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lainchan archive - /λ/ - 19205

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I'm in college right now. Nothing fancy, I'm not rich nor smart so I didn't get into any good schools. In fact I'm in community college right now, working on an associates degree (2 years, then transfer to another college and be in the junior grade immediately). I'm satisfied since 1. this helps keeps costs very low since I can be at home & 2. I do horribly in new living environments.
Another college is building a four year school here in my town. From what I've heard, the director of the CS department is very passionate and excited to be able to lead the program, since he thinks most college CS programs are outdated. They offer a mobile applications (applied program that earns you 12 or so credits on top of your regular CS degree) course.

>"With the applied computer science option, web and mobile software development, you will develop the multi-disciplinary skillset required to solve these and many other problems as you take courses in algorithm development, machine learning and data analysis, database design, web and mobile application development, UX design, and entrepreneurship. This program will provide you with a solid foundation in computer science and prepare you to join one of the fastest moving and exciting areas of technology."

At first I thought it was kind of gimmicky, but now I'm thinking differently. Mobile development isn't going to stop. As much as I find smartphones distasteful from a privacy standpoint, it's going to be the biggest personal computing market soon. Getting some experience with it is going to definitely not hurt my chances of having my resume not thrown in the trash.

Does your college have a good, relevant, modern CS program? I won't ask where you go 'cause OPSEC, but knowing if you go to an Ivy League or similar private schools would be good as well. Anyone doing it all/mostly online?


I go to a big research university, and the engineering department(which includes CS) has all the bells and whistles.


The program is very good, the only thing i dislike is that its almost only theoretical. U could pass without really knowing how to code, which in my opinion is very unfortunate. It breeds graduates which are good at Matlab and math behind machine learning or drawing uml diagrams but fail at basic tasks like writing a makefile for larger projects, using AVX/ARM Neon or writing clean code.


That's the main distinction between CS and SE: one is a science(theoretical), the other is engineering(practical). I think the practice of putting CS departments into schools of engineering is a big mistake.


This is very true for my school. CS is a part of the Arts and Sciences program and it is fairly common for 3 or 4th year students to not be able to use gdb, write a makefile or assemble a header. They will have fairly decent experience with various algorithms and data structures, just not a lot of experience implementing them in actual systems. In this sense it definitely feels that most CS courses should just be math courses.
What most people want from CS, they actually would probably get in SE and CE degrees. Whereas in CS, you get dropped into python or java and told to create a linked list, in CE or SE you start with something low level like C and then go even lower into x86 or ARM.
You might say that knowing algorithms is a lot more important than "coding experience", but there are algorithms, data structures and security courses in the engineering program too. On the other hand, it is very possible to go through CS without knowing what an ALU is, or how multipath cpus work, or parallelization for GPU/MPI. I truly think that most people who go into CS, don't fully understand that it really is a Science- a subset of Math, even.
Really here is my advice:
If you want to be a good programmer, get an undergrad in something like Math or Physics where you will learn most of the math you'll ever need as a programmer. On the side, dabble in some C or even python - maybe take some computational physics classes where you'll be forced to learn basic linux commands and you'll get some coding experience. Read some fun language books like sicp and c book Then go for an MS or PhD(feel free to drop out with an MS) in Systems, Computer or Software Engineering and take whatever sounds interesting.


At my Uni, the CS program is the main draw for most people, absolutely the largest department on campus. Also growing very quickly. It seems pretty modern, most of the graduate level classes focus on new topics and styles. Many of the classes I have been taking focus on design philosophy as well as the actual information.


...I... Disagree?

CS is equal to CE in importance. Just because it's taught poorly doesn't mean it's not.


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Sophomore in SE here. Apparently I will not be returning next semester. I already work as full-time programmer but Im worried about not finishing my degree and getting pigeonholed into my current job forever or worse, losing my current job and not being able to find another one because I dont have a degree.

I need and want to finish my degree but my only options are night classes which are not really an option for junior and senior level classes because they are all during the day time and are often only taught once a semester unlike freshman/sophomore classes.

Has anyone who has gone through this have any advice? The temptation to just drop out is growing stronger but I know I would be making a terrible career choice. I just stuck, I dont really know what to do and quitting my job to finish my degree is simply not an option.

One the brightside Im going to have a whole lot of time to work on personal projects next semester and will probably take some interesting classes through coursea or udemy.

Thanks for listening, here have a lain.


mobile computing and other modern technologies are great markets... right now. Think about the future though. We can't predict what the next big arena will be, just like people 60 years ago didn't predict we would have "super" computers in our pockets. Being able to make apps and webpages will get you a good job today, but once that's yesterday's news your soykaf out of luck.
Its still important to get good fundamentals OP. I agree that it's important to be up to date but basic CS hasn't changed and knowing your basics goes a long way.


save your earnings and invest conservatively as in the dividend aristocrats...depending on what you make, you can probably achieve a livable dividend return in a few years time. once you learn to live on your dividends, go back to school while remembering to get as much grant and scholarship aid as possible.

get your degree and enjoy your new life.

you could also talk to your employer about a work study program and tuition reimbursement, most technology employers worth their salt will offer such features in the interest of good pr and improving their human assets.

best wishes and thanks for the lain.