brother to Stephen
all things wolfram
Conrad Wolfram’s talk:
1. posing the right questions
2. real world to math formulation
4. math formulation to real world verification
the standards, are mostly about the calculations, which Conrad says we spend 80% + of our time on, doing by hand – the chore.
find him here on wikipedia
problem with math – no one is really happy…
using computers is the silver bullet for making math work
in the real world – math isn’t done by mathematicians..
why teach math?
1) technical jobs
2) everyday living – skeptical about stats, etc
3) logical thinking
we spend 80% of our time doing step 3 by hand
it’s the chore – it’s the thing you’d like to avoid if you can
math not equal to calculating
calculating was typically the limiting step
math has been freed
but that liberation hasn’t gotten into ed yet
automation allows math
we should be assuming computing for calculations and only do hand when it’s needed:
what’s worth teaching by hand:
what we’re doing right now is forcing people to do math…
if people are interested in it – fine – great – but no forcing…
line between what we’re making people to do
what are the basics
are the basics of driving learning how to service or design it?
need to separate the basics of what you’re trying to do and the machinery of how it gets done
automation has allowed freedom – driving is now a separate piece than design
in the same way it has automized math
order of the invention of the tools vs the order of the way you use it..
do we really believe the math kids are doing in school today, more than applying procedures to problems they don’t really understand for reasons they don’t get.
what’s worse: what they’re doing isn’t even practical today.. maybe 50 yrs ago
computers can really help…
like anything – they can turn into a multimedia show – why show a student how to solve a problem by hand when the computer can do it for them anyway. – this is just nuts
how you can make problems harder to calculate – change quadratic to a quartic
normal in school:
normal in life – messy – hairy:
the problem we really have in math is not that computers dumb down math but that we’ve dumbed down problems
if you go through tons of examples – you can get how the basics of the system works better.
understanding procedure and process is important – but there’s a fantastic way to do that these days.. it’s called programming
…how most procedures and process get written down these days..
programming is the way we should be doing that. – and a great way to engage students and check if they really understand
what we have here – a unique opportunity to make
can’t think of any other subject where that’s recently been possible – usually a choice
we want people to feel the math – that’s what computers allow us to do
calculus has traditionally been taught very late – why is this? because it’s hard doing the calculations
what about – adding sides to a polygon – looking at limits, diff calc – taking things to an extreme – a view of the world we don’t let people see for many many years after this – yet very important practical view of the world.
one of roadblocks in moving this agenda forward – exams
in the end – test by hand
hard to let computers come into exams
but then – we can ask real questions…
this isn’t some optional extra – letting people feel the math..
moving to the knowledge economy to the computational knowledge economy
this is not an incremental change – we’re trying to cross a chasm
suggesting – we should leap off
completely renewed math curriculum
not even sure we brand it math – but it is the mainstream subject of the future
if this resonates with you – or intrigues you – go here
to help out..
if you want to jump in but can’t this soon with kids… join us.. – meeting monday.
i’m noticing how easy it is to think you’re changing, when you’re really just tweaking a bit. i think it’s because we believe we should change, but we don’t trust completely, so the compromise occurs
i’m noticing that the premise behind the computerbased math via Conrad wolfram, that we spend 80% of our time doing calculations, only one of four main parts to math, is the premise to life. i’m noticing even more than before James came, how much time we spend on what we don’t want to do.
i’m noticing that the more you gather in your head.. from unlikely places.. from global voices… the more you are able to zoom out and notice the misuse of resources.. esp of people..
what makes us happy – is having a say in how we spend our time and in what we are about.. i’m noticing most of us are bound by things we don’t really want to be bound by.
i’m imaging a space where that doesn’t happen, a space where the 20% google time is all the time.
i’m imagining freedom from the things we think we have to do, the things that take up most of our day and freedom to appear inefficient
connecting with the writings of hagel and brown, the power of pull, and with kevin kelly, what tech wants, and with the thinking of my students and james bach as they converse with each other. with myself.
i’m chilling a bit.
i’m embracing natural instincts more, and voice more. i’m trying to listen better. .. zoom out more.
i’m going to try to channel my current thinking into tutorials of some sort – via James –
1) how to do the seemingly impossible
2) how to mentor/facilitate
i’ve been spending a ton of time this semester videoing and regurgitating conversations. i need to create something about that as well. i think that’s an incredible means to insight..
ah Bret.. i love you. i love this:
Interactive Exploration of a Dynamical System
from Bret Victor
.kill math using data viz
But the point is that the equation isn’t the math; it’s not the insight, the creativity, that actually happened inside Einstein’s head. What if Einstein didn’t have to resort to symbol-manipulation to express and communicate the idea that “matter is equivalent to energy in this exact way”? What if the next Einstein doesn’t have to do that? If fact, what if “not having to do that” is how we get the next Einstein?
sounds like Conrad Wolfram’s computer based math
his post on this
thanks to David Wees
What we need to do is to figure out, what’s the tool set that we really need, and how well should people know how use to use them?