This course is an introduction to computer programming. Programming is the art of explaining to a computer what you want it to do, in exact detail and in a language that the computer can understand. Programming is only one part of computer science, but it is the most basic and most central part.
It is an activity that requires you to think logically, to solve problems, to express yourself clearly, and often to endure a certain amount of frustration as you try to get your programs to work. The result, though, can be very rewarding. Many different languages are used for writing computer programs. Fortunately, it is possible to learn the principles and general techniques of programming that can be applied no matter what language you write in. Although you will work with a specific language, you should try not to lose sight of the general ideas. In this course, we will use the Java programming language. Java is a relatively new language, having been introduced in 1995. In the years since its introduction, it has become one of the most important languages for real application development. It is a very versatile language. Java can be used to write regular desktop applications and to make “applets” that can appear on Web pages. Many complex interactive Web sites are written in Java, and it can be used to write applications for many types of mobile phones. Even high-performance scientific programming has been done in Java.