The use of information and communication technology in mathematics - a double irony?
When the microcomputer was introduced to schools in the late 1970’s the connection between it and mathematics seemed more than obvious. Educators would have been excused if they thought that technology (and the computer in particular) was destined to be the exclusive preserve of the mathematics classroom. How wrong could they have been! In the 1990’s, the Internet exploded onto the scene adding enormous value to almost all disciplines except, it may have seemed, mathematics. An irony perhaps. The double irony, however, is that with a current emphasis on real-world problem solving and the goal of integrating mathematics into other disciplines, (particularly science) mathematics will also benefit greatly from the Internet. Based on article by Wright (2002), this paper provides a perspective on the use of information and communication technology (ICT) in mathematics including how it evolved and examples of its contemporary use. While it is clear that ICT has already had a significant and positive influence on mathematics it is also clear that there will be more to the story. The explosion of activity surrounding the Internet alone ensures that this will be the case.