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Showing posts from December, 2018

Code Academy Experience

Most coding I’ve done over the decades has been “self-taught.” IRC in the 90s and early 2000s provided me with a breadth of bright and eager-to-help minds to help guide me. Regardless of what task was at hand, there was always someone who knew something, or could at least point me in the right direction. Other than my own ambition, I didn’t have much in the way of a conventional “teacher” for guidance. Grabbing hints here and there made the project that much more exciting. The feeling of learning and using something for the first time after having worked for it cannot be overstated.
After my social life, work, and studies in uninteresting areas decimated my self-learning time for the years following, I decided to get back into it a bit. The landscape had changed greatly and most information could be found with a simple Google search. When I started working at Molloy, a coworker recommended I use Code Academy because it helped him. And use it I did. It helped me focus within the small…

Learning with Khan Academy

Internet-based education has plenty of advantages over its traditional forms. Some of these features specifically benefit me. For starters, the flexibility of learning on your own time is unmatched. With classic methods, striving for synchronicity between students can cause strain in learning process. Having physical presence as a necessity means that an absence interrupts the stream. In addition, it also requires students to be “on the same page” as far as grasping any given subject goes. In any mixed group, let alone a random selection of individuals, the deviation in lesson absorption between students can range greatly. This only benefits the middle of the bell curve. Students that fall behind can get stuck, while students that naturally excel have to wait for others to catch up. The ability for and individual to pace lessons, combined with the ability to pause, repeat, and alter the playback rates of videos, coalesce to raise comfort levels and personalize any given curriculum.
T…

Generation Like: A Response...

After watching Frontline’s “Generation Like,” I learned that the YouTube pop-universe is far more expansive than I thought. I’ve spent a decent amount of time on YouTube since its inception, but have never heard of these famous kids that were profiled.
A major takeaway of the program was that social media platforms seem to create their own ecosystems. Websites like YouTube have developed a social class hierarchy; highly “liked” and subscribed accounts being on top, with the lesser-knowns trying to carve out their own space in an attempt at recognition. The introduction of likes (or diggs and upvotes, if you go back far enough) created a type of currency within each sphere. The more likes and subscribers a creator has, the more valuable their output becomes.
Perhaps the most interesting part are the transactions that occur between the individual universes of each platform and the real world. For example, subscribers and likes may be the currency of YouTube, but the ability to cash th…