Mathematical Foundations of Computer Science
 Lecturers:
 Professor Cristian S. Calude,
room 303S571, Science Building, course coordinator.
 Professor Fred Kroon,
Arts 2,
18 Symonds St.,
Level 2,
Room 202.

Tutor:
Marcus Triplett. Office hours:
By appointment. Any problem
related to marking should be addressed to the tutor.

Class representative:
Kiran Anthony Foster.
Course Facebook group.
 Taught: First semester 2015, three hours of lectures and a tutorial a week (see 2015 Academic Dates).

Timetable: Lectures: Tuesday 1516, Wednesday 1617, Thursday 1516. Tutorial: Friday 1314, , starting the second
week.
Check updates at UoA Timetables 2015 .
 Short Description:
The aim of this paper is to present mathematical models for computers and
computation, and derive results about what can and cannot be computed. It
deals with idealised computers (automata) which operate on idealised input
and output (formal languages). For example, we prove that it is impossible
to write a computer program that takes as input any computer program and
tells us whether or not that program will end up in an endless loop (the
halting problem).
Quantum computing will also be briefly described and the ChurchTuring Thesis will be critically discussed. In addition we will discuss some problems in algorithmic complexity.
We assume you are comfortable with formal mathematical proofs and can write them
properly.
 Content:
 Automata and regular languages
 Computability and decidability
 Algorithmic complexity
 ChurchTuring Thesis
 Quantum computing
 Expected learning outcomes: On completion, students will be able to
 explain the theoretical limits on computational solutions of undecidable and inherently complex problems
 describe concrete examples of computationally undecidable or inherently infeasible problems from different fields
 understand formal definitions of machine models, classical and quantum
 prove the undecidability or complexity of a variety of problems
 understand the issue of whether there are limits of computability
 Textbook:
M. Sipser.
Introduction to the Theory of
Computation,
PWS Publishing Company, Boston, 2013, third edition.
 Software: Register machine simulation
 Tutorials: Materials will be available on the Tutorial page.
 Assessment: Three assignments worth 20% in total, Test: 30%, Exam: 50%
 Assignments (the assignment dropbox will be outside the room 303S571): Assignment 1:
due Monday 30 March, before 4.00pm,
worth 7%;
assignment 2:
due Friday 15 May, before 4.00pm,
worth 7%;
assignment 3:
due Friday 5 June, before 4.00pm, worth 6%.
Sample solutions: Assignment 1.

Test:
Thursday, 2 April 2015, 3.00pm4.00pm, during the lecture.Test preparation.
Sample Solutions.
 Handouts (subject to changes):
Part 1, Automata. Part 3, Complexity and Quantum Computing.
 Policy on
Cheating
 Other relevant sites: