Franco Preparata – On the evolving profile and role of Computer Science

Feb. 28, 2008

preparataTechnological innovation ushered the computer era, and, after a few years of tutelage, computer science emerged as an independent discipline. In the subsequent decades this discipline developed its special identity, sharing the dual character of engineering and mathematics. This evolution is revisited under the filter of my personal experience.

In my view, the notion of computational model has been the enabler of extraordinary creativity, and at the same time the source of critical reflection two decades ago. However, capitalizing on a vibrant technology, computer science is re-inventing itself as the indispensable enabler of applications. This is a crucial profile that calls for a pedagogical adaptation, where the notion of model morphs from means to end.

Franco Preparata (Brown University, USA)

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