University of Virginia, Department of Computer Science
CS200: Computer Science, Spring 2004

Notes: Friday 16 January 2004

Problem Set 1 Partners
If you submitted a registration survey, your partner for Problem Set 1 is below. For thie assignment only, I have attempted to match up teams of people with no or little previous computing experience with more experienced CS people. It is important as you work on PS1, that both members of a team understand each question.

Chelsea Coleman
Evong Nham
Kristina Hereford
William Ingram
Redcliff Chen
Leah Nylen
Erin Hallissy
Dan Nguyen
Jonathan Carter
Benjamin Walter
Cristina Rabaglia
Debora Wesner
Lincoln Hamilton
Lauren Walker
Michael Manning
Nicole Numbers
Raquel Johnathan
Kathryn Morandi
Preston Gisch
Steven Jo
Henry Cook
Mee Hwang
Seth Kendler
Stephen Sojka
Benjamin Justice
Erika Vogel

Notes and Questions

What is a formal system?

What is the difference between a formal system and a language?

Languages are made of:

When learning a foreign language, which of primitives, means of combination or means of abstraction is hardest to learn?

Who was Admiral Grace Hopper and what did she do?

Compiler: A program that translates between two languages, usually from a high-level programming language to machine code.

What is the difference between a compiler and an interpreter?

Why did John Backus want a precise way of describing languages?


Frankly, we didn't have the vaguest idea how the things would work out in detail... We struck out simply to optimze the object program, the running time, because most people at that time believed you really couldn't do that kind of thing.
John Backus (on FORTRAN language and compiler, quoted in 1966)

"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean - nothing more nor less."
"The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."
"The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master that's all."

Through the Looking Glass — Chapter VI: Humpty Dumpty, Lewis Carroll

Notes: Monday 19 January 2004
In observance of Martin Luther King Day, there is no class on Monday, 19 January (note this is not an official student holiday for UVa, so you should not assume your other classes are canceled). This is not meant to be a "day off" for you, but rather an opportunity for you to use the time you would normally have been in class learning something about Dr. King's visit to the University and UVa's civil rights history.

One way to do this is to follow the links below:

How many schools at UVa are named for commited segregationists? (And why are there no efforts to change their name?)

Did President Casteen handle the Pep Band incident more like President Shannon or President Darden would have?

Thirty years from now, will someone have cause to write a Honor to the Class of 2004-2008 essay? What should it be about?
Using these Materials