Computers do not possess intuitive powers of the human mind but they can complement mathematical research and inductive exploration because they are skilled in calculations and manipulations.
An article appearing on the Science News states how they have made it easy for scientists and researchers to seek proofs which were hidden behind the cloud of lengthy calculations till now.
On many occasions, contests the article, researchers have been able to figure out the link between two mathematical objects, variables or abstractions but they have failed to back their belief till the end because calculations close to hundredth of decimal points have eaten away their chances of reaching a conclusion. Computer, to the great delight of the mathematical fraternity, has changed all this. In doing so, it has really helped the cause of experimental mathematics.
It is quite true that it has changed a mathematician’s love for deductive reasoning and directed his energy towards inductive reasoning. Now, more than ever before, he is ready to draw laws from instances (rather than creating specific instances from general law- one which the school of deductive reasoning teaches).
It was sad to see lengthy calculations hindering our mathematical expansion and computers have cleared this dilemma for once and for all. The intuitive capacity of human brain can now work together with the computer’s “number manipulation” skills to bring many hidden mathematical facts to light.
It is important that children are taught the importance of experimental mathematics. After all, they will have the services of a computer for their experiments in math; something many number enthusiasts of previous generation did not have.
You can read the original article here.
Don’t you think experimental mathematics will allow children to focus better on their intuitive capabilities?