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Comment: Researchers mostly aren't good lecturers (Score 3, Interesting) 80

by thatkid_2002 (#47497033) Attached to: High School Students Not Waiting For Schools To Go Online

Kahn Academy was a God-send for me. I didn't even have a high-school level of maths before I managed to find my way into an Engineering degree. I learned all of High-school maths and a lot of university level maths in the space of a few months thanks almost totally to the excellent instruction available through Kahn Academy.

Many universities make researchers/professors teach. Some of them do an excellent job because they give a damn, or are passionate about sharing (as opposed to selfish and arrogant which many scientists are). Many of these lecturers are in academia because that's what they personally are good at - and so they don't understand how to teach people who aren't as naturally suited to the subject they are teaching as they were. They don't know what *normal* people find difficult or else they assume they know but completely miss the mark.

Nearly every single mathematical person I have met utterly fails at communication, as I have only found two: a really gifted guy who breezed through university maths and is currently working on his PhD and Salman Kahn of Kahn Academy who is the best communicator of mathematical concepts I have ever found - hands down. He seems to know what normal people find hard and even pre-emptively answers your questions right as they pop into your head.

This only reinforces how outdated the model of university education is and how poor value the university education itself generally is. Normal people can find higher quality resources online and consume them quickly and efficiently and apply them the next day. Instead of spending tens of thousands of dollars and 2+ years getting a fairly poor imitation of a "T-shaped" education I think the real solution is to set up strong learning resources (online and meatspace workshops) and allow people to cheaply sit certification tests (and portfolio checks) on university-level subjects. People can build their core education as narrow and tight as needed and expand the "arms" of their education out as far as needed in a dynamic fashion which suits this ever-changing world. Hey, if a person completes a whole degree in this fashion they can sell good-ole' degree certificates too!

Comment: Standalone? (Score 1) 56

by thatkid_2002 (#47421637) Attached to: The Future of Wearables: Standalone, Unobtrusive, and Everywhere
I thought we didn't have the battery technology to really make this idea fly yet... I thought the reason why the leading smart watch (Pebble) is so successful is because it is *not* standalone, and as such as excellent integration with your phone and very good battery life.
What do I know, I guess I'm just not in a sufficiently mindless consumer mindset. I'll never understand this idiocy.

Comment: Freecode/Freshmeat replacement? Simple? (Score 1) 62

by thatkid_2002 (#47268905) Attached to: Freecode Freezeup

We all used it as a way to learn about what had just come out, and discover new useful projects by watching/browsing interesting looking items on the feed. All it really was is an aggregator of update feeds... So lets build a new (RSS) aggregator/planet and reach out to the old Freshmeat projects/users to get them to move over?

If the functionality is pared right down it shouldn't even need logins or any of that stuff. Just make RSS links clearly visible and say to people "hey if you want to follow this project specifically, here's the link for your RSS reader!".

Comment: Re:'stay-at-home-dad' schlock (Score 1) 291

by thatkid_2002 (#47106081) Attached to: Parenting Rewires the Male Brain

Each to his own. It seems you "choose not to be" a father and thus the effects described don't apply or make sense to you. I have seen the changes described in this article myself and it only confirms what I have seen. I don't think the stay-at-home-dad thing is a bad thing or even being forced upon men in general - hell I hear more men arguing *for* the right to be a stay-at-home-dad than against it. I think you're seeing ideologically charged language where there is none; perhaps the mention of a same-sex couple or the mention that the effect is triggered differently in women has skewed your opinion.

Just to be clear, I am certainly not a feminist. I'm not narrow minded enough for that. I'm an egalitarian.

(clearly my opinion)

Comment: Network not search (Score 1) 309

Try getting into community technical groups - there's always jobs bouncing around these places for those who have natural interest and skill, and they're more likely to understand and accommodate your (student) lifestyle, rather than places that put up ads with more generic applicants in mind.
Hit Meetup and Facebook to help you find groups.

Comment: I hope they don't come too soon. (Score 2) 453

by thatkid_2002 (#46955505) Attached to: Study: Earthlings Not Ready For Alien Encounters, Yet
A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll know tomorrow. -- Agent Kay

Comment: Different mindset (Score 3, Insightful) 172

by thatkid_2002 (#46935953) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Beginner To Intermediate Programming Projects?
Stop thinking in terms of difficulty levels and programming problems. Go out there and just do stuff, easy or hard, with the objective of making something meaningful happen. Have another look at Open Source - maybe you don't grok open source and the ecosystem yet, but give it a bit more time and start with the simplest bugs rather than feature development.

Something that I have found particularly helpful is having a go at using open source tools and libraries and then when you find something hard to use (and with a lot of swearing, eventually understand it) go and write a tool or a library to make it easier. There's so many rough edges out there that you can smooth out and these problems tend to have a fairly confined complexity in my experience. You've already started this with your scripting so take it to the next level.

Real programs don't eat cache.

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