lecture1

lecture1 - David Evans http://www.cs.virginia.edu/ev ans...

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Unformatted text preview: David Evans http://www.cs.virginia.edu/ev ans cs1120 Fall 2009 University of Virginia Computer Science Class 1: Class 1: I ntr oduction I ntr oduction 2 What is Computer Science ? 3 Let AB and CD be the two given numbers not relatively prime. It is required to find the greatest common measure of AB and CD . If now CD measures AB , since it also measures itself, then CD is a common measure of CD and AB . And it is manifest that it is also the greatest, for no greater number than CD measures CD . Euclid’s Elements, Book VII, Proposition 2 (300BC) 4 The note on the inflected line is only difficult to you, because it is so easy. There is in fact nothing in it, but you think there must be some grand mystery hidden under that word inflected ! Whenever from any point without a given line, you draw a long to any point in the given line , you have inflected a line upon a given line. Ada Byron (age 19), letter to Annabella Acheson (explaining Euclid), 1834 5 By the word operation, we mean any process which alters the mutual relation of two or more things, be this relation of what kind it may. This is the most general definition, and would include all subjects in the universe... Supposing, for instance, that the fundamental relations of pitched sounds in the science of harmony and of musical composition were susceptible of such expression and adaptations, the engine might compose elaborate and scientific pieces of music of any degree of Ada Byron, 1843 6 What is the difference between Euclid and Ada? “It depends on what your definition of ‘is’ is.” ( Bill Clinton) 7 Geometry vs. Computer Science • Geometry (mathematics) is about declarative knowledge: “what is” If now CD measures AB , since it also measures itself, then CD is a common measure of CD and AB • Computer Science is about imperative knowledge: “how to” 8 Computer Science “How to” knowledge: • Ways of describing information processes (computations) • Ways of predicting properties of information processes • Ways of executing information processes Language Logic What kinds of things do we want to predict?...
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This note was uploaded on 02/18/2010 for the course CS 150 taught by Professor Humphreys,g during the Fall '08 term at UVA.

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lecture1 - David Evans http://www.cs.virginia.edu/ev ans...

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