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Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-22

New Study Finds Citizen Scientists Can Be Very Accurate | Mental Floss A new analysis of the work of these citizen scientists shows that trusting untrained strangers with scientific data isn’t a terrible idea. As the study in Conservation Biology notes, overall, volunteers classified 98 percent of the images accurately, based on a comparison with expert answers.  dy/dan » Blog Archive » The Difference Between Sketching and Graphing Desmos just added sketching into its Activity Builder. That was the result of months of collaboration between our design, engineering, and teaching teams. That was also the result of our conviction that informal mathematical understanding is underrepresented in math classes and massively underrepresented in computer-based mathematics classes. We want to help students express their mathematical ideas and get feedback on those ideas, especially the ones that are informal and under development. That’s why we built sketch before multiple choice, for example. I’m stating this commitment publicly, hoping that one or more of you will help us live up to it. ITP ITP is a two-year graduate program located in the Tisch School of the Arts whose mission is to explore the imaginative use of communications technologies — how they might augment, improve, and bring delight and art into people’s lives. Perhaps the best way to describe us is as a Center for […]

Google Script to Copy Row Above to Blank Row Below

I had a spreadsheet that entered blank cells when there was more than one admin for a WordPress site. So if Site_1 had two admins, I’d get two rows of data. The first row for the site would have- siteURL | siteTitle | siteAdmin but the second row for that site would have something like- < blank > | < blank > | siteAdmin I started to just drag down and fill but there was lots of data and it just felt like something for the machine to do. The following Google Script did it for me in a few seconds despite a couple thousand rows of data. Not rocket science but it might be handy for someone and it was a really convenient example of variables and loops when I had a conversation with my son last night.

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Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-15

How Technology Hijacks People’s Minds — from a Magician and Google’s Design Ethicist — Medium This is far more than “technology” . . . The “most empowering” menu is different than the menu that has the most choices. But when we blindly surrender to the menus we’re given, it’s easy to lose track of the difference: growth & development – gangster disciples 12. HOW MANY STEPS TO GANGSTA CITY? 63 13. HOW MANY BACK? 36 WHY? YOU ARE LOOKING IN A MIRROR. 14. WHAT’S UNDER THE DRAGON’S RIGHT FOOT? A 6-POINT STAR 15. HOW DO YOU KILL THE DRAGON? WITH A BLUE SWORD 16. WHERE IS GANGSTA CITY LOCATED? IN THE SKY BEYOND THE NORTH STAR 17. WHATCHA CLAIMING? 63 IGD OR 63 BGD Programming Doesn’t Require Talent or Even Passion — Medium * I actually hate programming, but I love solving problems. * There are people who actually like programming. I don’t understand why they like programming. * I’m not a real programmer. I throw together things until it works then I move on. The real programmers will say “Yeah it works but you’re leaking memory everywhere. Perhaps we should fix that.” I’ll just restart Apache every 10 requests. To train future ed-tech leaders, higher ed needs new discipline, some say “The report also called for colleges to train […]

Auto-Logging Email via Google Script

flickr photo shared by OSU Special Collections & Archives : Commons with no copyright restriction (Flickr Commons) A while back I was logging emails in a Google sheet via IFTTT. I’d add a hashtag and forward it on where a spreadsheet would parse out some stuff from the subject line based on the | character. At some point it stopped working and I never quite figured out what the issue was. I thought I wrote about it but, if I did, I can’t find it. It may be in one of my many draft posts. In any case, here’s a better and more customizable solution. It’ll grab anything I label ‘support’ and throw it in a spreadsheet with a few different chunks of information in different columns (to, from, date, subject line, link to the email). You’d open a spreadsheet and name a sheet ‘data.’ Open up the script editor (Tools>Script Editor) and put the script below in it. You might want to change the search parameters. Look at the stuff below the asterisk line. If you want to play around with the right search parameters, just practice in GMail with these parameters and then use them in the query variable below. You will want to set the trigger to run at 1-2AM each day. So now, all I have […]

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Weekly Web Harvest for 2016-05-08

Encouraging the Impulse to Annotate – Todd’s Brain Glossing with social media involves the creation of conversational “layers” which adhere to the original text and produce a richer cultural artifact so that the original text is not obscured, but enhanced. Gloss suggests the multiple veneers that adolescents create to make texts their own. Glossing also denotes the slipperiness of the online world—the Internet being a frictionless distribution system. A Video Game That Tailors Its Terrors to Your Anxiety “Affectiva’s emotion-sensing software watches the player’s facial expressions for signs of emotional distress. The heart rate sensors, on the other hand, pick up indications of physiological distress.” So, in a way, it’s a different experience, and you could combine both for an even more responsive game. In Oracle v. Google, a Nerd Subculture Is on Trial | Motherboard “The G part stands for GNU?” Alsup asked in disbelief. “Yes,” said Schwartz on the stand. “That doesn’t make any sense,” said the 71-year-old Clinton appointee. Introduction :: Eloquent JavaScript There will be times when reading this book feels terribly frustrating. If you are new to programming, there will be a lot of new material to digest. Much of this material will then be combined in ways that require you to make additional connections. It is up to you to make the necessary effort. When you […]

Photography – Week 125

I have to assume this person did this so they would be able to claim the police mis-read their license plate. This had been my plan for many years. Outside VCU’s school of education . . .

Grabbing JSON

flickr photo shared by Library Company of Philadelphia with no copyright restriction (Flickr Commons) What I wanted to do was grab data from the WordPress API and use that to provision chunks of my new portfolio site. The portfolio is hosted on GitHub and GitHub is HTTPS. At the moment my bionicteaching site is not HTTPS.1 That causes problems as secure and insecure are not friends. I wanted a quick and easy solution so I could continue until I do the HTTPS switch. The following is how I wandered towards a solution. A number of the things worked but don’t quite work for what I wanted. So they’re worth remembering/documenting for later and it’s kind of fun to see a mix of javascript, php, url manipulation, Google API, and the WordPress V2 API all in one little bit of wandering. My first thought was to grab the JSON via a Google Script and store it in Google Drive. I can do that but can’t seem to make it available for use the way I want. I tried messing with various URL parameters but it wasn’t flowing and I only started there because I thought it would be easy. I did eventually get the file accessible in DropBox (the only other place I could think of immediately for https file storage) […]

Many Paths in Programming

flickr photo shared by San Diego Air & Space Museum Archives with no copyright restriction (Flickr Commons) Minor Thoughts on Computational Thinking Probably obvious stuff but I’m trying to jot things down for my own reference. The first thing one ought to know about computational thinking/programming is that there are many correct paths (although some are better1 than others). This is true for just about anything but I think people think technology will be much more . . . binary. Searching for cleaner paths can be kind of fun. Computational thinking is powered by vocabulary. Vocabulary, like in language, is closely tied to concepts (maybe analogies). Having never heard of the range function, it didn’t occur to me that it existed . . . let alone that I should use it. To make it work properly I need grammar but just knowing the word exists and means something starts to change things for me. It brings to mind setting up programming challenges much more like Dan Meyer’s 3 Act math lessons . . . with the scenario really begging for the addition of a particular concept but letting students struggle with it rather than providing it ahead of time. A Path This is a little bit of real-life progression which demonstrates how one thing can be done in a variety […]