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Monday, September 12, 2016

Preparing for More Computational Thinking

Never heard precisely of 'computational thinking' , but as an engineer have done it for years.  Stephen Wolfram describes it in much detail using their systems.     Our past has been computational still, but now many more people are using such methods, because they are readily available.    But we will need to check applicability of the results.  Also, we are entering the world of virtual assistants, which further extends the reach of computation.  Then how do we get kids, not usually interested in math, ready for these changes?    Very good piece I am reading:

How to Teach Computational Thinking  by Stephen Wolfram: 

The Computational Future
Computational thinking is going to be a defining feature of the future—and it’s an incredibly important thing to be teaching to kids today. There’s always lots of discussion (and concern) about how to teach mathematical thinking to kids. But looking to the future, this pales in comparison to the importance of teaching computational thinking. Yes, there’s a certain amount of mathematical thinking that’s needed in everyday life, and in many careers. But computational thinking is going to be needed everywhere. And doing it well is going to be a key to success in almost all future careers.

Doctors, lawyers, teachers, farmers, whatever. The future of all these professions will be full of computational thinking. Whether it’s sensor-based medicine, computational contracts, education analytics or computational agriculture—success is going to rely on being able to do computational thinking well.

I’ve noticed an interesting trend. Pick any field X, from archeology to zoology. There either is now a “computational X” or there soon will be. And it’s widely viewed as the future of the field. ... " 

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