CS1800 Fall 2013
Overview
The Course Web Site
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http://www.ccs.neu.edu/course/cs1800/13F/
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http://www.ccs.neu.edu/course/cs1800/13FHON/
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Make one of these a favorite.
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Check the site regularly for announcements.
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Send me an email if you think something is wrong.
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I’ll try to fix it.
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online and at the bookstore:
Discrete Structures
by Harriet Fell and
Javed
Aslam
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and handouts
http://www.ccs.neu.edu/course/cs1800/13F/handouts.html
Text
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Do you think that you know most of the
material in this course?
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Try the on

line homework to see how much
you do know.
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Let me know if you would like to take an exam
to get out of this course.
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If you get the waiver, you will not get course
credit but you can take an extra elective.
Waiver Exam
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CS and IS are hard

but rewarding.
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They are not just programming

but
programming is very important.
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They both involve solving problems with
computers.
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Most CS departments came out of math or
engineering.
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Our college was started by 6 math department
faculty members.
Why Discrete Structures?
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Specific skills (e.g., Perl syntax)
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General knowledge (e.g., how to program)
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Analytical thinking (e.g., problem solving)
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Some CS/IS courses are more heavily weighted
toward the top of this list (e.g., course focused on
a specific programming language).
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Some CS/IS courses are more heavily weighted
toward the bottom of this list.
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CS1800 is weighted toward the bottom.
What do we study in CCIS?
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In CCIS, we will teach you how to solve
problems with computers.
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You will learn to be rigorous, analytical
thinkers and problem solvers.
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If all you learned was Excel syntax, you would
be a lousy computer scientist.
Furthermore,
when Excel++ comes out (hypothetically), you
would be out of a job...
CCIS continued
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How to *think*
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How to *solve* problems (in any language or
computational domain)
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How to *teach yourself*,
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so that when new technologies & techniques
become available, you can learn to use them.
Our goal in CS1800 and CS2500
is to teach you
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We will sometimes, if not often, give you
problems to solve which we have not
specifically told you how to solve (though we
will have given you the general techniques).
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This is by design, not by accident.
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You must learn how to "learn on your own.”
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What is a corollary?
Corollary
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Employers will love you.
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CCIS students are often hired for jobs which
seemingly have nothing to do with CCIS
courses (e.g., consulting, Wall street financial
analysis, etc.).
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Why?
Employers want rigorous, analytical
thinkers who can learn and solve problems.
Consequence
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hardware/circuits
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Boolean algebra
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programming languages
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lambda calculus (Racket)
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Turing machines (imperative languages)
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algorithmic analysis
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proof,
combinatorics
, etc.
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databases
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sets and relations
Much of CS and IS is based on
mathematics
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search engines and information retrieval
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probability and statistics
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algorithms
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graphics and game design
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pattern representations
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geometric algorithms
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bioinformatics
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algorithms on sequences and strings
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counting and probability
More Math in CS and IS
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big data
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statistics, algorithms
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networks
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graphs and graph algorithms
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human computer interaction (HCI)
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algorithms
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experimental design
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statistical analysis
even More Math in CS and IS
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