Skip to main content

Mark Miller

Facilitator - San Francisco

Contact

Office Location

600 California St.
San Francisco, CA

Mailing Address

Northeastern University
ATTN: Mark Miller, 600 California Street
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115-51000

Research Interests

  • Computer science education

Education

  • PhD in Artificial Intelligence and Education, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • BS in Psychology and Applied Physics and Information Science, University of California San Diego

Biography

Mark Miller founded Learningtech.org, incorporating it as nonprofit The Miller Institute for Learning with Technology, in March 2000. He serves as its lead technical contributor, as well as president and executive director. The mission of the organization is to help children of all ages use technology more effectively for learning. The firm has helped schools throughout California and several other states. Services include e-rate applications; technology plan preparation; professional development relating to computer science, robotics, and making; IT consultation (network design; server/router configuration/administration; technology impact assessment); and sponsored research in the areas of educational technology and computer science education.

Before founding the institute, Miller served as lab director for learning and tools at Apple, where he spent almost a decade heading up educational technology investigations. Apple programs under his direction included Apple Classrooms of Tomorrow, Apple Global Education, Visualization and Simulation, Business Learning and Performance Support, and Multimedia Authoring Tools.

Miller’s experience includes Texas Instruments’ Central Research Labs, where he established its widely recognized machine intelligence research program, emphasizing educational applications, expert systems, and natural language processing. Miller later co-founded Computer*Thought Corporation in Dallas, a high-tech Texas Instruments spin-off backed by venture capital. At the corporation, he led the design of an advanced instructional system to retrain software engineers for the Ada programming language then being implemented for the International Space Station.

Miller’s teaching experience includes the University of Texas, where he taught Introduction to Artificial Intelligence; Survey of Knowledge Engineering; Design and Implementation of Programming Languages; Compilers, Assemblers, and Operating Systems; Software Engineering Using Ada; and Discrete Structures. He also supervised successful MS and PhD candidates at UT and Southern Methodist University. While at MIT, he served as both research assistant and teaching assistant in the Department of Electrical Engineering and the Artificial Intelligence and LOGO Laboratories.

Miller has also taught high school mathematics and other topics at K-12 schools, community colleges, and county offices of education. He developed and co-delivered a high school CS elective that received UC G approval for use at multiple campuses of Summit Public Schools. Miller is working on a journal article with a half dozen pioneers which is in review for ACM SIGPLAN’s History of Programming Languages journal. The article describes the early development of Logo, the highly influential programming language for children made famous by Seymour Papert in “Mindstorms: Children, Computers, and Powerful Ideas.” Miller worked with Papert at MIT and Texas Instruments, and some of Miller’s contributions are mentioned in the end notes of Papert’s seminal publication.

Miller currently serves as vice president of the Silicon Valley chapter of the Computer Science Teachers Association.

About Mark

Where did you grow up?

I lived in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, until halfway through high school. I finished high school in Coronado, California, and attended University of California San Diego for undergraduate work. My wife and I then moved to Boston for graduate school.

What are the specifics of your educational background?

As a high school student in 1967, I was fortunate enough to attend an NSF summer program emphasizing mathematics and computing at San Diego State University. I was hooked! From that point onward, I knew this emerging field would become my career. I was further fortunate enough to study as an undergraduate with Don Norman in the early days of what is now called cognitive science. He encouraged me to read “Perceptrons” by Marvin Minsky and Seymour Papert, after which I knew I must do my graduate work at MIT, in the AI and Logo Labs.

What are your research interests?

My research focus is on how to bring computer science education to all. I have long believed that artificial intelligence should be an elementary school subject.

What courses do you teach?

Currently teaching CS5003 and CS5005.

What do you enjoy most or find most rewarding about what you teach?

I am teaching in the Align program. Students typically work full-time during the day while studying computer science three nights per week. I find their energy and enthusiasm inspiring. I hope I can inspire them to continue their studies, despite the challenges they must face.

What are the specifics of your industry experience?

I have worked at large corporations (Texas Instruments, Apple), think tanks (BBN), startups (Computer*Thought) and a nonprofit (Learningtech.org). I love consulting, teaching, and research. My industry experience has primarily involved research in educational technology. I am listed on a few patents.