Turtles, Termites, and Traffic Jams: Explorations in Massively Parallel Microworlds

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MIT Press, 1997 - Computers - 163 pages

How does a bird flock keep its movements so graceful and synchronized? Most people assume that the bird in front leads and the others follow. In fact, bird flocks don't have leaders: they are organized without an organizer, coordinated without a coordinator. And a surprising number of other systems, from termite colonies to traffic jams to economic systems, work the same decentralized way. Turtles, Termites, and Traffic Jams describes innovative new computational tools that can qhelp people (even young children) explore the workings of such systems--and help them move beyond the centralized mindset.

 

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Contents

Foundations
3
Constructions
23
Explorations
49
Reflections
119
Projections
147
Copyright

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About the author (1997)

Mitchel Resnick,nbsp;an expert in educational technologies, is Professor of Learning Research at thenbsp;MIT Media Lab. He has worked closely with the LEGO toy company for thirtynbsp;years, collaborating with them on such innovative projects as the LEGOnbsp;Mindstorms robotics kits, and he holds the LEGO endowed chair at MIT. He leadsnbsp;the team developing the Scratch programming software and online community, and henbsp;is cofoundernbsp;of the Computer Clubhouse project, a network of after-school learning centers for youth from low-income communities.

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