Students catapulted into programming at Angry Birds Bootcamp

Students catapulted into programming at Angry Birds Bootcamp
Students catapulted into programming at Angry Birds Bootcamp

Local students took a day out from their school holidays last Friday to attend an Angry Birds Programming Bootcamp hosted by the College.

Developed by Associate Professor Jochen Renz and his team, the goal of this workshop is to introduce students to programming in a fun way.

“We have developed a simple interface to our Angry Birds Artificial Intelligence software, which allows students to design and test their own Angry Birds strategies with simple programming skills,” said Associate Professor Renz.

Students were asked to consider a range of questions and modifications to the program that would produce the most effective Angry Birds AI agent.

“We wanted to show the students that programming is not that difficult, and that it’s a lot of fun as you can immediately see the outcome of your strategies and then modify them to get the best results.”

Professor Steve Blackburn was also contributing to this workshop with an introduction to programming. Almost half of the group had no experience in programming, but despite this the students successfully participated and completed the activities.

“Some of the agents they developed were very good. Best of all, it was great to see the students so involved and excited about programming,” said Jochen.

The bootcamp ended with a challenge were students joined forces in teams of two or three to develop an agent. Members of the winning team were Emma Turner (Merici College), Simon Malnar (Lake Tuggeranong College) and Qifan Xiao (Telopea Park School), who developed a very successful and intelligent agent.

“I really hope that the success the students had in the workshop will encourage them to get more involved in computing. It is clear that even with a little program experience students can achieve a lot,” said Jochen.

If you would like to participate in our range of workshops or organise a session for your students please contact us.

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