Computer science or computing science (abbreviated CS or CompSci) is the scientific approach to computation and its applications.

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8answers
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What methods are there to avoid a stack overflow in a recursive algorithm?

Question What are the possible ways to solve a stack overflow caused by an recursive algorithm? Example I'm trying to solve Project Euler problem 14 and decided to try it with a recursive algorithm....
80
votes
11answers
7k views

How can I make sure that I'm actually learning how to program rather than simply learning the details of a language? [closed]

I often hear that a real programmer can easily learn any language within a week. Languages are just tools for getting things done, I'm told. Programming is the ultimate skill that must be learned and ...
67
votes
32answers
18k views

What's a nice explanation for pointers? [closed]

In your own studies (on your own, or for a class) did you have an "ah ha" moment when you finally, really understood pointers? Do you have an explanation you use for beginner programmers that seems ...
28
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4answers
12k views

Upcoming Google interview, looking for some preparation advice [closed]

Well I've been hitting the books wherever I can. I have an interview coming up, first one via phone, for a software engineer position. I've read all the blog posts, I've read all the accounts of ...
15
votes
4answers
43k views

Preparing for Interviews [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to prepare yourself for programming interview questions? Could someone give me pointers on how go to about preparing for a technical interview? As a CS graduate, I ...
18
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2answers
1k views

What class of problem is this, and what math do I need to know to solve it?

Mushroom cultivation requires fairly precise chemical composition of substrate (a.k.a. growing medium). Let's pretend we're growing shitakes and that this is the required composition of their ...
83
votes
16answers
13k views

Do the young minds need to learn the pointer concepts?

Why did the C master Dennis Ritchie introduce pointers in C? And why did the other programming languages like VB.NET or Java or C# eliminate them? I have found some points in Google, and I want to ...
29
votes
11answers
21k views

What to do when coding begins to feel boring, like it is all just more of the same? [closed]

I started programming at the age of 6 on a Commodore 64. Now I'm 28, and I have to complete 4 courses from a first degree in Computer Science. I'm starting to get bored with writing code after all ...
23
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17answers
10k views

Is “Computer Science != Software Engineering” an excuse to teach programming poorly?

We've all heard it; whenever there's a discussion about CS grads having poor development skills someone eventually says, Computer science isn't software engineering. The problem that I see is ...
30
votes
6answers
5k views

What is the difference between 'layer of abstraction' and 'level of indirection'?

I am not sure if both terms can be used interchangeably. Maybe there is some academic distinction in computer science which is not relevant for day-to-day programming? Or can I use both term ...
14
votes
6answers
7k views

Why is Perl so heavily used in Bioinformatics? [closed]

What is it about Perl that makes it so useful in Bioinformatics ? Why isn't C++ or Matlab or Python the big language?
9
votes
8answers
2k views

Can a CS degree benefit an older programmer? [closed]

Is there any benefit in getting a CS degree in ones mid 40's career wise? Would the increased likelihood of getting past the HR filter be worth it? It's something I might actually enjoy doing, ...
15
votes
8answers
2k views

Is there a subset of programs that avoid the halting problem

I was just reading another explanation of the halting problem, and it got me thinking all the problems I've seen that are given as examples involve infinite sequences. But I never use infinite ...
23
votes
5answers
2k views

Why are strings so slow?

Ever since my very first programming class in high school, I've been hearing that string operations are slower — i.e. more costly — than the mythical "average operation." Why makes them so ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Switching to a career in Machine Learning [closed]

My day job is plain old software development. I am also doing my Masters in CS (part time, course based). I took a course on AI and found machine learning quite fascinating but like most courses it ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

How does const storage work? (Item 2, Scott Myers Effective C++)

In Item2 on page 16, (Prefer consts, enums, and inlines to #defines), Scott says: Also, though good compilers won't set aside storage for const objects of integer types... I don't understand ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Basic premise on counting sort. How is k related to to Big Oh?

I am reading (Cormen) on counting sort. I understand the structure of the algorithm but the statement: In practice, we usually use counting sort when we have k = O(n), in which case the ...
3
votes
5answers
14k views

How many bits' address is required for a computer with n bytes of memory?

How many bits of address is required (for the program counter for example) in a byte-addressed computer with 512 Mbyte RAM? What does the formula look like? How is this connected with the fact that ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the difference between Quantum annealing and simulated annealing?

In both algorithms objective functions, that will be executed with non quantum computers, are used. Both algorithms are methods for finding the global minimum of a given objective function. From ...
0
votes
1answer
187 views

Generic name for types and values [closed]

In computer science, what is the abstract common name of types and values (I mean an abstract "something" that can be a type or a value) ? To be more specific: If we have template <typename X> ...