Language as an intellectual tool: From hieroglyphics to APL

D. B. McIntyre
IBM Systems Journal

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quote By relieving the brain of all unnecessary work, a good notation sets it free to concentrate on more advanced problems, and in effect increases the mental power of the race. . . . By the aid of symbolism we can make transitions in reasoning almost mechanically by the eye, which would otherwise call into play the higher faculties of the brain. It is a profoundly erroneous truism, repeated by all copy-books and by eminent people when they are making speeches, that we should cultivate the habit of thinking of what we are doing. The precise opposite is the case. Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations which we can perform without thinking about them. on 2/2/2020, 9:50:44 PM