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Microcomputers in Computer Education (MICE)

A group of computer studies teachers led by Brian Weaver, Advisor for Computer Education in the Inner London Education Authority, who collaborated to create interactive for learning concepts in computing
When Aug 31, 1979 to
Jul 30, 1985
Where London
Aim: To develop new ways to teach computer studies using animated visualisations.
Reflection: My own program was intended to visually simulate the layout and operations of the central processing unit of a computer and would respond to CESIL programs. My intention was to bring these to life in a 'revelatory' mode (Millwood 1987) and relate them visually to the computer hardware.
Contribution: The design and development of educational software and the critique of others' designs. My part: 20%  (with the members of the group)
Orginality, impact and importance: Although there was a growing interest in teaching programming concepts through animations in higher education, it was new to be focussing such innovation on secondary school. Our work made impact on the practice of colleagues in the Inner London Education Authority and at the time was considered a vital part of the development of teaching computer studies there. Its work was reported regularly in the newsletter distributed to computer studies teachers in London by the advisory service.

Each of us developed a program to help with teaching computing.

My proposal was based on the teaching of the computer language CESIL, which was intended to be a simplified assembly language. An assembly language consisted of a set of short terms made up of alphabetic letters. Each term formed a cryptic mnemonic name for each operation instead of the computer's numeric or binary codes, thus making it easier to understand programs. Nevertheless this was low-level programming, matched to the central processing unit architecture rather than the high-level problem-related languages such as BASIC, COBOL, Fortran and Pascal.

(Words: 315 )

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Lewis Carroll describes a fictional map that had:

"the scale of a mile to the mile."

A character notes some practical difficulties with such a map and states that:

"we now use the country itself, as its own map, and I assure you it does nearly as well."
— Sylvie and Bruno Concluded, Lewis Carroll, 1893

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