Most research in computer science has focused on von Neumann computers or Turing machines (computation models that perform one small, deterministic step at a time). These models resemble, at a basic level, most real computers in use today. Computer scientists also study other models of computation, including parallel machines and theoretical models such as probabilistic, oracle, and quantum computers.
"Computer science is not as old as physics; it lags by a couple of hundred years. However, this does not mean that there is significantly less on the computer scientist's plate than on the physicist's: younger it may be, but it has had a far more intense upbringing!"
Computer science has roots in electrical engineering, mathematics, and linguistics. In the last third of the 20th century computer science emerged as a distinct discipline and developed its own methods and terminology. The first computer science department in the United States was founded at Purdue University in 1962, while the first college entirely devoted to computer science was founded at Northeastern University in 1980. Prior to this, CS was taught as part of mathematics or engineering departments, for instance at the University of Cambridge in England and at the Gdansk University of Technology in Poland, respectively. Cambridge claims to have the world's oldest taught qualification in computing. Most universities today have specific departments devoted to computer science, while some conjoin it with engineering, with applied mathematics, or other disciplines.
Computer science is closely related to a number of fields. These fields overlap considerably, though important differences exist
Computer graphics is the field of visual computing, where one uses computers both to generate visual images synthetically and to integrate or alter visual and spatial information sampled from the real world.
Information science or Informatics is the study of data and information, including how to create, interpret, analyze, store, retrieve, transfer, and manage it. Information science started as the scientific foundation for communication and databases. It also concerns about the ways people generate, use and find information (see Cognitive science).
The name "computer science" immediately gives the impression that the field is the study of computers, the everyday machines that run programs and perform computations. Nonetheless, the field (as noted above) is both wider and more abstract than this name would suggest. Alternate names such as "computation science" have been proposed, but the traditional name remains the most common.
In French, the discipline is named informatique, in German Informatik, and in Polish informatyka. However, informatics in English is not directly synonymous with computer science; it is actually more equivalent with information theory.
Kurt Godel, for his 1930 proof that demonstrated that Peano axiomatized arithemetic could not be both logically consistent and complete in first-order predicate calculus. Church, Kleene, and Turing developed the foundations of computation theory based on corallaries to Godel's work in 1930.
Admiral Grace Murray Hopper, for pioneering work on the necessity for high-level programming languages, which she termed automatic programming, for writing the A-O compiler, and heavily influencing the COBOL language.
Jacek Karpinski, for developing the first differential analyzer using transistors and developing one of the first machine learning algorithms for character and image recognition. Also the inventor of one of the first minicomputers, the K-202 .
Ramon Llull, for his multiple symbolic representations machines, his ars combinatoria, and his pioneering notions of symbolic representation and manipulation to produce knowledge. He was a HUGE influence on Leibniz.
Ada Lovelace, for beginning the study of scientific computation, specifically for her "Sketch of the Analytical Engine", an analysis of Babbage's work and for the namesake for the modern computer language, Ada.