Spring 2017

MWF 1:30PM-2:20PM Bagby 111

Professor Tom Valente

Bagby 123 x6210

** email: ** tvalente

MTWR 2:30PM-4:00PM, other times by appointment and by announcement

Foundations Of Computer Science, 2nd Edition by Forouzan and Mosharraf

This is a broad based introduction to computer science, using a hands-on approach to learning. This course has no prerequisites except a willingness to pursue the course objectives.

* Computer Science* is the study of the kinds of problems that computers can solve and how they
actually, in the end, solve them. At the heart of computer science is the notion of

The first part of the course will focus on how the computer, at its lowest levels, actually processes information. We'll learn how all information, regardless of its type (textual, numerical, audio, video) is represented in binary. We'll then learn how a computer's circuits can perform fundamental tasks such as adding two numbers or comparing two numbers.

After we've understood enough about the behavior of the computer at is lowest levels, we'll "zoom out" to think about what a person (i.e. programmer) must do in order to have the computer solve a problem. We'll study algorithms, both how to express them and how to understand whether or not an algorithm can produce answers in a reasonable amount of time. We'll do this by investigating algorithms to solve problems such as sorting a list of numbers or searching a list of names for some desired name.

Of course, an algorithm must expressed as a computer program in order for a computer to execute its instructions. Thus, later in the course, we will look at how computer programming languages have evolved to the ones that are in use today. We'll use a modern high-level programming language to learn about both procedural and object-oriented programming, the latter being particularly important in modern programming.

Finally, we'll investigate one of today's hot issues - that of secure communications. We'll study a couple of modern methods for encoding secret messages (an area known as Cryptography). In doing so, we'll understand once and for all that computers DO have limitations, and that this is not necessarily a bad thing!

In-class Tests (3 in class - Feb 17th, Mar 31st, Apr 21st) | 30% (12-12-6) |

Final Exam (Tuesday May 9th at 2PM) | 25% |

Quizzes | 10% |

Homework | 35% |

Homework 2 Due Monday February 6th

Homework 3 Due Friday February 10th

Homework 4 (to be done in class during week of Feb 13th)

Homework 5 Due Monday February 27th at 1:30PM

Homework 6 Due Monday March 6th at 1:30PM

Homework 7 Due Friday March 10th at 1:30PM

Homework 8 (DOWNLOAD)Due Monday March 27th at 5:00PM

Homework 9 (DOWNLOAD)Due Wednesday April 5th at 5:00PM

Week of Jan 23
Week of Jan 30
Week of Feb 6

Test 1 Study Guide

Week of Feb 20
Week of Feb 27

Mon Mar 6
Wed Mar 8
Fri Mar 10
Mon and Wed Mar 20-22

Test 2 Study Guide (Download)

A Scratchpad for doing basic Javascript programming

Our first day attendance experiment as a Javascript program.

Click here for a simulator that allows us to construct circuits that use the logic operations we learned.

Click here to program the VSC-32 in machine language.

Click here to enter a VSC-32 machine language program in hex.

Assembly Language Programming on the VSC-32