I will be giving talks about general topics in CS, and want to hit on TCS as well. The talks will be given to K-12 schools, so not all of them will be seniors who may go to an undergraduate program at a university (Note: this question is different than Inspirational talk for final year high school pupils, which only concerns seniors).

I am looking for references/videos/lecture slides/etc. that deal with CS/TCS topics in a general perspective given towards high/middle/lower school students.

The only one I have been able to find so far is this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msp2y_Y5MLE by Michael Sipser on the P vs NP problem. It is interesting, but I want to know if there are other sources that give insight into major CS topics that they + a general audience may not have heard about before.

  • $\begingroup$ I'd like to know from whoever downvoted this question to explain why. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 11, 2014 at 14:52

1 Answer 1


As one of the topics of your lecture, the problems from combinatorics might be good candidates.Generally, a high school student has some conception on permutation, combination and high school geometry. So, following examples illustrates what i mean.

  1. Take arbitary points on plane. Can we always find a line such that the number of points above and below the line is same? If yes, how ?

  2. Take a point set on plane. How can we find the minimum number of points that should be added to the point set such that it contains 4 points forming a square?

etc. Actually, the many problems in combinatorial geometry are even though hard to solve, but since they mainly focuses on points, lines they can act as motivational problems.

  • $\begingroup$ Is 1 just a line regression, or am I mistaken? Also, do you have a reference for 2? Thanks for the suggestions! $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 11, 2014 at 14:54
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The second problem is a problem from codechef.com and the first one is a simple application of median finding (Take the leftmost point and join it to other points to get the $n-1$ lines. Find the line with median slope and that is the desired line). $\endgroup$
    – Dibyayan
    Commented Oct 11, 2014 at 15:10

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