Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Adventures in Computer Code

When I told Dr. Preston how I created the "To Be Or Not To Be" practice test on the Random Absence Mentoring website, he asked me to write a quick post about it on my blog. Here's why:

I wrote entire thing in JavaScript, but I don't know JavaScript. I know HTML and CSS, which are nowhere near as complicated. All I did was skim through the JavaScript tutorial at the World Wide Web Consortum (or, as techies like me call it, W3). Then I went back to the lesson with an example that looked closest to what I was trying to do, and then screwed with the code in the lesson's tryit editor until it worked. That's it.

Dr. Preston pointed out that this was a pretty close parallel to what he's doing; he said to me something to the effect of, "All the other teachers think I'm some kind of genius because of this Open Source Learning thing that I'm doing. But really, it's crazy how simple it actually is."

The moral of the story is that you don't have to know everything. The Internet is overflowing with FREE resources, available to anyone who seeks them. If you want to create something but don't have all the technical knowledge, chances are you can find some way around it, either by learning what you don't know, finding something to copy-[modify]-paste, or connecting with an expert on whatever it is you need. Now that I think about it, I think that's what Open Source Learning is all about.

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