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GCSE OCR Computing

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Emma Makin

on 25 February 2014

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Transcript of GCSE OCR Computing

What is Computing?
Computing is the study of how computers and computer systems work and how they are constructed and programmed.

Computing is complementary to, but quite different from Information and Communication Technology. ICT is about the use of computers and their applications. Computing is about their design and implementation.

Computing is not just programming, either. A working knowledge of programming is necessary but not sufficient for a thorough grounding in computing.
So...why study computing?
1. Computing is part of everything we do!
So...why study computing?
Expertise in computing enables you to solve complex, challenging problems.
Computing enables you to make a positive difference in the world.
Computing offers many types of lucrative careers.
Expertise in computing helps you even if your primary career choice is something else.
Computing offers great opportunities for true creativity and innovation.
Computing has space for both collaborative work and individual effort.
Computing is an essential part of well-rounded academic preparation.
Future opportunities in computing are without boundaries.

How will I be assessed?
Aside from coursework assessment you will complete the following tasks and activities:

- Regular homework combining quizzes, group work, individual and contributing to discussions Via Moodle.
- 'Present a topic', Small groups will present a topic of interest (taken from the course) to the class,
- Participation and effort in class.
- Evidence of wider reading and engagement,

Surfing the web
When you type in words on a search engine's web page, how does it give you back the results so quickly? (
search algorithms, parallel computing
How does a search engine company go about indexing and storing information about the billions of web pages online at a given time, especially when pages are constantly being created and deleted?
(web crawling, data mining, databases, parallel computing)
Online Gaming
How do modern games look so realistic, with all of their cool 3-D effects, and how can it all be rendered in real-time as you are playing and constantly changing the in-game environment?
(computer graphics)
How do the in-game enemies seem to be 'smart' and able to learn from your actions?
(artificial intelligence)
How is it possible for dozens of people to play online simultaneously and still have the game feel responsive most of the time?
(networking, client-server architecture).
How do file sharing programs perform so much faster than simply downloading from a website?
(networking, distributed algorithms).
Isn't it astounding that when you download a file, it always arrives at your computer intact in pristine condition, even though it had to travel through thousands of miles of unreliable copper wires?
(reliable networking protocols, error detection and correction).
How can high-quality photos, audio, and video be compressed so much (1/10 to 1/100 of original size) without losing much quality?
(lossy compression algorithms).
Shopping online
How can you be reasonably confident that nobody will steal your credit card number while you are shopping online?
(network security, cryptography).
How can the retailer keep track of what items are in stock and report the results in real-time on their website?
(databases, web programming).
How can the retailer accurately predict what other items you might like to buy based on what you've recently bought?
(artificial intelligence, machine learning).
Mobile technologies
Mobile devices and cell phones can now be used for so much more than simply making phone calls...
(programming for embedded devices, networking and communications protocols, wireless networking).
How can you effectively navigate around the options and even browse the web on that tiny screen on your phone?
(user interface).
Social networking
It's so easy and enjoyable to simply browse around and get lost for hours on these sites!
(user interface).
How can these sites recall, store, and visualize interesting social networking relationships?
(databases, search, visualization).
What steps do these sites take and what options do they provide to you to ensure that your privacy is maintained?
(security models).
As modern planes become more and more automated, with more of their subsystems being controlled by software components, how can you feel safe flying on a machine where a single software bug could jeopardize hundreds of lives? How can we find difficult-to-squash bugs and give guarantees that software is functioning correctly?
(software reliability, program analysis).
Travelling on an airplane
How do air traffic controllers manage to constantly direct hundreds of planes while under high-stress conditions? How can computers aid them in doing their jobs so that passengers can enjoy safe and timely flights?
(user interface, communications, networking).
Travelling on an airplane
When purchasing tickets online, how is it possible for the computer system to search through millions of possible combinations of routes to give you the best deal on your tickets?
(algorithms, search, parallel computing).
Why are the self-check-in kiosks easy to use and much more efficient than waiting in line for people to check you in? You just swipe a credit card, passport and you're all set!
(user interface, networking, databases).
Make a difference...
Computing drives innovation in the sciences (human genome project, AIDS vaccine research, environmental monitoring and protection just to mention a few), and also in engineering, business, entertainment and education.
Choose a career...
Software Engineer, Systems Engineer, Business Analyst, Game Designer, Web Developer, Project Manager...and many more!
Unit A451

Computer systems and programming
Written paper including short and long answer questions, some of which require you to write program code.

90 minute examination worth 80 marks

40% of the overall qualification
Unit A451 overview
- Computer Systems
- Computing Hardware
- Software
- Data Representation
- Databases
- Networks
- Programming

Unit A452
Practical investigation
Controlled assessment
Approx. 20 hours
45 Marks

30% of the overall qualification
Unit A452 overview
- Carry out a practical investigation from a specific topic which requires research.
- Produce a report including analysis, justification and evaluation of the topic.
- The report must include the following:

Practical activity
Effectiveness and efficiency of the solution
Technical understanding
Testing, evaluation, judgements and conclusions,

Unit A453
Programming project
Controlled assessment
Approx. 20 hours
45 marks

30% of the overall qualification.
So...what will I study?
Unit A453 overview
- Carry out a practical investigation from a specific topic which requires research.
- Create suitable algorithms which will provide a solution to the problem then code your solutions using Visual Basic Express 2010.
- The code must be annotated and tested at each stage of development.
- A testing plan and data must be produced.
- All work must be evaluated.
- Must be completed under controlled conditions (minimal support from the teacher and completed largely in class.

Assessment Objectives (AOs)
Full transcript