Thursday, December 20, 2012

Teaching Hadoop in high schools!

I've just read a great book, "Automate this." Its topics range from automated trading on Wall Street to a dark fiber line from Chicago to New York cutting through mountains, to Facebook tracking what its billion of users do, to Cloudera and the story of Jeff Hammerbacher, to automated legal review, and then to US educational system.

On the last subject, the author suggests to give a course in programming to every high school student, in order to find those 5% who are born developers (that is because in the mind of the author, Christopher Steiner, everything can be automated: doctors, lawyers, and traders, except the automators themselves).

I say more: we should teach Hadoop in high school. Going through basic Java or C++ is booooring. Rather, tell the kids that you will teach them to program just like Facebook and Google people do, then by the way teach them Java. Don't start from int and float, but teach them to read the code, then to understand it, then to write it. Just like learning a human language the right way.

Do it in the IDE (NetBeans, of course:) with all the modern conveniences. And watch for the amazing results.