Android App

Our Android training is up and you can contribute to the our app Argue4Liberty through GitHub.

Even if you don’t know how to code at all you can still contribute liberty-based arguments. You can post them on the wiki or in the comments section here. Or if you are extra crafty, you can enter them in the strings resource file.

Google launches Project Bloks, a tangible programming learning tool

I have said that GUI [graphical user interface] is the best way to start programming. However, I have come to realize that tangible, physical programming may be the best place to start.  Google is launching a project to create tangible coding blocks to help beginner coders better visualize the coding process. As Sheena Vaidyanatham states in the video, a key element to learning programming is persistence. You do not know the true joy of programming or mathematics until you encounter a challenging problem and find the solution through persistent tinkering. That is a skill that trumps knowing syntax any day.

Coding is Not Over.

While I do not like that Lauren Mendoza frames her argument as an attack on coding, she has a point. She seems to be operating under a different definition of coding. It appears she has noticed an over emphasis on syntax in the field and that has lead to a very negative perception of code. I concur with a lot of what she says. I find the nuances of syntax a bit annoying myself. I also prefer to use a graphical user interface [GUI]. I also believe coding should be about solving new, interesting problems and not an assembly line of redundancy and syntax. But I do not believe that coding itself should be a thing of the past. I would not say that GUI and coding are mutually exclusive. You can code using a GUI and coding can allow users of different skill levels to use the same interface. Continue reading

Hour of Code

I would like to thank everyone for following and listening to the important things I have to say about whatever it is I’ve been talking about. I would also like to welcome you into the coding world and invite you to tinker around with it a bit. Let’s start with an hour of code, just a mere 60 minutes. You can take your pick. Continue reading

Coders for Liberty Gets Real and Adds Some Useful Training

While levels twofour are mostly fun and games and graphics, level five gets into programming that activist groups can actually use. Google Apps are great for collaborating on organizational projects. Google Scripts add to the functionality of Google Apps and allow you to generate form letters and send emails to your email list in your Google Sheets. While I had some difficulty with Google’s tutorial for emailing from a spreadsheet, I did find a work-around that worked for me. However, we invite you to try both methods or develop your own and find what is best for you. You can most likely improve on our training modules and we would appreciate any feedback you have. Please share your experience by adding comments to the training page.

Training Update

We have just updated our training. Level one is dedicated to learning about Coders for Liberty and how to get involved. Level two is dedicated to learning about the structure of coding on Scratch. Level three is dedicated to learning how to use Python and GitHub to collaborate. Each module includes a capstone project. Level two features the Make Mine Moderate political survey on Scratch. Level three features the Minecraft Burning Man project. Coders will earn a Twibbon badge for completing each level.

Minecraft Burning Man: Carrying the Torch of a Better Tomorrow

During the LP* primaries, the work of Judd Weiss was especially intriguing and interesting. To quote Judd Weiss, “we need to re-imagine something better.” While we can bicker all day about how the LP is going the wrong direction with the Johnson/Weld ticket, I find it much more constructive to work on something I am more passionate about. I care about the future. I care about education. I care about preparing young people for the future. I care about coding education. Continue reading