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    COP 5930 Generic Programming
    Fall Semester 2006


Lecture   TEC 129   Aug 29 - Dec 12   Tue   5:00pm - 7:30pm (Central Time)


Chris Lacher
Office: Faculty Annex B 101 / Panama City Campus 
Office Phone (during office hours): 
(these all ring the same instrument)  
850-522-5502 (local direct line)
850-872-4750x251 (local Panama City)
850-644-2090x251 (local Tallahassee)
866-693-7872x251 (toll free)
Mobile Phone & Voice Mail (24/7): 850-510-5575 
Email:  lacher@cs.fsu.edu
Mail & Delivery: Florida State University
4750 Collegiate Drive
Panama City, FL 32405-1099
Lacher Weekly Schedule Effective Aug 28 - Dec 15, 2006 (excluding Sep 4, Nov 10, and Nov 22-24)


  • Andrei Alexandrescu, Modern C++ Design: Generic Programming and Design Patterns Applied, Addison-Wesley, 2001 (ISBN 0-201-70431-5) (required).
  • Matthew H. Austern, Generic Programming and the STL, Addison-Wesley, 1999 (ISBN 0-201-30956-4) (recommended).
  • Stanley Lippman, Josee Lajoie, and Barbara Moo, C++ Primer (Fourth Edition), Addison-Wesley, 2005 (ISBN 0-201-72148-1) (recommended).
  • Nicolai Josuttis, The C++ Standard Library, Addison-Wesley, 1999 (ISBN 0-201-37926-0) (recommended).
  • A limited list of reviewed URLs
  • A number of paper handouts from periodicals


The courses COP 4530 (prerequisite) and COP 4531 (pre-/co-requisite); or appropriate maturity in both programming and course work, by permission of the instructor.


Generic programming is the science and engineering of creating re-usable program components. The field has been advanced significantly in the last 5 years and is now at the high level of usefullness in a wide range of applications. Understanding how to create and use generic program components is essential to modern program design.


The course will address the following topics:

  1. Generic Programming Principles and Techniques
    1. Generic Containers
    2. Function and Predicate Objects
    3. Generic Algorithms
    4. Mediation between containers and algorithms with iterators
  2. Containers and Algorithms in the C++ STL
    1. Vectors, Lists, Deques
    2. Stacks, Queues, Priority Queues
    3. Ordered Sets and Maps
    4. Hashed Sets and Maps
    5. Iterators and Iterator Adaptors
    6. General algorithms
    7. Set algorithms
    8. Heap algorithms
    9. Search algorithms
    10. Sort algorithms
  3. Extending the STL to new containers and new algorithms
    1. Graphs and Digraphs
    2. Graph Algorithms
  4. Policy Based Design
    1. Partial template specialization
    2. Traits
    3. Typelists
  5. Design Pattern Implementations
    1. Small objects
    2. Singletons
    3. Smart Pointers
    4. Abstract Factory
    5. Visitor


At the end of this course, the student should be able to:

  1. Be able to use all aspects of the std and fsu template libraries
  2. Define and use the concepts of generic container and algorithm
  3. Define, implement, and use generic algorithms
  4. Define, implement, and use function objects, including stateful function objects
  5. Use policy based design to enforce and regulate software designs
  6. Define, implement, and use type traits
  7. Define, implement, and use typelists8 Write compile-time type selection and bindings
  8. Define and use smart pointers of various configuratons and policies
  9. Define and use the generic design patterns singleton, smart pointer, and abstract factory


Class Participation: (10%) Students are expected to prepare for class by keeping up with assigned reading, exercises, and review questions. These will be discussed in class.

Assignments: (30%) Assignments consist of approximately three (3) exercises/problem sets that will be assigned in parallel with the course coverage.

Presentation: (10%) Each student will be assigned a presentation topic and deliver a presentation on that topic in class.

Exams: (50%) There will be a midterm exam and a final exam, together counting 50% of the course grade..

Course Calendar. Coverage, assignments, lecture notes, and exam coverage will be released through the Course Calendar.


The overall grade for CIS 5930 is the weighted average of four (4) parts: Exams, Assignments, Presentation, and Class Participation. The following Table 2 summarizes the grade components and their weighting. The final course grade will be determined using Table 3.

Table 1: Exam Calendar
Midterm Exam Tue Oct 17
Final Exam Tue Dec 12
 Table 2: Course Points 
 Item   No of Items    Total 
 Participation   1   100 
 Assignments   3   3x100 = 300 
 Presentation   1   100 
 Midterm Exam   1   200 
 Final Exam   1   300 
Total Points:    1000 
 Table 3: Letter Grades  
 Points   Grade 
 925 - 1000   A 
 900 - 924   A- 
 875 - 899   B+ 
 825 - 874   B 
 800 - 824   B- 
 775 - 799   C+ 
 725 - 774   C 
 700 - 724   C- 
 675 - 699   D+ 
 625 - 674   D 
 600 - 624   D- 
 0 - 599   F 
Note that grades below B- will not satisfy requirements for a graduate degree.


First Day Attendance Policy: Official university policy is that any student not attending the first class meeting will be automatically dropped from the class. For distance students, this policy is interpreted as posting to the discussion forum "First Day Attendance" no later than the first day of the semester.

Regular Attendance Policy: The university requires attendance in all classes. Attendance in distance classes shall mean regular access to the course web site via campus.fsu.edu and regular participation in the class discussion forums. Here, "regular" shall mean a substantial amount of time on a weekly basis. Note that individual access statistics are maintained by Blackboard.

Proctored Exam Policy: All exams must be proctored and taken at an approved testing site during the exam window or in class on the designated date. It is the student's responsibility to arrange for proctored exams in compliance with the FSU standards. Go to http://online.fsu.edu/learningresources/proctoredexam/ for details.

Exam Makeup Policy: An exam missed without an acceptable excuse will be recorded as a grade of zero (0). The following are the only acceptable excuses:

  • If submitted prior to the day of the scheduled exam:
    • A written and signed explanation as to why the exam will missed. Illness or required professional travel are acceptable, while discretionary or personal travel are not. In any case the explanation should be accompanied by corrobrating documentation, including names and contact information, and the explanation must be accepted by the instructor prior to missing the exam.
    • Evidence from a university official that you will miss the exam due to university sanctioned travel or extracurricular activity.
  • If submitted on or after the day of the scheduled exam:
    • A note from a physician, university dean, spouse, parent, or yourself indicating an illness or other extraordinary circumstance that prevented you from taking the exam and could not be planned for in advance. Again, corroborating information should be supplied.

All excuses must be submitted in writing, must be signed by the excusing authority, and must include complete contact information for the authority, including telephone numbers and address.

Missed exams with acceptable excuse will be made up or assigned the average grade of all other exams, at the option of the course instructor.

Missed, and acceptably excused, final exams will result in the course grade of 'I' and must be made up in the first two weeks of the following semester.

Grade of 'I' Policy: The grade of 'I' will be assigned only under the following exceptional circumstances:

  • The final exam is missed with an accepted excuse for the absence. In this case, the final exam must be made up during the first two weeks of the following semester.
  • Due to an extended illness or other extraordinary circumstance, with appropriate documentation, the student is unable to participate in class for an extended period. In this case, arrangements must be made to make up the missed portion of the course prior to the end of the next semester.

Completion of Work Policy: To be eligible for the grade of A or A-, working versions of all programming assignments must be submitted.


The Florida State University Academic Honor Policy outlines the University’s expectations for the integrity of students’ academic work, the procedures for resolving alleged violations of those expectations, and the rights and responsibilities of students and faculty members throughout the process.  Students are responsible for reading the Academic Honor Policy and for living up to their pledge to “. . . be honest and truthful and . . . [to] strive for personal and institutional integrity at Florida State University.”  (Florida State University Academic Honor Policy, found at http://dof.fsu.edu/honorpolicy.htm.)

All students are expected to uphold the Academic Honor Policy. Please note the following items are defined and made violations by the policy:

  1. Plagiarism
  2. Cheating
  3. Unauthorized Group Work
  4. Fabrication, Falsification, and Misrepresentation
  5. Multiple Submission
  6. Abuse of Academic Materials
  7. Complicity in Academic Dishonesty
  8. Attempted ...

Violations of the academic honor policy may result in failing grades and/or dismissal from the university. All students are expected to read and understand the policy.


Students with disabilities needing academic accommodation should:
(1) register with and provide documentation to the Student Disability Resource Center; and
(2) bring a letter to the instructor indicating the need for accommodation and what type.  This should be done during the first week of class.

This syllabus and other class materials are available in alternative format upon request.

For more information about services available to FSU students with disabilities, contact the:

Student Disability Resource Center
97 Woodward Avenue, South
108 Student Services Building
Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL 32306-4167
(850) 644-9566 (voice)
(850) 644-8504 (TDD)

(This syllabus and other class materials are available in alternative format upon request.)


Information regarding the status of FSU in an emergency situation may be obtained from the following sources:

  • For information specific to the Panama City Campus go to the FSUPC web page at http://www.pc.fsu.edu/ or call the Campus Hotline number 850-522-5555
  • For information related to FSU in general and the Tallahassee Campus go to the FSU alerts web page at http://www.fsu.edu/~alerts/
  • For state-wide and national information, go to the Florida Division of Emergency Management information pages at http://www.floridadisaster.org/

Any specific information related to this class will be posted on the course web site or sent via email to your fsu email address.


This syllabus is a guide for the course and is subject to change with advanced notice. Such notice will be in the form of an announcement to the course web site on My FSU.