“A programmer is ideally an essayist who works with traditional aesthetic and literary forms as well as mathematical concepts, to communicate the way that an algorithm works and to convince a reader that the results will be correct.”
— Donald Erwin Knuth
Computer programming is perhaps the perfect amalgamation of the aesthetic qualities, literary forms and mathematical concepts. Students are required to have all these qualities in order to come up with the perfect program that would revolutionize the way we use computers. But this is not an easy job. As a discipline, it has a notoriety to be esoteric while the field itself is extremely competitive. However, help is at hand. MyAssignmenthelp.com brings you programming help so that you can fulfill your dream of becoming a successful programming expert. Here is an overview on computer programming and programming assignments.
Understanding Computer Programming
A computer programming is the process that transforms a computing problem into an executable computer program.
A computer runs on a program. A program is a series of instruction that is received by the computer at its Central Processing Unit (CPU) and is executed by the computer in order to fulfill a particular task. The program has to be written in a human-readable language. The codes in which the computer languages are written are called source codes and are developed by programmers.
The science of writing, developing and perfecting codes is basically called computer programming. It is a highly competitive discipline and US, UK and Australian universities usually have a record number of applicants for programming courses. The following article summarizes the basics of computer programming for those needing programming help.
Uses of Computer Programming
Computer Programming is used for a variety of purposes:
1. Computer programming helps in developing programming languages which are used for transforming computing problems into instructions. While there is a long history of programming languages, popular programming languages that have been developed include Action Script, C++, C#, Haskell, PHP, Java, Python, Ruby, Smalltalk, SQL and Visual Basic. These are increasingly abstracted language, allowing programmers to develop source code much easily.
2. Programming languages have helped in the development of the internet which has brought people closer.
3. Programming is one of the chief stages of software development process. Software is a collection of computer programs and other data. Software development involves several stages including programming, testing, bug fixing documenting etc. A software developer or a programmer has to have the knowledge of all the stages and also a specialized knowledge about one particular field.
4. Finally from the point of view of students, programming helps them to understand how to solve computing problems. As you develop more and more programs, your confidence level surges.
Major Areas of Computer Programming
A programming language is a special kind of language meant to give instructions to a computer. The various elements of programming include syntax, semantics, design and implementation etc. Languages can be classified according to programming paradigms and domain of use.
There are four types of languages based on domain of use:
i. General-Purpose programming languages
ii. System programming languages
iii. Scripting languages
iv. Domain-specific programming languages
On the basis of programming paradigms, languages may be classified into:
i. Imperative programming languages
ii. Declarative programming languages
iii. Procedural programming
iv. Object-oriented programming
v. Functional programming
vi. Logic programming etc.
Some key languages needed by students for their programming languages assignments are:
C++: This is a general programming language. A version of it has been standardized by ISO. C++ is generally helpful in desktop applications, servers and entertainment applications.
C#: This is a multi paradigm specific language that helps in different paradigms like imperative, declarative, functional, generic, object-oriented etc.
Java: It is a general purpose computer programming language that has fewer implementation dependencies i.e. the code that runs one platform does not need to be recompiled when the platform is changed.
Visual Basic: It is programming language from Microsoft. It provides rapid application development of graphical user interface (GUI).
Swift: Another multi-paradigm programming language which is object oriented, functional and imperative.
Data structure refers to a particular way of organizing data. As a programming language concept, it is usually associated with C. A number of data structures are available. They are array, associative array, union, tagged union, set, graphs etc.
A data is a sequence of symbols on the basis of which operations are performed by a computer. An organized collection of data is called a database. DBMS stands for database management systems. They are computer software applications which interact with other applications, users and databases in order to store, retrieve and process data.
A series of computer instructions written in a computer programming language is called a source-code. A source code is transformed into a machine code. The machine code is then stored for execution at a later time. Learning about source code is a major area of software development and is important for programming assignments.
A bug is basically a software defect. Debugging is a methodical process of finding and removing that defect from the computer system and the software so that they can run as expected. There are numerous debugging methods:
Interactive Debugging Control Flow Integration Testing Log Files Monitoring Profiling Statistical Process Control
A computer network is telecommunications network that allows computers to exchange data. Although networking is not strictly a domain of computer programming yet it is an important sub domain of computer science in general. A student seeking networking assignment help usually finds difficulties in the following area:
Network packet Network typology Network nodes Network structures Protocols Network performance Network security
Chief Functions of a Computer Programmer
So, what does a computer programmer do? What are the stages of software programming development? A programmer’s basic job is to turn a computing problem into a software program. Programming involves definite steps common to any problem solving.
Defining the problem
The problem has to be defined in terms of what is given (input given data) and what is to be obtained (output the result).
Planning the solution
A solution has to be planned either by preparing a flowchart or by writing a pseudo code. Ideally, a programmer should do both.
Coding the program
This is perhaps the most important step of computer programming. A programmer should express the solution in a programming language.
Testing the program
The program has to be tested for bugs. If found, they have to be removed by the process of debugging.
Documenting the program
Documentation is perhaps the most tedious process of program development. Once the program is made, a detailed descriptive analysis has to be given.
Computer Programming and Information Technology
Computers have revolutionized the contemporary society. Information technology (IT) uses all the three domains of computer science: computer hardware, computer networking and computer programming.
i. Information technology helps to store, retrieve and manipulate data for the benefit of businesses.
ii. IT is a booming industry and a thriving academic discipline.
iii. Worldwide IT spending forecast for the year 2015 is 3888 billion dollars respectively.
iv. More importantly US, UK and Australian universities have introduced undergraduate and graduate programs in IT.
Computer Programming Assignments: an overview
Computer programming as mentioned before has developed into a major domain of computer science. Computer science deals with three major domains. They are:
The physical elements that constitute a computer system are collectively called computer hardware. The science that deals with the functions and the mechanics of computer science is called computer hardware.
Computer networking deals with the science of connecting different computer networks and sharing of data.
Programming is the third major sub-domain of computer sciences. A computer programming student needs to learn about the following sub-domains. They are divided into the following according to theory and applications:
Theories of Computer Programming
Areas of Applications
Theory of computation
Information and coding theories
Data structures and algorithms
Programming language theories like those of Java, C++, and Visual Basic etc.
Computer performance analysis
Programming courses require coursework, assignments, lab-work and examinations on the above areas of the discipline.
Major Challenges Faced by Students in their Computer Programming Assignments
Computer programming is much sought after discipline. Companies like Microsoft, IBM, and Intel hire computer programming students for bringing innovative products and developing path breaking software. However, the road to success and glory is never free from impediments. Such was the case with even with Bill Gates, one of the best computer programmers of our times. While he dropped out because of other reasons, many programming students cannot handle the pressure of academic life. Here are some general and specific problems which student face in the computer programming assignments.
General Problems: Some of the most quotidian problems faced by students are problems of deadline, writing in English and following the lectures. Let us look at each of these issues and try to find out how they can affect (sometimes seriously) the academic life of a student:
Many students miss their deadlines, sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally. Students often multi-task between studies, part-time jobs and extra-curricular activities. On the other hand, many students intentionally delay their assignments until the day of submission has arrived. Both can be dangerous. Handing out assignments late can create a very negative impact on students.
Students with English as their second language often fail to follow the lectures of the professors. Computer science books are often abstruse in nature. Writing in English is another area of difficulty. All these may seriously jeopardize the career of a student.
Specific Problems:Computer science students often squabble over the question: which is the most difficult domain in computer science? While some argue it is programming, others argue that it is networking. In any case, programming student has to face a lot of issues of their own:
Perhaps the most tedious job of computer programming. A simple fault in the codes can lead to a bug and as such coders have to be extra cautious.
Developing program language
A wide variety of programming languages are available and new languages are being developed. Industry demands newer technological innovations in programming languages. Java as a programming language thrived during the internet boom of early 2000. However, changes in the industry demanded better programming languages. A student needs to be aware of the changes in order to develop better programming languages.
Debugging is another tricky programming area. Once a bug is detected, the computer program has to be debugged. All these create a lot of problems for students.
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