Education = Transforming + Informing

Have a creative project you’d like funding for?

Have a potentially commercial (non-charitable) creative idea that you would like some funding for? Well if you have a really cool idea and people agree, Kickstarter could be just the thing for you! Kickstarter is among the largest funding platforms for creative projects. Every week, tens of thousands of amazing people pledge millions of dollars to projects from the worlds of music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields. Check out the site and start a project for yourself. http://www.kickstarter.com/start (Kickstarter is currently looking at expanding into the international market but is currently only open to US residents). If you’re in the UK try: http://www.wefund.com/,  pleasefund.us or http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/ If you want to know how it works (a risk free way of testing ideas) check out the Wefund FAQ page here: http://www.wefund.com/faq#n139 In a nutshell, these sort of sites are on the look out for creative artists of any kind. Are there any selection criteria? Not really. No hate-speech, no holocaust denial – nothing racist or inflammatory or offensive. WEFUND is for creative projects, but that can be very broadly defined. A film?  Sure. A chair? Definitely.  A book, a play, an installation? Of course. A new company? Yeah but you can’t sell shares. (the site mentions something about being able to sell shorts instead of shares though …not sure what they meant)  Finally, you can’t just use it to say, I want to stop working , can you all give me a pound.  As mentioned, they are looking for artists, architects, film makers, designers, carpenters, actors, singers, writers, illustrators, photographers, curators, maybe even the odd adventurer …. What will you do?


May 21, 2012 Posted by | General | 1 Comment

Collaborating and sharing files online

Collaborating with others online: There are a number of options for everything from sharing video and images to presentations, files, tasks, ideas and more. Some services require you to create documents online while others allow you to create them off.

1. EtherPad

EtherPad offers real-time editing and collaboration of plain text documents. It includes a mini chat room and shows each user’s edits with their own color in real time. Also nice is the ability to save and restore revisions.

2. Google Docs

Google Docs offers all three office apps for creating documents, spreadsheets and presentations. They also offer good sharing features which means you can collaborate with others in real-time at the same time on the same documents. There’s also an option to post the document to a blog or website and have any changes updated automatically by itself.

3. Zoho

Like Google Docs, Zoho offers a suite of apps to create online documents, spreadsheets and presentations (plus databases), but their sharing features are much better. Not only can you invite others to view or edit documents, but you can create groups to make them easier to manage. This makes it sort of like a wiki and a blog publishing platform. A downside to Google Docs is that you can’t chat with others inside Google Docs, but then again, you can always use Gtalk.


May 20, 2012 Posted by | General | 1 Comment

Finally – a way to understand Turing Machines ….

  Turing machines (named after a guy called Alan Turing) are a universal model of computation and play a central role in the theory of computation. TuringKara lets you solve many interesting Turing machine problems. It uses a two-dimensional ‘sheet’ as its external memory rather than the usual one-dimensional tape. This greatly simplifies your Turing machines for many problems, compared to Turing machines working on the standard tape. TuringKara illustrates typical problems such as basic arithmetic operations and pattern matching. Download the program here: Program: allkara-en.jar [2004/03/26, 5’000 KB]  and the user manual here: User’s manual: turingkara_manual-en.pdf or visit http://www.swisseduc.ch/compscience/karatojava/turingkara/

May 16, 2012 Posted by | General | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Random incoherent ramblings on the nature of TIME

Recently I had the thought that this “time” thing plays a major role in all the relational problems we experience in the world. It’ll take a while for me to explain my theory (which is more of a thought, at this stage, than a theory) but it’s based around the idea that in life we are required to prioritize – prioritize events and people, and when we prioritize one individual over another, or one event over another (which invariably we have to do because of the restrictions imposed upon us by time) we come up against problems. I tried to imagine a universe in which we had infinite to play with, not just slices of time that we need to divide between the people in our lives and the things we want to do. I suppose God has an infinite time slice for each of us as he is above and beyond and outside of the construct that we acknowledge as space-time. It is incomprehensible really, ‘cept conceptually – just about, but it’s an interesting thing to ponder. What is time? Ray Cummings – an early Science fiction writer – wrote “Time ….is what keeps everything from happening at once”. Time, according to Einstien, is the fourth dimension – a dimension in which things happen one after the other in sequence. Philosophers through the ages have speculated on the nature of time and tried to define it, but with little success. Is time something external to matter – something that clocks measure, and is that all? Or is time an intrinsic property of matter – inside it and at the very heart of everything created in this perceivable space-time bound universe? And how does any of this relate to Computer Science or ICT? Well, the other day I came across a post on the internet that was pontificating on the idea that this universe is a “Binary Universe” (Conrad Zuse said a similar thing and wrote several long books on the topic) The chap who wrote the thing mentioned how in his Binary Model the universe operates on fractal variations of 2 laws and 2 elements: “Space/time Quanta The law of conservation of energy No two quanta can occupy the same space/time”. The mention of time and its consideration in a Binary Universe was interesting simply because I wonder if “time” is something that could be understood by seeking to simulate it or indeed create it in a virtual world. Philosophically, I continue to think about whether time is the thing that limits us in our love and relationships and creates the delusion that “loving all” is a bad thing. Matthew 12:25 makes a peculiar statement in response to what people were asking Jesus about exclusivity of love and how it would be in the after-life. “When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.” Is this suggesting that the need for exclusivity is removed ….how could that be unless we were dealing in a universe in which time slices weren’t restricted and prioritization and exclusivity weren’t necessary ….

May 16, 2012 Posted by | General | 2 Comments

Design award-winning games fast, and without code!

Make Money creating gameshttp://www.stencyl.com/ is a very interesting site that allows you design complex flash based games fast, and without code. It requires download, but the interesting thing is that it allows you to then check out the different components that are involved in creating a game. You have the interface, but can also analyse (and edit and make new additions) to the events, behaviours and properties of objects and scenes. There is also a physics panel in which you can adjust settings such as “real world gravit y”! More importantly (depending on what you think is important of course) there is huge money making and fame-winning potential in the creation of these games. Games created by ordinary people on Stencyl have won awards, scored major sponsorships (from ArmorGames, Newgrounds, etc.), involved famous people or simply excelled on the market. They’re successes in every meaning of the word: racking up over 1 million of plays and passing the 5-figure mark in the best cases. You could be next! From a programming / computer science point of view, the stencyl interface allows you to analyse programming constructs such as conditional logic, iteration (loops) and object orientated programming.

May 6, 2012 Posted by | General | 3 Comments

Event Planning?

Elry (see link at the end) claims to be the easiest way to build a beautiful webpage for your event. You can: Invite guests; Collect photos, videos, and stories and browse updates from your friends’ events. You can effectively create elegant invitation pages where your guests can see event details, RSVP, and add photos from their computers or services like Facebook and Picasa – all from one place. You can make rather beautiful full-screen landing pages for your event or experience in one step and it all only takes a few seconds. Choose from gorgeous pre-selected backgrounds or upload photos of your own. http://erly.com/

May 6, 2012 Posted by | General | Leave a comment

Revenue generation and promoting user-engagement

People are always asking me how to make a quick buck, and how they might use the internet to do so. Well, the internet certainly does have potential for money making but you’ve still got to come up with a fantastic idea and see it through from start to finish. DEVHUB (see link at end) is an online site and by playing the DevHub game, you can easily build vertically-focused, media-rich destination sites that have the potential to generate revenue and promote user-engagement. http://www.devhub.com/editor/ Then there’s SHOPLY. Shoply is a hosted application which allows you to set up and run your own online shop. Shoply offers decentralized shopping software as well as a centralized shopping marketplace and directory. The site provides you with everything you need to run and grow your own shop, meet new people and effectively set up a business of your own in minutes. Finally (and in this post I’m just mentioning three of many many many) there is Betable with a single t. Betable is a place where you can bet with friends, family, colleagues and others on anything that interests you. With thousands of bets to choose from the betting marketplace and the ability to create your own bets, you’ll never run out of exciting things to bet on. What’s more, Betable lets you invite your friends and the greater betting community to bet with you so you can share the excitement and have some friendly competition.

May 6, 2012 Posted by | General | 2 Comments