Transforming the Academy: Knowledge Formation in the Age of Digital Information

My favorite quote from Edsger Dijkstra comes from his Turing Award Lecture, The Humble Programmer:
"In their capacity as a tool, computers will be but a ripple on the surface of our culture. In their capacity as intellectual challenge, they are without precedent in the cultural history of mankind."
I've just listened to the best defense of this thesis that I've ever heard, courtesy of Bob Constable. A paper on the same topic of his is linked above.

Other relevant papers on the same subject are Alan Bundy's Computational Thinking is Pervasive and Jeanette Wing's Computational Thinking.

I was also fortunate to see Jeanette Wing address this topic in her recent OOPSLA keynote. In the question period, I mentioned Dijkstra's quote, and also my interpretation of it. I believe that in his usual style, Dijkstra was exaggerating. I think there are two precedents: the invention of writing and the discovery of mathematics. Computing give us, with prose and mathematics, a third way to describe our discoveries.

Thanks for a nice and inspiring article. It is that computational thinking, raised and acquired while studying computer science, makes one a better human. It's the conjecture I always hold in my heart. I am very delighted to find another people who has same thought.
Interestingly, the humanities crowd discusses this as well, although it goes by the name of procedural literacy.
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