Some readers may fail to actually read the assignment. But whether you read exactly what the assignment requests or not, the parent is right in his statement that the problem used an overly complex method to teach students.
I had never even heard of a "number line" until a saw the problem shown in your link. After taking a moment, I can see how it could be used to determine an answer. However it is overly complex and takes the students in a direction that shouldn't be used because number lines cannot be used when the student moves beyond basic arithmetic. While the assignment wasn't to create a number line, it was still asking a student to realize what was incorrect with one that was given to them. This means actual students are taught to use number lines when solving basic arithmetic problems, like 427- 316 = 111. Basic arithmetic is a foundation and can typically be carried out in a very simple manner by writing one number over the other and performing the correct action on each column of digits. It is simple and can be used in their future endeavors and studies. Drawing lines with many nodes for 1's, 10's, and 100's cannot be used beyond basic arithmetic problems. Why confuse the students by adding an overly complex method of doing things when they can be taught to write two numbers and calculated the difference in a simple and easy to understand manner?
Second, when children are young and still learning a concept, they should not be shown problems that are incorrect when learning about the concept. Searching for an error and explaining it may allow a person's understanding of a topic to grow if they already understand the subject matter. However, when students are still learning the basic principles of something, they should not be shown incorrect ways of doing things. Lets say a child knows that a problem has one flaw in it, but everything else in the problem is right... just like in this homework assignment. If the child is incorrect in determining which part is flawed and which parts are correct, then the problem could actually reinforce the incorrect way of doing things.
The parent was correct in his rant. If the assignment insists on having a student determine what "Jack" did wrong when solving a math problem with an overly complex method, then the answer is that Jack should just subtract 316 from 427 and should not draw a diagram
Why are you bring the Nobel Prize into the discussion? What does a man-made award have to do with Truth? Science is supposed to be about determining facts and truth. The Nobel Prize is something created by man to recognize what is believed to be a significant achievement. As we learn more about the world, we sometimes learn that our earlier theories are incorrect. It is part of how we expand our knowledge.
Ilguido is correct in stating that "an inaccurate scientific prediction is wrong by definition" and those predictions/theories cannot be used to prove anything. Changing and revising our hypothesis and theories when our observations and experiments do not give the predicted results is part of the scientific method.
So... They didn't test the iPad / content combo to establish usability / feasibility / usefulness prior to dropping all this cash?
If you replace "iPad" with "Apple device", you will have a sentence that describes most Apple Fanboys when Apple releases a new product.
This is a high school prank, nothing more.
The kid wasn't even in high school. It it is a middle school prank.
For that price, you could buy 50 regular Android tablets and luggage to keep them in. Just grab a new tablet when you break one.
That's fine... unless you have data saved on the broken tablet.
A lot of companies and businesses have programmers that do not fall under the 'tech company' category. Insurance companies, colleges, railroad companies, large store chains (eg: Walmart and Target), RV companies, and many other industries all have in-house programmers. All of these businesses and industries are scattered across the country. Unless you absolutely must work in a tech company in silicone valley, you should not limit your options. My first career oriented job was at a relatively small health insurance. A very large part of their software was developed in-house. They had some developers that were only in their twenties, but the majority of them were at least 40, if not in their 50s or early 60s and preparing to retire. Why? These companies see the software as just an in-house solution to a problem and not a product in itself. They do not need someone that can write in whatever the fashionable language of the day is. They need someone that has the skill and efficiency to maintain a system that was probably written some time ago in a language that fit their needs. A 20 year old that only knows C# is not going to be of any use to them when they need someone that can quickly adapt their in-house solution that was written in C or Fortran to fit new health insurance laws.
Some places higher young programmers because they are cheaper.... but some places purposely higher older, experience people. Consider all options, not just tech companies in Silicone Valley.
Discrete Math: Yes. I do not think I actually took a course labeled 'discrete math', but I know many of my CS classes used it.
Algebra & Calculus: It depends on what you plan on doing. Some careers related to CS may require it. However, most software development positions for businesses only require basic algebra when writing code.
Technical writing: No. In my experience, you just use common sense. You write for your intended audience and include information that is relevant. Upper management does not want to know what algorithms you use to complete something. Documentation created for other developers to maintain your code in the future does not need fluff or information that only applies to the initial implementation of the project (eg: budget and deadlines).
Other courses: Not necessary to CS. They are intended to give you a more well-rounded education and make you pay for more credit hours. Unless your career is closely related to one of these fields, they will be useless. If you were actually trying to get a B.S. degree, then take them. If you are just trying to learn the CS realted things you would get from the degree, don't bother with things like psych and business. They are of no use to most people.
Doh! I made an error when correcting someone else's error.
I said 700 dollars and meant 700 million.
Doh... I make a error when I correct someone else's error!
700 dollars -> 700 million dollars.
7 Billion pennies totals 70 million dollars, not 700 dollars. 700 is a large amount... but so is 630 million.