CSE4317 Individual Presentation Topics
- Tools for monitoring and filtering access to the Internet.
Numerous tools are available for filtering Internet content (especially for
children) and monitoring Internet activity for maintaining security and
on-the-job productivity. Report on the tools available in this area and
arguments for or against there use in a public setting.
- Free speech and the Internet. Protecting our right to free
speech is a constant battle, and no less a battle in the realm of the
Internet. As with traditional battles over free speech, we are forced to
consider the protected status of questionable materials (e.g.,
pornography) or the propaganda of "hate" groups. Report on the status of
free speech protection and the Internet and the censoring restrictions
applicable to individuals and Internet Service Providers (ISPs).
- Customer profiling based on web activity. Most Internet-based
companies maintain sophisticated customer profiles in order to identify
trends in purchasing activity. A good example are the products recommended
by amazon.com based on others who
click-stream as you navigate through their websites. Report on the use of
customer profiling by Internet-based companies along with the security and
privacy issues involved.
- Ethical reservations about intelligent machines. In an April
2000 article in Wired Magazine entitled "Why the future
doesn't need us," Bill Joy, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, urges
scientists to consider the ethical implications of increasingly powerful
computers with increasing intelligence. Joy warns that soon the machines
may have no need for us. Report on the validity of his arguments and those
of his opponents. Also report on the ethical issues related to developing
- Computer technology and depersonalization. Many social
scientists warn that the increasing proliferation of technology is removing
the need to socialize with fellow humans. The resulting depersonalization
may have serious social and psychological effects on both the
technologically savvy and the technologically illiterate. Report on the
depersonalization risks involved with today's technology and assess the
validity of the warnings.
- Academic dishonesty in computer science and engineering. Most
computer science and engineering students cite cheating as the number one
ethical dilemma with university programs. Adding to the problem are the
increasing number of websites offering tools to make cheating easier and
even other students' work for free are at a small price. Report on the
extent of the academic dishonesty problem in U.S. colleges and
universities, the Internet resources available to either aid or catch
cheaters, and possible solutions to the problem.