Information Theory

Computers are all about storing and moving information, but what actually is information? How do we measure the amount of information in a message?

This activity uses some intriguing variations on the game of 20 questions to demonstrate how we can quantify information content, which in turn shows us how to store and share it efficiently.

Rocket Ride

Photos

  • Sam shows the students how much they already know of a sentence

Activity description (PDF)

Translations and other Versions:

Related Resources

    • An older version of this activity can be downloaded in PDF format here. The content is similar to the current version, but there’s some extra technical information.

Curriculum Links

Great Principles of Computer Science [info]
  • Communication
ACM K12 Curriculum [info]
  • Level I (Grades 6-8) Topic 9: Demonstrate an understanding of concepts underlying hardware, software, algorithms, and their practical applications.
New Zealand Curriculum [info]
    • Mathematics Level 1: Equations and expressions
      • Communicate and explain counting, grouping, and equal-sharing strategies, using words, numbers, and pictures.
  • Mathematics Level 1: Probability
    • Investigate situations that involve elements of chance, acknowledging and anticipating possible outcomes