What-Is-CS - What is computer science? Computer science is...

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What is computer science? Computer science is concerned with information. Much as physics is concerned with matter and energy or biology is concerned with living organisms, the practice of computer science is grounded by its inherent and intimate involvement with information. Other disciplines certainly use information as well. Biologists capture information about the DNA structure of genomes which can be described in a simple four letter alphabet. Engineers often use information-based modeling tools to help understand and design mechanical or electrical artifacts. Even artists use information in creating novel works of digital art. However, computer science is distinctive in that information is the object of its study while information in other disciplines is important, but secondary. For example, while a biologist uses the information about a genome’s DNA, the biologist’s focus is on the genome and its properties, not on the information and its properties. Representing and manipulating information are two key activities in computer science. Representation is important because information cannot be computed about until it has been made manifest in a concrete form. Three important aspects of representing information are modeling, data structuring, and displaying. Modeling concerns what information is being represented, how the pieces of information are related to each other, and how the information may change under different circumstances. A great deal of creativity and, often, experience is needed to determine the “right” model of information in a given situation. Creativity is required to guarantee that the information model has fidelity (corresponds to what is being modeled), is minimal (does not contain extraneous elements), is complete (does not ignore an essential aspect). Data structuring concerns
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What-Is-CS - What is computer science? Computer science is...

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