As the title says, Happy New Year! I hope you had a good 2014, I sure did. After completing my first term, sorry semester, of University and having a month off over Christmas I’m feeling pretty good.
I really enjoyed my first 3 months of Computer Science and University life. The first term consisted of 4 units with two of them solely assessment based and the other two a mix of both assessments and exams at the end of the year.
The most fun and interesting units were an Intro to Object Orientated Programming and Foundations of Computing. The OO unit was my first proper foray into the world of Java as well as the IDE BlueJ.
As a University, Kent is very proud of BlueJ - they have the creator of the software as a Professor of Computer Science and lecture. They also have several lecturers who have written text books specifically for it - which of course is required reading ;p. It has been interesting taking my somewhat limited knowledge of other OO languages like Python and Ruby and applying it to Java.
Foundations of Computing is basically maths. This unit began by bringing those who didn’t do A-level maths (me) up to speed and went from there. This has been by far the most difficult unit, but I have learnt so much.
The other two units of term one were Computer Systems and People and Computing. Computer Systems covered the basics of the inner workings of computers through their hardware, OS and networking. This pretty much covered the stuff I covered at college - going into more detail on the actual function of operating systems (especially UNIX) and general history.
People and Computing is a more ethical and group working unit. I am not the biggest fan of group work in general but the unit made people to work together to create a technical solution to a problem in the local area as well as debating over ethical issues.
I met my main group of friends through the original CS meet-up back in freshers week and others in the various geeky societies I joined. The people I met at SFX and AGS came together to form a weekly D ‘n’ D session - my first real game of D ‘n’ D! Hopefully a combo of people from these groups will be my house mates in the second year ;p.
I started back at the end of January with four more units - Further Object Orientated Programming, Foundations of Computing 2, Web and Databases and Human Computer Interaction. I’ll keep you posted on how these go!