CS-105: Computing Fundamentals I

Syllabus - Winter 2009

Course Reference Number:
CS-105-001, Winter 2009: 40837

Textbook Website: www.computing2008.com
Directory containing files for the Office 2007 textbook: Office_2007_Files
Lecture Notes: directory
Grades so far: pdf
Final Grades: PDF of point spreadsheet or PDF of bar chart

Homework 1: pdf -- due Thursday, Jan. 15 (end of 2nd week)
Homework 2: pdf -- due Thursday, Jan. 22 (end of 3rd week)
Homework 3: pdf -- due Thursday, Jan. 29 (end of 4th week)
Homework 4: pdf -- due Thursday, Feb. 5 (end of 5th week)
Homework 5: pdf -- due Thursday, Feb. 12 (end of 6th week)
Homework 6: pdf -- due Thursday, Feb. 19 (end of 7th week)
Homework 7: pdf -- due Thursday, Feb. 26 (end of 8th week)
Homework 8: pdf -- due Thursday, Mar. 5 (end of 9th week)
Homework 9: pdf -- due Thursday, Mar. 12 (end of last week)

Online Video Tutorials
Check out these free videos to learn about...
Excel: DataPig Technologies
Access: DataPig Technologies
MS Office: Microsoft training
Office 2008 for the Mac: Marrutt Software Training (try the free demo videos)

Instructor: Professor Harry Porter
E-Mail: harry@cs.pdx.edu
Web Page: www.cs.pdx.edu/~harry
Short Bio: Click Here
Office space at PSU: Fourth Ave Bldg, room 115-06 (click here for map)
Office hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 1:00PM-3:00PM)

Grader: xxx
E-Mail: xxx@cs.pdx.edu
Office: xxx 115-C (Fourth Ave Bldg)
Office Hours: DAYS..., TIMES...

Catalog Description:
Intended as an overview of computers and computer technology for non-CS majors. This course is often described as a computer literacy course. Focus is on the personal computer, but computers-in-general are discussed and classified according to size and performance. Hardware performance criteria are discussed and terminology defined. Hardware topics: central processing units (such as microprocessors like Pentium, Athlon, and others) are characterized regarding speed and data(bit) processing capabilities; memory size, speed and types, and how much is needed; storage media and capacity; input/output devices. Software is the primary focus of the course for the remaining 7 or 8 weeks. Main topics are system software (Windows, Unix, etc) and applications (such as browsers, word processors, spreadsheets, presentation graphics and database managers). Concludes with discussions concerning legal and ethical issues surrounding computer technology, management information systems, and systems analysis.

Recommended prerequisite: high school algebra.

When and Where:
Tuesday & Thursday, 10:00AM - 11:50PM
Fourth Avenue Building, Room 150
First Class: Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Holidays: (none)
Cancelled Class: Tuesday, January 27, 2009 (I have jury duty.)
Mid-Term Exam #1: Thursday, February 5, 2008 (tentative)
Mid-Term Exam #2: Thursday, February 26, 2008 (tentative)
Final Exam: Tuesday, Mar 17, 2009, 10:15AM-12:05PM
The final will be comprehensive. It will be closed book and closed notes.

Required Textbooks:

Computing Essentials 2008, (Complete edition) O'Leary and O'Leary, McGRaw-Hill Publishers, 2007, ISBN 978-0-07-351670-7, 544 pages.

Microsoft Office 2007, O'Leary and O'Leary, McGRaw-Hill Publishers, 2007, ISBN 978-0-07-351916-6, 1408 pages.

The O'Leary Series: Windows XP, O'Leary and O'Leary, McGRaw-Hill Publishers, 2002, ISBN 978-0-07-247250-9, 264 pages.

All three textbooks are available through the PSU Bookstore. Amazon carries a bundle of all three books for $166.01.

Course Outline
  Week 1: (Chapter 1: Introduction)
  Exam #1 (end of week 5)
  Exam #2 (end of week 8)

The official course prerequisite is:
  - High School Algebra
In addition you will need access to a computer with Microsoft Office (i.e., Word, PowerPoint, and Excel) installed. See below for details.

You'll need a computer:
You must use a computer for this course. Also, you will be using Microsoft Office (i.e., Word, PowerPoint, and Excel). You may use either a Windows PC or a Mac.

The course textbook material is aimed at Windows XP and Office 2007. However, you may use other versions of Windows (like Vista) or a Mac running Mac OS X. The current version of Office on the Mac is Office 2008. Older versions, like Office 2004, are also okay.

If you have your own computer, then use it. Otherwise, there are computers available for student use at PSU.

If you have not have an "Odin" account here at PSU, then please get one immediately! An Odin account will give you access to the campus-wide wireless network and will make it possible for you to use PSU's computers. For more information, go to www.account.pdx.edu.

If you do not have a computer, there are a number of computer labs around campus, where you can use PSU's computers. For example, there is a computer lab on the first floor of the PSU Library. You'll need an Odin account (see above) to use them. For information about the library's computer lab, go to library.pdx.edu/computerlab.html. The Office of Information Technology manages PSU's computers; more info at www.oit.pdx.edu.

You'll also need access to a printer, so you can print out the documents and spreadsheets you create.

There is a free software package called OpenOffice, which provides functionality similar to Microsoft Office. For more info, go to www.openoffice.org.

Homework Assignments:
There will be approximately 9 homework assignments, of one week each. Due dates are (tentatively):
  HW 1: End of 2nd week
  HW 2: End of 3rd week
  HW 3: End of 4th week
  HW 4: End of 5th week
  HW 5: End of 6th week
  HW 6: End of 7th week
  HW 7: End of 8th week
  HW 8: End of 9th week
  HW 9: End of 10th week
Homeworks are due at the beginning of class. Late homeworks will not be accepted without prior approval.

The exams may test on material covered only in class and on material covered only in the reading assignments.

Your grade will be based approximately, as follows. These percentages are tentative and subject to change.
   25% - Homeworks
   20% - Midterm Exam #1
   20% - Midterm Exam #2
   30% - Final
    5% - Attendance
Incompletes will not be given.

MailMan Mailing List: PorterClassList
A "MailMan" e-mailing list will be maintained for this class. From time to time I may post notices about the class and hints/comments about assignments. Students are encouraged to send mail to the list, too.

All students should subscribe to this list. Go to the following web page and enter your email address and a password and click "subscribe".

The MailMan program will email you a confirmation message. You must reply, but you can simply hit your email "reply" button. After being adding to the mailing list you will get a "welcome" message from me.

To post a message to all the list members, send email to:
For additional documentation, see
    staff.imsa.edu/~ckolar/mailman/mailman-userguide-0.1.pdf (pdf, 159 kb)
(By the way, if Internet Explorer does not work with MailMan on the Mac, use the "Safari" web browser instead.)

Attendance in class is mandatory. Successful students will arrive on-time, relaxed and full of curiosity.

Attendance will be checked regularly and will count for part of your grade.

Regarding Due Date and Time:
Please bring your homework submissions to class. All assignments are due at the beginning of class, and not one second later! I will collect submissions before lecture and I will not accept submissions after I begin class.

The reason I am such a stickler about this is that I do not want students to miss lectures because they are trying to finish up a homework. Plan ahead; all due times are "hard."

I will make extensions to deadlines in the case of medical emergencies and business travel if you contact me ahead of time.

Working Together:
I encourage students to discuss the material in this class. Unless an assignment is a group project, you must complete it on your own. This means you must come up with the answers on your own. You must not ask others for the answers and you must not copy the answers from other students. When copying material from any source, you must put it in quotes and make clear where it was copied form.

It will be considered cheating to copy answers from other students or to submit copied material that is not clearly labeled as such.

Hints on how to study effectively:
Here is a document I wrote, which you may find useful or interesting:

Professor Porter's Study Tips

Snow Closure: For inclement weather information, call the University switchboard, 725-3000, for a recorded message about university-wide class cancellation. Snow closure info is also available at: www.flashnews.net/pdx.html (click on "View Current Info").

Other Cancellations: If I should need to cancel class for any reason, I will email the class mailing list.

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