As an update to my previous post on this subject “Computer Science, A Science?” more debate has taken place on the CompSci.ca forums and blog as a result of a blog post by Tony entitled “The most important programming language”. Many good points were made, for instance: Tony suggested that many people become confused between computer programming and computer science which I agree with.
Perhaps in response to this, Zeroth posted about computer science on his blog with an article entitled “What is Computer Science?” He commented that many people in other disciplines make use of computer science as a way of expressing some of their complex ideas that would otherwise be very difficult to express.
I’m always quite interested in this kind of debate and will continue to follow anything further on the subject. After all the time I’ve been in school and all the profs and other computer type people I’ve encountered I still have to side closest to Zeroth and his post. Computer Science is separate from anything else we have right now. It’s a tool used to help describe complex phenomenon and ideas that could not be otherwise expressed well. It’s not completely math, engineering or an art.
Computer Science is like connection between everything. With computers we can express math through equations and logic within the computer. We can use computers to aid in engineering with CAD and blueprints and models that help with simulation of structures and devices. We can use a computer to create, enhance and distribute music, paintings and video. To me computer science should be trying to do what physics has always aimed for. Since we can use computer science to connect everything we know and understand, we should try to understand everything through the use of computer science. The aim of physics is some magical grand unified theory of everything and I think this theory or “concept of everything” will only be possible from advances in computer science.