Instructions for using the Online Textbook
During out unit on the Python programming language you will be using an
online textbook "How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: Interactive Edition"
which was developed and maintained by Drs. Brad Miller and David Ranum at Luther
To get credit for some of the assignments and activities you will need to
formally register with the textbook website and always login prior to using the
To Register with the Textbook
- Using the browser of your choice load the following website:
- On this page is a form to complete.
- For your username please use your MyUniverse/CatID login name.
If that name HAPPENS to already be used then use your login name followed by
"_UNI" For example, I would use schafer_UNI.
- For the Course Name please use "CS1140"
- You may choose to tie this to your Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc IDs as
defined at the bottom of the page only if this does not conflict with the
- [NOTE: I know the people running this website. They are very
privacy conscious professors at Luther College. I can assure you that
registering with this site will not cause you to receive spam or put you at
any significant risks]
This should complete the registration process. If you have problems
please let me know.
To Use the Online Textbook
To return to the site go to:
and log in.
Just some general statements and advise.
- You should make sure that you log on EVERY time you use the textbook.
This has several benefits.
- Any code that you write is stored with your account and will be
accessible no matter what computer you use next time.
- Any assignments/labs that you complete will be automatically saved for
access by me (no need to use the homework submission system).
- I can get access to your account to help you if there are problems.
- Navigation seems strange at first, but is really pretty simple
- Clicking on the Book Links and then "Thinking Like a Computer Scientist"
at the top of the page will take you to the textbook.
- Clicking on the "Thinking Like a Computer Scientist" banner at the top
of the page will take you to the Table of Contents. From here you can
easily jump to any chapter or even sub section in a chapter.
- Clicking on the "Page" menu at the top of some screens will have a
similar effect without taking you all of the way to the TOC.
- Take advantage of the fact that all code samples RUN in your online
textbook. Don't just read code. Run it. Change it when you
are allowed and see what happens. Don't worry about messing anything up.
The original code is always there when you come back.
- Take advantage of the built in quiz questions to test your understanding
of what you are reading. These aren't graded (although I do have access
to information about whether or not you are using the quizzes just like I do
with any other feature) so don't be ashamed to get something "wrong" At
least you know you had a misunderstanding.
- Be observant to things that look like graphics but are actually videos.
These short videos will often times make a significant contribution to your
understanding of the material.
- Ask questions of me if you don't feel like you understand the material in
the book or even how the book truly works. It's better to admit
confusion that can be fixed than hide it until an assignment or exam.