Advice for a Computer Science college applicant

Hello everyone!

I am a student in my final year of high school in the UK, and am currently in the middle of the often stressing university application process.

In our system, universities' admissions tutors look far beyond an applicant's grades: an important part of their assessment of future students is an essay known as the "Personal Statement", in which they discuss the reasons why they chose the course and demonstrate any knowledge outside the school curriculum about the subject.

And here is where I thought it would be useful to turn to The Verge forums. As an avid long-time Verge reader, I am mostly familiar with all the applications and impact Computer Science has in our everyday life. However, I would really appreciate some ideas from fellow readers on topics which could show I have a solid understanding of what Computer Science involves and how it impacts our everyday lives. I had thought of the 3D-printing revolution, crowdsourced artifficial intelligence systems such as Siri or Google Now, or augmented reality projects like Google Glass. They would also appreciate some extra reading in the form of books or very specific websites (unfortunately, I believe the topics The Verge covers are too broad to mention it.)

Thank you if you decide to contribute, any ideas are welcome!