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Section 0.5 Why Study Programming?

A computer program is a set of instructions that directs the computer's behavior. Computer programming is the art and science of designing and writing programs.

Years ago it was widely believed that entrance into the computer age would require practically everyone to learn how to program. But this did not prove to be true. Today's computers come with so much easy-to-use software that knowing how to use a computer no longer requires programming skills.

Another reason to study programming might be to enter into a career as a computer scientist. However, although programming is one of its primary tools, computer science is a broad and varied discipline, which ranges from engineering subjects, such as processor design, to mathematical subjects, such as performance analysis.

There are many computer scientists who do little or no programming as part of their everyday work. If you plan to major or minor in computer science, you will certainly learn to program, but good careers in the computing field are available to programmers and nonprogrammers alike.

One of the best reasons to study programming is because it is a creative and enjoyable problem-solving activity. This book will teach you to develop well-designed solutions to a range of interesting problems.

One of the best things about programming is that you can actually see and experience your solutions as running programs. As many students have indicated, there's really nothing like the kick you get from seeing your program solving a problem you've been struggling with.

Designing and building well-written programs provides a powerful sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.

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