Roxana Geambasu

Oct 2017

(Fall 2017) Pros I really love the homework assignments for this course (which are pulled from MIT's Distributed Systems class); I find them incredibly relevant and interesting programming challenges for distributed systems. I also love that the instructions and test cases are all given ahead of time. It gives me a lot of time as a student to start early and make sure I write my program correctly to earn full points. The TA is good, but I wish he would hold more than once regular office hours per week. One hour of office hours each week is not nearly enough for a class of this level that has ~80 students. Cons I find Prof. Geambasu's classroom delivery to be disorganized and hard to follow along with. I am not a fan of how she writes the lecture notes word-for-word on the blackboard, and she sometimes trails off while explaining something. There were several instances (e.g. first lecture of Paxos) when I went to the TA after class to clarify a concept, and was told by the TA that the professor made several mistakes when explaining the concept in class. The lecture notes are decent, but could be formatted better.

Feb 2015

Very relevant and cool class with really interesting material. Professor Geambasu is one of the top scientists in her field and recently received a Brilliant Ten award. However because of her busy schedule, do not expect much interaction with her and the projects and course material will be outsourced from MIT. Projects will be buggy, slides might be jumbled. There is also a 15% participation grade which is basically a random number and she does not hesitate to hand out 0%, 25%, etc..