> > I don't think it is a good idea to name this new math > > in the guise of computer science after a failed product, > > the old New Math.
> > This big new ship, why don't we name it the Titanic?
> > -- > > Dr Bean Walk the talk. > > Talk the walk.
> I see your point, but on balance it's easier to grab this meme > and spin it to serve our needs, than it is to just leave it to > our detractors to use as a term of derision (sort of like > "buckaneers", which I'm also deploying).
Instead of seeing New Math as having ended, or something to forget about, it should be seen as a beginning.
> If using the term provokes some discussion of New Math, I think > that's a good use of the pun. I'm in favor of playing Tom > Lehrer's 'New Math' as a segue into the topic of bases (still > relevant), by pointing out that his lyrics are all > mathematically correct.
That reminds me of the other thread about the linking of critical thinking and physical education.
> Why did the Titanic go down?
> You could point to flaws in the ship's design, but "inadequate teacher training" was another factor. The crew took some unnecessary risks -- going too fast without understanding about the turning radius.
It's easier to say, the cause was hubris. But another ship in the same situation would not have sunk?
> New Math had its design flaws -- e.g. too much emphasis on sets, based on some obsolete British philosophy -- but it was a step out of the quagmire.
And the quagmire was?
The mistake was to let the mathematicians decide the curriculum. Those people with no social skills.
> Gnu math, depending on the implementation, will also be "not perfect" in various ways -- we have this terminology of "bugs" thanks to Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, and tools like Subversion (an http-based version control utility).
The development of curriculum needs to be 'bootstrappable' and to 'scale'. What are the lessons from software engineering?
Subversion will help with history, answering the question: Now where were we before I was led down the primrose path?
-- Dr Bean Whereof we cannot speak, we must remain silent. --Ludwig Wittgenstein We know more than we can say. --Michael Polanyi