Robots Gone Berserk:
A Look at Robots in Film

Bryn Mawr College
Computer Science
Spring 2002

Welcome to the webpage for CSEM Robots Gone Berserk! If you don't see a menu to the left, then you should come back to this page via this link. Logging in will allow access to reserves, grades, chat, etc.

This College Seminar is not a writing course. It is not a film course. It is not a robotics course. It is not a science fiction course. Although, come to think of it, we will write some papers. We will watch some movies. We will study some robotics. And we will read some scifi. However, this course is really about thinking. In fact, we will spend quite a bit of time thinking about thinking. See below for further details.

NOTE: you will need to spend time outside of class viewing the films. Currently we have a time set up for 7-9pm on Monday evenings.


  1. Schedule
  2. Books
  3. WikiWikiWeb

Course Details

Instructor: Douglas Blank
Room: Park 336, and occasionally Park 338
Time: 2:30-4:00, Monday and Wednesday, and 7pm-9pm Monday Evening

Office: Park 246B
Phone: 6501

Papers. There will be a writing assignment every week. Usually, we will write a sketch, then a revision, followed by a final version. We will experiment a bit in this course. I have an idea I call "extreme writing" that I would like to try. More about that later. Briefly, we will write in pairs, and try interactive things over the Web.

Portfolio. You will end up with a final portfolio made up of all of your writing this semester.

Discussion. About once a week, class discussion will be lead by a small group of students. These are not presentations, but are designed to provide stimulation and direction. For example, rather than provide their interpretation of a film, group leaders could ask probing questions to get the discussion rolling, and keep it somewhat on track. Also, it might be useful to see a couple of clips in class. You could prepare these clips, and ask some pointed questions about dialog, director choices, etc. (We'll show you how to do that.) Be creative! Each student will participate in a couple of group leadings.

Readings. We have tried to keep the workload reasonable for this course. Please have the readings ready to discuss on the appropriate days.

Films. You will need to watch the films during the week they are assigned. You may have seen a movie before, but we will discuss items that you surely have not noticed before, so watching the movies this semester is imperative.

Misc. You will be able to see your grades, assignments, reserves, games, etc., after you log into Edventure. To get your Edventure password, email a blank message to '' with the word 'password' in the subject. You should do this from your Bryn Mawr account (not Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.) Let me know if you have any problems.

Douglas S. Blank