Informatics, TU Vienna

Search for the Science of Computing: Competing Viewpoints

Vortrag aus der PhD school Series "Current Trends in Computer Science"


Computing as a discipline started form up after a new era of computing dawned in the 1930s and 1940s with a number of technical and theoretical innovations. Clashes between different agenda for the nascent field characterized computing's disciplinary debates from the beginning. One of the early dilemmas was to describe computing as a rigorous, mathematically oriented field separate from mathematics. The software crisis brought up arguments for the importance of software engineering as well as studying people, the users of computer systems. All along computing was also characterized as an empirical science - first by virtue of its theoretical foundations, and then by virtue of its aims, methods, subject matter, and computational modeling's predictive success in other fields. This talk discusses some central debates about computing's disciplinary identity and their importance for the discipline's formation.


Matti Tedre is the author of The Science of Computing: Shaping a Discipline (Taylor & Francis / CRC Press, 2014). He's an associate professor at Stockholm University, and an adjunct professor in several other universities. His main fields of interest are the history and
philosophy of computer science and computer science education research.