Mike offers some blunt and intense advice about maintaining absolute integrity in one’s work. While he’s addressing his concerns to designers, I take his advice to apply equally well to computer programmers, UX, UI, teachers… any profession where you’re creating… and really, shouldn’t that be all professions?
I’m supporting a friend with a great idea that’s a little less than 12 hours old….
My friend and fellow computer science education researcher, Brian Danielak, has worked hard today to create what we hope will be the first of many video podcasts to promote high quality visualizations in science.
He and his team would like feedback ASAP on their initial effort.
If you have ~25 minutes tonight (or as soon as you can) watch his ‘cast and provide feedback via the form underneath the video…
Whatever your personal level of achievement, it’s vital that you remember to make space for others to stand up and stand out. Here are three examples of celebrities rising to that challenge.
Michael Bublè and Sam Hollyman in 2010
Billy Joel and Michael Pollack– a Vanderbilt University student in 2013
Bono of U2 and Adam Bevell– a self-taught, blind guitarist– in 2011
My sense is that we all often throw up our hands and imagine that there’s nothing we can do, whether it be about our country or our organizations or ourselves.
We should fear failure: the failure to try and the failure to behave in a moral, principled way; everything else is ego.
Logan’s thoughtful, well-presented talk at a recent TEDx conference reminds me just how much massified education is failing our youth.
Learners need agency over their learning experiences.
When a close friend sent me a copy of this book, his inscription read, in part
it has always been about the students
In this short video, Dr. Steven Strogatz– a Cornell Mathematician– reminds us that the student-teacher relationship is complex, dynamic, enduring, and often unpredictable; far from the Brave New World-style cold, isolationism espoused by the so-called professionalization of education that the United States has experienced over the past 100 years.
Bret offers some interesting insights into the importance of immediate, direct feedback while learning to program – really, while programming at all in his CUSEC talk from early 2012.
When I’m commenting on electronic documents, I find it useful to be able to quickly generate a PDF of the marked-up version of the document to return to authors for review. I annotate the document using track changes and adding comments (using the INSERT > COMMENT feature… not by adding text to the body of the document!!!), then
Save as PDF…
to keep a copy for myself and to email (or post to a course management system) for the author to review.
Unfortunately, OSX doesn’t have a built-in keyboard shortcut for Save to PDF…, but it’s easy to add one.
[Note: you can’t Save to PDF… from an Adobe Acrobat print dialog box… it would bruise their ego]
This 70-minute lecture by Charlie Kaufman— Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Adaptation, Being John Malkovich— on screenwriting applies equally well, I think, to being an educator. Consider the following excerpt, but replace screenplay with learning– for the student perspective– or even teaching!
A screenplay is an exploration. It’s about the thing you don’t know. To step into the abyss. It necessarily starts somewhere, anywhere, there is a starting point, but the rest is undetermined, it is a secret, even from you. There’s no template for a screenplay, or there shouldn’t be. There are at least as many screenplay possibilities as there are people who write them. We’ve been conned into thinking there is a pre-established form.
While I sometimes found it difficult to distinguish quotations from his original thoughts, I found both to be engaging and inspiring.
For me, the take away messages from this speech are:
- Find your passion
- Learn whatever you can wherever you are
- Life is a learning experience
- Looking forward is impossible; looking backward is deceptively obvious
- Rejection is not failure
- Rejection is only temporary
- Be gracious
- Be humble
- Be dedicated
- Be of service
How we frame a question both constrains and frees our creativity1,2. The form of the question itself either encourages or precludes certain types of answers. Some forms of questions encourage shallow, quick answers while others encourage you to dig deeper into a topic.
In this video, Richard Feynman– lecturer and physicist– discusses why questions in an attempt to understand magnetic force.
- Creativity: flow and the psychology of discovery and invention by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi ↩
- Framing in Discourse by Deborah Tannen ↩
I find Dr. Pausch’s creativity and joy of teaching to be inspiring. In the last months of his life, he managed to share with the world his love of a life well-lived.