A Window into Computer Science: Third Time’s a Charm I Hope

        This is starting to become a major issue seeing as this is the third time that I have to write this. The last two times (the first being Sunday afternoon, the second Monday night) I’d write the entire blogpost, add my tags, and then try to add the picture that I want at the end, and then the page refreshed itself to add the picture and returning a blank blogpost. The autosave feature would then kick in and save over the old draft with a now empty one. Needless to say this has become an unnecessary source of frustration. Without a further ado I guess, here’s probably my last shot at this before I give up.

Now to actually start this… again. Aside from rewriting this multiple times, (almost) everything in the city has been great. The food has been pretty good, some of it has even been pretty cheap (a pizza place near the office has mini pizzas that are a little under $2 USD), and I love that all the stores have the tax already accounted for on the labels. Public transportation is super easy to figure out and I haven’t had an issue with it yet. Not to mention that it’s a whole lot cleaner that what we have in Philly or Pittsburgh. I have some hopefully interesting events coming up next weekend so there should be something more interesting in this section of next week’s blog. Now onto the actual response.

Seeing as I am the only Computer Science student and the only student from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (at least in the Berlin section), I would hope that my perspective is unique and maybe even refreshing. For the internship I’m working with a start-up company in web design with specializations in multi-media projects and virtual reality. We even just rolled out support for the Oculus Quest headset that came out within the past two days. Each of these aspects actually sum up my collegiate academics quite well. My second major is in multimedia and digital culture which deals in large part with aesthetic design and message conveyance, my job on campus is a position as a virtual reality keeper and experimenter, not to mention that my primary degree program is in computer science which most closely handles web design. Even though the company seems to be a perfect fit, which it is, there’s still a lot of work I have to do outside of work and this is seriously cramping on my time. I mostly just have to acquaint myself with about two programming languages that I haven’t worked with before and a number of supporting libraries. Aside from just learning more programming languages, which is the more basic side of computer science, the most important skills in my opinion are having a cause-and-effect style mindset and mild ingenuity. Although the two of those go hand-in-hand in, I want to briefly describe them separately. The mindset comes into play every time something in the program breaks (which is almost every time)and you have to figure out what is causing the problem and what you need to do to fix it, which is where the ingenuity comes into play. Often times, the solution is kind of circuitous and usually breaks more things. For example, one of the problems that I already with at the internship dealt with simultaneous functions that have different speeds ending in the wrong order because some of them would catch up too soon and thus issues occurred. So when I realized that one step in the program needed to happen earlier, the change actually caused a new issue because the new step was now happening too quickly.

Computer science doesn’t really have any country specific skills, because it doesn’t matter who you are, where you are, or what language you speak computers still don’t understand human language. It also helps that most documentation for programming languages is almost entirely in English with typically non-official translations so even my coworkers all have very functional English. That being said, having additional languages never hurts. My time spent studying Latin is actually still very relevant to computer science in that it taught me great lessons in how to process a new language and I am thus much faster at picking up new programming languages like the HTML and JavaScript that I’ve been learning for the past three weeks for this internship. I remember that I had another part about aesthetic design and that’s why I tried to upload another picture, but considering that adding the picture seemed to break wordpress every time, I’m just going to leave that part out.