1st Edition

Computers and Society Computing for Good

By Lisa C. Kaczmarczyk Copyright 2011
    305 Pages 16 Color & 71 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    316 Pages
    by CRC Press

    Since computer scientists make decisions every day that have societal context and influence, an understanding of society and computing together should be integrated into computer science education. Showing students what they can do with their computing degree, Computers and Society: Computing for Good uses concrete examples and case studies to highlight the positive work of real computing professionals and organizations from around the world.

    Each chapter profiles a corporation, nonprofit organization, or entrepreneur involved in computing-centric activities that clearly benefit society or the environment, including cultural adaptation in a developing country, cutting-edge medicine and healthcare, educational innovation, endangered species work, and help for overseas voters. The coverage of computing topics spans from social networking to high-performance computing. The diversity of people and activities in these profiles gives students a broad vision of what they can accomplish after graduation.

    Pedagogical Features
    Encouraging students to engage actively and critically with the material, the book offers a wealth of pedagogical sections at the end of each chapter. Questions of varying difficulty ask students to apply the material to themselves or their surroundings and to think critically about the material from the perspective of a future computing professional. The text also gives instructors the option to incorporate individual projects, team projects, short projects, and semester-long projects. Other resources for instructors and students are available at www.computers-and-society.com

    Visit the author’s blog at http://computing4society.blogspot.com

    Poverty Alleviation in the Remote Peruvian Andes
    Systemic poverty and health problems in the villages
    A software engineering project as a response to poverty
    The many challenges of requirements gathering in the Andes
    How was trust established and the requirements gathered?
    Organizing and itemizing final requirements
    Confirming the accuracy of the requirements with all stakeholders
    Non-traditional specification development in the Andes
    Specifications: social, cultural, technical implementation intertwined
    Requirements that led to customization
    Rapid results and concrete outcomes
    Problems and challenges
    Testimonials about the poverty alleviation project
    Lives changed: reports and assessment
    Future and global effects of the Andean project

    Improving Patient Care with Digital Image Management
    Developmental challenges for premies
    Problems for patients when digital images are not effectively managed
    The primary technical reason for the human problems — single vendor systems
    A typical single vendor PACS system architecture
    Initial analysis of CHOP’s single vendor system problem
    The solution is clear if you know your computing history
    What is a vendor-neutral archive?
    Chris Tomlinson advocates for a vendor-neutral archive
    Data input to the vendor-neutral archive
    Retrieving data from the vendor-neutral archive
    Data storage redundancy and a design to respond to system failure
    The project timeline and challenges
    Implementation: Initiation and design
    Implementation: VNA implementation
    Implementation: Migration and go-live
    The changes as viewed by stakeholders
    The current system status and plans for the future

    Internet Voting for Overseas Citizens
    Voting: A right guaranteed by the United States Constitution
    Disenfranchisement in the United States
    Outdated ideas and technologies?
    Internet voting: Why not?
    Security and privacy: Critical technical challenges for Internet voting
    Complexity and performance: Top-down and bottom-up challenges
    Political challenges
    Initial efforts to aid overseas voters
    Prototype Internet voting
    Strategy changes: Operation BRAVO foundation and Okaloosa project
    Design and architecture of Okaloosa voting project
    Special technical considerations
    Successful outcomes of human and technical measures
    Keeping pace with Internet voting progress
    Final thoughts

    Social Networking and Computer Modeling Aid Sea Turtles
    Limited resources and a seemingly limitless mission
    The challenge of gathering data and digesting it
    Computer assisted modeling supports informed decision making
    Tracking turtles by satellite to learn how they behave
    Getting the word out
    Social networking technology changes "business as usual"
    Developing effective web pages comes first
    Why STC websites are successful
    A blog on the scene
    Who could ignore Facebook?
    Twitter — A work in progress
    The overall impact of social networking on the cause of sea turtle protection
    What next? Challenges and new initiatives

    Best Practice Recommendations in Children’s Medical Care
    Data is needed for pediatric best practice recommendations
    The Children’s Hospitals neonatal consortium is formed
    The Child Health Care Corporation of America partners with the CHNC
    The CHCA development team
    Design and implementation strategy of the neonatal database
    Who are the CHND users?
    What is the CHND data?
    There are unique challenges to collecting medical record data
    The user data flow layer: The abstractor’s perspective
    The application data flow layer: A level below
    The transport data flow layer: Additional security
    The rational for the architectural framework
    Special security and privacy concerns
    Beta release of the CHND
    A perspective from one of the application developers
    Nearing the end of phase 1 implementation of the CHND
    Gearing up for phase 2: Analytics development and quality improvement initiatives
    Longer range technical plans and challenges for the CHND
    Moving ahead and looking back
    Final thoughts from the system architect

    Protecting Lives Using the Results of Earthquake Modeling
    The techno-socio challenges of earthquake science
    Scientific computing is at the heart of earthquake science
    SCEC: A techno-socio response
    Computational projects to advance earthquake understanding
    Computational simulation projects and support platforms
    Education and outreach efforts
    Concrete results of SCEC supported research
    Future challenges and plans
    Concluding thoughts

    When Following Your Passion Means Forming Your Own Business
    Discovering the potential of the iPod in education
    Mobile devices leverage learning style preferences
    The first iPod touch application: 5 pumpkins
    Keeping up with the latest mobile devices
    Mobile devices support how people learn effectively
    Thinking like a business owner strategically
    Critical first business decisions
    Becoming an Apple developer
    First software application officially launches
    More applications follow
    DevelopEase: Behind the scenes at a start-up company
    The challenges of introducing new software into the public schools
    Concrete accomplishments for DevelopEase
    Future plans for DevelopEase

    Exercises and Activities appear at the end of each chapter.


    Lisa C. Kaczmarczyk is currently an external evaluator on National Science Foundation-funded research projects. She has over 18 years of experience teaching and researching applied learning theory in computer science education. Dr. Kaczmarczyk is a member of the ACM Education Council and an associate editor of ACM Inroads. She earned a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin, master’s degrees from the University of Oregon and Northeastern University, and a B.A. from Tufts University. You can access her blog at http://computing4society.blogspot.com

    One of the most challenging topics to teach in the undergraduate computing curricula is the social and ethical implications of computing. … Kaczmarczyk’s book is a great help in answering these questions. … many well-crafted, open-ended questions and projects at the end of the chapters guide student work and discussion. The case studies are carefully researched and presented at an appropriate level for students to study any time after their freshman year. … What can one do with a degree in computing? What opportunities are there to use such a degree for good? The book is unique and successful in pulling together answers to these questions. It shares the stories of people who have used their technical skills to positively affect the lives of many people, both directly and indirectly. I know of no other book like this one.
    —Anthony J. Duben, Computing Reviews, May 2012

    Computers and Society: Computing for Good contains in-depth case studies with extensive, thought-provoking end-of-chapter questions and is appropriate for a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate majors in areas such as Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Computer Information Science, Information Technology, Health Information Science, Business Management, and Political Science as well as many other areas. The complex nature of the case studies allows them to be used in a stand-alone social and professional issues course, a capstone issues course, or as individual case studies that may be woven into a variety of computing or business courses.
    Kaczmarczyk’s book contains a unique and fresh look at how people from a variety of disciplines use computing and how the use of computing impacts these individuals as well as society.
    Kaczmarczyk’s book should be a ‘must have’ book for all college or university libraries.
    —Carol L. Spradling, PhD, Associate Professor, Northwest Missouri State University