[Edu-sig] Rational Division

Will Ware wware@world.std.com
Tue, 8 Feb 2000 07:58:20 -0500 (EST)

Regarding rational division (and extensible, one imagines, to the issue
of case sensitivity), Tim Peters wrote:
One way to "make learning easy" is to (as in the recent Dijkstra quote)
infantalize the subject matter.  If that's what CP4E becomes, why bother ...

The principle of minimal surprises is laudable, but zero surprises is
unattainable. Perhaps there should be a budget of, say, a half-dozen
surprises. Two have been used up, four are left for future issues.

I found learning easiest when the subject matter had some kind of
organizing principle. This was easy to find in math and science, and
would have been easy in a programming class if one had been available,
but I couldn't find one in history or English. The English language is
full of irregular verbs and awkward spellings, yet we expect even the
dummies to stumble through it more or less successfully. Maybe
Everybody has a slightly larger capacity for surprises than one might
-- I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And --
-- I can picture us attacking that world, because they'd never expect it.  --
Will Ware - N1IBT - wware@world.std.com