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May 04, 2007


Tim Rue

Since we can't get computer to think like humans (re: i.e. cyc project to give computers common sense) lets try to get humans to think like computers.???

Given the extensive background Ms. Wing has in the computer education industry, is she perhaps so entrenched in that industry that she has forgotten the importance of the learning feedback loop of verification?

"Computational Thinking" doesn't seem to require such a feedback loop.

Perhaps what really needs to happen is not the education of people to think like computers, which are created by people, but rather to understand the human qualities that enable abstraction creation and use.

What came first, computers or the humans that created them? Of course its humans and to think in terms of what we create is a demotion from being the creators of it. And this does seem to fit a dumbing down of the user base.

Fundamental to "Computational Thinking" is the understanding of how we create and use abstractions. And abstraction creation and use has been, long before computers were ever conceived.

Consider abstraction physics ( http://threeseas.net/abstraction_physics.html ). Just as math can be boiled down to addition, so it is from the fundamentals of abstraction physics that high levels of computing concepts can be expressed and done through the abstraction machine of a computer. This way the feed back verification loop can exist.

Primary knowledge is knowledge from which other knowledge can be calculated from. "Computational Thinking" as coined by Ms. Wing, is Secondary knowledge. Instead of thinking like a computer that has been programmed by someone (thinking like someone else thinks) how about better understanding the mechanics of how we humans are able to think and have been doing so long before our computer creations?

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