Monday, November 26, 2007 Technology | Why Johnny can't code Technology | Why Johnny can't code:

"Typing in a simple algorithm yourself, seeing exactly how the computer calculates and iterates in a manner you could duplicate with pencil and paper -- say, running an experiment in coin flipping, or making a dot change its position on a screen, propelled by math and logic, and only by math and logic: All of this is priceless. As it was priceless 20 years ago. Only 20 years ago, it was physically possible for millions of kids to do it. Today it is not.

In effect, we have allowed a situation to develop that is like a civilization devouring its seed corn. If an enemy had set out to do this to us -- quietly arranging so that almost no school child in America can tinker with line coding on his or her own -- any reasonably patriotic person would have called it an act of war."