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Carl and Richard talk to Andrew Parsons and Alfred Thompson about getting students interested in programming. The conversation spans over use of computers in schools, teaching fundamental uses of computers, actual programming, and looking beyond. Andrew gets into Imagine Cup, a world-wide competition of students building software to change the world.

Andrew Parsons is the Academic Developer Evangelist for New York state. That means he gets paid to travel around talking to college students about how to do cool stuff like make games for Xbox 360 and Windows Phone 7, and tell them about how they can get software for free, as well as getting involved in the premier technology competition for students. He says it's not a bad job at all. In a previous life he did the same thing for Microsoft Australia (think much bigger scale physically, and much smaller in terms of number of people to talk to) and has been a journalist, author, programmer and more over the course of 20 years in the industry.

Alfred Thompson is the K-12 Computer Science Academic Relations Manager for Microsoft where he has worked for the last seven years. Prior to Microsoft, Alfred was a high school computer science teacher and school-wide technology coordinator. He has also taught grades K-8 as a computer specialist. Before teaching, Alfred was a software developer for 18 years. In his current role he is a frequent speaker at conferences and advisor on computer science curriculum. He maintains a computer science education blog at http://blogs.msdn.com/b/alfredth

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Running Time 45 minutes      Date Thursday, February 3, 2011     Comments Comments

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