Conrad Wolfram is a brilliant mathematician. He has written a book which argues that math education should not focus on how to compute various things, but on the thinking behind the computation. This article describes in breathless wonder Wolfram’s equally breathless idea to change how math is taught in order to keep up with the real world.
Wolfram makes the case that computation thinking is required in all fields and in everyday living—and that no one does calculations by hand. We’re living in what Wolfram calls a “computational knowledge economy” where the education question is, “How to prepare young people for a hybrid human-machine world?” In this new age, it’s not what you know, “it’s what you can compute from knowledge,” argues Wolfram.
It is a brave new world that Wolfram envisions, getting away from what he views as rote memorization and to the actual solving of real-world problems.
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