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Weekly AiS Challenge Updates

5 / 7 / 2002

Hope everyone is doing well and getting prepared for the end of the school year. Hang in there!

Computer accounts will be closed on Thursday, May 30, except for the 12 teams of finalists and all teachers. This includes login access to mode and dialup access through New Mexico Technet.

We will be making modifications to mode and pi this summer so if you feel you should be able to get on and can't, send email to consult or phone 505-665-4444 extension 811.

We are excited about the Summer Teacher Institute in just a few weeks. Due to a cancelation, we still have an opening so send email to consult if you know of a teacher who would like to participate. They won't be sorry they attended!

We did not get as many Evaluations Forms turned in at the Awards Ceremony as we would have liked so if you have comments about how this year went or suggestions that need to be considered for next year, please send them to consult. We do listen!

David, AiS Challenge Consulting, consult@challenge.nm.org

5 / 2 / 2002


We have a grant from Siemens Foundation to support two teachers, or two students, or one of each to attend a math or science workshop this summer. The funding will cover tuition, room and board, and airfare. There are several very promising opportunities. These are taken from the http://www.ams.org/employment/mathcamps.html list.

One is in for girls and it is in Nebraska. ALL GIRLS/ALL MATH Location: University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE Web site: http://www.math.unl.edu/~agam July 7-12 or July 21-26, 2002 Another is in Texas: http://www.swt.edu/mathworks The date for registration is past BUT because of our connection Siemens they will take late registration from us. This program is for high school students and it is a six week program. http://www.swt.edu/mathworks/student/HSMC/expenses.html. There is a fine program in Michigan http://www.math.lsa.umich.edu/mmss which is also organized by one of the Siemens associates. It has two week sessions.

There are other opportunties that you may know about. These are specially for students but teachers, if you have a workshop in mind, let us know. Please write back to Consult and we will work to get you the funding.

4 / 29 / 2002

AiS Challenge Community:

The Expo Awards Day for the 2001-2002 AiS Challenge Year took place over two beautiful days in Los Alamos last week, April 22-23. Held in Los Alamos Research Park in a spacious room with spectacular views of the mountains, teams presented their projects to each other and to AiS Challenge Judges. Silver High School took top honors and Manzano captured second place. Ten Honorable Mention Teams won plaques and gift certificates. You can read all about it in the Los Alamos National Lab Press Release: http://www.lanl.gov/orgs/pa/newsbulletin/2002/04/24/text01.shtml
The Albuquerque Tribune article is at http://www.abqtrib.com/archives/news02/042302_news_compute.shtml

The winning teams will be traveling to NASA Ames to visit the research facility and to have a day in San Francisco. We look forward to hearing reports from that trip.

Because the Silver teams had to be back home for events on Tuesday, they missed the Expo Awards Day events. David Kratzer and Eleanor Walther from Consult are planning a trip to Silver High for their Awards Assembly to present their prizes.

For those of you who attended the Awards Ceremony, you may remember that Consult was introduced to the audience. However, three of our members were omitted. They are Paula Avery, Moriarty High School, Eleanor Walther, Sandia National Labs, and Joe Watts, Los Alamos National Lab. Each plays a significant role in the work of Consult. Paula provides curriculum materials, Eleanor offers a judge's perspective, and Joe is a major fund raiser.

The AiS Challenge Year is winding down and we are preparing for next year's event. The Summer Teacher Institute will be held in Farmington during the first two weeks of June. Afterwards, two AiS Challenge teachers will head to San Antonio to the National Education Computing Conference. Judy Pino from West Las Vegas and Albert Simon from Alamogordo High will be attending Computer Science and Information Technology workshops.

And those of you who will have at least one senior on your team next year, will want to look through the Siemens Foundation application you received at the Awards Expo. You can find more about Siemens at http://www.siemens-foundation.org/ The regional round of the competition is in the Southwest. Teams who apply and qualify for the regional competition can be very proud of their work. We think it is a worthwhile effort and we look forward to several of you making that effort..

Finally, here is a URL that describes many of the math camps available over the summer. The AiS Challenge is looking for grants to help underwrite AiS Challenge students' attendance at these camps. If there is one that you could reasonably attend this summer, please write to us. http://www.ams.org/employment/mathcamps.html

Congratulations to all of you. As John Browne, Los Alamos National Lab Director, put it so well: You are all winners. We know that what you have learned participating in the AiS Challenge will be a good foundation for future work in high school and the career path you choose after you graduate. We are all proud of you.

Betsy for Consult

4 / 8 / 2002

Good Morning!

Things to do this week:

  1. work on your display poster
  2. work on your presentation for the judges
  3. dream up a graphics poster
  4. produce an HTML version of your final report
  5. read over http://www.challenge.nm.org/AwardsDay to find out details about these topics
  6. dig out your swim suit for the pool party Monday night

In case you haven't already:

  1. register to come to the Awards Expo (though there might not be any hotel rooms left)
  2. submit an electronic copy of your final report (see yours or whose reports are missing at http://www.challenge.nm.org/FinalReports )
  3. practice your presentation
  4. practice your presentation
  5. practice your presentation

And remember the Internship opportunity for this summer at the High Performance Computing Center in Albuquerque. Details can be found under the March 28 News.

We have sent all of your Final Reports to our Judges. Thank you for getting yours to us on time and in good form.


4 / 1 / 2002

Good Morning!

Here we are in the home stretch - an appropriate metaphor as the baseball season opens?

This is the week for Final Reports - due Wednesday at New Mexico Technet and they can be mailed or hand-delivered. Remember, no faxes, staples, and number the pages.

Be sure to register for Awards Day. Consult visited the space at Research Park in Los Alamos for the Expo and it is really spacious. If you will be bringing a laptop for your (PowerPoint/HTML) presentation at the Expo, let us know so that we can be sure to arrange an electrical outlet for you. If you will need to borrow a laptop for your Expo presentation, send a message to Consult. An electronic presentation at the Expo is not a requirement.

Start working on your poster display board, see the details on the AwardsDay link on the AiS Challenge home page.

Create a web version of your final report and submit it by April 12, see http://www.challenge.nm.org/FinalReports/html.shtml

Thanks for all your good work!

Betsy for Consult

Gross Science Story of the Week

Humanoid Robots

GPS Applications for Everyone - including sight-impaired and golfers

3 / 28 / 2002

Dear Students,

The Scholarship Applications from juniors and seniors are due on April 3. Please send or enclose them in an envelope separate from the Final Reports. There is informatiion about scholarships on the home page at http://challenge.nm.org. Scholarship interviews will be scheduled during the Expo.

Dick Allen, Consult team member from the Albuquerque High Performance Computing Education & Research Center, is inviting students to apply for summer 2002 internships at AHPCERC. This is a terrific opportunity for summer employment, advanced study, and post-high school preparation. The information is attached below. Be sure to get in touch with Dr. Allen at rcallen@unm.edu if have any questions.

See you soon.

Betsy for Consult

The High Performance Computing Education and Research Center (HPCERC) at UNM (www.ahpcc.unm.edu) is offering two Internships during Summer, 2002 for AiS Challenge students. The internships are for a period of 8 weeks and are subject to both parental and university approval. Selected students must make their own housing and transportation arrangements; if necessary, an additional stipend may be available to assist with per diem costs.

  1. Submit a letter (e-mail preferred) to me, indicating your interest in such a position. The letter should include what kind of high-performance computing activity you would like to pursue at the Center and how the internship would contribute to your plans for the future.
  2. Ask a sponsoring teacher to send me a letter (e-mail preferred) in support of your application, which includes the student's GPA. Selection will be based on the student's application materials, including their project.

Awards Expo judges will nominate candidates to be considered for the internships. Nominees will be interviewed by HPCERC research staff and final selections made.

If you have questions about the internships or the HPCERC, please contact me.

Richard Allen
High Performance Computing Education & Research Center
1601 Central Ave. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87131
Ph: 277-8249
e-mail: rcallen@unm.edu

3 / 25 / 2002

Good Morning!

Coming Up Next Week:
I urge you all to spend time at the AiS Challenge Awards Expo link - http://challenge.nm.org/AwardsDay/ - and make sure that you are clear about the requirements for the Final Projects, HTML Final Reports, and registration for Ais Challenge Awards Expo events.

Final Reports are due Wednesday, April 3, at noon, at New Mexico Technet. Please note the guidelines link. No Faxes! No staples!

Scholarship applications due Wednesday, April 3.

HTML Reports are due Friday, April 12.

Registration for Awards Expo is due on April 3. There is a link to registration from the Awards Expo Page.

There is also information about preparation of the display board poster for the Awards Expo.
And there is information about the graphical poster contest.

Appearing Now in the Sky Near You
Has any of you seen the new comet? Ikeya/Jhang can be seen shortly after sunset as you look Northwest near Mars. There was a terrific photo in Saturday's Albuquerque Journal of the comet taken at Chaco Canyon. These two links below have photos and hints for seeing Ikeya/Jhang.


Have a great week. I know some of you are on holiday already and others will be soon. Enjoy! We are looking forward to seeing your reports next week. Remember to get in touch if you have questions.

Betsy for consult@challenge.nm.org.

3 / 18 / 2002

Good Morning!

We are mighty proud of the Manzano team of Brian Rosen and Bob Cordwell who came to the New Mexico Information Technology and Software Association lunch meeting on Friday and presented their project on Cryptology. The audience was really impressed with their work and we are very grateful to them for coming to help us lure mentors and funding from this group. It turned that one person in the audience works for a company owned by a former Challenge participant. Special thanks to Steve Schum for driving and helping prepare the team.

Since you are getting ready to prepare posters, I thought I would include a handful of URLs. Perhaps there will some useful hints here.


Please check over the requirements for Final Reports and let us know if you have any questions. Remember to register for Awards Day.

Have a good week.

Betsy for Consult

3 / 11 / 2002

Good Morning Adventurers:

Final Report Categories
We received a note from Larry McBride in Las Cruces noting that the directions for the cover sheet for the Final Reports asks that a "category" be listed. We have decided not to have two categories this year as we have had in the past. In past years, a team that did not complete their project could submit as category B so that they could come to closure and attend the Awards Day activities. This year, all teams are expected to have a presentation of the work that they have done on their project.
So, do not list a category. Again, thank you Larry, for noticing this for us.

Awards Day: Special Prize for First Place Team
Willard Smith, our NASA Ames and Tennessee State University colleague, has announced to us that the AiS Challenge winning team and teacher have been invited to travel to NASA Ames Research Center of Excellence as part of their First Place Award. Point to this URL to see what a great opportunity this is: http://www.arc.nasa.gov/

Supercomputing 2002
David Kratzer sent this note about a great opportunity at Supercomputing 2002. Baltimore, MD -- Undergraduate faculty and middle and high school teachers interested in learning about computational science and how to integrate it into the classroom are invited to participate in the SC2002 Education Program. Applications are now available online and the deadline is April 26. See http://www.challenge.nm.org/teachers/sc2002.html for details.

News Flashes
Remember that if you want to check out past MMMs they are all on the web page: http://challenge.nm.org

We are looking forward to seeing several of you at Sandia tomorrow.

This MMM does not have a special science site for you to peruse. Instead, we urge you to explore the NASA and SC2002 pages.

Have a great week!

Betsy for Consult

3 / 4 / 2002

Good Morning!

It looks as if our state is in for some warmer weather. I'm ready! Here in Albuquerque some of the bulbs planted last spring are starting to push their way up to the sunlight.

Have you signed up yet for next Tuesday, March 12 Tour of Sandia Labs? The Tour will feature Robotics, Visualization Lab, Decontamination Foam, Micro Machines and computing facilities. Overnight lodging and breakfast buffet will be provided for those coming from a distance and lunch will be served at Sandia.

Remember that you will need a photo id. Please fax (505)884.8648 or email Eleanor Walther (eawalth@sandia.gov) with the following information on ONE form per school:

Team Numbers, Names of Team Members, Social Security Numbers, Dates of Birth. Be sure that teacher names are included.

Send Eleanor e-mail if you will need financial support for a bus to bring you to Albuquerque. Other details are in a message Eleanor sent on Frebruary 27. Let her or me know if you have questions. DEADLINE for signing up: March 6.

Did you know the Hubble Telescope is nearly ten years old? The current Columbia space shuttle mission has been doing some repair and upgrades to the Betsy Frederick Hubble this week. You can read about that, see video clips, and review Hubble's decade at the following URL:


Hope to see many of you next week at Sandia!

Betsy Frederick for Consult

2 / 25 / 2002

Good Day!

You all should have had some feedback from your oral evaluations! Hope it is helpful as you prepare for the writing of your final report.

Here is the next important date:

Wednesday, April 3, 2002 at NOON. Deadline to submit final report and scholarship applications.
Wednesday, April 3, 2002 Registration deadline for Expo and Awards Ceremony in Los Alamos.

Please place it in your palm pilot, on your palm, on your calendar, on your dance card, commit it to memory!

Teams will have until April 2nd to complete and run their projects. Specifications for this report are described in the Challenge Handbook, which you received on a CD at Glorieta. It is also on the web.

Each Challenge year, scholarships may be awarded based on qualities demonstrated by individuals applying for consideration for the Scholarship Program. These scholarships are not automatic, and students wishing to be considered MUST apply. Application details are in the Challenge Handbook, also.

Please let consult@challenge.nm.org know if you are having any problems with your project.

We need to have a head count for our festivities at Los Alamos on the 3rd, also, as plans for tours, meals, etc. need to be made at that time. We really hope you get to see each and every one of you on Monday, April 22nd at LANL.

Check out the Science of the Games, 2002 Winter Olympics at http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/winter02/speed/index for our Science site of the week!

Celia for Consult

2 / 18/ 2002

Happy Presidents' Day!

Hope you are enjoying your day off of school! Two thirds of you have presented your project to some judges. Hope that your experience has been a positive and useful one!

Consult is making plans for the April Expo/Awards Day celebration. Last week I talked a bit about the Amy Boulanger scholarship.

Please do check out the other scholarships on your CD handbook you received at Glorieta and here online


Scholarships this year are for juniors and seniors, only!

So what if you are in mid school, a freshwoman or a sophomore? What does the Expo/Awards Day celebration have in store for you? There will be tours and lectures at Los Alamos Lab, a chance for you to learn about the projects from your peers statewide, the opportunity to be a finalist from your final technical report (due April 3rd) or your poster report on April 17th, a chance to win money for the graphical logo for next year, or fame for your technical poster and many different prizes. So I guess what I am saying is after your oral presentation this month, it is time to start thinking about writing that final report and about creating those two posters!

And the science link for the week

from the AiS online textbook on mathematical modeling. Do check out the examples of
A Falling Rock
A Spring Mass System
Heat Flow
Population Growth

Celia for Consult

2 / 11/ 2002

Happy Almost Valentine's Day!

Well, some of you have completed your AiS Challenge project evaluations! Did the judges bite? I do suggest that you listen to their advice and incorporate it into your projects or tell why you didn't when you present in Los Alamos at the Expo/Awards Day celebration, April 22nd! They can be a great advocate for your team!

Each team will give a presentationon that Monday. Please review that week's overall schedule at


We have an exciting prize for the first place team! More to come on that and we have many prizes for all teams to think about: best Powerpoint presentation, best team players, best written report, favorite project - student's choice, gift certificates and more! This year scholarships are just for juniors and seniors!

Let me tell you about the Amy Boulanger scholarship, four years/$2400 per year, restricted to seniors only. The Board of Directors of New Mexico Technet, Inc awards this scholarship. It is the top one that the AiS Challenge gives. It is given in honor of Terry Boulanger's daughter, Amy. Terry is our manager at New Mexico Technet and he was the MC at last year's Awards' Day ceremony and this year's Glorieta Opening Ceremonies. Recent winners have attended NMSU, Tech, UNM and came from Las Cruces, Silver, Rowell and Albuquerque.

We have just announced the 2002 Summer Teacher Institute which can be found at


Please invite any colleague or teacher you think might be willing to sponsor a team next year! Register quickly as the slots are going fast.

And for our science link of the week

Who invented Peanut Butter?

Big Hint: This is Black History Month....

Celia and Betsy for Consult

2 / 04/ 2002

Happy February!

Heads up to the teams in the southern part of the state!

Please go to http://www.challenge.nm.org/Evaluations/ to get the links for the following!

Saturday, February 9, 2002 - Eastern New Mexico University, Portales
Saturday, February 9, 2002 - New Mexico State University, Las Cruces
Saturday, February 9, 2002 - Silver High School

If you are needing any help with Java, please write to our AiS Challenge JAVA list at challjava@challenge.nm.org and ask any appropriate questions!

And if you are needing help with graphics, try looking at http://challenge.nm.org/ctg/graphics/gnuplot.shtml - Gnuplot is a command-driven interactive function and data plotting program. It is free of charge and readily available from ftp sites on the internet.

Please write to challgnuplot@challenge.nm.org if you have any questions about gunplot!

Please do look at our new and improved Awards Day link off our webpage and send us suggestions on what you would like to do on Sunday evening. What kinds of activities could we plan for that evening?

There will be a tour of Sandia National Labs in March; my memory says March 12th. I will double check that date. Details will follow! There will be money for transportation and housing! More to come!

And our science link of the week:

The Internet Scout Project is proud to announce the publication of three new reports funded by the National Science Foundation and part of the National Science Digital Library Project. These reports will bring readers the best new and newly discovered Internet resources from the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.

To learn more about these reports, please visit: http://scout.cs.wisc.edu/nsdl-reports/

To subscribe to the reports, please visit: http://scout.cs.wisc.edu/nsdl-reports/subscribe.html

PLEASE NOTE: These reports will be published biweekly, on Fridays. This week, we are publishing the first issues of the Physical and Life Sciences Reports. We will then be publishing these reports EVERY OTHER WEEK. The first Math, Engineering and Technology Report will be published on February 25th.

If you subscribe right away, you will recieve a copy of today's Physical and/or Life Science Report, as we will be publishing those later this afternoon. If you subscribe later (after today's NSDL Scout Reports are published), you will receive your first reports on February 8th. You can always read any of the reports we've published online at: http://scout.cs.wisc.edu/nsdl-reports/ And back issues of the NSDL Scout Reports at: http://scout.cs.wisc.edu/nsdl-reports/archive.html

Sites covered in all three reports will be cataloged and accessible through the Scout Archives at: http://scout.cs.wisc.edu/archives/

We look forward to your comments on the new Reports.

The Internet Scout Project Team

Best for luck in your oral presentations this month!

Celia for Consult

1 / 28 / 2002


A review of February presentations follow:

The February presentations are in 30 minute time slots during which we expect the teams to have a 20 minute presentation with 10 minutes for questions/answers/comments. PowerPoint presentations are encouraged. If you don't bring your own laptop, contact the local host to make sure the format (PowerPoint version/platform) you have will work with their machines.

Check to see when your team is scheduled to present at:

by looking at the Schedule of Presentation Times for all locations, or check the location nearest you. If you have conflicts and need to change your time or date, please email consult@challenge.nm.org as soon as possible. Also, please write a note to celia@nm.net to tell us that the assigned time is good for your team.

The link for Expo/Awards Day is now hot at http://www.challenge.nm.org/AwardsDay/

How this year's Expo/Awards Day looks:

On April 17th, there will be a judges conference call, after which about half a dozen finalist teams will be announced based on the submission of the written final report. They will make presentations to a panel of judges Monday morning April 22nd and then join tour groups on Monday afternoon.

All other teams that have submitted final reports will be expected to give a presentation (with time for questions), in pre-assigned half hour blocks, on Monday morning April 22nd to a small number of judges. These presentations must include a poster (tri-fold ok) to discuss and can include a PowerPoint presentation. At noon, approximately half a dozen teams will be selected as additional finalists and they will make presentations to a panel of judges on Monday afternoon.

All posters will be on display from 11:00 to 1:00 for judging for several awards, including best technical poster, best logo, and student choice award.

Interviews for scholarships will take place on Monday afternoon.

Tuesday, there will be an Awards Ceremony and a Lunch Reception for all at LANL!

We went to see the movie A Beautiful Mind. The hero is John Nash, a mathematician, and he certainly did see the world in a way no one else could have imagined. We recommend the movie for its insights into a beautiful and brilliant mind. If you have Flash 5 (or you could download it), you might want to look at http://www.abeautifulmind.com/

The Astronomy Picture of the Day Site http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ looks at the surface of the moon today. The site has many links from that picture to relevant resources and to its photo library.

Betsy and Celia for Consult, with help from David!

1 / 22 / 2001


Consult has been busy! We have set up seven regional evaluations in February. Each team will need to give a 20 minute presentation on their problem definition, mathematical model, and progress with their solution. Please leave another ten minutes for a question and answer portion!

Please click at this link


Do RSVP to celia@nm.net so that we know exactly what times our judges need to be at their assigned places. Please note room assignments have changed from previous years. Please write to consult with any requested changes. We will do our best to accommodate you.

At Glorieta, students took the Profiler Survey and self selected themselves into help groups. If your team is needed help with your mathematical model, please write to challmathematicalmodels@challenge.nm.org and that will be a list of AiS Challenge students and teachers who may be able to help you. If you are needing help with presentation skills or what to present, please try writing to this list: challpresentationskills@challenge.nm.org

We will be sharing other lists this spring also.

Dates to note:

Wednesday, April 3, 2002 at NOON. Deadline to submit final report and scholarship applications.
Wednesday, April 3, 2002 Registration deadline for Expo and Awards Ceremony in Los Alamos.
Wednesday, April 17, 2002 Judges' Conference Call.
Monday, April 22, 2002 AiS Challenge Expo in Los Alamos
Tuesday, April 23, 2002 Awards Ceremony in Los Alamos

Details about the AiS Challenge Expo will soon follow.

And for those of you who eagerly await the science link of the week, here is a good one from NASA: http://www.nasa.gov/today/index.html

Betsy and Celia for Consult

1 / 14 / 2001

Happy January!

Hope that you are able to plan a peer review this month to get you ready for your visit with some judges in February!

Here are some hints about effective presentations from Consult member Gina Fisk:


It was written for teachers at our 2001 Summer Teacher Institute. Just substitute you for your students!

Some other hints:

  • Be on time!
  • Dress as if you were going to an important interview.
  • Don't forget to introduce yourselves.
  • Have all the members of your team speak.
  • Practice your 20 minute presentation. Leave about 10 minutes for questions.
  • Speak so you can be heard!
  • No gum chewing!

Here is a tutorial on PowerPoint from our fall Profiler survey:


You will soon be receiving an email that will tell you what time you need to be at your February Evaluation. Please confirm that time with us when you receive it!

Consult and friends met last week to finalize plans for the Expo/Awards Day in April. Details to follow! There are some exciting prizes and changes this year! By the way, there is a Microsoft prize for the best PowerPoint presentation!

Betsy and Celia for Consult

1 / 7 / 2001

The BEST to you in 2002!

Congrats to all of you who submitted your interims!

On the calendar for this month is the school evaluation where you present your project to your local community. Please follow directions at


In February, we will schedule you for a presentation in front of 2-3 judges with immediate feedback. Team members will make an oral presentation, not to exceed 20 minutes, to a team of Challenge judges so that the judges can better understand their project, review progress and offer advice and direction on overcoming obstacles or finding additional resources. NOTE: All team members do not have to be present - but it is highly recommended that they be there if not competing elsewhere.

Here are the dates for those presentations:

Saturday, February 9, 2001 - Eastern New Mexico University
Saturday, February 9, 2001 - New Mexico State University
Saturday, February 16, 2001 - New Mexico Highlands University or Santa Fe Community College; details pending
Saturday, February 16, 2001 - University of New Mexico - Abq.
Saturday, February 23, 2001 - San Juan College
Saturday, February 23, 2001 - New Mexico Tech

Consult is meeting this week to finalize the plans for Awards Day! Details to follow.

I took a road trip to southern California and we listened to Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! : Adventures of a Curious Character. It is a delightful book which really gets into the mind of a famous physicist. He thinks like a scientist from his early years, is so curious, and asks pertinent questions. I highly recommend listening to it on your next road trip!

Celia for Consult

12 / 17 / 2001

Good Afternoon, Challengers!

Congratulations to teams who have submitted Interim Reports! We are looking to seeing the rest by the end of the week.

I'm sure you know what Prime Numbers are. But do you know what Mersenne Primes are? David shared with me the news that the 39th Mersenne Prime has been found! Read all about the new prime, the young person who discovered it, and contests relating to the discovery of more Mersenne Primes.


I'm going to look for a book called the Elegant Universe by Briane Green. He is a phyicist and Columbia University and he writes about Strong Theory, which is an explanation that resolves the "antagonism between ...General Relativity and Quantum Theory". I've heard Green speak twice and found him interesting and his explantations not beyond those of us who are mere mortals! You might enjoy his work, too.

Happy Holidays! See you next year.

Betsy for Consult

12 / 10 / 2001

Good Morning!

The season is well upon us. Ramadan is coming to an end; last night was the first night of Hanukkah; Christmas is upon us; and Kwanzaa is coming, too.

And that's not all that's on our horizon. I know you know, but I have to say it: Interim Reports are due on the 21st but we will be happy to receive and review them ahead of schedule. Remember to let us know if you need help or want to talk about your project with us.

I was very fortunate to attend the Siemens Westinghouse Science and Technology Contest Finals in Washington, D.C. last weekend. On Saturday afternoon, judges and guests visit with the finalists and studied their poster presentations. On Sunday, the finalists make twelve minute presentations to the judges and guests which were followed by a twelve minute question and answer period with the judges. On Sunday evening, the Advanced Placement winners were honored, and the female and male students with the highest cumulative scores on the APs were announced. Milo Lim, from Los Alamos High School, was one of the AP finalists.

This was followed by a banquet at the Smithsonian. This year, it was at the Natural History Museum and we were watched over by elephants. If you go to the home page http://www.mnh.si.edu/ you will see that is a motif. The dinner speaker was the consultant scientist for Xfiles. She has a PhD and has a "real job" but she obviously enjoys this gig and showed several funny clips. She also talked about how she used mutant fruit flies to create a monster needed for one of the episodes. Her point was that she tries to keep the science on Xfiles as much as possible within the realm of possibility.

The winners were announced on Monday morning. There were three "pure" mathematics projects. Most of the other projects had to do with medicine: one studied Alzheimer's Disease. The individual winner was Ryan Patterson from Colorado Springs who designed a glove made of the same kind of material as golf gloves. It translates American Sign Language to text. It allows person who sign to carry on coversations with non-signers. The text is projected to a regular monitor or to a small, portable battery-operated monitor that could be used in a restaurant, for example, to order lunch. It learns the nuances of the user's signing thus allowing for individual differences.

If you are freshman, sophomore or junior, you can be thinking about entering a project in the 2002 contest. The first cut is based on a written report. The second is made at from a presentation at a regional which for us is at the University of Texas, Austin. Regions select one individual and one team project to represent the region at the Finals. Having your paper accepted and thus being invited to Regionals is a tremendous accomplishment. We looks forward to seeing an AiS Challenger at a Regional, soon!

Til next week.

Betsy for Consult

12 / 3 / 2001

Happy December,

A note from Eric:

Instructions for submitting interim reports online are up at:

The Interim's link off of the AiS Challenge homepage will take you there.

You have 18 days and nights to get your interim submitted. Please remember to include a bibliography as part of your work.

Consult would love to hear how your progress is going with your mentors! Do let us know.

Also, do check out this website, Bad Science: http://www.ems.psu.edu/~fraser/BadScience.html
Mrs. Pope, from Bloomfield, shared it with me.

A quote from the Bad Science page:

"Be very, very careful what you put into that head, because you will never, ever get it out." - Thomas Cardinal Wolsey (1471-1530)

This month is the time to start planning an AiS peer review in January. Check it out at: http://challenge.nm.org/peer_review.pdf

What is that you say? Betsy mentioned it last week. We have learned that communication is sometimes saying it over and over again. We hope you plan this review and let us know what transpired!

Celia for Consult

PS A Happy Birthday to Mr. Velarde in Cuba!

11 / 26 / 2001

Good Morning!

We hope you all had a rereshing Thanksgiving Holiday. For the first time ever, I soaked the turkey in brine and it was really tender and moist. Now, why should brine make a difference? Interested? Do a web search for turkey and brine and see what you discover. Or you could look in a cookbook and see if you can find out why.

Those of you who are previous Challenge participants know that in January you attended workshops where you presented your work on your project to date. This year as part of our AiS Challenge year there are no January Workshops. However, schools are invited to have Peer Evaluations at their school. Several AiS schools have held these Evaluations in past years. You can read some recommendations for holding a Peer Evaluation at your school. Recommended January Peer Review This link is from the Important Dates section of the Home Page. You can also take this time to check your calendars and make sure that you'll be ready to turn in your Interim Report. Please note also the date for your February Project Evaluation and make sure you let us know know if your team has a conflict with another event.

Here is a science question for you:


If I am standing on a mountain, Am I going faster than someone at sea level? If so, is my day shorter or will the higher vantage point of the horizon allow my day to seem longer?

What do you think? When you've got an answer, check it out at: http://www.physlink.com/Education/AskExperts/ae413.cfm

Did any of you see the meteor shower? If so, did you see many meteors?

I'm attending the 2001 Siemens Westinghouse Science & Technology Competition finals and awards Dec. 1-3 in Washington, DC. Siemens provides more than $1M in scholarships and awards each year to talented high school students. I urge those of you who are juniors this year to look ahead to next year's competition. I'll give you a report when I get back. But meanwhile, you can go to http://www.siemens-foundation.org/default.html to learn more and to see who this year's finalists are.

Have a good week and keep those cards and letters coming!

Betsy for Consult

11 / 19 / 2001

AiS Challenge Community!

Enjoy your short school week and your Thanksgiving dinner!

Please check out: AiS Challenge Employment - LANL and Sandia

It is a well known fact that the brightest and most promising students in New Mexico participate in the AiS Challenge. The AiS Challenge staff wishes to further enhance the prospects of these students by helping them to obtain real-world work experience at two of the most renowned scientific laboratories in the world

To find out more, go to http://www.challenge.nm.org/Employment/

Dates to remember: Interim Report due on Friday, December 21, 2001

The interim report is an appropriate place to share your bibiliography - web and text resources. You should be finishing up your research phase of your project. How to write the Interim report and submit is available on both the AiS Challenge webpage and CD.

Did you know the first Thanksgiving in MA in 1621 lasted three days? Am thinking that there are southwestern thoughts about rediscovering Columbus, but what about Thanksgiving? http://www.hartford-hwp.com/Taino/docs/columbus.html

Celia for Consult

11 / 12 / 2001


1) This is the month that you should be working with your mentor to research your project, plan your mathematical model, etc. If you need assistance getting a mentor, please check out the AiS textbook assistance at

and check out our mentor database at

2) Do you know how to forward your Challenge mail? Please check out how to do that at the AiS Challenge Technical Guide off our homepage.

3) Do you need to ask an expert about your project? Here is the Ask An Expert site:


4) And for our weekly science url:

It has been 35 years since the Leonid meteor shower put on a show like the one expected during the early morning hours of Nov. 18.


Heads up! Your interim report is due on Friday, December 21st, five and one half weeks away. Then we are going to recommend that you have a peer review in January. Details will follow on that review.

As always, please do not hesitate to write to Consult with any of your questions, suggestions, thoughts.

Celia for Consult

11 / 5 / 2001

Good Morning!

We are into November and have already scheduled visits to several schools. It is not too late to request that Consult come out to your school to meet with teams about projects.

79 Teams have turned in Abstracts. Excellent! This is a terrific start to the 2001-2 AiS Challenge Year.

Consult met last week to talk about plans discussed at the Fireside Chats. We have taken your remarks about the number of trips you are able to manage. As a result,

  • January Workshops have been cancelled
  • The February Preliminary Judging will be held as scheduled
  • Final Reports are still due on April 3
  • Judges Conference Call will be on April 17 to discuss Final Reports
  • The Expo will take place in Los Alamos on Monday, April 22. All teams will make 30 minute presentations to a team of three judges. Six Finalist teams will be selected to be judged by the entire panel of judges in the afternoon. The Expo Awards Ceremony will take place in the afternoon. Details will follow on the Web Page.
  • The Awards Day will be held on TUESDAY, April 23.

Consult also talked about having schools organize individually to make presentations to their own schools in January. Anita Gerlach who has done this in previous years will share ideas about this could be done.

And finally, we talked further about having an Administrator Conference to. spread the word about the AiS Challenge and, perhaps more importantly, to raise the commitment of current administrators. Committee: Dick Allen, Paula Avery, Anita Gerlach,Candace Martinez, and Gina Fisk

And finally, for fun and resources, I think this issue of Tourbus is good. It has links to interesting resources AND to some Pixar movie clips: http://www.TOURBUS.com - Click on Archives from the bottom of the opening page. This week's is at the top of the list.

Have a great week.

Betsy for Consult

10 / 29 / 2001

Good Morning!

We are really pleased that our first big milestone of the Challenge Year was a great success. We appreciate your participation including the completion of the evaluation forms so that we can continue to make the Kickoff as useful for you as we can.

We currently have 61 abstracts submitted out of the 112 we expect. We are confident that several more will be submitted this week. Please make sure that your team has entered its abstract on mode and "submitted" it. Details on how to do that were handed out at Glorieta and are available at: http://challenge.nm.org/Abstracts/abhints.shtml.

We know that it was difficult for some of you to take the Profiler survey. If you were unable to complete your survey, please take it this week. We are planning to set up study groups based on the results of the study. To find directions on using Profiler, go to HELP from the Challenge home page. Our District ID is written under the Profiler link - it 00000240 (5 zeroes then 240). You can go back anytime to update your profile.

I have had fun this week looking for resources to help teams with their projects. This is a URL I came across which is really super: http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/.

If you find a site you think other students and teachers would enjoy, please send it to consult or to me:

Have a great week!
Betsy for Consult

10 / 22 / 2001

No message -- at Glorieta for the Kickoff!

10 / 15 / 2001

Good Morning!

Next Monday there will be no MMM because we will be together in Glorieta. First Session will be finishing their workshops, Second Session will be registering, and we will be enjoying Sandra Begay-Campbell's keynote.

There is a new link on our home page, http://challenge.nm.org, from the Glorieta link to information about Team Schedules. There is also a link to a map of Glorieta and directions for getting from I-25 to Glorieta turnoff.

Registration for Session 1 begins at noon on Sunday. The first workshop begins at 2. You will be finished by around 2pm on Monday.

Registration for Session 2 begins at 10 on Monday. You will be finished by 11:30 on Tuesday. You can stay for lunch if you wish.

The Joint Lunch is at 11:30 on Monday, followed by the Keynote at 1:00.

Telephone contact during Glorieta: 505.665,4444X811. This is David Kratzer's Voice Mail which he will be checking regularly throughout the conference.

Please check the Team Schedules to be sure that we have all of your students listed. Please send an EMail to consult@challenge.nm.org if you notice any errors. Please write as soon as possible if a student is unable to attend Glorieta. It is much easier for us to sort out hotel reservations ahead of time. We understand that it is not always possible to get to a computer to send a message, but you can use David Kratzer's Voice Mail number for those very last minute messages.

We are looking forward to seeing you and your students and having a terrific Kickoff. The weather should be beautiful. The five day forecast for Glorieta is for sunshine and temperatures around 70 or slightly lower and the lows in the 30s. Do keep an eye on the weather, though. And bring a warm jacket just in case.

Betsy for Consult

Richard Allen, University of New Mexico
Celia Einhorn and Betsy Frederick, New Mexico Technet
David Kratzer and Eric Ovaska, Los Alamos National Lab/Department of Energy

10 / 8 / 2001

Good Morning!

We are delighted to report that we have more than 400 students, 112 teams, and 35 schools registered for the 2001-2002 Kickoff. We are very pleased that your school and students are among this terrific group.

We've been busy with registering and will be double checking the Team Entry Authorization Forms (TEAF) this week. If you suspect any of your teams haven't quite got that done, please give them a nudge so that we won't need to phone or write or fax. The point of the TEAF is to make sure that your students are really clear about the Acceptable Use Policy involving government computing facilities and Technet's Dialup policies. It is also important that the principal of your school is aware and supportive of your participation in the AiS Challenge.

If you haven't sent in your registration fee, again please send it in so that we don't have to follow up. Thanks!

This year at the Kickoff, the students will attend three different topic blocks. One is Programming, the second is an Introduction to the Challenge and Overview of the milestones and requirements, and the third is Project Management. In the Project Management unit, students will develop a good abstract and strategy for a project with a strong computational focus. In each of the blocks topics that are key to success will be covered. For example, mathematical modeling will be a part of Project Management, team building will be part of the Overview, and Unix will be part of the Programming. We will have a special strand for advanced students.

In addition, we will be welcoming Sandra Campbell-Begay, a Civil Engineer from Sandia National Labs who will be our Keynote Speaker. Dr Skateboard will present a lively show on the physics of eXtreme sports. http://drskateboard.com/.

There will be full schedule for teachers, too, including a Fireside Chat led by teachers from the Summer Teacher Institutes.

And as always, we'll have Tee Shirts, Sponsor Bags, Cookies, and gorgeous fall weather!

Please write to Consult ( consult@challenge.nm.org ) if you would like a confirmation of your teams' registration.

As Celia noted last week, we want to introduce ourselves to those of you who may not have worked with us. I'm Betsy Frederick and work with Celia as a a co-facilitator of the AiS Challenge. We both work with New Mexico Technet. Although I've been immersed in instructional technology for many years I also have a strong interest in the Fine Arts. My BA is in dance and and I love theatre, art and music, too. I came of age in Berkeley in the 60s and that experience has certainly shaped my world view. I was born in Maine where I was home-schooled, and then moved to Arizona, and attended college in California and am happy to have spent the last 30+ years here in New Mexico. I have a son who is a network engineer in Phoenix and a daughter who lives in Connecticut and is an organizational-development consultant to non-profits and government departments. I like to read, learn about science, politics, and history, and work in the garden.

All of us on Consult are looking forward to seeing you and your students in Glorieta. Please stay in touch if you need help or have any questions.

Thank you!

Betsy for Consult

10 / 1 / 2001

AiS Challenge Community!
Happy Monday! Happy October!

Three weeks from today, we hope to see each of you at the Glorieta Conference Center. That means we all have a lot of work to do.

You need to choose a project, get an abstract written, think about mentors and deadlines. Please use the search portion of our website to find help in any of these areas. On every page at http://challenge.nm.org there is a search box. Look for the most current entry and then utilize the info!

We, Consult, are meeting tomorrow to work on the handbook, CD, scheduling, etc.

We would like to introduce you to the members of Consult, the AiS Challenge coordinating team. We will highlight one of us a week so that you know something about us when you meet us!

I get to go first. As you can see in my signature, my handle is computer fairy, given to me by a fourth grade student. This week I am excited to facilitate an online creative writing class with participants from six of the seven continents. No penguins signed up.

I work 1/4 time for New Mexico Technet, one of the main sponsors for the AiS Challenge. We do the planning for the AiS Challenge year and work on all the small details, like who yet hasn't paid their $20 registration fee.

I have one daughter in college at Pacific Oaks, CA! I love the koi pond and waterfall in my front yard. I am most interested in how technology integration can work as a seamless tool to make students work easier, more explicit and show greater understanding of subject matter.

Enough about me. Please contact us with any problems, suggestions, etc. Next week you will meet another member of the Consult team!

Celia for Consult

9 / 24 / 2001


We have 332 students registered for the AiS Challenge year! Now our countdown for the kickoff is just over a month!

A. We all are on step three of the 8 steps needed for registration. Please check out the hot links at http://www.challenge.nm.org/Glorieta/

B. Please let consult know if your team needs help in choosing a supercomputing project and/or writing your abstract. If you think your team will need a visit from consult before the kickoff, please let us know when would be convenient. We will start introducing the individuals on consult to you online next week.

C. And last, but not least today, learn how to install and use Java, the newly supported language of the AiS Challenge at http://www.challenge.nm.org/Java/

May our year together be peaceful and profitable for all concerned!

Celia for Consult

9 / 17 / 2001


What a different reality we all have this Monday from last... My inner voice says teach tolerance, not terrorism. Several sites to check out on this topic are:

Teaching Tolerance http://www.splcenter.org/teachingtolerance/tt-index.html — sign up for their free magazine.

US Government page on Helping Children Understand the Terrorist Attacks at http://www.ed.gov/inits/september11/index.html

Math and Science Projects with telecom that make a difference at http://www.iearn.org

From 911 to 9-11: an Alarm for Learning by Ferdi Serim at http://oii.org/911/alarm.html

America's Tragedy as seen by the World at http://manson.exodus.net/thankyou/index2.html

Do you have any other useful sites to share?


Please realize that you have till the end of this week to register your teams. We will try to uphold that deadline.

We hope you have read the invite (Step 1) and these steps will help you meet that deadline:
2. Register Online (Closes September 21st)
3. Understand the AUP
4. Mail in the TEAF
5. Send in Registration Fee
6. Learn about the Kickoff
7. Prepare your Abstract

If you go to our website at http://challenge.nm.org those links will be hot and will help guide you through those necessary steps.

Please, as always, contact Consult at consult@challenge.nm.org with any questions. There are 8 competent people on that list and one of us will get back to you within 24 hours!!!!! Great track record we boast of, but true. We will introduce each of us in upcoming Monday Morning Messages.

Hope to see all of you in just over a month.

Celia for Consult

9 / 10 / 2001

Good Morning Mates! (Have an Australian artist staying with me and she must be rubbing off on me!)

Nine schools, 16 teachers, 91 students have registered already.
Deadline is September 21st, just 11 "daze" away.

Consult is working on planning for Glorieta! Each participant, teacher and student, will receive a CD with the most current to the moment website on it, which will include the handbook, info on abstracts, interims, etc. It will also include the final reports from last year, which are a great teaching tool. Other useful files, like the winning PowerPoint and JAVA installation files, will be included.

Yes, I said JAVA. We will be teaching JAVA at Glorieta and will support Fortran, C++ and JAVA.

We will be having a separate teacher track. More to come on that. Candace, on our online voluntary advisory team, shared her concern at Glorieta making sure her students are where they ought to be; we will work on scheduling so you can do both. She suggested a JAVA workshop on a Saturday in the fall for teachers. Please let us know if you would be interested in such a workshop.

We will have three student modules:

Overview (2 hours long)
Challenge year, mentors and teamwork, Challenge Website, CD, importance of mentors, teamwork, share winning PowerPoint, fill out Profiler to create online help groups in necessary areas

Structured Design and Programming (3 hours long)
Two Tracks: Beginners and Advanced People
UNIX, C++, Java, MPI, Triazzles (Are you familar with these puzzles?)

Project Management (3 hours long)
Math Modeling, work on abstract or project with a scientist's input, research, search engines, look at starter projects if necesary

We have Sandra Begay Campbell as a keynote and a special demo and info on the physics of skateboarding from Dr. Skateboard.

Please check out and share with your students info on the kickoff which is at http://www.challenge.nm.org/Glorieta/

Review the rules at Glorieta; it is a good idea to print them out and share them with students.

Follow the seven steps to successful registration.

Please remember to consult consult@challenge.nm.org with any questions.

Looking forward to seeing you soon.

Celia for Consult

9 / 04 / 2001


We hope that you have received your invite to the AiS Challenge, 01 - 02, already.

Cuba High teams were the first to register so their teacher, Victor, will receive the gift from Microsoft! 49 more gifts to go!

The website this year has all the requirements! Check it out at http://challenge.nm.org

On our homepage, you will find:

To Start Your Challenge:
1. Read the Invitation to Participate
2. Register Online (Closes September 21st)
3. Understand the AUP
4. Mail in the TEAF
5. Send in Registration Fee
6. Learn about the Kickoff
7. Prepare your Abstract
8. Look into the Future!

Maybe we should have a contest and see if anyone knows what all the Challenge abbreviations and acronyms stand for! SCC, AiS, AUP, TEAF, MS. You have 17 days to register your teams! We hope to see each and every one of you there!

Celia for Consult

8 / 28 / 2001

Good Morning!

This is the first of many AiS Challenge Morning Messages for the 2001-02 school year! Some days it will appear on Mondays, some days on Thursday afternoons!

We are excited to start this twelfth year of the Challenge! The snail mail and online invitations went out this week. Please check out our new website at http://challenge.nm.org for details on registration, the kickoff, etc.

Microsoft has given us copies of Office XP for the first fifty teachers who register teams for the AiS Challenge 2001-2. So register early and register often . Electronic registration opens on August 31 and closes on Friday, September 21st.

This year, the Adventures in Supercomputing program formerly housed at Albuquerque High Performance Computing Center at the University of New Mexico has merged with the New Mexico High School Supercomputing Challenge. This merger should result in a strong, focused program with free teacher pre- and in-service workshops during the school year and a Teacher Institute in the summer. Students will benefit from increased opportunities for recognition through interaction with judges at Regional Expos. This will be an exciting year as we pilot the new combined program.

At any time, please contact consult@challenge.nm.org with any questions. We are looking forward to seeing each and every one of you this year at the kickoff and throughout the year.

Celia for Consult

New Mexico High School Adventures in Supercomputing Challenge Management Team:

Richard Allen, University of New Mexico
Celia Einhorn and Betsy Frederick, New Mexico Technet
David Kratzer and Eric Ovaska, Los Alamos National Lab/Department of Energy
For questions about the Supercomputing Challenge, a 501(c)3 organization, contact us at: consult1516 @ supercomputingchallenge.org

New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge, Inc.
80 Cascabel Street
Los Alamos, New Mexico 87544
(505) 667-2864

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