All simulation programming projects must meet these requirements on a standard student account of a BB136 ("alamode") machine.
Your submission must build without extra installs of additional packages or libraries to the grader's account. The only exceptions to this requirement are:
Submitted as a .zip or .tar.(Z|gz|bz2|xz) compressed archive.
If you are generating an archive with symbolic links from another *nix box, just use tar --- the invocation of zip seems to be tricky (or there are inconsistent zip versions in Linux land).
The unrolled archive will be scanned for a top-most key file: only one of these may exist:
A Makefile compatible with GNU make (this is the standard make on a Linux box)
A Build.sh Bourne (sh) or bash script
Case in names are important! It is Makefile with a capital M, not makefile; likewise for Build.sh. This is a 400 level course in a CS program, I think it is reasonable to expect students to be able to either
- develop in a Unix environment
transport a system independent code base1 from Windows or MacOS X to a Unix environment.
If you need help doing this please let me know, I'm happy to assist.
In either case, after running2
top $ makeor
top $ bash Build.sh
SIM will be invoked with the appropriate command line arguments for the assignment, results required by the assignment should be printed on stdout. Any output line with an assignment required result must have OUTPUT as the first word (token).
- All numerical values required by an assignment must have whitespace (which includes end of line) around them.
Required textual output should be surrounded by single colons (:).
The order for results is assignment specific and important, they must emanate from the application in the order dictated by the assignment.
Your submitted archive should not contain unnecessary files (.o, .pyc, *.h~ ) or executable machine or vm code (*.class files, a __pycache__ directory, ...).
Files and directories that begin with an underscore are reserved for use by your instructor, TA, or grader.
- Your submitted archive file should not have any entries that begin with an underscore.
Your SIM should not use or create files or directories that begin with an underscore.
Written answers or graphs should always be provided in a doc subdirectory, the doc directory should be alongside your Makefile or Build.sh.
- Prose should be provided in either a text file, an HTML file, or a PDF file.
- Graphs may be embedded in your written answers (if you provide HTML or PDF). If your answers are written in a simple text file, provide your graphs in a common raster image file format (PNG, JPEG, ...), SVG, or (preferably) PDF. Refer to the graphs by name in your answer write-up.
Graphs provided for assignments without a required written component should be in appropriately named files (still, of course in doc) and should be self-explanatory on viewing.5
Students may always feel free to submit a README file for any assignment, but it needs to be in doc and follow these conventions.
Your SIM should not prompt the user for any input, nor pause the display of console messages for the human eye.
Here are example trees for submissions, one each for the most common languages used by students. If you are using another language, look at one of the templates for a similar language.
Templates with a Makefile: edit Project.mak instead --- much easier.
Here is a source tarball that is a "more pure" example of a non-trivial Makefile for building C++. This example doesn't use my Project.mak build configuration file.
If you like to use IDEs such as Eclipse or M$Vs:
- do your work in the IDE with a simple source layout
- copy your code into the appropriate extracted template on a CSM Linux box
test to make sure it builds and runs correctly
clean it out (there is a clean target in the provided Makefiles, otherwise remove residual files by hand)
tar or zip it up and submit.
If your IDE purports to generate Makefiles, then give it a try (YMMV). Be sure to test on a Mines machine!.
Beware that M$ based IDEs frequently generate NMAKE files, which are a far cry from conventional Unix make compatible build files, and are uniformly mocked by gmake.
Suppose a simulation assignment dictates:
Your SIM should accept two arguments. The first argument is the seed for your pRNG, the second argument is the number of experimental runs.
Your SIM should display 3 numerical results: the average theta, the minimum theta, and the median alpha across all the experimental runs.
Then all of the following outputs would be acceptable:
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 OUTPUT 7.43 -2.1113 7483 $
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 OUTPUT 7.43 OUTPUT -2.1113 OUTPUT 7483 $
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 OUTPUT Average theta 7.43 minimum theta -2.1113 middle alpha 7483 $
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 1000 experimental runs beginning! ... half-way there ... woot! look at us go OUTPUT Average theta 7.43 minimum theta -2.1113 maximum theta 32.874 OUTPUT middle alpha 7483 whew. $
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 OUTPUT Average theta 7.43 minimum theta -2.1113 maximum theta =32.874= middle alpha 7483 $
But this one is not acceptable for two different reasons:
$ ./SIM 38478 1000 OUTPUT Median alpha=7483 Average theta=7.43 Minimum theta=-2.1113 $
Sims should be pretty OS agnostic (1)
The name of your directory containing Makefile or Build.sh does not have to be named top, the example is simply showing that make and bash will be run from within your top directory. (2)
Heaven forbid, don't forget a graph title. (5)