We communicate by electronic mail, read newspapers on-line, shop and buy from companies that exist only in cyberspace Engineers use software to design and build airplanes, and pilots use software to fly them... Ninety percent of the cost of cell phones is software... Informatics is everywhere. Universities must reflect on what role they can play in this new world, how best to respond to informatics and ever newer and broader applications; and they must review their teaching methods. That is why, in 2004, USI created a Faculty entirely devoted to Informatics. The teaching curriculum focuses on the fundamentals of the discipline: software design and architecture, modelling and analysis of complex systems, the theory of the latest technologies, and the development of system thinking. As it is essential to practise programming, theoretical lectures are complemented by fairly complex projects. In their daily laboratory activities, students have a chance to apply concepts and principles acquired during regular lectures, testing their soundness and learning to design and programme from day one.
The Faculty is becoming an internationally recognised centre of research and teaching in advanced informatics; and it promotes synergies with the programmes of the Institutes of Technology in Zurich, Lausanne, and Milan, with which it already enjoys a fruitful partnership.