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Computer Science and Intelligent Systems

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A Beginner's Guide

Algorithms are what we do in order not to have to do something. Algorithms consist of instructions to carry out tasks—usually dull, repetitive ones. Starting from simple building blocks, computer algorithms enable machines to recognize and produce speech, translate texts, categorize and summarize documents, describe images, and predict the weather. A task that would take hours can be completed in virtually no time by using a few lines of code in a modern scripting program. This book offers an introduction to algorithms through the real-world problems they solve.

Proof is the primary vehicle for knowledge generation in mathematics. In computer science, proof has found an additional use: verifying that a particular system (or component, or algorithm) has certain desirable properties. This book teaches students to read and write proofs using Athena, a freely downloadable computer language. Athena proofs are machine-checkable and written in an intuitive natural-deduction style.

A Cyber-Physical Systems Approach

The most visible use of computers and software is processing information for human consumption. The vast majority of computers in use, however, are much less visible. They run the engine, brakes, seatbelts, airbag, and audio system in your car. They digitally encode your voice and construct a radio signal to send it from your cell phone to a base station. They command robots on a factory floor, power generation in a power plant, processes in a chemical plant, and traffic lights in a city.

“Written by three experts in the field, Deep Learning is the only comprehensive book on the subject.”
—Elon Musk, cochair of OpenAI; cofounder and CEO of Tesla and SpaceX

Photographs have been doctored since photography was invented. Dictators have erased people from photographs and from history. Politicians have manipulated photos for short-term political gain. Altering photographs in the predigital era required time-consuming darkroom work. Today, powerful and low-cost digital technology makes it relatively easy to alter digital images, and the resulting fakes are difficult to detect. The field of photo forensics—pioneered in Hany Farid’s lab at Dartmouth College—restores some trust to photography.

The Palladio Approach

Too often, software designers lack an understanding of the effect of design decisions on such quality attributes as performance and reliability. This necessitates costly trial-and-error testing cycles, delaying or complicating rollout. This book presents a new, quantitative architecture simulation approach to software design, which allows software engineers to model quality of service in early design stages.

With Application to Understanding Data

This book introduces students with little or no prior programming experience to the art of computational problem solving using Python and various Python libraries, including PyLab. It provides students with skills that will enable them to make productive use of computational techniques, including some of the tools and techniques of data science for using computation to model and interpret data.

Applied state estimation and association is an important area for practicing engineers in aerospace, electronics, and defense industries, used in such tasks as signal processing, tracking, and navigation. This book offers a rigorous introduction to both theory and application of state estimation and association. It takes a unified approach to problem formulation and solution development that helps students and junior engineers build a sound theoretical foundation for their work and develop skills and tools for practical applications.

Principles and Best Practice

This book addresses an often-neglected aspect of the creation of VHDL designs. A VHDL description is also source code, and VHDL designers can use the best practices of software development to write high-quality code and to organize it in a design. This book presents this unique set of skills, teaching VHDL designers of all experience levels how to apply the best design principles and coding practices from the software world to the world of hardware.

What Every Research Assistant Should Know

This book offers a practical guide to the computational methods at the heart of most modern quantitative research. It will be essential reading for research assistants needing hands-on experience; students entering PhD programs in business, economics, and other social or natural sciences; and those seeking quantitative jobs in industry. No background in computer science is assumed; a learner need only have a computer with access to the Internet.

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