Tag Archives: teaching

Two Solitudes – CS and Software

Via channels I can’t now remember, I came across this presentation about the very unsolved issue of how Computer Science as a field of study relates in any way to creating software.

With so many colleges in the area, and having a number of friends that are CS professors, and other IT staff at colleges, it continues to amaze me how disconnected these worlds are. All made the stranger by coming into the field sideways from a physics degree.

Plus, I love the term software carpentry.

Being more entertaining than a cell phone

Tuesday night was the first night of the Mid Hudson Astronomy Association in their new digs, the Coykendall Auditorium at SUNY, New Paltz.  I really like the venue.  The lighting and environment is much better than the library.  With 34 people in attendance last night, we had a quite good turn out.

The lecture itself was given by Cathy Law about teaching Astronomy to middle and high school kids.  In an hour we got about 5 weeks worth of material thrown at us (some of it was skipped over), but all of it was quite good.  I especially appreciated the use of Monty Python and the Universe song to end us off.  Cathy was an incredibly compelling speaker, and her students are definitely lucky to have her.

The thing that made me think the most was her comment that one of her biggest challenges in class is being more entertaining than a cell phone, though, ironically, I was on my cellphone at the time verifying the statement I’d just made on the modal lock of Mercury.