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What is Computational Thinking? Logical Thinking

A chess playing robot

One of the fundamental parts of Computational Thinking is to be able to think logically. Computers use logic in the way that they do computation but that isn't quite the same as thinking logically in a Computational Thinking Sense. Computers themselves have to be programmed (taught) to do logical reasoning. Computers are not natural logical thinkers!

Spock from Star Trek is one of the great fictional logical thinkers. In his case the distinction that was made was between thinking emotionally (Kirk always did that) or logically. In complicated situations a good mix of both is probably best which is why they made a good team.

Logical thinking is about deducing as much new information as possible from the little you already have - but (and this is the critical bit) not by jumping to conclusions. The new information gleaned must follow for sure. You can't be right just because you are lucky.

Logical Thinking is fun. Pick up any newspaper and you will see the evidence of that. Virtually all papers have some kind of logical thinking puzzle for people to do to pass the time. Sudoku are one of the purest kinds. You are given information of the values in some cells. To solve the puzzle you have to deduce the values in all the other cells. Make even a slight logical thinking mistake and it all goes horribly wrong. You have to have a logical reason for believing you know the value of a cell, that rules out all other possibilities. Kakuro and Pixel Puzzles use similar skills.

Exercise your brain regularly by having fun doing Sudoku and Kakuro and you will be on the way to great logical thinking skills...Then you just need to hone the skill to use in real situations.