Wednesday, November 13, 2013

One more into the breach, as I attempt Cellular Automata from Stanford. Not too sanguine about my chances to complete it, and I am also taking Nanotechnology from Rice. d'Be nice if I could get one from Rice after a computer failure caused me to miss too many Python assignments. As it happens, my previous Stanford course was finished successfully, even though I timed out at the very end and missed the Distinction Certification. 

So above is the Graph for scoring Tennis as an automata device. I am keeping up through the first week (yeah, two weeks behind). And I am just current in Nanotechnology. So I have two courses complete. See if I can double that. Fun times!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

This is an abstract distilled from the MOOC "Jo Boaler's 'How to Learn Math' ." It graphically or through glyphs reflects the main points of a vid showing five professionals and how they approached math personally and practially. It is possible that I will continue to update this graphic.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

It is alarming how ugly the Conservative Party in the United States has become. Their loss in the last National Election has sent them into full blown berserk mode, their politics and their luminaries are loathsome. Their naked hatred is odious. Their bigotry is embarrassing.

What is wrong with these people?

Friday, August 2, 2013

A new MOOC: How to Teach Math. This is the first "internet artifact" assigned, and this post is mainly to provide a url for the above graphic. It is a concept map that contemplates the stumbling blocks to students having fair access to learning math. This is the first session of the course.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

This is Socrates most controversial doctrine. He claimed that "No-one willingly does wrong." The first instinct is to deny it. But after consideration, provided there is nothing organically wrong with an individual, it is true. I submit no person decides to do something that will bring condemnation from friends, family and, even, strangers. Everything we do, even on the spur of the moment, has some rationale behind it, some kind of justification. Even the individual that thinks they might be on the edge of impropriety can accept their actions if they think no one will be harmed if they never learn of it.
There are many people we meet and hear of whose actions passeth all understanding; but I think, without excusing them for the consequences of their actions, we owe them at least a measure of compassion. Whether through ignorance, confusion or just plain stupidity, no thinking human wants to harm another for fun. There is no fun in it. The reason that many of us do the right thing is not, alas, because it is the right thing but because we want to avoid the punishment that will result later.
This is the basis for Mercy. The worse the wrong, the greater the actor will eventually pay, sometimes for the rest of their lives, with a misery that can never be washed away. Whatever short term punishment we can properly deliver will pale in a lifetime spoiled by a foolish act.
The most difficult problem comes with the pathological or the sociopath, the ones that have no way of knowing or caring for whatever wrong they do. Even worse, some of them delight in it. What should be done with such a one? Is it not cruel to confine them in solitary for the span of their lives? Should they be chemically or physically neutralized to stay alive but harm no others, rendered unaware of their surroundings? Would those remedies be no better, or worse, than putting them to death?

Sunday, April 21, 2013

I am a teacher, and though liberal, I am more than a little disturbed by the sexual activity of young folks. The infection rate of STD's is embarrassing, and no telling what long term effects. I have gotten old enough now to be annoyed by their fashions - in my day it was long hair that upset the fuddy-duddies, now it's tattoos and body piercing. I am a late term Baby Boomer, and find all of this more than a little perplexing.

But there is a very strong upside to the current generation developing, at least from my empirical observations. There is much less evidence of racism and bigotry in the midst of this swirl of artificial, even extreme, culture. For a deep understanding of all this investigate the Burning Man event. At first blush its a Hippie resurgence, but it's much more than that. Consider just one of their principles: Radical Self Reliance! Nothing wrong with that.

Every Generation thinks the next one is going into the sewers, Aristotle infamously condemned his successors. But for the most part we are progressing. Modern technology is propagating so rapidly, it's making our heads spin. In five years time, we will not be able to recognize the current world! Perhaps it's just wishful thinking on my part, in a politically and economically, even culturally, broken moment in time. But the advances in the Multiverse give me great hope!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Oh joy, rapture! I am starting a new MOOC. I had one intervening but had to drop it, touching on graduate level programming I woulda been in over my hayd.

Now a new Language, a sophisticated one but not esoteric. Or so I hope:

The course is through Rice University. Hmmm. Looks like an extended make good!