Introduction to Computer Science
About

Module: Introduction to Computer Science (CH232)

Semester: Fall 2020

Instructor: Jürgen Schönwälder

TA: Gjoni, Petri

TA: Sota, Henri

TA: Chhetri, Maulik

TA: Paudel, Subigya

TA: Pham, Tuan

TA: Karki, Aabishkar

Class: Tuesday, 11:1512:30 (ICC East Wing)

Class: Friday, 08:1509:30 (ICC West Wing)

Class: Friday, 09:4511:00 (ICC West Wing)

Tutorial: Tuesday, 19:3021:30 (Group A, Petri)

Tutorial: Tuesday, 19:0021:00 (Group B, Henri)

Tutorial: Wednesday, 19:0021:00 (Group C, Maulik)

Tutorial: Wednesday, 16:0018:00 (Group D, Subigya)

Tutorial: Tuesday, 19:0021:00 (Group E, Tuan)

Tutorial: Wednesday, 19:0021:00 (Group F, Aabishkar)

1st Module Exam: TBD

2nd Module Exam: TBD

Office Hours: Monday, 11:1512:30 (Research I, Room 87)

Start: 20200901
Content and Educational Aims
The module introduces fundamental concepts and techniques of computer science in a bottomup manner. Based on clear mathematical foundations (which are developed as needed), the course discusses abstract and concrete notions of computing machines, information, and algorithms, focusing on the question of representation versus meaning in Computer Science.
The module introduces basic concepts of discrete mathematics with a focus on inductively defined structures, to develop a theoretical notion of computation. Students will learn the basics of the functional programming language Haskell because it treats computation as the evaluation of pure and typically inductively defined functions. The module covers a basic subset of Haskell that includes types, recursion, tuples, lists, strings, higherorder functions, and finally monads. Back on the theoretical side, the module covers the syntax and semantics of Boolean expressions and it explains how Boolean algebra relates to logic gates and digital circuits. On the technical side, the course introduces the representation of basic data types such as numbers, characters, and strings as well as the von Neuman computer architecture. On the algorithmic side, the course introduces the notion of correctness and elementary concepts of complexity theory (big O notation).
Intended Learning Outcomes
By the end of this module, students will be able to

explain basic concepts such as the correctness and complexity of algorithms (including the big O notation);

illustrate basic concepts of discrete math (sets, relations, functions);

recall basic proof techniques and use them to prove properties of algorithms;

explain the representation of numbers (integers, floats), characters and strings, and date and time;

summarize basic principles of Boolean algebra and Boolean logic;

describe how Boolean logic relates to logic gates and digital circuits;

outline the basic structure of a von Neumann computer;

explain the execution of machine instructions on a von Neumann computer;

describe the difference between assembler languages and higherlevel programming languages;

define the differences between interpretation and compilation;

illustrate how an operating system kernel supports the execution of programs;

determine the correctness of simple programs;

write simple programs in a pure functional programming language.
Resources
Books

Eric Lehmann, F. Thomson Leighton, Albert R. Meyer: "Mathematics for Computer Science", 2018

David A. Patterson, John L Hennessy: "Computer Organization and Design: The Hardware/Software Interface", 4th edition, Morgan Kaufmann, 2011

Miran Lipovaca: "Learn You a Haskell for Great Good!: A Beginner's Guide", 1st edition, No Starch Press, 2011
Links

Glasgow Haskell Compiler (download ghc from here or use your package manager)

Learn You a Haskell for Great Good! (a book that is also available online)

Haskell: An advanced purely functional programming language (web site about Haskell)

Real World Haskell (a book that is also available online)

Haskell Tutorial (a relatively concise online tutorial)

UNIX Tutorial for Beginners (a tutorial that can be downloaded and done offline)
Schedule
Tu 11:15  Fri 08:15  Topics 

20200901  20200904  Introduction and maze generation algorithms 
20200908  20200911  String search algorithms, complexity and correctness 
20200915  20200918  Mathematical notations and proof techniques 
20200922  20200925  Sets, relations, and functions 
20200029  20201002  Representation of integer and floating point numbers 
20201006  20201009  Representation of characters, strings, date and time 
20201013  20201016  Boolean operations and expressions / practice midterm exam 
20201020  20201023  Boolean algebra and normal forms 
20201027  20201030  Boolean expression minimization and Boolean logic 
20201103  20201106  Logic gates, combinational and sequential digital circuits 
20201110  20201113  von Neuman computer architecture, assembly programming 
20201117  20201120  Interpreter, compiler, operating systems 
20201124  20201127  Software specification and verification 
20201201  20201204  Automated generation of proof goals and termination proofs 
Functional Programming (Haskell)
Fri 09:45  Topics 

20200904  Haskell (ghc, expressions) 
20200911  Haskell (lists) 
20200918  Haskell (characters, strings, tuples, types) 
20200925  Haskell (functions, pattern matching, recursion) 
20201002  Haskell (guards, bindings, case expressions) 
20201009  Haskell (Lambda functions, composition, currying) 
20201016  Practice Midterm Exam 
20201023  Haskell (higher order functions) 
20201030  Haskell (datatypes) 
20201106  Haskell (typeclasses) 
20201113  Haskell (functors, applicative, monads) 
20201120  Haskell (IO monad) 
20201127  Haskell (IO monad) 
20201204  Summary and Outlook 
Assignments
Rules
The final grade is determined by the final exam (100%). In order to sit for the final exam, it is necessary to have 50% of the assignments correctly solved.
Electronic submission is the preferred way to hand in homework solutions. Please submit documents (plain ASCII/UTF8 text or PDF, no Word) and your source code (packed into a zip archive after removing all binaries and temporary files) via the online submission system. If you have problems, please contact one of the TAs.
Late submissions will not be accepted. Assignments may need to be defended in an oral interview. In case you are ill, you have to follow the procedures defined in the university policies to obtain an official excuse. If you obtain an excuse, the new deadline will be calculated as follows:

Determine the number of days you were excused until the deadline day, not counting excused weekend days.

Determine the day of the end of your excuse and add the number of day you obtained in first step. This gives you the initial new deadline.

If the period between the end of your excuse and the new deadline calculated in the second step includes weekend days, add them as well to the new deadline. (Iterate this step if necessary.)
For any questions stated on assignment sheets or exam sheets, we by default expect a reasoning for the answer given, unless explicitely stated otherwise.
Students must submit solutions individually. If you copy material verbatim from the Internet (or other sources), you have to provide a proper reference. If we find your solution text on the Internet without a proper reference, you risk to lose your points. Any cheating cases will be reported to the registrar. In addition, you will lose the points (of course).
Any programs, which have to be written, will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

correctness including proper handling of error conditions

proper use of programming language constructs

clarity of the program organization and design

readability of the source code and any output produced
Source code must be accompanied by a README file providing an overview of the source files and giving instructions how to build the programs. A suitable Makefile is required if the build process involves more than a single source file.
If you are unhappy with the grading, please report immediately (within one week) to the TAs. If you can't resolve things, contact the instructor. Problem reports which come late, that is after the one week period, are not considered anymore.