Like the words of the ancientest of Greeks, mathematical techniques such as integration by parts, trigonometric substitution, and partial fractions would be all but forgotten if nobody took the time to learn them. No living person today can understand Linear because it went into disuse; and when people stop trying to ride a pony, it turns into a sour, resentful horse. Those who want to put integration techniques out to pasture, who insist the calculator is more powerful than the pencil, those who spit in the eye of established mathematical hegemonic orthodoxy and demand TI-92s—they’re afraid.
Afraid of their own mortality. Afraid of spending ten minutes and two pages answering a single problem. Afraid of being seen as a math nerd (math nerds make up exactly e% of the total U.S. population). Fear makes people do strange things. It turns poets into soldiers, and bricklayers into glassblowers. And it makes lazy students turn to Texas Instruments for a quick fix, to make their lives lighter and fancy-free.
It hurts. It hurts because there’s no logic behind it. I mean, just imagine: calculus has been streamlined; TI-89s and 92s are in every pocket; the math department is rejoicing! Teachers are rioting in the streets, brimming with glee! And why are they so happy? Because now that the simpler parts of integration have been addressed, students can be forced to learn all kinds of advanced calculus stuff that I can’t even begin to describe without bursting into tears. All in the name of scientific advancement.
Perhaps in some future paradise, when calculators have surpassed human intelligence, the techniques of integration can be bypassed. Perhaps then, when the lessons of the Dorian invasion have been taken to heart, can we truly use TI-92s properly.