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Computer Science: An Overview by Glenn Brookshear

One of my biggest regrets is not doing a computer science degree. Instead I have been entirely self-taught. This isn’t a bad thing, and many great developers are self-taught, but I always thought I was missing out on some fundamentals that could have really helped me to learn more effectively.

Over time you pick up things from fragmented sources like tutorials, MOOCs etc. However, if you are a data scientist and you don’t have a strong background in computer science it probably isn’t a bad idea to learn the fundamental computer science concepts in one place through a book such as “Computer Science: An Overview”.

Table of Contents

This book has very little code in it, mainly ideas and pseudocode. But it will help you with programming indirectly. Knowing how computers work, and knowing the main areas of computer science is helpful. As it turns out this book is often used as a textbook for new computer science students to give them a general overview of the field.

The book starts with explaining computer architecture, it then describes operating systems, networking and the internet and software fundamentals like algorithm design, programming languages and the process of developing software. Then we get an understanding of data structures and databases, then there is a chapter on AI and another on the theory of computation.

A great book, especially if you can pick it up second hand for $4 like I did!