human interactions (with other humans or with machines) much more so. This chapter contains many assertions about our intentions, our wish to understand the ways that talented and sensitive human tutors work, and how to capture some of that behavior in a computational environment. Those assertions are, in fact, a statement of purpose. It goes without saying that fleshing out our intentions will be a major research endeavor.
Finally, this perspective represents just one part of one vision of 2020, and a narrowly focused one at that. I have not dealt with the issues of creativity, equity, or the integration of technology into people's lives or into the schools, just to name a few. As the other chapters in this volume make all too clear, those are significant and difficult problems. Intentionally, this chapter does not stand alone; it stands in the context established by the others. We can only profit from the interplay of the sometimes complementary and sometimes contradictory perspectives expressed in them. One thing about the future is certain: It will have plenty of room for accommodating the pluralistic views in this volume, and many more.
The computer-based environment described in this chapter is the product of the Berkeley Functions Group. Members of the group, in alphabetical order, are: Abraham Arcavi, Laurie Edwards, Marty Kent, Bill Marsh, Mark Nakamura, Al Schoenfeld, and Jack Smith. Special acknowledgments go to Marty Kent for his work as programmer and idea generator for the computational environment, and to Laurie Edwards for performing the student interviews and generating Fig. 5.2 and 5.3. The work described in this chapter was supported by the National Science Foundation through NSF Grant MDR-8550332. NSF grant support does not necessarily imply NSF endorsement of the ideas expressed in this chapter.
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