Foundations of Computer Science, CSCI 2200, RPI, Spring 2023

As a computer scientist, your goal will be to choose or design, then implement, efficient algorithms that accomplish the goals for which they were designed. The aim of FOCS is to give you the tools necessary to establish certainty about your algorithms: that they do what they claim to.

As such, this course introduces the fundamental mathematics used in computer science for the purpose of ensuring such certainty: discrete mathematics and the theory of computation.

Discrete mathematics
This is the study of objects that can be counted—including proofs, sums and recurrences, graphs, counting, and probability—this toolbox is essential for showing algorithms do as we claim.
Theory of Computation
This branch of CS helps delineate what kinds of problems can even be hoped to be solved, and how efficiently. Understanding this helps you to avoid tilting at windmills.

See the course syllabus for more details.

Course Logistics

Lectures: Tue/Fri 10:00am-11:50am ET in Darrin 308

Course Discussions: Piazza

Instructor: Alex Gittens (gittea)

TAs: Sharmishtha Dutta (duttas), Ryan Kaplan (kaplar2), Dhruva Narayan (narayd), Akshat Runwal (runwaa), Yue Zhou (zhouy35)

Undergraduate mentors: Nathan Agpalo (agpaln), Griffin Bates (batesg2), Afsana Bhuiyan (bhuiya), Charles Chae (chaec), Logan Carter (cartel4), Junseob Kim (kimj43), Yanshen Ren (reny5), Samyuth Sagi (sagis2), Espie Taylor (taylos7), Max Zhang (zhangm21)

Course Coordinator: Shianne Hulbert (hulbes)

If you need testing accomodations (e.g. a shift or extension in your test time), please contact Shianne. She will also be sending emails to ensure that you are informed about your test time accomodations near to the tests and quizzes.

Office Hours:
Mon 10am-11am ET AE 127 Dhruva Narayan
Tue 8:30am-9:30am ET Lally 316 Alex Gittens
Tue 12pm-1pm ET AE 118 Sharmishtha Dutta
Wed 12pm-1pm ET JEC 4309 Yue Zhou
Thu 11am-noon ET AE 118 Akshat Runwal
Thu 2pm-3pm ET Lally 316 Alex Gittens
Fri 2pm-3pm ET AE 118 Ryan Kaplan
Sunday 2pm-6pm ET AE 118 Rotating: one TA and two mentors

Wed 10:00am-10:50am ET Eaton 215 Dhruva Narayan
Wed 11am-11:50am ET Eaton 215 Yue Zhou
Wed 1pm-1:50pm ET Eaton 215 Ryan Kaplan
Wed 2pm-2:50pm ET Eaton 215 Sharmishtha Dutta
Wed 4pm-4:50pm Pitts 4206 Akshat Runwal

Course Details

Announcements: It is the student's responsibility to be aware of and understand all announcements made in the lectures.