My IT Department Will Not Let Me

Today on Facebook Gary Stager posted a rant of a status update: Here’s a novel idea. Don’t send teachers to computing PD with laptops on which they are banned from installing software. Teachers are neither imbeciles or felons and they do not work for the IT staff. The IT staff works for the teachers. This…

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There Is More To Computing Than Computer Science

Last week Doug Peterson pointed me to an article called “Let’s not call it computer science if we really mean computer programming.” My initial reaction was “Let’s not call it computer programming if we really mean software engineering.”  Really the author was talking more about the difference between CS and SE than much else.The ACM…

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Please Don’t Learn To Code

I am a late convert to the idea of computer science education for everyone. Or pretty close to everyone. A lot of people still don’t see it as valuable for more than a few people with some sort of natural predisposition for programming. I think there are many reasons for this. One is that they…

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Computer Science Across the Curriculum

Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting with Seung Yu, the principal of the new Academy for Software Engineering, a new software/computer science focused school opening in New York City this fall. We had a great discussion about the school, its goals and how Microsoft might work with them. It’s an exciting idea – a…

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Why College?

Yesterday Edwin Guarin and I represented Microsoft at the formal opening of a computer lab at the Clark Elementary and Middle school in Hartford CT. The lab was donated by Ray Allen (UConn and Boston Celtics basketball star) and his Ray of Hope Foundation. Microsoft was pleased to donate software to support the lab. As…

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No Room in the Inn–I Mean Schedule

I spent yesterday at Stevens Institute of Technology, an outstanding university across the river from New York City. The occasion was a high school computer science workshop for  faculty and students. While the students were getting demonstrations on some of the cool technology that Stevens faculty and students are working on the high school teachers…

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Pick The Software First

Last week an email passed though my inbox that said something like “my district is buying the latest shiny new computing gadget. What software should I get to teach computer science on it?” OK now I am a software guy and biased towards software but this question seems all wrong to me. I’ve always believed…

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Preaching to the STEM Choir

This week I received an announcement about yet another “STEM Summit.” My first reaction was – are these STEM Summits just “preaching to the choir?” Now as a preacher’s kid the term “preaching to the choir” has real meaning to me. On one hand it means talking to the already converted – those who already…

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How Many Jobs Are There For Poets

I was listening to an Internet stream of Gary Stager presenting a keynote at an education conference in Iowa the other day. The technology for this amazes me but the opportunity it provides is even more impressive. In any case, during his talk he presented a conversation that went something like this: "Are you suggesting…

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Computer Crackers are Evil

Recently a friend of mine, Vicki Davis, received a pre-publication copy of the new book by Kevin Mitnick the famous cracker. Vicki wrote here review of the book at Ghost in the Wires: Kevin Mitnick’s memoir. She found the book disturbing.  BTW I refuse to call him a hacker because that is in many ways…

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