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Another Racket Script: Text to Markdown

Here is another Racket Script that automates some repetitive work as a GDM (Graded Direct Method) teacher. Over the next week there should be time to share the script that uses the same text file of sentences and image base-names to generate a html file that prints out as a nice worksheet page.

Explanation-Free Education Examples


I re-visited some ideas for explanation-free entry into programming.

I'm not sure if I was able put the pdf on MediaGoblin or no
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I started putting class worksheet materials on-line with WriteFreely:

Four Aspects for viewing Language Use

Practical Criticism I.A. Richards (1929)

Four Aspects of Language Use

It is plain that most human utterances and nearly all articulat speech can be profitably regarded from four points of view. Four aspects can be easily distinguished. Let us call them Sense, Feeling, Tone, and Intention.
— I.A. Richards in Practical Criticism (192
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Brian, which out of the four do identify most with, or see as the most important?

Hello Malcolm, I think all four aspects of language are working together most of the time. These four points of view just help us step back and see what we're doing.

For me, this way of thinking about language helps me focus on what is best done in my ESL or EFL classes, and what should best be left for other contexts or venues. In a beginning English classroom of 40 to a 100 students at varying levels of verbal ability, social maturity, and interest I think a focus on sense is appropriate. I can show how English sentences works to express basic "acts", and students can show if they understand enough to get the sentences to work for them.... The Practical Criticism book focuses on a higher level of language use where judgments need to be made about the subtle cooperations of sense, feeling, tone, and intention all work together to influence us... My guess is English as a Second Language, or Foreign Language is a "failure" is because the textbooks and classes leap right into a certain context of feeling and tone, without being conscious of what they are doing. Mayb... show more

Stephenson on Power Disorders with Wink

Neal Stephenson on "power disorders"

You gave a speech at the Computers, Freedom, and Privacy Conference a few years back in which you suggested that the focus on issues like encryption was too narrow, and that we should give more attention to what theologian Walter Wink calls "domination systems." This surprised some of the attendees, partly because it reached outside the usual privacy/free speech issue set a
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Taking Care with Intellectuals

Chomsky and Schmidt on Professional 'Intellectuals'; technocrats

Quite generally, what grounds are there for supposing that those whose claim to power is based on knowledge and technique will be more benign in their exercise of power than those whose claim is based on wealth or aristocratic origin? On the contrary, one might expect the new mandarin to be dangerously arrogant, aggressive, and incapable of adjus
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Japanese Wrinting(Composition) Books

「文章読本さん江」 斎藤美奈子 (2007)


  • 書く人の論理
    • 文章読本というジャンル
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Gould and Solnit: strong finishes

Great Essays, facing stupid power

The last paragraph of Rebecca Solnit's "Let This Flood of Women’s Stories Never Cease" made me think of the last line in Stephen Jay Gould's "Wide Hats, Narrow Minds."
I am, somehow, less interested in the weight and convolutions of Einstein's brain than in the near certainty that people of equal talent have lived and died in cotton fields and sweatshops. —
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ESL and CSL learning

English as a Second Language and Computer Science Language: Getting Started

Seeking hints for an efficient approach to education, I've looking at computer language books from the nineties. The need for a terminology or notation to talk about my teaching method is driving me into computer science education. Even books by the founders of languages that I would not consider for a general education/liberal arts program pr
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Compliments for the Ancient Greeks

Ancient Greeks infallible instincts and health

When the Greek geometers had exhausted, as they thought, the more
obvious and interesting properties of figures made up of straight
lines and circles, they turned to the study of other curves; and, with
their almost infallible instinct for hitting upon things worth
thinking about, they chiefly devoted themselves to conic sections,
that is, to t
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Japanese School English: why?

Japanese School English

A Japanese high school student had trouble with two textbook sentences. After seeing these sentences she no longer understood the difference between `what` and `how`:
  • How beautiful is this house!
    • この家はなんて美しい
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Ja Gothic?


A trip to a "recycle shop" or "old things" shop brought an "icon" of a painting to mind:


> American Gothic is a painting by Grant Wood in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago. Wood's inspiration came in his decision to paint what is known as the American Gothic House along with "the kind of people I fancied should live in that house." He painted it in 1930,


> American Gothic is a painting by Grant Wood in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago. Wood's inspiration came in his decision to paint what is known as the American Gothic House along with "the kind of people I fancied should live in that house." He painted it in 1930,
This entry was edited (2 years ago)

The Free Network: The Fediverse and The Federation

Links to three Fediverse writings

... we also recognize that social media has become a crucial part of everyday life, which is why we urge you to ditch Facebook and instead utilize freedom-respecting, distributed, user-controlled services like GNU social, Mastodon, or Diaspora.
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Rain Water Tank


What is the best way to seal the hole around the hose going into the tank. Withouts some kind of seal, I don't think the overflow will go back up into the down gutter.

@Brian Small @carolyna

Cow Face

I'm trying to upload a new picture directly with this status update. , @Sean Michael Wilson I just discovered that you can share among your #Friendica and #Diaspora accounts. This is fascinating. Now I just have to learn how to set up my friendica/nerdica groups the way I've been able to set up my diaspora/rhurspora aspects .... You should be able to share your friendica/nerdica posts and your diaspora/ posts with Victoria on her diaspora account...