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The Technion-Cornell Dual Master’s Degrees in Connective Media mixes advanced technical coursework in computer science and engineering with hands-on project work in software and product development, human-computer interaction, communications, and the social sciences. You’ll emerge from the program with the full skill set and unique insights you need to create the technology our future society will use to connect with each other and the world.
A full third of the curriculum is comprised of cross-disciplinary Studio courses, where you’ll work with students from every Cornell Tech master’s program to develop a new product idea for a real organization or create your own startup. Work side-by-side with MBA, law, and engineering students to build and beta test your innovation, then present it for critique and potential funding to a panel of venture capitalists.
 

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Technical Courses

Algorithms and Data Structures for Applications

CS 5112 3.00

An introduction to some fundamental algorithms and data structures used in current applications. Examples include cryptocurrencies (hashing, Merkle trees, proofs of work), AI (nearest neighbor methods, k-d trees, autoencoders), and VR/AR (gradient descent, least squares, line-drawing algorithms). Six lectures will be replaced by applied clinics taught in the evening. Programming assignments in Python or Java.

Applied Machine Learning

CS 5785/ORIE 5750/ECE 5414 3.00

Learn and apply key concepts of modeling, analysis and validation from Machine Learning, Data Mining and Signal Processing to analyze and extract meaning from data. Implement algorithms and perform experiments on images, text, audio and mobile sensor measurements. Gain working knowledge of supervised and unsupervised techniques including classification, regression, clustering, feature selection, association rule mining, and dimensionality reduction.

Computer Networking

CS 5450 3.00

This course focuses on architectural principles of Internet architecture; network protocol mechanisms (MAC, Transport, Routing, SDN); design principles (modularity, scalability, performance, end-to-end); how the Internet works and is used today; mobile technologies (communication, sensing, location, cloud interaction, wearables); and elements of mobile systems design and implementation. It is appropriate for graduate students who have no or limited networking knowledge. Note that there is project work involving both software development and some data analysis.

Connective Media Systems & Technologies

INFO 5302 3.00

What makes connective media platforms — such as Facebook, Reddit, New York Times, and Uber — successful? The goal of this project-based course is to merge social science, information science, computer science and engineering approaches to explore the social and technological forces driving connective media services (including, for example, interaction design, social networks, computational and information aspects of social media, communication and motivation theories). Students will form teams to conceptualize, design and implement a connective media application. The teams will build on the respective strength of students of different backgrounds to theorize, write, design, reason, build and manage connective media applications.

Data Science in the Wild

CS 5304/INFO 5304 3.00

Massive amounts of data are collected by many companies and organizations and the task of a data scientist is to extract actionable knowledge from the data – for scientific needs, to improve public health, to promote businesses, for social studies and for various other purposes. This course will focus on the practical aspects of the field and will attempt to provide a comprehensive set of tools for extracting knowledge from data.

Developing and Designing Interactive Devices

CS 5424/INFO 5345 3.00

This course provides an introduction to the human-centered and technical workings behind interactive devices ranging from cell phones and video controllers to household appliances and smart cars. This is a hands-on, lab-based course. For the final project, students will build a functional IoT prototype of their own design, using Javascript, single-board Linux computer, embedded microcontrollers, and other electronics components. Topics include electronics prototyping, interface prototyping, sensors and actuators, microcontroller development, physical prototyping and user testing.

HCI & Design

CS 5682/INFO 6410 3.00

Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and design theory and techniques. Methods for designing, prototyping, and evaluating user interfaces to computing applications. Basics of visual design, graphic design, and interaction design. Understanding human capabilities, interface technology, interface design methods, prototyping tools, and interface evaluation tools and techniques.

Introduction to Computer Vision

CS 5670 3.00

An in-depth introduction to computer vision. The goal of computer vision is to compute properties of our world-the 3D shape of an environment, the motion of objects, the names of people or things-through analysis of digital images or videos. The course covers a range of topics, including 3D reconstruction, image segmentaion, object recognition, and vision algorithms fro the Internet, as well as key algorithmic, optimization, and machine learning techniques, such as graph cuts, non-linear least squares, and deep learning. This course emphasizes hands-on experience with computer vision, and several large programming projects.

Natural Language Processing

CS 5740 3.00

This course constitutes an introduction to natural language processing (NLP), the goal of which is to enable computers to use human languages as input, output, or both. NLP is at the heart of many of today’s most exciting technological achievements, including machine translation, automatic conversational assistants and Internet search. Possible topics include summarization, machine translation, sentiment analysis and information extraction as well as methods for handling the underlying phenomena (e.g., syntactic analysis, word sense disambiguation, and discourse analysis).

Parallel and Distributed Computing

CS 5460 3.00

This course is an introduction to parallel and distributed computing systems. Topics include models, organization, algorithms and libraries for parallel and distributed computing systems.

Privacy in the Digital Age

CS 5436/INFO 5303 3.00

This course introduces students to privacy technologies and surveys the current state of digital privacy from multiple perspectives, including technology, law, policy, ethics, economics, and surveillance.

Psychological and Social Aspects of Technology

INFO 5310 3.00

This course explores the behavioral foundations of communication technology and the information sciences, and the ways in which theories and methods from the behavioral sciences play a role in understanding people’s use of, access to and interactions with information and communication technologies. Multiple levels of analysis—individual, small group, and larger collectives—will be included, along with multiple disciplinary perspectives. Course topics will include: human perception and cognition; cognitive perspectives on design, attention and memory; psychological theories of language use and self-presentation in computer-mediated communication; social psychological perspectives on coordination and group work, social science theories of social ties and relationships; user motivation, persuasion, and more. The course will also provide a high-level view of methodologies used in the behavioral and social sciences.

Remaking the City

INFO 5915 2.00

Specialization Project (Fall)

INFO 7900 6.00

Two of your semesters will be devoted to an in-depth specialization project. During this time, company advisors will work with you or your team once a week. This is the deepest form of engagement you and your participating external companies will have throughout your time at Cornell Tech. Your ultimate goal here is to create a high-tech paper presentation and demo to pitch to company stakeholders at your mentoring company.

Specialization Project (Spring)

INFO 7900 3.00

Two of your semesters will be devoted to an in-depth specialization project. During this time, company advisors will work with you or your team once a week. This is the deepest form of engagement you and your participating external companies will have throughout your time at Cornell Tech. Your ultimate goal here is to create a high-tech paper presentation and demo to pitch to company stakeholders at your mentoring company.

Values in Information Technology and Digital Media

INFO 5325 3.00

Computing, information technology, and digital media are integrated into all aspects of contemporary life including commerce, finance, education, politics, entertainment, communication, and social life. This project-based course studies these technologies through the lens of social, political, and ethical values investigating whether and how technical systems promote or impede values to which we, individually and as societies, are committed, values, such as liberty, privacy, autonomy, and justice. While we explore concepts and literatures, students will form collaborative groups, select projects and apply philosophical and social theories of technology to analyze and, possibly, design, prototype, and build systems. Ideal project groups will be multidisciplinary and project goals and deliverables will be adjusted to students’ backgrounds and skills.

Virtual and Augmented Reality

CS 5650 3.00

Augmented and virtual reality technologies and applications are becoming increasingly popular. This course presents an introduction to this exciting area, with an emphasis on designing and developing virtual and augmented reality applications. The course will cover the history of the area, hardware technologies involved, interaction techniques, design guidelines, evaluation methods, and specific application areas. Students will be tasked with designing, developing, and evaluating their own augmented or virtual reality application as a course project.

Studio & Interdisciplinary Courses

Becoming a Leader in the Digital World

TECH 5000 1.00

In each class, students focus on building skills needed for effective entrepreneurial leadership in a digital world and build on understanding how to maximize the positive economic, social, and cultural impact of digital businesses and products.

Business Fundamentals

NBAY 5500 1.00

This course is an introduction to fundamental concepts in business management – strategy, finance and financial accounting, marketing, organizational design, operations management, and negotiations – that are crucial knowledge for any entrepreneur and/or product manager. The course will help you learn the ‘language of business,’ and prepare you to take business electives in the near term and to run your own firm or product unit in the not-too-distant future, after you graduate from Cornell Tech. Business Fundamentals is not just economics, psychology, sociology, or mathematics, but draws from all of these disciplines. As a result, some of the concepts may sound familiar to some of you, but we will focus on understanding how they are applied to real-world business problems. In order to do so, we will use business cases and exercises in addition to lectures. Analyzing a case study and the resulting deductive learning will help you think in a different way, and will teach you to be comfortable with ambiguity, uncertainty, and contingencies, which are inevitable realities of business life. The general structure of the course is to introduce core concepts in each business area – strategy, finance/accounting, marketing, organizational design, operations management, and negotiations – through a lecture and a reading and then to apply those concepts in analyzing a custom-written case that draws from current business news.

Designing Disruptive Strategies

NBAY 6010 1.00

Entrepreneurial Finance

NBAY 5300 1.50

This course is designed to introduce students to the challenges and pitfalls of financing new enterprises. The class sessions will combine lectures and cases. The course covers three broad topics: Identifying and valuing opportunities, contract design and financing alternatives, and exit/harvesting strategies.

Law for Non-Lawyers (for non-LLM students)

LAW 6673 1.00

This class introduces the principal legal issues involved in starting, managing and operating a technology-oriented business by entrepreneurs. It is intended to provide non-law students with an understanding of many of the laws and regulations to which developing businesses in the United States tech sector are typically subject—from the time an entrepreneur conceives and begins to build a business, implements a business plan, and obtains financing, to when she begins operations in anticipation of managing a mature company and considering possible exit strategies. The instructor, a former corporate partner in a large New York City law firm, will adopt the role of a general counsel to a start-up company advising his client/students about how laws and regulations affect their businesses at various stages of development, as well as about typical key contractual terms and negotiating strategies. Practicing lawyers will serve as guest lecturers. The course is designed to impart an understanding not only about substantive areas of the law that intersect with tech businesses but also about the role that lawyers should—and should not—play in burgeoning business enterprises. Students will gain insights into how lawyers approach business problems and the benefits and limitations of such a perspective.

Law of FinTech

LAW 6459 2.00

Financial technology, also known as FinTech, is an economic industry composed of companies that use technology to make financial services more efficient. High margins, underserved customers, and accumulated inefficiencies have made the financial services industry a perfect target for entrepreneurs and innovators. This course will dissect emerging business models in alternative lending, equity raising, blockchain technology, crypto-currency, and payment solutions, as well as wealth and financial management services.

Product Management

CS 5093 1.00

This studio-based course helps students learn about and develop product management (PM) skills by putting those abilities immediately to use on their Startup Studio projects. In each session, students learn about a different aspect of product management, product design, or technology development, then practice applying it to their Startup Studio projects, working in the Studio with their project teams and with the help and critique of the practitioner instructors and sometimes visiting practitioners. By the end of the semester, students will have developed and practiced many of the fundamental product management skills required to develop new technology products, and their Startup Studio projects will have greatly benefited from the practice.

Product Studio

TECH 5900 3.00

Product Studio is the foundational studio course for product development at Cornell Tech. Students form semester-long teams and select a “How Might We” question posed by a company. During the semester students learn the basics of product development so they can apply the knowledge and skills from their degree program: identifying impactful problems to solve, product ideation and design, development process, and constructing a meaningful product narrative and complete product loop. Students present their working product, narrative, and thought process four times during the semester, after completing each of three 24-hour “studio sprints” where they will focus on developing their product and a final product presentation at the end of the semester.

Startup & Product Ideas

TECH 5100 1.00

This studio-based course helps students develop their ability to imagine, recognize, develop and improve startup ideas. In each class, students learn a different approach to product ideation or product critique, then practice that approach, working in many different teams — often with the advice of visiting entrepreneurs, VCs, domain experts, and other practitioners. Students invent and explore hundreds of startup ideas, and help each other evaluate and improve those ideas. By the end of the course, students self-organize into co-founding teams around specific startup ideas that they will pursue in Startup Studio the following semester.

Startup Studio

TECH 5910 3.00

In Startup Studio you and a team of your classmates will develop your own new product or startup idea. You’ll experience the entire process, from developing your idea, to prototyping and testing, to pitching to investors. You can even apply for a Startup Award that will provide funding and other support to help you turn your Startup Studio project to a real business.

Technology Transactions

LAW 6893 2.00

This course is designed to familiarize students with common issues that arise in, and how they are addressed by attorneys who structure, technology transactions.