T-minus six days to online teaching

Today was the day that things started to click a little. I had three online meetings including one with a student. I recorded and posted two new videos (up from my prior one-a-day pace). My bare bones list of the minimum I need done to get started is shrinking, and I’m hoping will be tied up tomorrow, and then I can focus on getting enough out ahead of things that I am not literally teaching day to day. I’m even starting to understand Teams a bit – including the fact that I’d probably understand Teams a lot more if I’d … Continue reading T-minus six days to online teaching

T-minus seven days to online teaching

Some lessons learned today in the project of taking my classes online: If you’re going to be screen capturing in a video lecture, do a very short test lecture first, flipping through all the windows you may show, to make sure you have your font sizes big enough to be legible. If you don’t you’ll end up re-recording a 20-minute live coding session. Don’t get too update if you have to re-record something. It will probably be better the second time through. In general try not to have 20 minute videos. Also, trust your students to forgive you if your … Continue reading T-minus seven days to online teaching

Making the Jump to Online Teaching

Like many (most?) faculty who started the spring term teaching in a face to face context, I’m finding myself suddenly figuring out how to move my classes mid-stream to a new format. Based on what my college provides, the major platforms I have available to me are Microsoft Teams and Sakai as my CMS. I’m discovering there are a lot of features in these tools I didn’t know about. I’m also discovering that they’re a bit complicated to learn how to use and I’m concerned about how well students will pick them up – particularly without someone able to help … Continue reading Making the Jump to Online Teaching

Teaching Goals for Spring 2020

The start of the spring semester is looming all too close (about 60 hours left to go), and the pressure is exacerbated by having spent the past two weeks in intensive committee service (it is, apparently, possible for five people to sit in the same room for six hours multiple days in a row and churn out productive work, but it is exhausting and your evenings are not productive) and having a new course launching this spring. I’m trying desperately to get my ducks in a row (note to self: perhaps duck sorting would be a good programming exercise…) but also … Continue reading Teaching Goals for Spring 2020

Personal Memories of the 2010s

Wrapping these series of posts up about the past decade, I looked through my various calendars and journals and thought about the major events and accomplishments of the past ten years. Professionally, this decade will be hard to top. I received tenure and then was promoted to the rank of Professor. I ramped up my rate of publishing and received an NSF grant. I developed new courses in game design, eye tracking methods, gender and technology, and artificial intelligence. I supervised student research projects in nine different areas, including sentiment analysis, biometric identification, the accuracy of fitness tracking devices, and … Continue reading Personal Memories of the 2010s

Favorite Books of the 2010s

I’ve wandered in and out of various on-line solutions for keeping track of the books I am reading, but thankfully I’ve never fallen out of the habit of logging all of the books I read in a paper journal that dates back to the fall I started graduate school. Flipping through what I read in the 2010s, here are some favorites and other observations… If I had to recommend a single set of books I read, it would be Connie Willis’s Doomsday Book and then Blackout and All Clear. They’re a blend between science fiction and historical fiction, with a … Continue reading Favorite Books of the 2010s

Best Cooking of the 2010s

I keep a moderately updated Pinterest board of recipes that I’ve made or want to make. Some of my memorable cooking of the decade is there, but a fair bit isn’t. For example, I got a smoker this decade, and now smoking our Thanksgiving turkey is an annual tradition that, if I believe what they say, my whole family looks forward to. Homemade smoked salmon, slow-smoked brisket, and even the half dozen extra chicken breasts I throw on the smoker whenever I use it and then freeze for later – this is my absolute favorite way to cook meat, though … Continue reading Best Cooking of the 2010s

Favorite Places of the 2010s

I’m not a big traveler, but I’ve found some places I’ve enjoyed spending time this past decade, some closer to home than others. As far as exciting destinations go, I visited Hawaii for the first time this decade. This is the only place I’ve visited off the North American continent, and I expected it to be nice but not up to the raptures one hears about it. I’m now part of the rapture contingent. I spent a week and a half on Oahu, mostly on the north shore. I was shocked how easy it was to find secluded spots to … Continue reading Favorite Places of the 2010s

2010s in Review

The timing of the holidays this year and my various work responsibilities makes the ending of the decade align with a week where I’ve been able to set aside time to step away from work and catch my breath. It’s inspired me to, in addition to just resting and catching up on reading and maybe even getting some fresh air, spend the next week reflecting a bit on the past decade. Not from any deep philosophical stance. But I’ve been reading through the various “decade in review” posts and articles that are cropping up and a few ideas caught my … Continue reading 2010s in Review

Education at the Bauhaus

I started exploring the Bauhaus: Building the New Artist online exhibit (companion to a current live exhibit at the Getty Center) out of curiosity to learn more about the design principles that the interactive modules present. From the blurb I read promoting it I didn’t realize there would also be significant content about the educational vision of the Bauhaus. There were elements of how the exhibit discusses the blending of fine arts and applied arts that resonated with conversations I’ve had with colleagues about the goals of education – including outside the domain of the arts. In fact, I’m frequently … Continue reading Education at the Bauhaus