Computer Science is a pointless discipline with no culture. (…) They rarely teach deep philosophy and instead would rather either teach you what some business down the street wants, or teach you their favorite pet language like LISP. (…) Another way to explain the shallowness of Computer Science is that it’s the only discipline that eschews paradox. Even mathematics has reams of unanswered questions and potential paradox in its core philosophy. (…) There’s an envelope of knowledge so vast in most other disciplines that just when you think you’ve learned it all you find something else you never knew. This is what makes them interesting.
Oh! I think there are many deep and exciting questions in Computer Science. (And not just whether P is equal to NP.) And do Sociology, Economics and History have more depth? But I agree that Computer Science is too often utilitarian. Some like to pretend that by catering to the perceived needs of industry, graduates will get better jobs. Unfortunately, too often, the students have to unlearn their so-called “practical knowledge” once they leave the campus. The honest truth: you don’t need three or four years of college to do great in the software industry.
Maybe more time should be spent on the deep questions. Here are a few discussion points that come to mind :
- What is “meaning” and how can computation capture or codify it? What does it say about our brain? Is our brain a Turing machine?
- Why are some programmers ten times more productive than others?
- Can computers extend our intelligence? How intelligent can we become?