In the preface to their textbook Simply Scheme, Brian Harvey and Matthew Wright of Berkeley begin:
"There are two schools of thought about teaching computer science. We might caricature the two views this way:
- "The conservative view: Computer programs have become too large and complex to encompass in a human mind. Therefore, the job of computer science education is to teach people how to discipline their work in such a way that 500 mediocre programmers can join together and produce a program that correctly meets its specification.
- "The radical view: Computer programs have become too large and complex to encompass in a human mind. Therefore, the job of computer science education is to teach people how to expand their minds so that the programs can fit, by learning to think in a vocabulary of larger, more powerful, more flexible ideas than the obvious ones. Each unit of programming thought must have a big payoff in the capabilities of the program."
Thinking tools follow the second, radical, path. Their goal is not to divide problems into tiny bite-sized morsels, but rather to empower the individual analysts so that they can attack the huge, complex enigmas that we face today. Moreover, thinking tools aim to enable analysts to work together better, bridging gaps in space and time, so that the organization as a whole can learn and grow.
Friday, April 09, 1999 at 22:29:55 (EDT) = Datetag19990409
TopicThinking - TopicProgramming
(correlates: Infelicitous Prose, HowToFixIt, SomebodyElse, ...)