Computer Science 333:
Thanks to everyone for really fine presentations. By the way, the somewhat older generation sitting in the back row was mostly community auditors from various of my courses. Most of them have technical backgrounds in computing, and they have often had significant managerial roles as well. When they say that they are really impressed with your work, it means something.
Now all that's left is the final submission: final submission information.
Lecture notes: 2/6 2/8 2/13 2/15 2/20 2/22 2/27 3/1 3/6 3/8 3/13-15 3/27 4/3 4/5 4/10 4/12 4/17 4/19 4/24 4/26 5/1 5/3
Assignments:   1   2   3   4   5
Project: preliminary description (2/6) planning and organization (2/20) previous projects comments from previous projects potential external projects design document template authentication code SVN help file Project groups and TA assignments Demo information (4/10, updated 5/1) Demo schedule
Readings: general bibliography language tutorials Epigrams on Programming original 02/57 Fortran paper John Backus obituary O'Reilly: Web 2.0 Spolsky: software frameworks McIlroy: Virology 101 Dave Touretzky's Gallery of CSS Descramblers
Old stuff: Newsgroup playlist Python challenge web page techniques assignment 5 hints Fall 07 registrar data
Dates: All dates are subject to minor changes.
S M Tu W Th F S Feb 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 first class 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 assignment 1 due; preliminary project info 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 assignment 2 due 25 26 27 28 Mar 1 2 3 assignment 3 due 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 assignment 4 due 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 assignment 5 due; project proposal due this week 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 spring break 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 first TA meeting Apr 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 project prototype 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 alpha test 29 30 May 1 2 3 4 5 last class; beta test 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 project presentations 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 Dean's date; project due 20 21 22 23 24 25 26
This is a course about the practice of programming, an attempt to expose students to the development of real programs. Programming is more than just writing code. Programmers must also assess tradeoffs, choose among design alternatives, debug and test, improve performance, and maintain software written by themselves and others. At the same time, they must be concerned with compatibility, robustness, and reliability, while meeting specifications. Students will have the opportunity to develop these skills by working on their own code and in group projects.
COS 333 is about programming, not about a specific language. The course will assume that you are familiar with C and Java, and will include excursions into C++, Visual Basic, and scripting languages like shells, Awk, Perl, and Python. There will be significant emphasis on tools, both how to use them and how they are designed and built. The course will use Unix more than Windows, but not exclusively. Students must be comfortable with C and Java programming and with Unix, and able to write modest-sized programs that work. COS 217 is a prerequisite.
This is meant to be more than a laundry list, however. Each section will also discuss issues of design, implementation, testing, performance, portability, and other software engineering concerns, and these will also be part of the programming assignments. With luck there will be a few guest lecturers as well.
There will be two lectures each week. During the first half of the semester, there will be a modest-sized programming assignment each week, which should take perhaps 5 hours to complete. During the second half of the semester, students will work in groups of 3 or 4 on a project that will involve a significant amount of design and implementation.
There is one required text: The Practice of Programming, by Kernighan and Pike; you should also know basic Unix tools and usage as described in, for example, The Unix Programming Environment. Other readings will be handed out in class or found on the Web. The books listed in this bibliography are also worth looking at; they cover a wide variety of material related to programming.
Tuesday and Thursday 11:00-12:20, somewhere.
Brian Kernighan, 311 CS Building, 609-258-2089, bwk at cs.princeton.edu. Depending on class size, I may set up regular office hours once things get rolling; alternatively, make an appointment, or just drop in if my door is open, which it usually is.
Wei Dong, CS 318a, 258-1759, wdong@, Thu 2:00-3:00
Xiaojuan Ma, CS 313, 258-6126, xm@, Tue 2:00-3:00
Five programming assigments will be assigned during the first half of the term; each is intended to take about five hours, but is sure to take longer unless you are careful.
Assignments are together worth about 30-35 percent of the course grade. Assignments are due by midnight on Thursdays unless there are extraordinary circumstances. For the record, extracurricular activities and heavy workloads in other classes don't count as "extraordinary", no matter how unexpected or important or time-consuming. You must complete all assignments and project requirements to pass the course.
The project will have frequent checkpoints along the way for which you will have to present status reports, preliminary designs, and the like. There will be a public presentation and demo at the end, a written writeup, and submission of a system for testing and evaluation. All of these are graded.
The project will be worth about 60-65 percent of the course grade; it will be shared equally among group members, with the possibility of negative adjustments for members who fail to contribute their fair share.
Regular class attendance is expected and class participation helps. Frequent absences are grounds for a failing grade regardless of other performance. This means you.
Do not, under any circumstances, copy another person's program for an assignment. Writing code for use by another or using another's code in any form violates the University's academic regulations.
Examples of unacceptable behavior for assignments include:
The program you turn in must be your work. You may get help from the instructor or TA after you have started writing code, but not from other students. Computer science assignments are not like physics or math problem sets: there is no single right answer. Each student is expected to come up with his or her own individual solution.
If you plan to do something that you are not absolutely sure is legal, ask first. Ignorance of this policy will not be accepted as an excuse for your actions.
You are responsible for ensuring that your files are not readable by your classmates. We recommend doing your COS 333 work on your own machine or in a private subdirectory, i.e.:
% mkdir cos333 % chmod 700 cos333
Project groups are encouraged to share insights and information about how things work, how to get things done, and other aspects of programming knowledge.