Denning, P. (2007). Computing is a natural science, Communications of the ACM, 50 (7), 13–18.


Type: Theoretical

Purpose: The purpose of this article was to argue in the form of a framework that computation and CS is embedded in all fields such as biology, physics, architecture, economics.

Findings: Old definitions of computer science are removed for newer definitions such as " the study of natural and artificial processes" (p. 15). In the middle 1990's, the articulation of fundamental principles framework in computer science was initiated with the intent of defining common language across fields, describing new approaches to teaching and learning around computing, and to inspire young people with the possibilities of a career in CS. According to Denning (2007), the four questions addressed in the framework were: (1) What is information? (2) What is computation? (3) How does computation expand what we know? (4) How does computation limit what we can know? This framework created seven categories of principles in different facets of technology (e.g., communication, recollection, evaluation, design). The seven principles are: intractability, compression, choosing, locality, search, bottlenecks and hierarchical aggregation.