CSCI 112 Fall 2016
Exploring Computer Science
Archived Class
Charles Cusack
Computer Science
Hope College



CSCI 112
CSCI 125


Homework 1

General Comments

  • Problem from the book are taken from the Chapter Review Problems sections.
  • For full credit, provide context for each problem, show all calculations, and explain your work/answers.
  • Numbers and/or algebra by themselves are not enough.
  • You will lose a significant amount of credit if you do not show enough work/context for your answers.
  • Homework assignments must be very neatly written or typeset (e.g. using Word or OpenOffice).


  1. Answer the following questions based on the course website. For each one, specify which link on the left you clicked to get the information. For instance, your answer for one might be:
          e. Certainly (Gradebook)
    Each question is worth 1/2 point. (10 points)
    1. How many assignments can you turn in late? What is the penalty?
    2. What percentage of your grade are exams? What percent is each exam?
    3. When are my office hours?
    4. If you can't come to my office hours, what is the best way to find a time to meet with me?
    5. Is one of the topics of coverage for the course Networks?
    6. Can you tell exactly what grade you got on any assignment in the course at any time?
    7. What grade will you get if your final percentage in the course is 86?
    8. What is due on Wednesday, September 7, and at exactly what time(s)?
    9. Will I give extra credit assignments to students who are not performing well in the course?
    10. How many of the Questions & Answers do you need to complete for each section? Do you turn them in?
    11. Can you listen to your iPod or send a text message when you are in the classroom?
    12. What percentage of your final grade is the third paper worth?
    13. How many papers will you submit to me this semester?
    14. How many problems are on Homework 9?
    15. If you need help during the evening hours, are there any options?
    16. How many points is Homework 12 worth? What about Homework 14? Which one of these counts more toward your final grade?
    17. When is the Midterm exam?
    18. Can you take the Midterm on a day other than what is specified?
    19. Is reading the textbook optional? Explain.
    20. Can homework be hand written?

  2. What is computer science? (20 points)

    The purpose of this assignment is to try to give you a good start to understanding what computer science is by asking you to give a clear definition of what it is based on what those in the field think it is. The audience you are writing for is the general public—that is, assume the reader has no knowledge of computer science or any of the terminology.

    Give a clear and complete definition of computer science, making sure to define any terms you use (information, computation, computing system, etc.). You should find, modify, or create a definition that makes perfect sense to you. In other words, do not just use the "dictionary" definition if it does not make sense to you. Either modify it so it makes more sense, further clarify it so it makes sense, or look for other definitions.

    A good format for your answer would be a one sentence definition followed by one or more paragraphs further clarifying your definition. If you use this format, you may quote your one sentence definition from one of your sources if you find a definition you think is clear and complete. Make sure you include your definition as a quote so it is clear that it is not your definition, and cite the source. Then provide a clarification of the definition by defining any vague terms and giving further explanation as needed.

    Use your textbook, Wikipedia (If it's on Wikipedia, it has to be true!), Google, a dictionary, the library, and any other source of information you can think of to find the best definition you can. In fact, it might be helpful to get definitions from multiple sources and merge them into one definition.

    Your answer should be no longer than one page (and no shorter than half a page), and must be typeset. (That is, it may not be hand written.) You should have at least three different sources (the textbook counts), and make sure to cite all of your sources!

    Follow the guidelines given on the Project page for citing and listing references.

    Grades will be based on the Paper Grading Criteria 2.0.