love of pink wafer biscuits. On balance I think I'd be the sort of savoury Parmesan biscuits that my wife makes from time to time.

8. Will there be a new model of the Raspberry Pi soon?

We don't talk about unannounced products ;) We've said that we're going to do a minor revision of the board to reduce our power consumption but mostly we're focused on delivering better software and teaching material for the existing device.