Montgomery Blair High School's Online Student Newspaper
Monday, March 27, 2017 10:36 am

Clubs: Computer Club

Time: Wednesday, 5A and 5B lunch
Place: Room 314
Sponsor: Karen Collins
President: Louis Wasserman
"I went down to R&E to find a plank to walk on, but they wouldn't let me. I can't imagine why," senior Louis Wasserman, president of the Computer Club, says to a classroom full of club members chomping on their lunches. R&E is the Magnet program's Research and Experimentation class where students engineer and build devices. But why would Wasserman's Computer Club, which works with the more abstract computer science, need a plank? It turns out that the plank was supposed to be a continuation of the previous week's computer science lesson conducted entirely in pirate-lingo in celebration of Talk Like a Pirate Day.

Computer Club's main goal is to prepare participants for computer competitions, according to Wasserman. The club enters several major competitions University of Maryland High School Programming Competition, which awards a $2,500 first-place prize, Loyola College High School Programming Competition, Continental Math League Java competition, "but most importantly, the USA Computing Olympiad," says Wasserman.

During normal club meetings, Wasserman teaches new and complex algorithms including Dijkstra's shortest-path algorithm and greedy algorithms. Aside from algorithms, the club also delves into other miscellaneous computer science topics including theoretical computer science.

Although club members are taught in a classroom setting, the atmosphere is much more flexible. The attentive audience either calls out or raises hands whenever a question occurs to one of them; some take notes, but most just listen.

Wasserman recommends that prospective members have some background knowledge of computer science but insists that anyone is welcome. "It's interesting, exciting and involves pirates," says Wasserman. "What more could you ask for?"

If interested in joining Computer Club, please contact Karen Collins or senior Louis Wasserman.

Editor's Note: Louis Wasserman is on the Technical Staff of Silver Chips Online.

Club beat by Ya Zhou