Getting on the map (workshop)

On May 29th/30th, Reed is co-hosting the inaugural instructional technology conference of the Northwest Five Consortium (NW5C). I am leading a workshop on maps, mapping, spatial analysis, and spatial thinking; materials below.

Additional links:

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Why should students at a small liberal arts college learn R?

From an educational philosophy perspective, learning to program is well aligned with what we strive to teach our students. Becoming proficient in statistical programming requires the ability to think critically about complex problems, to develop scientific research questions, and to apply rigorous analytical methods to answer your questions. I believe these skills are key elements to a strong liberal arts education. We want our students not only to be able to think critically about the world around them, but to have the skills to critically engage with the world. Continue reading

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Software zooming in iMovie and Final Cut Pro X

In my iPad post regarding video creation on the iPad, I hinted at using software to zoom instead of using the digital zoom available on the iPad. This is because the iPad (and iPhone) use digital zoom and not optical zoom.   Continue reading

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iPad as a musical instrument

Playing an instrument is an analog experience: a tangible act based in physical reality. Because of this, when instrument simulating apps (soft synths or virtual instruments) can use the touch paradigm available on iPads, musicians can find themselves having more of an analog experience with that technology. This is useful as music creation has traditionally started via an analog process: playing a string, wind, or percussion instrument, for example. Because of touch technology, the process of playing digital instruments is now able to become more seamless.
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Digital humanities and information visualization

This is a guest post from Kelly Holob, class of 2014

At Reed, I was a Classics/Religion major (’14), maybe not the sort of person you’d expect to see on a technology blog. But I worked with computers a lot — and not just because I was a T-Watcher. My field’s been developing tools like the TLG, which can search nearly the entire corpus of Greek texts, since the 1970s, and almost anyone who’s taken a class in Latin or Greek knows about Perseus, a easy-to-search collection of public domain classical texts and translations, including lexicons. There’s also Logeion, another lexical tool, which my current school, the University of Chicago, is still developing. Digital Humanities tools have been useful for exploring new ways to learn, interpret, and discover information about everyone from Plato to Plotinus for a long time. Continue reading

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The Vowel Worm

As a language learner myself, I often struggle with the unique sounds in different languages. Humans are culturally-bound language learners; this means we are able to hear and identify all human sounds when we were born, but we gradually lose this ability as we get older. For example, Japanese speakers and some Chinese speakers have difficult identifying the English “r” and “l,” while English speakers have difficulties identifying the Chinese “j,” “q,” and “x.” When I taught Chinese a few years ago, I had students arguing that there is absolutely no difference in the Chinese “j,” “q,” and “x,” and I had a hard time explaining how the sounds are produced differently.

Language has a critical period for learning: babies and children are naturally talented in language learning, but from birth to age 7, there is a systematic decline in language learning. Adults struggle more with language learning, but it doesn’t mean foreign languages cannot be learned. This means there needs to be more effort put into language learning. Luckily, technological tools can help in this process. Continue reading

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Workshop: Data analysis + visualization

For the economics junior seminar workshop this afternoon, please find datafiles and code here.

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Geocoding

Recently, I have been assisting several students with geocoding projects for their classes and thesis projects, using geocoding functionality in R. To document this work I have put together several tutorials and resources for students and faculty to use. Continue reading

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One stop video capture, edit and finished project on the iPad

Say you need to make a video for a class, a short rough of a performance idea for a theatre project, some dance choreography, a video capture to be used in a multimedia project you move into software on the PARC computers, a music video of your band, or even a feature length film. Why not consider using an iPad? It is quick and easy. As mentioned in my previous blog post the iPad’s processing power is approaching laptop speeds and with the iPad Air 2, they are closer than ever. Continue reading

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Workshop: Stata for Econometrics

stata_workshopOn Thursday, 1/19/15, I will be presenting a workshop for Econometrics students on how to use Stata in preparation for the first homework assignment. Come join in!

Workshop materials are here. Log in to a computer and download the zipped file – we’ll use this in our workshop.

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