Governor's Career & Technical Academy Arlington

Introduction to Computer Science: Week 2


This week we return to Python for Everybody, learning about how to exchange data between computers using web services.

Using the NVCC Canvass worked fabulously. The more I learn about Canvass the more I like it, and using it will indeed permit the kind of smooth workflow and individual feedback I was hoping for. It even supports assignments involving submitting just a URL, which will allow for you to link to your git repos and still see personal feedback inside Canvass.

Wednesday, February 10th


Only 9 of you submitted the XML Reflections assignment as of 20 minutes before the start of class, and given the troubles I had over the last two days connecting remotely to the APS web infrastructure, I did not get a chance to link the Canvass assignment to this web page, so I will extent the due date until Friday at 1:50 pm.

During class today, I will share the first experiments I did with Python's XML library, point you in the direction of some good resources, and then ask you to finish the video questions if you haven't already done so, and then do some independent investigation of Python's XML support, and come to class Friday ready with a 5 minute presentation of what you learned.

Here is what you should do:

  1. Make your own XML file with data of your own design, with a bit more elaborate structure than the really simple one Dr. Chuck showed us. For example, you could make a contact list that has three or four contacts in it.
  2. Write a small Python program to read it in and display it in a nice way.


This assignment will count for 2/3 of your grade for the week.

Monday, February 8th


Today we will begin Lesson 14: Using Web Services. Watch the first three videos in the series, Web Services Part 1, Web Services - XML (Part 2), and Worked Example: XML, and answer the following questions in a document you will submit on our Canvass website:

  1. What is a wire protocol? What does serialization mean? Which two wire protocols does Dr. Chuck say we are going to look at?
  2. What is XML? When does Dr. Chuck say it first became popular?
  3. Define each of these XML terms: element, tag, and attribute. Use web resources to help you come up with a more complete definition than the brief ones provided in the video.
  4. Dr. Chuck gives us a synonym for element and talks about two types: simple and complex. Explain what he says about these.


This assignment will count for 1/3 of your grade for the week.