Please Stop Discussing Arrows Until We All Have a Fair Chance at Understanding the Theory

William Tanksley wtanksle@UCSD.EDU
Sun, 10 Jan 1999 23:52:24 -0800 (PST)

On Sun, 10 Jan 1999, RE01 Rice Brian T. EM2 wrote:

>> Ok Brian, I think I speak for many people on the list who haven't had a
>> chance
>> to read (or have the background) for the arrow system., through the fog of
>> terms, I think I am begining to see something concrete, but what we need
>> now, I
>> hate to sound demanding, is a straight forward tutorial/primer/intro.  We

I don't know about the others, but all my talk so far has been focussed on
gaining a simple understanding of what goes on.  Brian has what might be a
great idea, but he understands it too well to explain it.  What we need
first is sommeone who understands his idea just well enough to explain it,
but not so well that they assume knowledge (sound right?).  That's what us
questioners are working towards.

Oh, also, we're trying to keep Brian from leaving the group -- you try
walking into a group, giving your brilliant idea, and having it met by
stony silence. :)

>ok.  i assume here that you're recognizing the potential for real code here

Certainly working for it.

>so, i have questions for you and anyone else who agrees with you:

>first, from what perspective should this tutorial be based?  more
>specifically, what sort of description are you looking to use for the

For me, I wanna see why I should care, and after I care, what I should do
about it.  The "what I should do" section right now needs to talk about
possible implmentations; later, after our model implementation has been
set up, we can change that part to talk about implementing a HelloWorld
type of arrow program on that prototype.

>	ideas: the arrow system is a new type of computing system, because
>it is designed to reflect not just on programming, but also on the way
>_people_ think about things as well... ?  (not a good way to go, but a
>reference point for discussing how to start the tutorial.)

You'll have to get a LOT more primitive than that.  Teach what you mean by
"reflect", "Reflect on programming", and "reflect on the ways people
think".  A lot of the problem here is that you're using a very specialized

>do you want to review the sections of the tutorial before it gets released?

Sure.  No promises, but I'm willing.

>who's going to take responsibility for screening my input for the group?

Umm...  That sounds more intimidating, but I think it means the same
thing, right?

>who can i count on to do some good thinking on my work?

Nobody.  But with hard work, you'll do some, and with some luck, maybe
I'll do some as well.  Let's see what we can do!