CMSC 15400: Introduction to Computer Systems

Spring 2007


Course Staff:

Svetlozar Nestorov, evtimov at cs ...,
Office: Ry 275a
Office hours: Wednesday, 10:30-11:30am and by appointment
Teaching Assistants:
Jing (George) Cao, jcao at cs ...,
Office hours: Tuesday 3-5pm, Mac Lab

Paolo Codenotti, paoloc at cs ...,
Office hours: Thursday 3-5pm, Mac Lab

Joshua Grochow, joshuag at cs ...,
Office hours: Friday 2:30-4pm and Saturday afternoons, Mac Lab

Time & Location:

Lecture: MWF 9:30-10:20, Ryerson 251. (schedule)
Lab: W 3:30-4:50, Maclab, Regenstein Library, A-level. (schedule)

Course description:

This course covers the basics of computer systems from a programmer's perspective.
Topics include data representation, machine language programming, exceptions,
memory systems, and being the client of an operating system.

The goal of this course is to help students be more effective programmers and
to prepare students for advanced systems courses, such as architecture, compilers,
operating systems, and networks.
C programming required.


Computer Systems: A Programmer's Perspective by Randal E. Bryant & David R. O'Hallaron
Recommended (choose one):
The C Programming Language, Second Edition by Brian W. Kernighan & Dennis M. Ritchie
C, A Reference Manual, Fifth Edition by Samuel P. Harbison III & Guy L. Steele Jr.

Course prerequisites:

Introduction to Computer Science-2 (CMSC 15200 or CMSC 16200) or permission of the instructor.


Late policy:

Homework: Homework is due at the beginning of class. You may submit up to up to three
homework problems late. Late homework is due at the beginning of the next class.
We will not accept homework by email.

Labs: Lab work is due at the end of Lab, that is, before the TA walks out the MacLab door.
We will not accept late Lab work.

Programming exercise: We will not accept late programming exercises.

We will make special arrangements for students who have a major illness,
a major religious holiday, or a family emergency.

Academic Honesty Policy:

We expect students to have read and to follow the University's policy on academic honesty. A student who fails to follow this policy will receive an F in the course (students may appeal this decision to the Dean of Students at the Division of Physical Sciences and request a disciplinary committee hearing).

We encourage working together to solve homework problems, but each student must write-up the homework alone. Write-ups must include the names of any collaborators and any sources used to help solve a problem (including websites).

evtimov, March 2007 (adapted from amr, March 2006)