File not found. The vanishing concept of File

By | November 10, 2022

The complete title from this article is “File not found A generation that grew up with Google is forcing professors to rethink their lesson plans” (Archived version.)

Vanishing structure (img from original article)

Here is a short summary:

It’s the idea that a modern computer doesn’t just save a file in an infinite expanse; it saves it in the “Downloads” folder, the “Desktop” folder, or the “Documents” folder, all of which live within “This PC,” and each of which might have folders nested within them, too.

…“The most intuitive thing would be the laundry basket where you have everything kind of together, and you’re just kind of pulling out what you need at any given time,” he says, attempting to describe his mental model.

…Guarín-Zapata was taught computer basics in high school — how to save, how to use file folders, how to navigate the terminal — which is knowledge many of his current students are coming in without.

…But even after presenting students with every metaphor in the books, Colling still isn’t positive that his students get what he’s talking about: “It feels like I’m having some success, but yeah, sometimes it’s hard to tell,” he says.

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