(A flow diagram showing the process of working out a problem, making an algorithm to solve said problem and then programming it so a computer can do it for you)
The feature image for this post describes a lot of my day. It shows what we learnt about what an algorithm is in our 2nd Programming lecture of the week and it also shows how I have typed up all my notes and made them a lot more professional and graphical. The aforementioned lecture took place at 4:15 so I had the entire day to myself until 3:30 at which point I would have to catch the bus.
The day started at some time between 6:55 and 7:10 (I don’t know exactly when, either way it was far too early) however because of the “early morning fire test”. This involved me jumping out of bed, putting some jeans on (I tend to sleep in a shirt anyway) and slipping into some boots and then walking calmly (read: Running) out of the door of the block. All of Lambert was out of their halls in 2 minutes and 36 seconds, a healthy 24 seconds before the buildings would have burnt down. 😛 This was particularly impressive seen as we have a deaf boy in our block.
After a few hours sleep to recover from such an early morning I woke up and texted Jess for a while before tidying my room, emptying my bins and making myself a lunch of Bacon Toasties. By the time I had collected a package (full of basically a weeks worth of clothes! Excellent!) and packed my bag for the day and checked the previous days lecture notes it was time to go!
The lecture consisted of learning about what algorithms actually are (essentially methodologies for doing certain tasks) and looking at some example problems which could be resolved. When I got back to the lawns it was more than time for dinner! This consisted of Gammon and chips and a chocolate donut — it was lovely!
Soon after this me and Jess got our maths vibe on and she taught me Logarithms. According to wikiedia:
logarithm reverses exponentiation
Essentially this means it lets you figure out what power would have been used to get that number. It took me a long time but eventually I understood Logarithm with a custom base in addition to common Logarithm (where the base is always 10).
Thats all for today, thanks for reading!
(The two A4 sheets which have taken up much of my night, and have helped me learn interesting subjects such as Scientific Notation, Significant Figures, Decimal Places, Rounding, Percentages, Modular Arithmetic, Logarithms, Expand, Factorise & Prime Factorisation)
Today was the start of my first full week of proper lectures and it started with a 9:15 lecture on Quantitive Methods for Computing — which as the name suggests is all about the mathematics behind computer programming. The lecture was an introduction to the module and touched on some basics such as Number systems (including a brief history of integers from Roman Numerals (and why its not such a great system due to the lack of a 0) to the modern day system we use originally thought up by Arabic people).
2 hours later, around lunch time, I also had my first computer systems lecture which explained the course. Essentially we will be looking into computer architectures and hardware as well as the function of Operating Systems. This sounds like it will be an enjoyable module, and many CS students will probably agree with me judging by the amount of people who raised their hand to say they had built their own computer — well over 90%.
About 3:15 we had our first QMfC Tutorial, where Dr Gordon provided additional support and gave us some works sheets to go through to be marked against model answers later in the week as well as our scores to Fridays diagnostics test — since then I have been working hard to go through the sheet as I need to work really hard to get my maths up to the level that is required for my CS degree.
Directly after the tutorial I had a Programming Lecture which was an introduction to what computers are (technically) and algorithms, both of which also look to be pretty interesting. Unfortunately Rob Miles couldn’t be there as he is in Berlin for some Windows Phone 7 conferences, however the lecture was still quite humorous — which is good as that helps me learn.
When I got back to the lawns I immediately had dinner as it was almost 6 and I hadn’t eaten since my Jacket Potato and Cheese at 11:30, chilled for about 45 minutes and then left for my compulsory 1 hour lecture on Fire safety, very kindly presented by Humberside Fire Brigade, whilst in student housing, which was both full of interesting facts and somewhat unnerving. Since then the lovely Jessica has been helping me with my mathematics as she got an A at AS and is currently in the process of taking A2, which is the time when many of the theories and methods are taught.
Im exhausted after today so thats all for now, thanks for reading!