Congratulations to Richard Pate School for their super entry that uses PiFace Digital, in the “PA Consulting Raspberry Pi Competition”. This video features the children showing a school assembly how their invention works.
There’s also a link to a write up about their achievement. As well as budding computer scientists they’re clearly confident communicators too. The BBC have covered it here.
It’s really great to see this — the PiFace was designed to make it really easy for anyone to control things and sense inputs. In this case the children have used it to control the lock on the door and drive LEDs to indicate the status. The young inventors have used Scratch, and it shows what we’ve seen at workshops — no one is too young to learn to program!
So, congratulations to all involved, I’m sure that in the future we’ll see some of these youngsters as the engineers of the future, and who knows what they’ll go on to achieve.
When 13-year-old Tahoe native Logan LaPlant takes the stage for his TEDx talk at the University of Nevada, what follows are 11 minutes of eloquent, confident wisdom on his style of education, which he calls “hackschooling.” Here’s a sample:
I’m not tied to one particular curriculum, and I’m not dedicated to one particular approach. I hack my education. I take advantages of opportunities in my community and through a network of my friends and family. I take advantage of opportunities to experience what I’m learning, and I’m not afraid to look for shortcuts or hacks to get a better, faster result. It’s like a remix or a mashup of learning. … And here’s the cool part: because it’s a mindset, not a system, hackschooling can be used by anyone, even traditional schools.
He touts the virtues of having the hacker mindset:
A lot of people think of hackers as geeky computer nerds who live in their parents’ basement and spread computer viruses, but I don’t see it that way. Hackers are innovators. Hacker are people who challenge and change the systems to make them work differently, to make them work better. It’s just how they think, it’s a mindset.
I’m growing up in a world that needs more people with the hacker mindset, and not just for technology. Everything is up for being hacked, even skiing, even education. So whether it’s Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, or Shane McConkey, having the hacker mindset can change the world….
With a Japanese television news crew keeping close watch Monday, Buford Middle School science students crafted their own sound speakers from plastic and paper.
They did it using three-dimensional printers and computer design software to produce plastic supports, paper cones and other pieces.
“I think it’s interesting that they’re including 3-D computerization and printing into the education program at this level and what it means for the future of job training in the U.S.,” said Takashi Yanagisawa, a correspondent with Japan’s Nippon Television. “This is what President [Barack] Obama talked of in his State of the Union address, about bringing technology into schools for job training.”
Yanagisawa and his cohorts are producing a segment for Japanese television that will feature the Buford Middle School class as an example of U.S. efforts to bring more technology into schools.
“We’re in on the ground floor of bringing manufacturing and technology into the classrooms,” said Jim Henderson, assistant superintendent for Charlottesville schools. “We’re participating with Piedmont Virginia Community College and the University of Virginia and we hope to make this a seventh- through 12th-grade program. This is the start.”
The start is the result of a $300,000 state grant to create a “laboratory school for advanced manufacturing technologies.” …
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!
These rules were originally tweeted by Emma Coates, Pixar’s Story Artist. Number 9 on the list - When you’re stuck, make a list of what wouldn’t happen next – is a great one and can apply to writers in all genres.
You admire a character for trying more than for their successes.
You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be very different.
Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about til you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite.
Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.
What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?
Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard, get yours working up front.
Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.
When you’re stuck, make a list of what WOULDN’T happen next. Lots of times the material to get you unstuck will show up.
Pull apart the stories you like. What you like in them is a part of you; you’ve got to recognize it before you can use it.
Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never share it with anyone.
Discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. Surprise yourself.
Give your characters opinions. Passive/malleable might seem likable to you as you write, but it’s poison to the audience.
Why must you tell THIS story? What’s the belief burning within you that your story feeds off of? That’s the heart of it.
If you were your character, in this situation, how would you feel? Honesty lends credibility to unbelievable situations.
What are the stakes? Give us reason to root for the character. What happens if they don’t succeed? Stack the odds against.
No work is ever wasted. If it’s not working, let go and move on – it’ll come back around to be useful later.
You have to know yourself: the difference between doing your best & fussing. Story is testing, not refining.
Coincidences to get characters into trouble are great; coincidences to get them out of it are cheating.
Exercise: take the building blocks of a movie you dislike. How d’you rearrange them into what you DO like?
You gotta identify with your situation/characters, can’t just write ‘cool’. What would make YOU act that way?
What’s the essence of your story? Most economical telling of it? If you know that, you can build out from there.
We created this guide to walk you step by step through using Git and Github – really useful tools in open source. At the same time, it is walking you through completing all of the challenges for the Open Sourcerer Skill!
The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of women whose commitment to nature and the planet have proved invaluable to society.
What’s emerging in schools now is something tougher to pin down. In one district, it might be a fancy new school dedicated to teaching tech. In another, an apprenticeship program. Some schools design career and technical classes to line up with college-prep courses that guide students to become engineers, chefs, CEOs or doctors. Almost 80% of high school students who concentrated on career and technical studies pursued some type of postsecondary education within two years of finishing high school, the U.S. Department of Education reported in 2011.
“We’re hearing policy makers talk about it more often. Certain districts are looking at career and technical education as a way to reform schools,” DeWitt said. “The focus on project-based learning, how to get students engaged more, is something that’s caught on.”
Welcome to the LearnStreet beginner course on Python. The Python programming language is a high level programming language that is used in a wide spectrum of applications — from web design and game programming to scientific research. Its simple and flexible syntax makes it easy to learn and understand, but still powerful and expressive. By the end of this course, you’ll have a solid understanding of the Python language, and be able to complete some cool projects in the Code Garage section. Keep in mind this course uses Python version 2.7. Python 2.7 is more widely used in industry, and therefore more valuable to learn. The most recent version is 3.2, which has some key syntax differences. We have designed this course for people who have no prior programming background. In this course, we will teach you some fundamental programming concepts through Python. Throughout this course, you will write code to apply what you’ve learned to solve programming problems. In addition to the instructional course content, you will be working towards building an event planner in Python which will be fully functional and ready for you to use by the end of this course. Now, click on the big black box – the Python interpreter – below this to start coding away!
On Sunday March 3rd, the littleBits team will be giving an electronics prototyping class at The Harlem School of the Arts as part of the AIGA Inspire/Make Free Teen Workshops. Students will use littleBits to design generative art machines, inspired by artwork they see during a tour of the MET museum. Creative possibilities are endless as students design drawing machines that can respond to light and sound or spin to create unique designs. Check back soon to see what we create.
Learn about a new “superpower” that isn’t being taught in in 90% of US schools. Starring Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, will.i.am, Chris Bosh, Jack Dorsey, Tony Hsieh, Drew Houston, Gabe Newell, Ruchi Sanghvi, Elena Silenok, Vanessa Hurst, and Hadi Partovi. Directed by Lesley Chilcott.
What would you do if your city announced it would close 19 out of 25 local libraries? Protest, complain, become a cynic, or take action and create something new? A group of residents from Rotterdam chose the latter when we learned that our libraries would be closing by the end of 2012.
President Obama says he wouldn’t mind seeing a curriculum requirement for American high school students to learn a programming language.
“I think it makes sense, I really do,” was his response to the idea posed in a live Google+ Hangout earlier today. “I want to make sure that (young people) know how to produce stuff using computers and not just consume stuff.”