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Secondary Exam Results In India Mean An SMS Flood 244

Posted by timothy
from the what'jdaget-huh-what'jdaget? dept.
syrinje writes "The Times of India reported that Indian high-school seniors who took the exams conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education sent more than a Million SMS messages within a 11 hour period to query the result database and receive detailed examination results. In addition making the results available to cellphone users, the CBSE has also published the results online at a dedicated web-site . Since the results were announced on the weekend, students would otherwise have had to wait for Monday to get their results from their schools. A spokesperson for Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited , one of the operators involved in setting up the SMS result system estimated that they handled 100,000 messages per hour during the day on Sunday and said that "There was no problem in the network due to the heavy SMS traffic and we were able to give subjectwise marks to the students"."
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Secondary Exam Results In India Mean An SMS Flood

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  • by Advocadus Diaboli (323784) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:02AM (#9235607)
    ...if you could get the answers for the exam by SMS during the exam. :-)
    • by Viceice (462967) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:10AM (#9235645)
      you maybe trying to be funny, but i've read that in some places (Indonesia?) that is a problem. Apparently parents who want their children to score well in an exam will hire a syndicate where during the exam, the candidate will be provided with a phone, and the syndicate will obtain a copy of the exam paper and a genius outside will do the exam and sms the answers to the candidate.

      The invigilators and so on are duly paid off.
      • by gl4ss (559668) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:28AM (#9235717) Homepage Journal
        that's not a sms or tech problem at all.
        it's just a bribery/corruption problem.

        if the officials holding the exam are paid off succesfully what does it matter HOW the right answers end up on the cheaters papers?
        • that's not a sms or tech problem at all. it's just a bribery/corruption problem.

          In that particular case, it may be a bribery problem. However, given the ubiquity of phones (or worse: highres camera phones) and smart calculators which can communicate via infra-red, etc., high tech cheating becomes a real problem. Go into exam, discreetly snap highres picture of paper, MMS it to a team of accomplices outside, and get the answer back.

          Or alternatively, enter short message into calculator, point its infrared

          • Most universities (well at least the one I graduated from) would have an approved list of calculators, and you have to get your calculator certified before the exams. Calculators which don't have the ceritification sticker would result in the candidate being asked to leave the hall...

            And last time I checked - I haven't heard of any sel respecting examiner who would allow mobile phones and pagers into his exam hall.
          • "Go into exam, discreetly snap highres picture of paper, MMS it to a team of accomplices outside, and get the answer back."

            but if you could do that you could just as well sneak in the book and read the answers from there. ie, that technique would ONLY work if there was no supervision at all at the exam, so in that kind of environment you could cheat with variety of other techniques like peaking or sneaking in a paper with all the essential stuff.

            *With the number of different phones and different calculato
          • And banning calculators (in a math exam) is even less feasible
            From google search, you can see that in India, calculators are banned in all school exams. You have to use log tables. For college exams, calculators are allowed.

          • And banning calculators (in a math exam) is even less feasible.

            So that's why my parents can't do basic math - there was no math testing back before calculators were available! Sigh. I took calculus through differential equations, and some matrix theory, etc. Not once have I taken a math test that couldn't be done without a calculator (most prohibited it - including the Mathematic-taught math classes). If kids can't do math without a calculator, then they haven't learned enough.

            I also think everyone s
        • I hereby decree all future college exams must be taken in the nude! Especially liberal arts!

          On the other hand, all engineering and comp-sci students are exempt from this ruling. *shudder*
  • Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Loonacy (459630) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:03AM (#9235610)
    That's a lot of work for something that really doesn't matter that much. I mean sure, grades are important, but they're not so important you can't wait until Monday to see your results.
    • Mods on crack again? Someone please enlighten me why the parent is a troll. Honestly, what does 24 hours matter in getting your grades? Very cool use of technology, but the end result isn't all that technologically cool, except from the perspective of volume of messages handled.
    • Re:Wow (Score:3, Interesting)

      by nabil_IQ (733734)
      I took a similar secondary school exam in Iraq. You whole Future (and past) rests on 8 subjects examination. 3 hours per subject, one subject a day.

      if you get high marks, you get into Engineering or Med. school, i.e. big bukcs. If get low marks you get into "community colleges" i.e. no money. I wish we had something like what India has now back then, that would have saved me teh 4 sleepless nights I had when I heared the results are out in 5 days :|

      p.s.: if you are curious, I got 93% in the examinati
    • Re:Wow (Score:3, Insightful)

      by turgid (580780)
      When your acceptance into university depends on your exma grades, there can be many sleepless nights between your final exam and the notification of the results. In my day, they came by post.
    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Informative)

      by manavendra (688020) on Monday May 24, 2004 @05:01AM (#9235833) Homepage Journal
      While this may sound surprising to the western world, kids in India are under tremendous social, parental and peer pressure to perform well in exams, especially the Secondary (high school( exams, and for several reasons:

      1. Your chances of getting even your application considered for admission in any college depend entirely upon the Secondary school results.

      2. The Seconday exam results are seen as a measure of success and dedication of not only the kid, but the parents as well. Unlike the developed countries, it is extremely difficult for anyone to find a job without a college education. There aren't all that many alternative, yet well-paying streams to choose from.

      3. With a population of a billion, competition is fierce over every single seat in every college. There are instances where more than 100 students compete for a single place, and even a tenth of a difference in high-school percentage can make a difference

      4. Parents as well the kids are under pressure to make a showing of their emphasis and sincerity towards education. It is almost unthinkable for a parents that their kid would fail in Secondary - that's virtually a stigma on the entire family.

      And finally, in typical Indian fashion, there are hearty celebrations and distribution of sweets if the kids score well (the definition of "well" means anything over 80 or 85%)
      • And finally, in typical Indian fashion, there are hearty celebrations and distribution of sweets if the kids score well (the definition of "well" means anything over 80 or 85%)

        We East Asians don't stop getting a whippin' until we get over 99%, you insensitive clod! Sweets will come after we score that 1600 on the SATs and make first violin at Juilliard.
      • Heheh, wish I could say that about my brother... dude scored over 80%, and still is in depression; apparently, grade inflation has become pandemic over the years, what with the highest scorer allegedly scoring a freaking 98.4% (AP state board, not CBSE).

        And oh, 1 in 100 is only for "normal" institutions like the IIT's; when I applied to the International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) in Hyderabad some five years back, the ratio was more to the tune of 1 in 2500. :-)

    • Re:Wow (Score:2, Informative)

      by guy-in-corner (614138)

      In the UK, if your 'A' level results are marginal, you might have to apply to a different university than the one you originally applied for. It's called 'clearing'.

      Knowing your results earlier allows you to jump straight into the clearing system, possibly allowing you to grab a place at a better university than if you'd waited until Monday.

    • Re:Wow (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Xenna (37238)
      We've been doing this for 4 years at the Dutch university where I work (in fact I set up the system, not that much work to add to an already web-based system, actually). All students have the option to enter their GSM numbers on their personal webpages. About 2/3 of the registered students take advantage of this.

      We send the messages thru a 3rd party Internet SMS provider for about 10 Eurocents a piece. It costs a few thousand dollars a year but the students are very happy with it because they receive their
    • Not just in India... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by blorg (726186)
      That's a lot of work for something that really doesn't matter that much.

      You are either trolling, or are just unaware of how important final-year school exams can be, and how seriously they are taken. This is the case in many countries throughout the world; it's in no way specific to India or to developing nations.

      Here in Ireland these exams are the most important you will ever do and count as a fairly pivotal point in your life. How many points you get in your final school exams determine what course you
  • I want it. (Score:4, Funny)

    by mphase (644838) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:07AM (#9235627) Homepage
    I would love a service like this for US Colleges. Currently I have to go through various problems with postcards and other bull trying to get grades sooner then a month after the semester ends. Though currently there are some online grade services but not many teachers use them so maybe I should be complaining about the lazy luddite professors.
  • by aralin (107264) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:08AM (#9235633)
    I understand this might be interesting, considering all of them came from the same source, but for a country so large as India it should not really be a big deal, one million SMS. In Czech Republic thats a pretty much a daily standard for one of the three cell networks and thats a country with only 10 million people. Last Christmas there was over 10 million SMS in about one evening. So, what I am trying to say, considering they have about 100 times more people, they should prepare for much larger loads in the future.
  • A billion people (Score:4, Interesting)

    by darnok (650458) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:08AM (#9235636)
    I'm sure IT managers in India must chuckle to themselves when they see discussion of the dreaded "Slashdot effect".

    A one-off hit of 100,000 SMS hits per hour on a site would be newsworthy and probably site-melting just about anywhere else, but in India it's just another day at the office.

    If it isn't already, Indian IT infrastructure should be THE reference testing ground for application scalability and load testing. Doesn't matter if it's systems for voting in elections, distributing exam results, traffic information, drought/flood information - if your system works in India, it's pretty much guaranteed to work anywhere else in the world from a load/stress perspective.
    • Re:A billion people (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 2674 (661934)
      You are absolutely right. I once worked on a project for implementing an SMS service for a portal to check availability of Movie tickets Online and they planed for 50,000 Hits an hour on a friday evening (when the New movies come out) in the City of Bombay. Moreover they were pretty non-chalant about it.
      • by torpor (458)

        Not to put a damper on this India-net-testing-ground concept, but I regularly designed systems for ISP's in the US during the 90's that were intended to experience similar work loads, sometimes even greater.

        At one point, a deployed RADIUS setup for one of my larger network clients was getting 40-50,000 hits an hour, persistently, for weeks on end. I slept pretty well in those days, due to good, balanced, working-order network design. An operational network able to withstand millions of hits per hour was
        • /.'ers are pretty proud of their 'slashdot effect', but in my opinion the only thing that differentiates the /. meltdown from any other meltdown is that /.'ers have worked hard to get the description of the event into a modern, contemporary online vernacular.

          Well, there is another difference. Namely, that the slashdot effect strikes without warning, often on unprepared sites. I have no doubt that it's easy to design something from the ground up to get much more traffic than a slashdotting will give. Indee
    • This is a valid point, which Car companies have picked up long before IT.. If your car can withstand high temperature ranges (-10 degrees C in Kashmir to 52 degrees C in plain - I can't be bothered to convert to Fahrenheit, DIY), deal with some really awful roads and traffic, still manage to not bust your suspension, blow your radiator and keep the a/c cooling, you've got a winner. So even though most Indians can't afford BMW SUVs, or the Porsche Cayenne (it's being relaesed this month in India), they are s
  • by dominux (731134) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:13AM (#9235658) Homepage
    SMS =160 chars max *100,000 messages per hour *11 hours 176,000,000 bytes /11 /60 /60 =4444 bytes per second *8 =35555 bits per second = about the speed of a modem.
    • There's actually a bit more to SMS than that. Sending a message is more like:

      Submit request: = 300 or so bytes (max message length with latest protocol (3.4) is 254 characters, not 160). With optional parameters the request will bulk up even more since a TLV requires a minimum of 4 bytes per use.

      Submit response: Can be up to 81 bytes with the id assigned to the message.

      If delivery receipts are supported and requested, you can expect yet another message from the remote that is a receipt that the origina
  • I've been out to India twice for business trips (mostly in Bangalore) and you cant help noticing the contrast between the rich and educated in the tech industries and the incredibly poor people in the same city. Of course there are a lot of inbetween people as well, but the contrast between the extremes is scary.

    Considering a mobile phone is an expensive bit of kit (if you get it "free" you pay for it over a few years on calls) you have to wonder if most people can afford a mobile phone.

    • Not until an year ago. But last year, when Reliance launched their CDMA services, they made sure that *anybody* could buy one. Since then, Reliance have added 40 million subscribers. And thats in just one year. They were offereing LG/Samsung CDMA handset for Rs. 500/- which would be ~ 12 USD. Offcourse, their air-time usage charge was also *very low*. An CDMA to CDMA call would cost you Rs. 0.40 per minute. That could be less than 1 cent.

      • Wow. I thought we only used CDMA here in the 'states. GSM is a growing market, but none of the GSM providers (the largest being AT&T/Cingular) has the coverage that the largest CDMA provider (Verizon) has. Do they use CDMA in India due to the size of the country?
    • Answer to your header - yes. They can.
      Expensive bit of kit? The cheapest mobile phone is available for US$50 in India. But if you buy it thru the commitment plans, you pay nothing for it. How is that expensive? Get opver the fucking contrast. There are 1 billion people living in India. There are lots of poor people, and there are lots of rich.
    • Well, many vegetable-sellers* (the kind who have little push-carts full of vegetables) have cellphones now, so do many auto-rickshaw [google.com] drivers.

      Do most poor farmers have cellphones? Nope. As you pointed out, the extremes in India are astonishing. I believe this can be best explained by the fact that a lot of India is uneducated, has a feudal mindset, and believes that suffering is their destiny in life (Karma, however we use it on /., is not a joke to most Indians).

      That said, there are _lot_ of vegetable sel
    • Isn't it absolutely predictable to see this kind of a comment on any technology news coming out of India?!

      For your information, every month, roughly 1.5 million new subscribers are added to the mobile phone user base in India which was about 28 million in December last year.

      Till about a year or two ago, there was a definite urban-rural divide in terms of mobile phone usage. This was mostly due to the fact that the mobile phone market had only a few private operators who used to charge exorbitant rates in
  • India... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Viceice (462967) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:16AM (#9235673)
    There seems to be a lot of talk about India on SlashDot lately. Are the editors being outsourced there too?
    • There seems to be a lot of talk about India on SlashDot lately. Are the editors being outsourced there too?

      If so, it could only improve the editors' grammar.

  • by arvindn (542080) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:21AM (#9235691) Homepage Journal
    She got her results from the website, there was no problem. Which surprised me, since results websites are usually "slashdotted" when the resutls are announced.

    Incidentally

    http://uptime.netcraft.com/up/graph?site=cbseresul ts.nic.in

    cbseresults.nic.in was running Microsoft-IIS on Windows 2000 when last queried at 24-May-2004 08:16:18 GMT

    *sigh*

    This year, election [slashdot.org] result updates were also available through SMS.

  • Way off the record! (Score:5, Informative)

    by dnnrly (120163) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:21AM (#9235695)
    New Year 2003/4 in the UK, 111 MILLION SMSs were sent between midnight 31 December and midnight 1 January, an average of 4.625 million/hour. In reality the first couple of minutes around 37.2 million were sent.

    See here [bbc.co.uk] for details.
    • Informative? You're talking about a different record.

      Your link was about the number of SMSs sent.

      The story is about the number of SMSs sent to (and handled by) a single SMS server.
      • Regardless, you have to realize that a SMS service that can handle 100K messages in a single hour could be written in VB script. Any way you look at it this is truly not news.
    • As the article you link to also pointed out, this just about wrecked the mobile phone network in london for a few hours. I happened to be there and tried to call someone, no chance... even SMS arrived hours later...
  • Too Open (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:26AM (#9235713)
    If you go to the page, and click on exam results, you can enter a roll number.

    Roll numbers starting with 12 seem to work, and in less than a minute I had the results of 5 students. Complete names, grades, pass/fail status.

    This would never fly in the US. There are laws against the publication of this type of data (apparently)
    • Re:Too Open (Score:2, Insightful)

      1. So u have their names. What can YOU do with that? Publish it on the internet?
      2. Pass/Fail status..hmmm... I think most students would be able to figure out if their friends/enemies made it into the next grade, without the help of this website.... As for future prospective employers, you have to provide your original certificates to them anyway.
      Finally, there's a disclaimer on the site saying they're not responsible for any typos, and this site should not taken as the final Word on your grades. Anybody
      • Re:Too Open (Score:3, Insightful)

        by dedazo (737510)
        So u have their names.

        It's "you", not "u".

        What can YOU do with that?

        Take a wild guess as to what I can do with all this [slashdot.org]. Ever heard of social engineering?

        I could care less, but for someone who is in India it might prove rather useful.

        • Re:Too Open (Score:2, Insightful)

          I am in India. New Delhi, in fact. I know Manvendra Singh passed his Exam. I don't know which Manvendra Singh, I don't know where he lives in all India, I don't know what he looks like. And to a non-Indian, you don't even know if it's a He or a She. I would really like to know, What can I do with the information given?
          • You're being a bit naive, I think. With that level of information, a determined person could identify one individual, contact them and use their knowledge about their family for social engineering purposes - "Hi, I'm a friend of your father Manmohan, he needs you to meet him at such and such a place/send 10000Rs to this address/etc"

            You may not be interested, but that doesn't mean potential criminals aren't.

            Besides the danger of fraud, a lot of people might not want everyone else in the world to know their
    • Re:Too Open (Score:5, Informative)

      by thodu (530182) on Monday May 24, 2004 @06:26AM (#9235994)
      You are right. It is a privacy issue. But, here, in India, traditionally, the entire spreadsheet of all students is put up in a public place in the institute (college, school, board, wherever) for all to see. Therefore, it is not a big issue for somebody who has grown up here.
  • by Rurouni Joe (772302) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:34AM (#9235737)
    Below is a link to a story of teenager who commited suicide after receiving an sms telling her she had failed, when in reality she had passed. It just goes to show the pressures some of these teenagers face in India today.

    news.com.au [news.com.au]
  • Drawbacks (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gokulpod (558749) <gpoduval AT hotmail DOT com> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:48AM (#9235792) Homepage
    Just so that we don't get all gung ho over the news, here's a very sad story. [news.com.au]. A girl committed suicide when she got a result over SMS that she had failed. She had in fact passed the exams.
    • we still have to remember that teenage girls, particularly in the nation's south, have one of the highest suicide rates for any demographic in this part of the world.

      Sad, seriously sad.

  • by jpatokal (96361) * on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:50AM (#9235798) Homepage
    This is newsworthy more from a societal than a technological point of view. 100,000 messages per hour (=27 msg/s) is chicken feed for your typical SMSC, which usually measure traffic in hundreds of SMSes per second. There are even SMS bulk delivery tools that plug directly into SS7 and claim a throughput of 20,000 messages per second [bmdwireless.com]. Working in the industry myself (at a competitor, mind you) I'm a little skeptical about this particular claim, but I do know that there are SMSC networks out there capable of handling sustained loads of several thousand msg/s.

    But it's neat anyway. Then again, I thought it was pretty nifty to be able to call me university's automated service and get my results via phone 10 years ago... although I'm sure that little wait between "You have..." and "passed" was put there on purpose!.

    Cheers,
    -j.

    • Working in the industry myself (at a competitor, mind you) I'm a little skeptical about this particular claim

      Working in the industry myself, and not for your competitor, mind you, I can tell you to drop the skepticism. A handful of newer dual proc boxes on a decent pipe will hit those numbers easily. The only real challenge is in the bandwidth - SMPP is a little on the chubby side.
      • Working in the industry myself, I'm trying to find phones which work with North American GSM frequencies and supports GSM 03.42 (or whatever its called nowadays) Huffman Compression for interoperability testing.

        Anybody know of any?
    • 27 msg/s

      My SMS skills suck so much I'm lucky to get 1 msg per 27 seconds!
  • Some more details? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I think this might have been more interesting on Slashdot if we could have gotten some more details. What systems and programming languages did they use? What development methodologies? What unique problems did they face and how did they solve them?

    That would have been an interesting read (and a sure way to start "my language is better than yours" flamewars ;)

    This headline trivia is just...meh.

    Incidentally, I was involved in a project dealing with SMS processing. It was the worst thing I have ever seen.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:59AM (#9235824)
    Browsing the site I came across a results page:
    http://cbseresults.nic.in/class12/cbse12.as p
    it asks for a 7 digit number, and within 3 attempts i found a working one: 1228540
    Roll No: 1228540
    Name:
    SREEJA SURENDRAN
    Mother's Name: BHARATHI SURENDRAN
    Father's Name: SURENDRAN NAIR

    and from their i can continue harvesting information and school scores for my devilish purposes:
    Roll No: 1228539
    Name:
    SNIGDHA THAKUR
    Mother's Name: BITHI THAKUR
    Father's Name: RAVINDRA NATH THAKUR
    I guess privacy isn't that big of an issue to them
    • That second one is interesting since the father's name is pretty much Rabindranath Tagore. I wonder if it's fake. Ravi
      • 'Thakur' is a caste name, a feudal caste of landowners in northern India. In places such as Bihar, trouble between old money castes such as this and the (so-called) lower castes often lead to rioting and massacres; the outlawed "private army", the Ranbir Sena, is often seen as a ragtag band of armed Thakurs and Bhumihars desperate to cling to political and societal power that was once theirs.

        I probably over evil-ised Thakurs :-), which certainly wasn't my intention, I have a lot of Thakur friends, but just

    • Trust me, as an Indian, I probably should be more paranoid about details like this than you international folk. Consider this:- a google search for my surname, for instance, results exactly 20 hits. 18 of them are about me.

      It's probably not an issue for surnames mentioned here (Malayali and North Indian respectively), but for ethnicities such as mine, I believe surname privacy is a very serious issue, and it's time gov.in does something about securing access.

  • This is slightly OT, but everybody's talking about how little bandwidth these messages actually take up.

    My question is, why do SMS's cost so damned much? For a max of 160 bytes of data, the phone companies charge an unbelievable amount! It's something like a tenth of a second worth of voice traffic, but they're not priced accordingly. Is there a technical reason for this or, (more likely) are the phone companies just money-grubbing rat bastards?
    • they cost for few reasons..
      first, the profit.
      second, if they cost nothing people would use them for data loggers and stuff like that for which it doesn't work very well(unnecessary big network loads.. and yes, people did abuse this already here when there were unlimited sms's on some carriers for a while, now there's some 1000 sms monthly limits on their flat price sms subscriptions).

  • by Vertex Operator (100854) on Monday May 24, 2004 @06:12AM (#9235964) Homepage
    Go to

    http://cbseresults.nic.in/class12/cbse12.htm

    Enter 1200003

    GRADE
    301 ENGLISH CORE 087 A1
    041 MATHEMATICS 095 A1
    042 PHYSICS 097 A1
    043 CHEMISTRY 095 A1
    044 BIOLOGY 097 A1
    500 WORK EXPERIENCE --- A2
    502 PHY & HEALTH EDUCA --- A2
    503 GENERAL STUDIES --- A2

    Can anyone find another Indian that beats my
    Indian?
  • Education In India (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nate nice (672391) on Monday May 24, 2004 @06:42AM (#9236034) Journal
    I've talked to some Indian friends of mine in school about what school is like in India. It's a whole different game there. You basically have 3 options; engineering, business and "other". You don't want to end up in the other part. You must be an engineer (computer programmer et all) or business person and it all rides on your grades. I asked about people interested in art and other similar topics and going to college for something like that just is not an option. In fact they don't have those degress really.

    They would talk about how it is not fun at all but is the way it is. Hell, being a teacher or professor is actually looked down upon, it's amazing.

    My problems with this approach is it seems like people get very 1-dimensional educations and are not put into fields they are good at. Creativity is pushed aside and it's only about numbers. But then again, the "best" wil get through. I think as far as outsourcing goes, this has to be looked at. They really do have a lot of people, and I mean a lot, going for the type of software engineering and IT jobs many of us are looking for.

    • It's the same in developed countries like Finland. We produce the largest number of university-educated engineers per population in the world, IIRC. Top executives are often engineers too. If you graduate with an arts degree you go straight on the dole.

      The cause is the economization of society, and on a larger scale it's globalization. The government measures everything in terms of efficiency.

      It's kind of sad because when you have a society going through changes such as economic growth and transformation
    • Well, in net terms, India still churns out more Arts grads than science/engin grads; in fact, policymakers here often point to places like Ireland and keep telling us how we need to actually increase the percentage of tech grads. (60% of all fresh Irish grads are apparently sci/tech types, compared to the 25 - 30% that we have currently).

      The reason why tech grads have more visibility (and hype) than arts grads is because the number of good engineering schools is more than the number of good Arts schools. S

  • by patrixx (30389) on Monday May 24, 2004 @07:00AM (#9236100)
    Better to have a field on the exam (or in a student directory service) where you can enter a cellphone number. When there is a score to report, the database atomatically sends an sms to that number.
    Saves all the hazzle with a SMS-query interface.
    We have a system like this in Sweden. Works perfect.
  • I heard a girl killed herself because she got an SMS saying she had failed. She had actually passed.
  • by s0ny (703153) on Monday May 24, 2004 @08:33AM (#9236619)
    According to the Herald Sun, one 17 year old student killed herself after the computers sent her the wrong sms telling her that'd she'd failed while she'd in fact past [news.com.au]. (sorry a repost because my a href didnt work properly)
    • telling her that'd she'd failed while she'd in fact past. (sorry a repost because my a href didnt work properly)

      Well you fixed your HREF but your spelling seems to suffered for it. The cosmic balance is restored ;-)
  • by ErichTheRed (39327) on Monday May 24, 2004 @10:27AM (#9237582)

    If these are end-of-high school exams, no wonder the Indians are taking all of the technical jobs! The amount of math and science knowledge they're expected to have is amazing compared to what it is here. Take a look at the New York regents exam content and compare it to the samples on the Indian website:

    http://www.nysedregents.org/testing/hsregents.ht ml

    When I have a kid, I'm turning it into an education robot...it will do nothing but study from pre-school onward. It's the only way for us to stay competitive.

    • If these are end-of-high school exams, no wonder the Indians are taking all of the technical jobs!

      I checked out the sample exams (math and science) and they basically look like hybrids of the SAT/ACT and Advanced Placement tests.

      You can't really compare them to state tests. State tests are written with a much lower standard in mind, because the purpose of state tests is to measure whether students are learning the basic parts of the state cirriculum. Most students (should?) score very high on these exa

  • by bobbabemagnet (247383) on Monday May 24, 2004 @11:04AM (#9237899)
    The GRE is the standard test for admission to graduate school. There is a lot of pressure surrounding this test, as well. But rather than having to wait to get our results, we know exactly what we got at the very end for two of the three sections (the third section is writing, and it takes a few weeks before we find out).

    It seems to me that this method is way better than having to distribute based on some centralized service.

    Also, competition for graduate school is just as bad as in India. I applied to two schools only to find out that over 3000 had applied to a school that was only accepting 100. If you don't have the numbers, they won't even look at the application.
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