The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

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The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Alejandro Tejada
The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers is
Hypermedia Learning.

Recently, I was consulting EBSCO database:

http://search.ebscohost.com/

for articles and publications about
Hypermedia.

Surprisingly, most of these articles have been
written from 1988 to 1995 and uses the Macintosh
and HyperCard as their role model for hypermedia
explanations and implementation.

After 1995, multi-platform web browsers
opened the internet frontier and hypermedia
learning and teaching was relegated to
a second plane. The big problems was:
NOT EVERYONE had an internet connection.
Still today, this is true in most parts of the
world. Maybe not in your neighborhood, but
this is true in most parts of the world

Today, April 2014, one of the hottest topics
in education is the "gamification of learning"
but...
How could a teacher have the skills to
create a game for their classes, if her/him
do not even know the basics of hypermedia
creation?

My request to Kevin&Co. (RunRev) and Richard,
as Community Manager is:
Contact by email every author of Hypermedia
books, article, tutorial and publication.
Request them to test and use LiveCode
as a Hypermedia learning tool and send
directly to the mothership their comments
about the suitability of LiveCode for
this specific task.

I am sure that many of them will be
surprised by the capabilities and
easy of use of this platform.

Probably, some of them will want to
update their publications using
LiveCode as model.

What do you think?

Al











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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Richard Gaskin
Alejandro Tejada wrote:

 > The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers is
 > Hypermedia Learning.
 >
 > Recently, I was consulting EBSCO database:
 >
 > http://search.ebscohost.com/
 >
 > for articles and publications about
 > Hypermedia.
...
 > My request to Kevin&Co. (RunRev) and Richard,
 > as Community Manager is:
 > Contact by email every author of Hypermedia
 > books, article, tutorial and publication.
 > Request them to test and use LiveCode
 > as a Hypermedia learning tool and send
 > directly to the mothership their comments
 > about the suitability of LiveCode for
 > this specific task.

I recently corresponded with Dr. Robert Horn, whose book "Mapping
Hypertext" was one of my favorites back when it was first published in
'89.  The problems designers were facing back then were very new, and
Horn's richly-illustrated book covered the cognitive and technical
aspects of creating navigable hypermedia.

When I first started Fourth World my company description was "Hypermedia
Development Tools".   Around the turn of the century I changed the
description, because even by 2000 the word "hypermedia" was sounding dated.

Today hypermedia is alive and well, bigger than ever really, just under
a different name: the Web.

In the 25 years since Horn's book so much has happened.  Decades of
familiarity with hyperspace, first in HyperCard, then in other xTalks,
then in the Web, has made most folks using computers today almost
uncannily comfortable with mentally mapping non-linear hyperlinked media.

I do think you're onto something important.  My only reluctance is to
use the word "hypermedia" in any contemporary context, as it's a lot
like trying to discuss water with fish - they have no concept of what it
is as distinct from anything else because they're so familiar with it.


Education, or more broadly, knowledge transfer, is the key to a better
future, not just for the learner but for the economy and even
civilization as a whole.

The power of computing to assist mental tasks, along with the global
interconnectedness computers are so adept at helping people do these
days, offer nearly unlimited potential to improve knowledge transfer
beyond anything previously conceivable.

And of course as a LiveCode fanboy, it seems to me that having a
programming language that makes true ownership of both local and global
computing accessible to anyone with a few weeks' time to invest in
learning it has the potential to be a major catalyst as this
still-nascent Internet Era unfolds.

When LC had their Kickstarter last year I reached out to pretty much
everyone I knew from the old "hypermedia" days, and even a few I'd only
heard of.  At this point they're either using LC, considering it, or are
invested in something else.

I think the biggest potential for helping the world realize the role
LiveCode can play in knowledge transfer today is to look in the opposite
direction:  the next generation.


As one example of a powerful intersection of interests coming together
well, check out this thread in the forums:
<http://forums.runrev.com/viewtopic.php?f=76&t=19248>

The Raspberry Pi is helping young people all over the world understand
that computing isn't some rarefied special thing other people make and
we merely use, but instead computing is cheap, ubiquitous, and something
we all can make.  The 21st century isn't about users, it belongs to makers.

In that thread Hermann has been posting a series of stacks designed
specifically to run on the Pi build of LiveCode.  Beautiful work,
thoughtfully crafted.

And that's just one small corner of a world of possibilities.

I hope we can see a group of community members who have an interest in
using LiveCode in educational contexts come together to identify goals
and the tools needed to satisfy those goals, and then set about making
them and sharing them with the world under an open source license so
everyone on the planet can help enhance and proliferate them.

Maybe you'd like to help with that effort?  If so drop me a note - we
have the forums, many servers, and a free and open LiveCode Community
Edition at our disposal.  Everything is possible.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World
  LiveCode training and consulting: http://www.fourthworld.com
  Webzine for LiveCode developers: http://www.LiveCodeJournal.com
  Follow me on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/FourthWorldSys


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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Jeff Reynolds-3
In reply to this post by Alejandro Tejada
Al,

this is all so true. I have this issue in educational media publishers as they all want everything on the web but i still get constant feedback from teachers that they like to have a cdrom in their hand to base their curriculum on rather than a web site. Why? Because websites with content, even those subscription based ones from publishers tend to go poof fast. Even publishers tend to start ignoring titles after just a few years. If teachers want to base curriculums on certain content they want it there for many years to pay off the investment and not have to be continually changing things. High bandwidth or any bandwidth at all is also an issue in many schools still. Hypermedia works so much better for this delivery than browser based approaches. Unfortunately though publisher just think this direction is dead and distributors as well so almost impossible to go down that route anymore. But the issue of web based materials getting quickly forgotten and breaking in new browser revs or just disappearing still goes on.

This also goes for kids producing their own media projects. Hypermedia like livecode work so much better at letting the kids do their own thing both in versatility and also in teaching more basic programming logic and content layout than doing web pages. While some assignments worked well in the classroom lab environment (I taught multimedia for a year in my old high school to fill in) and is a useful skill, only a small subset of the overall curriculum assignments that we adapted to doing with multimedia approach worked well with web sites. Even traditional page layout was well suited for some assignments as it got the kids thinking into how to present the standard assignment content in a different manner and really think thru the content not just spit it back. But hypermedia was the king for really getting the kids involved in larger projects and team efforts.

cheers

jeff



On Apr 17, 2014, at 6:00 AM, [hidden email] wrote:

> Recently, I was consulting EBSCO database:
>
> http://search.ebscohost.com/
>
> for articles and publications about
> Hypermedia.
>
> Surprisingly, most of these articles have been
> written from 1988 to 1995 and uses the Macintosh
> and HyperCard as their role model for hypermedia
> explanations and implementation.

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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Paul Dupuis
I recently made a number of inquires in and around the greater Boston
(MA, US) area for any classes that are teaching LiveCode at any of the
area colleges or universities. Sadly, in the greater Boston area, one of
the places with more colleges and universities per square mile than
almost any where else in the world, there seems to be NO programming,
(or multimedia, hypermedia, etc.) classes being taught using LiveCode.
Boston College used to, but the faculty member who taught LiveCode
retired several years ago and the chairman of the department tells me
there are no current courses using LiveCode.

In part I was doing this out of curiosity as I was exploring potentially
hiring a college programming student for a small, one-off project in
LiveCode or even see if I could find an Faculty member with an
interested grad student who might like to collaborate for college
credit. I even asked RunRev for help in pointing me in the right
direction based on their awareness of license sold to area universities.

I was surprised not to find anyone. That said, as RunRev itself pointed
out to me, with the Open Source version, it means people could be
teaching LiveCode and RunRev would have no awareness. And while I have a
lot of contacts in the higher-education community in this area, I did
not exhaustively check every school in the area.

I'd love to see, and help with, any efforts to get more people teaching
LiveCode and even more so, collect awareness of those courses into some
visible place on the web.





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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Alejandro Tejada
In reply to this post by Richard Gaskin
Richard Gaskin wrote:

Richard Gaskin wrote
I recently corresponded with Dr. Robert Horn, whose book "Mapping
Hypertext" was one of my favorites back when it was first published in
'89.  The problems designers were facing back then were very new, and
Horn's richly-illustrated book covered the cognitive and technical
aspects of creating navigable hypermedia.
Richard, many thanks for pointing to this book. The author still receives raves reviews
25 years after publishing his outstanding work:
http://www.amazon.com/Mapping-Hypertext-Organization-Knowledge-Generation/dp/0962556505

Richard Gaskin wrote
When I first started Fourth World my company description was "Hypermedia
Development Tools". Around the turn of the century I changed the
description, because even by 2000 the word "hypermedia" was sounding dated.
Today hypermedia is alive and well, bigger than ever really, just under
a different name: the Web.
In the 25 years since Horn's book so much has happened.  Decades of
familiarity with hyperspace, first in HyperCard, then in other xTalks,
then in the Web, has made most folks using computers today almost
uncannily comfortable with mentally mapping non-linear hyperlinked media.
The big problem is: for most teachers and schools, creating and maintaining
a webpage (or a complete website) is many times more difficult than
creating and distributing stacks among students.

http://www.scmagazine.com/education-sector-most-affected-by-malware/article/180337/

Possibly, Mark Greenberg could confirm this fact:
http://mistergreenberg.com/Games/MrGreenbergsGames.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/08/19/technology/circuits/19teac.html 

I tried to entice teachers to create a single stack to help
their students to learn the most difficult topic in their classes.
Just a single stack to teach one topic, but teachers wanted
to be compensated for creating this teaching aid for their classes
and their students... How do you compensate a teacher for this?

Richard Gaskin wrote
I do think you're onto something important.  My only reluctance is to
use the word "hypermedia" in any contemporary context, as it's a lot
like trying to discuss water with fish - they have no concept of what it
is as distinct from anything else because they're so familiar with it.
Education, or more broadly, knowledge transfer, is the key to a better
future, not just for the learner but for the economy and even
civilization as a whole.
The power of computing to assist mental tasks, along with the global
interconnectedness computers are so adept at helping people do these
days, offer nearly unlimited potential to improve knowledge transfer
beyond anything previously conceivable.
Yes, I agree. But it's a fact that in most places (not all places),
people just repeat what have been done previously. And this repetition
is (frecuently) of lesser quality than previous accomplishments.

Many of us, in the place where each lives, have visited schools that years ago
have been the best in their district, applying the technology in the classroom.
Today, these same schools have fallen in routines that do not
allow them to keep with the pace of new opportunities opened
by new (and cheaper) technologies.

Richard Gaskin wrote
And of course as a LiveCode fanboy, it seems to me that having a
programming language that makes true ownership of both local and global
computing accessible to anyone with a few weeks' time to invest in
learning it has the potential to be a major catalyst as this
still-nascent Internet Era unfolds.
When LC had their Kickstarter last year I reached out to pretty much
everyone I knew from the old "hypermedia" days, and even a few I'd only
heard of.  At this point they're either using LC, considering it, or are
invested in something else.
I think the biggest potential for helping the world realize the role
LiveCode can play in knowledge transfer today is to look in the opposite
direction:  the next generation.
When I contacted the authors of some of the articles and publications
that I found in EBSCO, asking for the original software named in
their paper, they send me a HyperCard stack... without the
resource fork. Every Mac user knows what this means. :(

For this reason, I think that it is a good idea to write them
and ask if they want to try LiveCode. Next time, when they
receive a request about the software named in their articles,
they could send a LiveCode stack, instead of a damaged
HyperCard stack...

Richard Gaskin wrote
As one example of a powerful intersection of interests coming together
well, check out this thread in the forums:
<http://forums.runrev.com/viewtopic.php?f=76&t=19248>
The Raspberry Pi is helping young people all over the world understand
that computing isn't some rarefied special thing other people make and
we merely use, but instead computing is cheap, ubiquitous, and something
we all can make.  The 21st century isn't about users, it belongs to makers.
In that thread Hermann has been posting a series of stacks designed
specifically to run on the Pi build of LiveCode.  Beautiful work,
thoughtfully crafted.
And that's just one small corner of a world of possibilities.
This is great! Many Thanks for posting this link. :D

Richard Gaskin wrote
I hope we can see a group of community members who have an interest in
using LiveCode in educational contexts come together to identify goals
and the tools needed to satisfy those goals, and then set about making
them and sharing them with the world under an open source license so
everyone on the planet can help enhance and proliferate them.
Maybe you'd like to help with that effort?  If so drop me a note - we
have the forums, many servers, and a free and open LiveCode Community
Edition at our disposal.  Everything is possible.
Yes, I want to help in this specific area. I will send you some ideas.

Did you have an specific email as Community Manager
or send email to Fourth World?

Have a nice week!

Al
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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Alejandro Tejada
In reply to this post by Jeff Reynolds-3
Jeff Reynolds wrote:
 
Jeff Reynolds-3 wrote
this is all so true. I have this issue in educational media publishers as they all want everything on the web but i still get constant feedback from teachers that they like to have a cdrom in their hand to base their curriculum on rather than a web site. Why? Because websites with content, even those subscription based ones from publishers tend to go poof fast. Even publishers tend to start ignoring titles after just a few years. If teachers want to base curriculums on certain content they want it there for many years to pay off the investment and not have to be continually changing things. High bandwidth or any bandwidth at all is also an issue in many schools still. Hypermedia works so much better for this delivery than browser based approaches. Unfortunately though publisher just think this direction is dead and distributors as well so almost impossible to go down that route anymore. But the issue of web based materials getting quickly forgotten and breaking in new browser revs or just disappearing still goes on.
Do you know why this happens?
Because these "disappearing" supporting websites
actually makes perfect "business sense"...
As simply like that. :(

I have not think about this previously, but from now on,
will be really careful about these  "disappearing"
supporting websites.

Thanks for pointing this.

Jeff Reynolds-3 wrote
This also goes for kids producing their own media projects. Hypermedia like livecode work so much better at letting the kids do their own thing both in versatility and also in teaching more basic programming logic and content layout than doing web pages. While some assignments worked well in the classroom lab environment (I taught multimedia for a year in my old high school to fill in) and is a useful skill, only a small subset of the overall curriculum assignments that we adapted to doing with multimedia approach worked well with web sites. Even traditional page layout was well suited for some assignments as it got the kids thinking into how to present the standard assignment content in a different manner and really think thru the content not just spit it back. But hypermedia was the king for really getting the kids involved in larger projects and team efforts.
The perfect example of this was the Gallery of winners of Multimedia Mania:
http://www.ncsu.edu/mmania/winners.html

Sadly enough, Multimedia Mania does not exists anymore for lack
of corporate supporters.
http://www.ncsu.edu/mmania/

When I was a member of HyperSIG, I ask them:
Could we actually make Multimedia Mania an International Contest?
Never get an answer back...

Al
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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Alejandro Tejada
In reply to this post by Paul Dupuis
Paul Dupuis wrote
I recently made a number of inquires in and around the greater Boston
(MA, US) area for any classes that are teaching LiveCode at any of the
area colleges or universities. Sadly, in the greater Boston area, one of
the places with more colleges and universities per square mile than
almost any where else in the world, there seems to be NO programming,
(or multimedia, hypermedia, etc.) classes being taught using LiveCode.
Boston College used to, but the faculty member who taught LiveCode
retired several years ago and the chairman of the department tells me
there are no current courses using LiveCode.
as I wrote previously, while commenting Richard's message:

It's a fact that in most places (not all places), people just repeat
what have been done previously. And this repetition  is
(frecuently) of lesser quality than previous accomplishments.

Many of us, in the place where each lives, have visited schools that years ago
have been the best in their district, applying the technology in the classroom.
Today, these same schools have fallen in routines that do not
allow them to keep with the pace of new opportunities opened
by new (and cheaper) technologies. (like phones and tablets)

Paul Dupuis wrote
In part I was doing this out of curiosity as I was exploring potentially
hiring a college programming student for a small, one-off project in
LiveCode or even see if I could find an Faculty member with an
interested grad student who might like to collaborate for college
credit. I even asked RunRev for help in pointing me in the right
direction based on their awareness of license sold to area universities.
I was surprised not to find anyone. That said, as RunRev itself pointed
out to me, with the Open Source version, it means people could be
teaching LiveCode and RunRev would have no awareness. And while I have a
lot of contacts in the higher-education community in this area, I did
not exhaustively check every school in the area.
If your project is very labor intensive, like formatting text, images and
graphics in many cards of a stack, maybe a graphic designer student
would have been really useful too.

In this mail list and Runrev forums, you find the best LiveCode programmers  
and most of them are really eager to help a fellow LiveCoder. :)
 
Paul Dupuis wrote
I'd love to see, and help with, any efforts to get more people teaching
LiveCode and even more so, collect awareness of those courses into some
visible place on the web.
Yes, like UMich HyperCard repository, but in this case, a RunRev controled
website where only students and teachers upload their open source
stacks to download for free.

Of course, these stacks must be checked in advance to avoid
the possibility of malware infection.
(For example, stacks posted in this repositories should not try to
download resources from the internet, write to registry or launch
webpages and other applications, etc).

Al



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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Kay C Lan
In reply to this post by Richard Gaskin
On Thu, Apr 17, 2014 at 10:33 PM, Richard Gaskin <[hidden email]
> wrote:

>
> The Raspberry Pi is helping young people all over the world understand
> that computing isn't some rarefied special thing other people make and we
> merely use, but instead computing is cheap, ubiquitous, and something we
> all can make.  The 21st century isn't about users, it belongs to makers.
>
> I reckon Thomas Edison and the people at Bell Labs would argue that the
19th and 20th centuries belonged to the the makers. Leonardo might contend
that it even started before then and the guy who first set fire to things
when he walked out of his cave would probably suggest that it has always
been the case. It won't be paradise when man is finally too apathetic to
invent stuff to solve the problem's he's created ;-( Thankfully, if it
comes to that, women will come to the rescue ;-)

When I went to school we had to do one term of woodwork and one term of
metalwork. Everyone built a wooden pencil case with their name burnt into
it with a soldering iron (I can almost smell the burnt pine) and either a
nail punch or a tack hammer. My children all did almost exactly the same,
certainly one son ended up with a near identical wooden pencil case
although the other made his from metal. One child made a metal BBQ burger
flip, another a set of metal napkin rings.

I, along with many many other students used our wooden pencil cases.

I've always felt the tipping point for 'modern technology' is to identify
something that is truly useful for the students to make.

For software classes it seems all they do is learn how to use Word and
Excel, there doesn't seem to be any software creation. IMO some kind of
Homework/Assignments stack would probably fit the bill. A simple db stored
on the schools server. Teachers have a stack that updates the db with their
class homework and assignments. Students, get to make their stack that
queries the db and gets their homework. The basics of query the db, filling
a field with the output and some kind of Alert/Reminder function would be
very easy. The beauty though would be when the student's realise that they
can customise their stack; so instead of a simple dialog box that pops to
tell you Page 432 of Advanced Math is due 30Apr and an OK button; you could
replace that with 7 buttons, one for each day of the week, so you could
specify exactly when you want to be reminded again. Guarantee some class
clown will figure out that they can simply replace the 'OK" button with
"Procrastinate until the night before'. Software, particularly HC Stacks
use to be full of such humours dialog boxes - not so much today although
error messages from Google seem to be an attempt at more human like
responses. I think that's what students need to see, that they can humanise
their software, they can reflect their personality.

On the hardware side I'm a little partial towards Arduino myself, only
because these boards are for prototyping so once you figure out all the
components you don't need (like a USB port and 32 I/Os) you can make a much
smaller board - wearable broach for girls, key fob size for boys. The
Raspberry I see as more for those who get the bug and want something a
little more advanced. Unfortunately I haven't figured out what kind of
electronic knickknack every student could use; the hardware equivalent of a
pencil box. But once someone clever figures it out then every student
should at some stage posses a wooden pencil case, a metal BBQ burger
flipper, their own Homework software and <a key bob that makes fart sounds>.

<insert something far more useful>
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Re: The Missing Link between LiveCode and Teachers

Alejandro Tejada
Just read this today:

"some students complained that the course material
was too challenging, especially with a shaky internet
connection."

http://www.ecampusnews.com/curriculum/one-shocking-fact-flipped-learning-matters/3/

Wait and see: Shaky Internet connection
will top the list of student excuses in this
century:
http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2012/08/30/british-lecturer-compiles-best-student-excuses#sthash.R4xLqKuA.dpbs

Even so, teachers would benefit of learning to
create a simple hypermedia project for use
in their classroom.

Al