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Bill Gates: iPad Users Are Frustrated They Can't Type Or Create Documents

ProfessorDoom What's my son doing up there in his bedroom? (618 comments)

Dear Abby,

    Ever since we got my 13-year old an iPad, he's gone up to his bedroom after dinner each night and asked us to not disturb him while he "creates a document." Today I learned from Bill Gates that he can't actually create a document.

    Should I knock before entering his room to ask about this?

about a year ago
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MIT Investigating School's Role In Swartz Suicide

ProfessorDoom Re:Hypothesis (382 comments)

If you know Hal Abelson, then you know this won't be a CYA investigation.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: The Search For the Ultimate Engineer's Pen

ProfessorDoom Zebra F402 (712 comments)

It may not work for you but I really like the Zebra F402 and have used them ten years without unhappiness.

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Do Kids Still Take Interest In Programming For Its Own Sake?

ProfessorDoom Yes (276 comments)

Just asked my kids: 12 year old boy, 10 year old girl. I asked them separately. Each looked at me like I'm stupid (okay, maybe that's accurate) and said, "Yes."

They mainly program Scratch and Kodu but I'm installing App Inventor later today.

more than 2 years ago
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Learning Programming In a Post-BASIC World

ProfessorDoom My 9 and 12 year have tried some languages (510 comments)

My kids don't mind programming. They both used Alice http://alice.org/ and were meh about it and didn't go back (about two years ago).

They both like Scratch http://scratch.mit.edu and the 12 year old has moved on to building his own blocks in the Squeak interface underneath it -- so as a starter language I think it has done exactly what we'd like it to do. He's now looking forward to learning python, probably using the media computation materials from Guzdial/Ericson.

The 9 year old actually prefers Microsoft's Kodu http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/projects/kodu/.

I'm thinking about working them through some of the material at Bootstrap http://www.bootstrapworld.org/ which is teachScheme for kids.

more than 3 years ago
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Pope Urges Priests To Go Forth and Blog

ProfessorDoom It's a miracle! (284 comments)

The poster is missing the real miracle here. Pope Benedict XV died in 1922.

more than 4 years ago
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Intel Resigns from One Laptop Per Child Project

ProfessorDoom Re:OLPC will stand or fall on the XO laptop itself (338 comments)

I participated in the give-one-get-one program and got one of these for my kids (6 and 8). I literally pulled it out of the box, put in the batteries, showed them where to plug in the power cord, and have not touched it since. Two days after getting it, my six year old had written multiple stories and was browsing the web easily enough that I'll need to think about watching where they go browsing. She'd also figured out how to use the microphone and the camera software and was using them somewhat ... creatively (you need to think like a 6-year old...).

Based on this, I'd say the interface is pretty good. They're still getting used to the transactions for pulling up the stories they've written, but other than that it's been very smooth.

more than 6 years ago

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