Now, this may seem like I'm contradicting the opinion of the guest blogger last week. However, I'm not referring to the endless pursuit of rankings and grades.
I'm meaning the fantastic things that can happen when competition is used as an instructional tool. I'm meaning having students race to solve puzzles, or sort number cards into Pythagorean triples. I'm meaning getting a wild energy in class, and having students speak up who never said a word before.
In most of the work on social technology I've been reading, it's paired with the word "cooperation". What happened to competition? Why is it so wrong?
This concerns me because mathematics is particularly suited to competition. Some competitions are downright legendary. Solving problems in high-level math competitions can lead to thinking that shatters the hierarchy of intelligences, creating wonderful things I still don't fully understand.
What's wrong with students competing to solve an Internet math hunt, or students challenging each to ever-harder problems?
I simply implore technology coordinators: please consider the possibilities competition can offer.
Goodness, it's been a week already? I feel like I've just nicked the surface of this territory. I'll try to continue with things I couldn't fit next week at my blog. I'd like to thank everyone for their comments; I learned much more than I ever suspected possible, and I'll be closely following this blog and others for new developments.
Jason Dyer, Guest Blogger
International poker champion Liv Boeree teaches decision-making for Big Think Edge.
How can we use the resources that are already on the Moon to make human exploration of the satellite as economical as possible?
If you were transported to the Moon this very instant, you would surely and rapidly die. That's because there's no atmosphere, the surface temperature varies from a roasting 130 degrees Celsius (266 F) to a bone-chilling minus 170 C (minus 274 F). If the lack of air or horrific heat or cold don't kill you then micrometeorite bombardment or solar radiation will. By all accounts, the Moon is not a hospitable place to be.
An MIT study predicts when artificial intelligence will take over for humans in different occupations.
While technology develops at exponential speed, transforming how we go about our everyday tasks and extending our lives, it also offers much to worry about. In particular, many top minds think that automation will cost humans their employment, with up to 47% of all jobs gone in the next 25 years. And chances are, this number could be even higher and the massive job loss will come earlier.
"I was so moved when I saw the cells stir," said 90-year-old study co-author Akira Iritani. "I'd been hoping for this for 20 years."
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- Unless better technology and DNA samples emerge in the future, it's unlikely that scientists will be able to clone a woolly mammoth.
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