On Tue, Sep 11, 2012 at 8:54 PM, Paul Tanner <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
<< snip >>
> I dealt with the act that you are the one who said that almost > everyone never needs to deal with mathematics that deals with > non-computable objects - when as we all know everyone does need to > deal with all the reals in any and all mathematics based on the reals, > which is essentially all the math everyone learns in high school and > beyond. >
That shouldn't be the case though. Confining our numeracy and alpha-numeracy training to the real numbers and its subsets is a huge deficiency in today's mediocre curriculum, as administered by what I'd call the idiocracy, but which in Haim's book is controlled by the left, whereas his side is in a noble battle to save sanity.
Pattern matching with regular expressions, cryptic little symbolic constructs, a set of rules for searching and matching: this is problem solving that requires concentration, study, internalization of an institution (that of regular expressions) i.e. it has all the elements of one of those vocational desk job activities that factory-like schools have adopted.
Ditto SQL. Record keeping, tabulation, is the most basic capability of civilization. Rows and columns are what got us to where we are today. Every industry from banking to airlines to journalism to fundraising is based on database technology.
We talk about Venn Diagrams, intersections and unions, but the fact that free (as in free beer) SQL engines might be used to exercise the children, that's considered avant gard and "out there" when really it's just long overdue.
The idiocracy sees itself as being wise and conservative whereas it's just being wimpy-dweeby and mediocre, as humans excel at being.
Had regular expressions come out in the 1930s, when many of the schools were built, and when industry was loud about the workforce of tomorrow it needed, they'd likely be integral within the curriculum even today, as those were bolder times when people knew how to effect change.
Taylorism was rampant in industry. Those not officially decision-making were less likely to question authority and just go along as good doobies.
But by now the analog math curriculum has calcified around calculus and the pet topics have aligned for the ages, at least in the minds of the status quo preserving spin doctors, who have a financial stake in what drummer the people march to.
Like the pied piper of Hamlin, the calculus teacher takes our little darlings over the bridge, which turns out to be a draw bridge into swirling flood waters below.
Turns out most of the jobs that take alpha-numeracy skills require a kind of digital savvy you don't really get on the creaky old analog track.
In college they may sort of tell you that, but then many colleges are only sort of interested in the real world. Inertia runs high. The supply of people with useful forms of literacy runs low. Such is life in a thralldom. If you're lucky, some schools in your zip code don't follow the herd and take direction from smarter administrators.
Here in the Silicon Forest, we continue to widen the circle of opportunity. Even the police have been involved, with their Linux lab in Hillsboro (probably not there any longer -- so funny to have them trying to make up for the schools' obvious deficiencies).