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A physical implementation of the Turing machine accessed ... - ICL

A physical implementation of the Turing machine accessed ... - ICL

A physical implementation of the Turing machine accessed ... -

Conference ICL2008 September 24 -26, 2008 Villach, Austria A physical implementation of the Turing machine accessed through Web Marijo Maračić, Slobodan Ribarić University of Zagreb, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing Key words: Turing machine, e-learning, web interface, client-server architecture Abstract: A Turing machine has an important role in education in the field of computer science, as it is a milestone in courses related to automata theory, theory of computation and computer architecture. Its value is also recognized in the Computing Curricula proposed by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and IEEE Computer Society. In this paper we present a physical implementation of the Turing machine accessed through Web. To enable remote access to the Turing machine, an implementation of the client-server architecture is built. The web interface is described in detail and illustrations of remote programming, initialization and the computation of the Turing machine are given. Advantages of such approach and expected benefits obtained by using remotely accessible physical implementation of the Turing machine as an educational tool in the teaching process are discussed. 1 Introduction A Turing machine [1] has an important role in education in the field of computer science, as it is a milestone in the courses related to automata theory, theory of computation and computer architecture. Its value is also recognized in the Computing Curricula proposed by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and IEEE Computer Society [2]. At present time the Turing machine is mainly implemented as a program simulator available on the Web [3-6]. Fig. 1 represents an example of the interface of a Turing machine program simulator [3]. The main characteristics of such program simulators are: • they are widely accessible, • they execute entirely on a computer, • output of the machine is visually displayed, • program is a character string whose semantics and syntax are often unintuitive, • symbol set is very limited, usually restricted to alphanumeric symbols. 1(13)

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