Introduction to Philosophy of Computer Science
small.jpg

Lecturers:
Prof. Pawel POLAK
Roman KRZANOWSKI, PhD

Course content

The presentations for the lectures are available in encrypted ZIF - only for the authorised students and only for educational use.

Part 1:
a. What is a Computer? Historical and Philosophical perspective
b. Algorithm, Information, Computation - basic ideas
c. What is Computer Science? (Computer Science, Computing or Informatics – some philosophical remarks)

Lectures:

Part 2:

Required learning resources (readings):

  1. Ammon H. Eden, Three paradigms of computer science, Mind and Machines 17 (2007), pp. 135-167.
  2. R.V.L. Hartley, Transmission of Information, pp. 535-545. C.E. Shannon, Introduction, pp. 1-3 [in:] A Mathematical Theory of Communication, [originally published in: The Bell System Technical Journal, Vol. 27 (1948), pp. 379–423, 623–656].
  3. Alan M. Turing, On computable numbers, with an application to the Entscheidungsproblem [selected parts] http://www.comlab.ox.ac.uk/activities/ieg/e-library/sources/tp2-ie.pdf
  4. Alan M. Turing, Computer Machinery and Intelligence, Mind, 59 (1950), pp. 433-460.
  5. Alan M. Turing, The Chemical Basis of Morphogenesis, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B 237 (641): 37–72 http://www.dna.caltech.edu/courses/cs191/paperscs191/turing.pdf
  6. John R. Searle, Is the brain a digital computer?, Proceedings and Adresses of American Philosophical Association, 64 (1990), pp. 21-37.
  7. Stuart Shapiro, Computer Science: The Study of Procedures, http://www.cse.buffalo.edu/~shapiro/Papers/whatiscs.pdf
  8. Peter Suber, What is software?, Journal of Speculative Philosophy, 2 (1988), pp. 89-119. https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/3715472/suber_software.html
  9. Timothy R. Colburn, Software, abstraction and ontology, Monist 82(1) (1999), pp. 3-19.

You can download the texts in ZIP file (encrypted).

Recommended readings

  1. William J. Rapaport, Philosophy of Computer Science, http://www.cse.buffalo.edu/~rapaport/Papers/phics.pdf

Assessment methods and criteria

A student will be examined orally (English or Polish) on a base of a set of open questions regarding the course's content. There is a possibility of writing a final paper instead of the oral exam. Additionally, student's activity during the class may raise one's grade.