I'm developing a big data algorithms course, and would love to teach students how to use IBM's InfoSphere streams platform, which I once used years ago. Does anyone have experience reaching out to companies like IBM to request a version for academic purposes? First I'd need a version for me to play with and develop course materials, then maybe one for students (perhaps at a discounted price) to learn during the course. I've poked around IBM's website, but can't find any clear "contact us" email address. Hoping someone here can suggest a way forward. Thanks!

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    $\begingroup$ So you are to teach you pupils to be customers. After Graduation, they won't be able to use the product that they learn, unless them become a customer (Same is true for Microsoft, Apple, Google, but you should consider it anyway). $\endgroup$ Jun 4, 2019 at 22:22
  • $\begingroup$ Well, I did ask months ago on this platform for a free alternative. But no one was able to come up with one. $\endgroup$ Jun 5, 2019 at 2:39

1 Answer 1


This is a question to ask on the SIGCSE mailing list. A member there was primarily an educator and now works as a sort of liaison to the SIGCSE community. She will probably respond to such a question.

I suspect that they still have grants available that, with some work on your part, might solve your needs. You might need to write up a research proposal, of course. Easy? Maybe no. Possible? Maybe yes.

  • $\begingroup$ If they count pedagogical research as research then it would be easy. Can you remember which SIGCSE member you're referring to? I'm not a SIGCSE member (I'm a PhD mathematician who teaches CS at my SLAC), so not sure if I can write to the mailing list, but I could write her directly. If you don't want to share in the comments here, you could always email me. My email address is in my profile. Thanks! $\endgroup$ Jun 3, 2019 at 23:08
  • $\begingroup$ If Prof Havill is still chair of your department, ask him. He is a member and subscribed to the list. $\endgroup$
    – Buffy
    Jun 4, 2019 at 0:08
  • $\begingroup$ I'm trying to maintain my anonymity and also not give information without permission. A bit delicate. And I think pedagogical research would be a good possibility. $\endgroup$
    – Buffy
    Jun 4, 2019 at 0:14
  • $\begingroup$ He's on sabbatical. I think Tom Bressoud is a SIGCSE member too. $\endgroup$ Jun 4, 2019 at 1:50
  • $\begingroup$ Actually, if you are teaching CS you should consider joining SIGCSE. It is very inexpensive and doesn't require also joining ACM, the parent organization. $\endgroup$
    – Buffy
    Jun 4, 2019 at 12:43

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