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CS254
Fall 2006
Sec1
Home Page/Syllabus
Theory of Computation
Instructor:
Chris Pollett
Office: MH 214
Phone Number: (408) 924 5145
Email:
cpollett@gmail.com
Office Hours:MW 4:30pm7:00pm
Class Meets:
Sec1 MW 7:00pm8:15pm in MH223

To take this class you must have taken:
CS154
with a grade of C or better.
This course covers the basics of computability and
complexity theory. That is, it covers models of computation;
decidability; complexity measures; hierarchies;
P, NP and other complexity classes; intractable problems. By the end of this course, students
should be able to: (1) Exhibit a simulation of one machine
model with another. For instance, a Turing machine by a RAM. (2) Give a minimal classification of the
complexity of a
computational problem as being in one of the class L, P, NP, coNP, some level of the
polynomial hierarchy, PSPACE, E, EXPTIME, decidable, undecidable. (3) Show the completeness
of a complete problem for each of these classes. (4) Know properties of the randomized classes RP, BPP.
(5) Know conditions under which various of these hierarchies might collapse. (6) Explain
at least one circuit lower bound technique such as Razborov's techniques for monotone circuits. (7)
Exhibit a relativized separation (oracle result) of complexity classes for standard classes such as P
and NP.
Below is a tentative time table for when we'll do things this quarter:
Week 1:
Aug 23

Read Ch 1.

Week 2:
Aug 28
, Aug 30

Read pp1932.

Week 3:
Sep 4(Holiday)
, Sep 6

Finish Ch 2

Week 4:
Sep 11 (HW1 due)
, Sep 13

Read Ch 3.

Week 5:
Sep 18
, Sep 20

Read Ch 4.

Week 6:
Sep 25
, Sep 27

Read Ch 7.

Week 7:
Oct 2 (HW2 due)
, Oct 4 (Midterm 1)

Review.

Week 8:
Oct 9
, Oct 11

Read Ch 8.

Week 9:
Oct 16
, Oct 18

Read Ch 9.

Week 10:
Oct 23 (HW3 due)
, Oct 25

Read Ch 10.

Week 11:
Oct 30
, Nov 1

Start Ch 11.

Week 12:
Nov 6
, Nov 8

Read Ch 11 to p268

Week 13:
Nov 13 (HW4 due)
, Nov 15 (Midterm 2)

Review.

Week 14:
Nov 20
, Nov 22

Finish Ch11, Read Ch 12 to p287

Week 15:
Nov 29
, Dec 1

Read 14.1, Theorem 14.3, Sec 14.3

Week 16:
Dec 4
, Dec 6 (HW5 due)

Read Sec 14.4. Review.


The final will be Monday, Dec 11 from 7:45pm to 10:00pm

Homeworks 
40%

Midterm 1 
15%

Midterm 2 
15%

Final 
30%

Total  100% 
Grades will be calculated in the following manner: The person or persons with the
highest aggregate score
will receive an A+. As this is a graduate class the material will be harder, and so I
will make a slightly more lenient curve than typical for an undergraduate class.
A score of 60 will be
the cutoff for a B. The region between
this high and low score will be
divided into five equalsized regions. From the top region to the low region,
a score falling within a region
receives the grade: A, A, B+, B, B. If the boundary between an
A and an A is 85, then the score
85 counts as an A. Scores below 60 but above 50 receive the grade C.
Those below 50 receive the
grade F.
If you do better than
an A in this class and want me to write you a letter of recommendation, I will generally
be willing provided
you ask me within two years of taking my course.
Be advised that I write better letters if I know you to some degree.
Links to the current list of assignments can be found on the left hand frame of the
class
homepage. After an assignment has been returned a link to its solution (based on the best student
solutions) will be placed off the assignment page. Material from assignments may appear on midterms and
finals. For homeworks you are encouraged to work in groups of up to three people.
Only one person out of this group needs to submit the homework assignment; however,
the members of the group need to be clearly identified in all submitted files.
Homeworks for
this class will be submitted and returned completely electronically. The written and
programming parts of an assignment are submitted by clicking on the submit homework
link
for your section on the left hand side of the homepage and filling out the online
form.
Hardcopies or email versions of your assignments will be rejected and not receive
credit. Homeworks will always be due by the start of class on
the day
their due. Late homeworks will not be accepted; however, your low homework score will
be
dropped.
When doing the programming part of an assignment please make sure to adhere to the
specification given as closely as possible. Names of files should be as given, etc.
Failure to follow the specification may result in your homework not being graded and
you receiving a zero for your work. In addition, you should make sure your code
conforms
with the Departmental Java Coding Guidelines. This will be worth one point on every assignment.
The written part of each homework should be typeset in LaTeX. Links to where one
can obtain LaTeX can be found in the Text and Links section above.
The midterms will be during class time on:
Oct 4 and Nov 15
.
The final will be: Monday, Dec 11 from 7:45pm to 10:00pm.
All exams are closed book,
closed notes and in this classroom. You will
be allowed only the test and your pen or pencil on your desk during these
exams. Beeper or cellphone interruptions will result in immediate excusal
from the test. The final will
cover material from the whole quarter although there will be an emphasis on
material after the last midterm. No make ups will be given. The final exam
may be scaled to replace a midterm grade if it was missed under provably
legitimate circumstances. These exams will test whether or not you
have mastered the material both presented in
class or assigned as homework during the quarter. My exams usually consist
of a series of essay style questions. I try to avoid
making tricky problems. The week before each exam I will give out a
list of problems representative of the level of difficulty of problems the
student will be expected to answer on the exam. Any disputes concerning
grades on exams should be directed to me, Professor Pollett.
If you believe an error was made in the grading of your program or exam, you
may request in person a regrade from me, Professor Pollett,
during my office hours. I do not accept email requests for
regrades.
A request for a regrade must be made no more than a week after the homework or a midterm is
returned. If you cannot find me before the end of the semester and you would like to request a
regrade of your final, you may see me in person at the start of the immediately following
semester.
Your own commitment to learning, as evidenced by your enrollment at
San Jose State University, and the University's Academic Integrity
Policy requires you to be honest in all your academic
course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions
to the Office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The policy on
academic integrity can be found at
http://sa.sjsu.edu/student_conduct.
Specifically, for this class, you should obviously not cheat on tests. For homeworks,
you should not discuss or share code or problem solutions between groups!
At a minimum a 0 on the assignment or test will be given. A student
caught using resources like Rentacoder will receive
an F for the course and be referred to University for disciplinary action.
The campus policy to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act is:
"If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an
appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 9703 requires that students with disabilities register with DRC to
establish a record of their disability."
More information about SJSU policies and procedures can be found at the following links:
