Taking the CS50 by Harvard University

Taking the CS50 by Harvard University

If you’re just pondering on what to or where to imbibe some serious coding stuff, then CS50 is the right place for you to be! This course [Computer Science 50] offered by Harvard on Edx is one of the best courses if you want to learn computer programming. It is also a good refresher course for those who already have some knowledge about programming.
Now, you might be thinking “Why should I opt this course while I have other options online?” Right? Well, let me tell you why you have to do this course!

These points hike this course’s significance and make it the BEST course

  1. It doesn’t focus on teaching you any particular programming language, it teaches you how to code! The course primarily uses C language along with Python, SQL, JavaScript, CSS and HTML.
  2. CS50 focuses more on actually DOING rather than just the theoretical lectures.
  3. Covers a wide range of topics over 11 weeks inspired by real-world domains of biology, cryptography, finance, forensics, and gaming. So we get to learn a lot! 🙂
  4. The homework is pretty cool and you get a sense of accomplishment once you complete it successfully. [Don’t believe me? Take up the challenge and feel it yourself!]
  5. The sheer amount of effort Harvard has put into this course is amazing. The CS50 appliance (Virtual Machine) is just amazing! It is custom built for CS50 and has a special Linux command (style50) which checks your code style which informs you if you haven’t added comments, if your indentation is wrong, if your usage of White Space is incorrect among other things! This might feel ordinary to a pro coder, but for me, it was pretty exciting!
  6. Last, but in no ways the least, sign up for CS50 just because you get to learn from this guy….
David J. Malan | Trynal
David J. Malan | Trynal

David J. Malan!
He’s an awesome instructor and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed! If you are going to sign up for it, I can surely assure you, you will never regret your decision.


How did I get to know about this?

Well, I was pursuing my B.Tech freshman year [ yes, CS as major ] and I used to solve some problems on HackerRank. I used to share my views with my brother and he, I don’t know what made him share this course with me, but he did one day. I was like, ‘Hmm, let’s take a glance at that’. Boom! In a span of just 2 minutes I was totally into that course. I mean, just look at this.

I made up my mind to do this course and paid the stipulated bucks and got myself registered. I somehow verified myself by taking a snap of me [live] and a snap of my Aadhaar card. My account was verified and ready to blast off the next day. After seeing that verification deadline of a year, I told to myself that I’d complete this in just 5 – 6 months [ over confidence at pinnacle ] because I didn’t know how comprehensive this course was.

The other thing is, this course has not only got a single language to its syllabus, but it has got multiple languages stipulated in it. These are the things that are taught in this course.

Week 0 – Scratch
Week 1 – C
Week 2 – Algorithms
Week 3 – Memory
Week 4 – Data Structures
Week 5 – HTTP
Week 6 – Dynamic Programming
Week 7 – Python
Week 8 – Python
Week 9 – SQL
Week 10 – JavaScript
Week 11 – The End

Diving into Week 0:

I was so excited to watch the video although it was over an hour and I found it really interactive and interesting as hell. So, a long journey had begun, the week 0 class has introduced some basics of computer programming, how it solves problems using algorithm. It also introduced a visual programming language by MIT called Scratch. I knew that, that is the only time we will use that, since the schedule starts C on week 1.

Speaking frankly, everything was really fun while watching the video but the main trouble began when I got into problem set 0 [pset0]. It was quite hectic as it was the first time and I had to get myself on the CS50 IDE. Done!!

After going through the prescribed constraints to the problem set, I set off to the scratch site and started to ponder of something I could present as my project. I still remember, I spent 2 hours just to figure out what I was going to do! Well, I decided to just create a story line kind of project which was not a big deal for many of you guys reading this now. But I tell you, the beginning was really delicious [ if you know what i mean ]. My perspective slightly changed as I got to know more about this top-notch course.

This might surely have brought a smile on your face.

David J. Malan | Trynal


I’d like to bring out my best line from Prof David J. Malan.

“What ultimately matters in this course is not so much where you end up relative to your classmates, but where you in week 11, the end of the semester, end up relative to yourself.”

Hello CS50!

This is what i managed to do in my pset 0 : Hello CS50!

You could get an idea of my laziness after reading the description. Some how I got it done in 5-6 hours and when i went to submit it, a lot more was waiting for me. I guess that was the form that everyone had to fill who was submitting the pset 0. That took quite a while and yes, that felt like really a sense of relief when I submitted it!

I was eagerly waiting for my grade and got them in a flash, just in 2 days! I was really elated to see it get 100/100. So, this is how my pset 0 went on and I’ll be putting up all my experiences that I’d been through while i was taking this course, I hope you guys found this one helpful.

I just want to tell that “I’d have quit this course long ago if I hadn’t paid for it priorly”. Yes, I mean it for I found it real difficult at times. This fact that I’d paid 90$ pushed me everytime while I was down and out!
But, as I said, when you finish each pset, you get lot of experience and yes, a sense of content and accomplishment!

Do share your views and let me know what more can I put up in this post so that everyone would find it helpful.

Welcome to CS50!!
Happy coding!

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14 Replies to “Taking the CS50 by Harvard University”

  1. I love that there are so many types of courses you can take to excel in life and business. This sounds like the perfect option to learn a bit of good code

  2. Wow! This course CS50 is so amazing and in span of 11 weeks you will learn a lot about programming. I know how hard this course is but I am sure at the end it’s all worth it.

  3. This sounds like a great course. One of my friend is interested in it. It would be great if you’ll elaborate it in your next post.

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