MA/CS 109 - The Art and Science of Quantitative Reasoning

The Art and Science of Quantitative Reasoning (MA 109/CS 109) is a Boston University course offered jointly by departments of Computer Science and Mathematics and Statistics since Spring 2009. It satisfies both Mathematics Competency and MCS Divisional requirements.

If you are currently in the course, click here to go to Moodle, our course management system. It contains most up-to-date lecture notes, homework assignments, dicussion forums, and other useful information.

The goal of the course is to explore how mathematics, statistics, and computer science enable the modern world. Follow the links below for hands-on examples of the kinds of problems that will be addressed in the course.

  • Green Travel To minimize their environmental impact, transportation companies need optimize their routes. In fact, as fuel prices rise, trucking companies that don't may end up going out of business.
  • Encryption and Copyright Special legal protection is granted to encryption technologies that lock up copyrighted works. How do we determine whcih ones are deserving of protection without stifling innovation? More broadly, how can we know which encryption is truly secure?
  • Traffic Control and Deadlock Have you ever been stuck in gridlock? Ever had your computer freeze up inexplicably? Surprisingly, these two annoyances of modern life share a common cause.

For more information about the course, please see the course syllabus, which includes a list of topics and contact information for the course staff. Feel free to read the FAQ and take a look at the course lecture notes to learn more.