http://www.inf.unibz.it/~calvanese/teaching/16-17-tc/

## A.Y. 2016/2017

### News

• 29/1/2017: The results of the final Theory of Computing exam of 24/1/2017 are available.
There will an office hour on Tuesday 31/1/2017 at 17:00 in my office in piazza Domenicani 3 (2nd floor), where students can get an insight in their exam and discuss the corrections. After that date, the marks will be finalized.

Course description

Objectives. The objective of the Theory of Computing course is to introduce and study abstract, mathematical models of computation (such as Turing machines, formal grammars, recursive functions), and to use the abstract computation models to study the ability to solve computational problems, by identifying both the intrinsic limitations of computing devices, and the practical limitations due to limited availability of resources (time and space). A second objective is to show how to reason and prove properties about computations in a precise, formal, abstract way.

Prerequisites. There are no prerequisites in terms of courses to attend. Students should be familiar with notions of mathematics and set theory, and with basic proof techniques, as taught in the mathematics courses of a bachelor in computer science.

Teaching material
[M1] Introduction to Automata Theory, Languages, and Computation (3rd edition). J.E. Hopcroft, R. Motwani, J.D. Ullman. Addison Wesley, 2007.
[M2] Lecture Notes for Theory of Computing. Diego Calvanese. 2013. Available as scanned pages in pdf.
[M3] Languages and Machines (3rd edition). Thomas A. Sudkamp. Addison Wesley, 2005. Only Chapter 13.
[M4] The Convenience of Tilings. Peter van Emde Boas. In Complexity, Logic, and Recursion Theory, volume 187 of Lecture Notes in Pure and Applied Mathematics, pages 331-363, 1997.
[M5] Exercises on Theory of Computing. Available as scanned pages in pdf.
• Elements of the Theory of Computation (2nd edition). H.R. Lewis, C.H. Papadimitriou. Prentice Hall. 1998.
• Introduction to the Theory of Computation. M. Sipser. PWS Publishing Company. 1997.
• The Universal Computer: The Road from Leibniz to Turing. M. Davis. A K Peters/CRC Press. 2011. Full text accessible to all unibz users at Safari Books Online.
• The Church-Turing Thesis. Copeland, B. Jack. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Fall 2008 Edition.
• The Status of the P versus NP Problem. Lance Fortnow. Communications of the ACM. Vol. 52 No. 9, Pages 78-86, September 2009. pdf
• On P, NP, and Computational Complexity. Moshe Y. Vardi. Communications of the ACM. Vol. 53 No. 11, Page 5, November 2010. pdf
• Solving the Unsolvable. Moshe Y. Vardi. Communications of the ACM. Vol. 54 No. 7, Page 5, July 2011. pdf
• An Interview with Stephen A. Cook. Philip L. Frana. Communications of the ACM. Vol. 55 No. 1, Pages 41-46, January 2012. pdf
• Rosser's Theorem via Turing machines. Scott Aaronson. Shtetl-Optimized - The Blog of Scott Aaronson. 21 July 2011
Further interesting and fun material

• Office hours
• Teaching assistant: there is no teaching assistant for this course. The exercise hours are taught by the lecturer.
• Schedule: The course is taught in the 1st semester: from October 5, 2016 to January 20, 2017.
• Lectures (Lecture Room E412, Sernesi E):
• Monday 8:30-10:30
• Thursday 10:30-12:30
• Exercises (Lecture Room E431, usually): Tuesday 10:30-12:30

• Lecture notes (made available during the course)
• Esercises solved in class (made available during the course)
• Course program
• Exam esercises from the last years (in part with solutions).
Note that Part 1 of the exams up to June 2007 deals with topics that are not covered anymore in this course. Also, Part 2 of some exams contains exercises on circuit complexity, which is currently not part of the course program, and has been substituted by the part on tiling problems.
• Exam dates
• Winter session: Tuesday, 24/1/2017, 14:00-18:00
• Summer session: Monday, 19/6/2017, 14:00-18:00
• Autumn session: Tuesday, 19/9/2017, 8:30-12:30
• Rules for the exam
• At the exam, the student has to solve exercises and/or answer questions on the course topics in written or oral form.
• The exam is divided into two parts:
• The two parts of the exam can be taken together in the same exam session, or separately in different exam sessions.
• Even when the two parts of the exam are taken together, they can be passed separately.
• For a part to be passed, a minimum of 18/30 points is required (half marks are rounded upwards).
• A passed part of the exam (or the passed midterm) is valid until the end of the academic year (i.e., exam session of September). If the other part is not passed by then, the passed part is lost and cannot be carried over to the next academic year.
• For the written exam, each part has a duration of 90 minutes, with 15 minutes break between the two parts. During the exam, it will not be possible to consult any kind of material, to use laptops, smartphones, or tablets, or to leave the exam room before the break/end of the exam.

teaching page of Diego Calvanese