Academic journals for high school students

Academic journals

Introducing academic journals for high school students

Is Computer Science, Science?

Wiliam S. Calzone
Stevenson High School


Computer science meets every criterion for being a science, but
it has a self-inflicted credibility problem.

What is your profession? Computer science. Oh? Is that a science? Sure,
it is the science of information processes and their interactions
with the world. I’ll accept that what you do is technology; but not
science. Science deals with fundamental laws of nature. Computers are
manmade. Their principles come from other fields such as physics and
electronics engineering. Hold on. There are many natural information
processes. Computers are tools to implement, study, and predict
them. In the U.S. alone, nearly 200 academic departments
recognize this; some have been granting CS degrees for 40 years.
They all partake of a mass delusion. The pioneers of your field genuinely
believed in the 1950s that their new field was science. They were mistaken.
There is no computer science. Computer art, yes. Computer technology, yes.
But no science. The modern term, Information Technology, is closer to the
truth. I don’t accept your statements about my field and my degree.
Do you mind if we take a closer look? Let’s examine the accepted
criteria for science and see how computing stacks up.
I’m listening.

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