Why Computer Science?

The best answers I know of are those provided by Joseph P. Brooks, in his classic book on software projects and why they crash and burn, The Mythical Man-month. Another question is why Madison, SD as a place for Computer Science -- I answer that below. On another page I (try) to explain why I think Computer Science is a great career for women? I'm working on reasons why Computer Game Design is a great choice, too. For now, just keep in mind that the all the reasons for Computer Science apply to Computer Game Design as well!

I've summarized them below.       

Joys of the Craft

  1. The sheer joy of making things
  2. The pleasure of making things that are useful to others
  3. The fascination of fashioning complex puzzle-like objects of interlocking moving parts and watching them work
  4. The joy of always learning
  5. The delight of working in such a tractable medium
  6. The programmer, like the poet, works only slightly removed from pure thought-stuff
  7. ... builds castles in the air, from air, creating by exertion of the imagination
  8. The magic of myth and legend has come true in our time

Why Computer Science? IN MADISON, SD???

The answers I have for that are:

  1. DSU is a surprise -- a smaller regional school with a serious commitment to technology.
  2. DSU cares about its students -- they aren't numbers, they are people, and they get treated well
  3. Despite the importance of teaching, DSU encourages and supports research
  4. My commute is 5 minutes (rounding up -- I can walk it in 7 minutes and drive anywhere in town in 5 minutes)
  5. The winters are cold, but the summers are great -- you can go out and do things!
  6. The cost of living is outstanding -- no state income tax, housing is very reasonable, and nothing else is bad
  7. Great colleagues -- I really enjoy the people I work with here at DSU.
  8. The students -- they may enjoy having fun, but they have a great attitude. They are here to learn, not just satisfy requirements.
  9. A wireless computing environment which works!
  10. Outstanding technology available throughout the school, which works!
  11. Wireless tablet computers in every student's hands -- anywhere and everywhere is a lab.