Oregon State University

CS 391: Social and Ethical Issues in Computer Science

Oregon State University, College of Engineering

Chapter 3 ~ Software and
Data Development

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In this chapter you'll explore software development topics such as methodologies, cyberpsychology, data acquisition and use in advertising, machine learning, artificial intelligence, laws, and governing organizations.

In addition, an expert speaker will discuss how professionals tackle complex problems.

Then, you'll examine a case where poorly developed software caused serious problems. You'll analyze the major player(s) in relation to an ethical theory.

Explore Topics: Software Concepts

3.1 Introduction

The author of Machine Curve lays out the relationships between data structures, business, mathematics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning in the diagram below:
Relationships among machine learning and AI.

The author (Chris; no last name) provides a detailed description of each main area of the diagram, which is an excellent read when you have ample time to digest it. Here is a brief overview to keep handy during the course, as these terms will popup often:

  • Data science is about bridging the gap between data technology and data driven problems by bringing a good technological understanding & business-/problem-oriented mentality to the table;
  • Artificial intelligence is about making machines intelligent – the goals may vary from superintelligence to very task-specific intelligence;
  • Machine learning is about learning from data without explicit human programming, but with human-configured features;
  • Deep learning makes the feature learning process autonomous. For this, the field uses very complex algorithms;
  • Big data is about the characteristics of the data – volume, velocity, variety, veracity (and maybe variability) – and the value it may provide, but less about technology. Big data may be applied within any field, like ecology, astronomy, meteorology, but also in business. Business analytics tends to focus on applying data about past events to a business problem in order to learn for the future.
© 2017 Machine Curve

Learn more by viewing Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence.

To improve their big data projects developers must gather lots and lots of data. One method is through Data Mining, which is explained in the following video.

3.2 Set up the Template and Reading List.

Use the following template link to complete this research and writing assignment.

  1. Login to your OSU Google Account.
  2. Launch this chapter's Explore Topics Template.
  3. Do not request permission to use the file. Login to your OSU Google Account.
  4. Once you have the file open:
    1. FileMake a copy.
    2. Rename the new file so it includes your "First and Last name" in place of "Template".
    3. Move the file into a folder for this course.
  5. Add your name to the cover page.
  6. Read instructions on the cover page. When in doubt about how to write in the templates, refer back to this page for clarification.
  7. Refer to the green instructions below each page to understand what is required.
  8. The last page requires a bibliography.
Reading List

Refer to writing instructions under each page of the template. Open articles in new tabs and add them to your bibliography tool.

  1. Software Development Methodologies:
  2. Data Acquisition and Retention:
  3. Online Advertising:
  4. Laws and Regulatory Organizations:

3.3 Edit, download, and submit the file.

  1. Ctrlc or c Copy the bibliographic entries you made during the Explore Topics reading and research. On the last page of the template, Ctrlv or v paste in the bibliographic entries. Select the list and apply the bullet or numbered list icon. Update the font size to 14 if necessary. Add more pages if necessary.
  2. Check and correct grammar and spelling using the built-in functions.
  3. From the File menu, choose Download as PDF.
  4. Check to confirm that hyperlinks work in the new PDF file. If they do not work, then in the Assignment Commenting Box, leave a note stating which platform, operating system, and browser you used to print or download the PDF file.
  5. Copy of the file to a backup folder on your hard drive.
  6. Submit the PDF file by uploading it in the Canvas Assignment screen.
  7. Confirm that your file has uploaded by looking for the document icon in the Grades area.

Examine a Case Discussion: Software Failures

Examine a case where poorly developed software caused serious problems. Write/discuss from a factual and critical perspective. Analyze the major player(s) in relation to an ethical theory. Counter another student's analysis with more research.

3.4 Participate in the Group Discussion.

  1. Pick a case to study from the list below (scroll through the many choices). Or, scroll through the TECH tab of the SmartNews app on your phone/tablet to locate newer software failure cases.
  2. Four days before the Due date, start writing in a word processing document to synthesize what you learned about the case. Use research, including what you find in the SmartNews feed, library journals, broadcast news, etc.
    • In paragraph 1, describe and cite one of the major players in the case. Who did what when, how, and why?
    • In paragraph 2, name, cite, and describe at least one law or regulation that was broken in the case.
    • In paragraph 3, describe and cite the positive and negative consequences of that person's actions in relation to historical, political, and economic perspectives.
    • In paragraph 4, analyze the person's actions using one of the ethical theories or approaches ...were they morally and ethically justified or not? Cite the theory/approach.
    • Check the word count (150+ per paragraph, not counting the author names or article titles).
    • Check the hyperlinks (they must be in article titles, law names, or theory/approach names).
    • Spellcheck, fix grammar, then Ctrlc or c to copy the paragraphs.
    • Click the Chapter 3 Examine a Case Discussion in Canvas.
    • Ctrlv or v to paste the copied text into a Reply thread (click the Reply field to activate the editing box).
    • Save your thread.
  3. Before the Due date, reply to at least one person in your group.
    • In paragraph 1, discuss a counter-argument related to their analysis of the case. Describe and cite an article that supports your argument.
    • Check the word count (150+ not counting the author names or article titles).
    • Save your thread.

Need Help?

Share a Google Slides file with the Instructor.

If you have questions about using the template, the research prompts, or writing conventions, you can share your file with the instructor.

  1. With your file, open, click the Sharing button at the top right of the screen.
  2. Change the settings so that only people at OSU can view the file.
  3. Copy the resulting URL/address.
    Right-click to change sharing settings.
    Change settings so that only OSU people can view. Copy the link.
  4. Paste the resulting URL into a Canvas Inbox message to the instructor (or if you have already submitted your file, provide it in the Assignment Commenting box).

Work offline without Wi-fi

If you will be out of wi-fi range, feel free to work on your files offline.

  1. Click the blue Docs icon (or orange Slides or green Sheets icon).
  2. Select the file(s) to use offline.
  3. Select the 3-dot More menu
  4. Toggle on the Available Until button.
  5. Look at the list of files to view the new Available Offline icon next to the file name.

Writing Tutors

Consult one or more of these resource for a review of the structure of your writing, grammar, and spelling. Provide the tutor with a link to the instructions as well as your project online.

NetTutor's Paper Center
Access online tutoring via Canvas. 48-hour turnaround.
OSU Online Writing Suite
Electronic feedback from home, asynchronous email consultation, or synchronous Skype consultation.
OSU Undergrad Research & Writing Studio
Drop in writing help with no wait times. Standard hours are:
Monday to Thursday → 10:00am to 10:00pm
Friday → 10:00am to 5:00pm, and
Sunday → 2:00pm to 7:00pm.
OSU Academic Integrity Tutorials
Citing sources and using TurnItIn.

Use the Service Desk if you have computer, ONID, or Canvas problems.

But first:

  1. Logout.
  2. Close the browser and relaunch it.
  3. Login to OSU.
  4. Still have problems? Contact Service Desk.

Scoring Criteria

If you have questions about how to use any of the required technologies for this lesson or what these criteria mean, please reread the relevant lessons, then ask the Instructor via the Canvas Inbox.

Check Canvas Home, Assignments, and Calendar for the most current Due date and time. The Available Until date and time constitutes a grace period, which can be used in an emergency or if you are ill.

By the end of chapter 3, these items must be included in the assignments to earn full points:

Explore Topics

  1. Software Development Methodologies page includes enough detail and is properly cited.
  2. Data Acquisition and Retention page includes enough detail and is properly cited.
  3. Online Advertising page includes enough detail and is properly cited.
  4. Laws and Regulatory Organizations page includes enough detail and is properly cited.
  5. Illustration or movie explaining a critical software or data concept is included with a detailed description and is properly cited with a copyright statement.
  6. Bibliography page includes a list of references (4 or more expected).
  7. Writing is free of plagiarism.
  8. Writing is free of grammar and spelling errors.

Examine a Case Discussion

  1. Discussion thread describes and cites one major player's actions (who did what when, how, and why) in one case.
  2. Discussion thread names, describes, and cites at least one law or regulation that was broken in the case.
  3. Discussion thread describes and cites the positive and negative consequences of that person's actions in relation to historical, political, and economic perspectives.
  4. Discussion thread analyzes the person's actions citing one of the ethical theories or approaches.
  5. Discussion includes a reply to another student's thread which counters their analysis and cites a supporting article.