Syllabus
CSCI546 Introduction to Theory of Computation
Deterministic and nondeterministic Turing machines, decidable and
undecidable problems, complexity classes P and NP. PreReq: 431 Elective in
the CSci BS.
Note: this class will make more sense if you have completed CSCI500 first.
Theoretical foundations of computer science: models of Computation,
recursive functions; Church's thesis and undecidable problems; complexity classes: P, NP, CONP and PSPACE. Prereq: classified. Elective in the CSci MS.
Note: this class will make most sense if you have completed CSCI600 or 500 first.
If you are enrolled in CS646 then to earn full credit for the work
you have to select the tougher exercises marked by an exclamation
mark in the book(!).
 Do you want to be a millionaire?
[ http://www.claymath.org/millennium/ ]
[ http://www.claymath.org/millennium/P_vs_NP/ ]
[ http://www.claymath.org/Popular_Lectures/Minesweeper/ ]
 Do you want to tackle some of the most intriguing and powerful
results in the whole CSci curriculum?
 Why is some encryption so hard to crack? Does it have to be that way?
 Why am I still waiting for the answer? Has the computer crashed?
 Which programs can not be solved by programming?
 What kind of problem is hard to solve quickly?
Instructor Information
I haven't taught this class for nearly a decade. I've
never taught it with this text book or as a coscheduled
class (CS546 + CS646).
[ ../index.html ]
Calendar, Schedule, Required Work
The schedule may have to change.... since I've not used this
book before etc...
[ schedule.html ]
Support, Instructional Methods, Policies, & Grading
[ ../syllabus.html ]
Readings
Required Text
 INTRODUCTION TO AUTOMATA AND LANGUAGE THEORY
 John E. Hopcroft & Rajeev Motwani & Jeffrey D. Ullman
[ ialc.html ]
 Addison Wesley 2001 ISBN 0201441241
(We'll cover chapters 1,2,8,9,10, and 11 of it in this course, the
rest was in the previous quarter's theory course).
The following was used in previous editions of this class.
You may find it helpful but you don't need to buy it if you
haven't got a copy:
 Author: John Martin
 Title: Intro to Languages and Theory of Computation
 Edition: 3rd ISBN#: 0072322004
[ http://highered.mcgrawhill.com/sites/0072322004/ ]
A Classic Text
 Marvin Minsky
 Computation: Finite and Infinite Machines
 Prentice Hall 1964
 =TEXT THEORY OBSOLETE READABLE TURING AUTOMATA FUNCTIONS POST
 Written before complexity and intractability was published.
I will be handing out a couple of pages as reading for one class.
This has just been rated the 13th most popular computer science book
that is out of print by the Association for Computing Machinery.
Do not buy  unless you see a second hand copy going cheap.
There are very few books on computability and tractability in the
CSUSB library. Possible library of congress classifications are
QA9 (Foundations of mathematics) and QA76.6 G35.
I have found
(and borrowed) a useful reference work: Michael R Garey & David
S Johnson, Computers and Intractability: A Guide to the theory of
NPCompleteness, Bell Telephone Labs 1979.
The preparation for two classes requires you to search the web
for topics and submit a relevant URL that you have discovered
as assigned work/study.
. . . . . . . . . ( end of section Readings) <<Contents  End>>
Project Work and Programming(6%)
You will work in a team to produce a simple simulator
of a Turing Machine. More details in the schedule. The whole
project earns 30 points: 10 points for a progress report(2%) and 20
points (4%) for the finished product and presentation.
I will ask you to program and test a single, well known function.
This is a bonus of 10 points(2%).
Assigned work(26%)
(Study): The schedule assigns a piece of reading to be studied to prepare
for class.
You must "[Submit]" a questions based on the reading using the
"[Submit]" button on the web pages at least one hour before the start of
each class. This is worth 2 points if on time. You get a 2point
bonus for attending the first class.
Notice that if you don't ask about something we probably will not
spend time class time on it. So ask about things you need help with.
(Ex): You should
also attempt all the exercises that you have time for and bring
a written answer to one of them that is not marked by an asterisk(*).
An exercise is one part of a numbered exercise.
You may work in a team of up to 4 people and hand in one answer
with all the names on the front sheet. This is worth 5 points(1%).
All members of the team will get the same score. I will pick
one person from the team to present  and they may lose all their
points if they apparently don't know what their team did.
When the reading in the schedule is on the web you should
"[Submit]" a URL for a page at least one hour before class. This is
worth 5 points max(1%).
The will be a short test of the material in the first chapter
of the book (math) in the third class  it contributes 50 points(10%)
to the total grade for the class. The final exam is comprehensive
and contributes 200 points (40%) to the total grade.
Participation (20%)
To earn all 5 points you must: (1) turn up and be ready to take
part at the start of the class, (2) stay until the class is dismissed,
(3) Answer questions, (4) ask questions, and (5) take part in
class discussions and exercises.
. . . . . . . . . ( end of section Work to be done) <<Contents  End>>
All points earned before the final will be totaled with the maximum
possible score being set to 300 points. The maximum on the final is
200 points. These two totals will be added together to calculate
the grade for the course according to the rules
[ ../syllabus.html ]
in my generic syllabus.
. . . . . . . . . ( end of section Syllabus) <<Contents  End>>
Date
 Meet'g
 Study(2 pts)
 Bring(5 pts)
 Topic(5 pts)
 Notes


Mon Apr 3
 1
 
 
 Survival

Wed Apr 5
 2
 Chapter 1+O(.)+graph
 Ex
 Methods

Mon Apr 10
 3
 Preface+Web1
 URL
 History
 Exam on math(50 pts)

Wed Apr 12
 4
 Chapter 2+Chapter 6 section 6.1
 Ex
 Automata

Mon Apr 17
 5
 Chapter 8 sections 8.1, 8.2
 Ex
 Turing Machines

Wed Apr 19
 6
 Chapter 8 sections 8.2, 8.4
 Ex
 Programming TM

Fri Apr 21
 
 
 
 Last day to drop

Mon Apr 24
 7
 Chapter 8 sections 8.5, 8.6
 Ex
 Restricted TM

Wed Apr 26
 8
 Chapter 8 section 8.7+Minsky
 Ex
 The Halting Problem
 Start Project

Mon May 1
 9
 Web2
 URL
 Recursive Functions
 Acker(10 pts Bonus)

Wed May 3
 10
 Chapter 9 sections 9.1, 9.2
 Ex
 Undecidability & RE
 Project1 (10 pts)

Mon May 8
 11
 Project2 (20 pts)
 
 Turing Machines

Wed May 10
 12
 Chapter 9 section 9.3
 Ex
 Undecidability & TM

Mon May 15
 13
 Chapter 9 sections 9.4, 9.5.1, 9.6
 Ex
 Post Correspondence+ Programs

Wed May 17
 14
 Chapter 10 sections 10.1
 Ex
 Intractable Problems P & NP

Mon May 22
 15
 Chapter 10 sections 10.2, 10.3
 Ex
 NPComplete

Wed May 24
 16
 Chapter 10 sections 10.4, 10.5
 Ex
 Graph Problems & TSP

Mon May 29
 
 
 
 HOLIDAY

Wed May 31
 17
 Chapter 11 sections 11.1, 11.2, 11.3
 Ex
 CoNP & PSPACE

Mon Jun 5
 18
 Chapter 11 sections 11.4
 Ex
 Randomization RP ZPP

Wed Jun 7
 19
 Chapter 11 sections 11.5, 11.6
 Ex
 Primality

Mon Jun 12
 20
 Chapters 8, 9, 10, 11
 Ex
 Review

Fri Jun 16
 Final
 Chapters 1, 2, 8, 9, 10, 11
 
 Comprehensive (200 pts)

Tue Jun 20
 
 
 
 Grades Due in

(Web1): Search the WWW for pages on the theory of computability,
Alan Turing,
Turing Machines, tractability, Stephen Cook, Michael Rabin, etc. Submit one URL.
(math): Chapter 1 + notes on the bigO notation
[ bigOnotation.html ]
[ Big_O_notation ]
[ time1.cpp ]
(Down load and run some tests on UNIX system)
+ notes on directed graphs.
[ Graph_theory ]
[ GRAPHTHE.HTM ]
(Acker): Study the Ackermann function on page 381  Exercise 9.2.2.
Write the simplest possible program that could possibly compute this
function for small x & y. Use recursion and long ints(at least). Demo
results to class. Earn a bonus of 10 points. Note: your program
does not have to run fast (halt within 10 minutes) on large numbers (y>2).
(Web2): Search the web for pages on recursive functions, partial
recursive functions, primitive recursive functions,
recursively enumerable, recursive languages, and recursion
in general. Submit one URL.
(Minsky): Study my two page handout from Minsky's 1964 "??"
(Project): Working in a team of 3 or 4 people design, code, and test
a simple Turing Machine simulator.
 Notes
 You may use any language that can be demonstrated
in class.
 You may choose any kind of user interface you like.
 Your
TM simulator does not have to have infinite memory capacity like a real TM.
 Do the simplest thing that can possibly work.
 Consult with me in my office hours.
 Process
 Start by thinking about the design and developing tests for your code...
 (Project1): First deadline: bring a progress report to class and present it.
Grading: pass/fail. Any running set of tests will pass.
 (Project2): Second deadline: bring a report on the final status, present it,
and hand in a hard copy for grading.
(URL): Submit one Universal Resorce Locator for a relevant page on a piece of paper. Use the submit button at the top of the web page. To earn complete credit you need to do this at least 90 minutes before the start of class.
(Ex): Do as many of the relevant exercises as you have time for. You may work in a team of upto 4 students and hand in one joint solution. Bring to class one written solution to an exercise. This must not be a solution to an exercise marked with an asterisk(*) to earn full credit. One of the authors will be invited to present the solution to the class  failure will loose points. Students taking CS646 must hand in the solution to an exercise marked with an exclamation mark(!) to earn full credit.
(Study): Read & think about the assigned items. Submit one question by selecting the submit button at the top of the web page. To earn complete credit you need to do this at least 90 minutes before the start of class. Hints. Read each section twice  once the easy bits and then the tough bits. Use a scratch pad and pencil as you read.
(Topic): To earn all the possible points you must: turn up on time, not leave early, present work when called upon, and take part in discussions.