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Topic: measuring CS-friendliness of math textbooks (criteria?)
Replies: 1   Last Post: Feb 19, 2014 4:23 PM

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kirby urner

Posts: 3,690
Registered: 11/29/05
measuring CS-friendliness of math textbooks (criteria?)
Posted: Feb 19, 2014 1:45 PM
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In this essay, posted last night to math-teach / Math Forum,
I ask the question: what K-12 math textbooks might be
considered the most computer science friendly?

That brings up the question of what criteria to apply, and
the example I give is: introduces the concept of "function"
with some examples that include operating with strings
(characters) or other non-numeric inputs.

One hallmark of CS is its algorithms are often only "semi-
numeric" i.e. numbers enter into it, but so do other types
of object. Tradebooks like 'Godel, Escher, Bach' make it
clear that mathematics is not strictly confined to "numbers"
where concepts such as "function" are concerned.

I'm imagining a listing of mathematics textbook titles
with several columns of criteria, either with a check or
an X, measuring how friendly this textbook's way of
teaching mathematics is to computer science, meaning
it provides smooth segues, jumping off points, topics,
for going back and forth between them etc. What else?

Another criterion: programming and programming
languages are at least mentioned, perhaps only in a
side bar. Actually using a programming language would
be another column. And so on.


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