“The New Latin”

Back to Michael Gove for a bit:

While many teachers detest him, he’s getting a sympathetic press from the IT sector. Joshua Lachkovic says Michael Gove knows computers are critical.

I think the New Latin idea has misfired, and misses the key point: If you can’t program, then you’re forced to rely on those that can.

And finally, thanks, Verity!


Hello world – time for a revolution!

Is there really a revolution in ICT for schools in the offing? Maybe, maybe not. Lets look at some of the evidence.

Given that the new online world is being transformed by creative technology companies like Facebook, Twitter, Google and video games companies, it seems incredible that there is an absence of computer programming in schools.

– Ian Livingstone OBE, Life President of Eidos and one of the UK’s founding fathers of interactive entertainment.

In July 2010, Minister for Culture, Communications and the Creative Industries Ed Vaizey asked Ian Livingstone and Alex Hope (Managing Director and Co-founder of Double Negative Ltd, the UK’s largest film-only VFX company) to review the skills needs of the UK’s video games and visual effects industries and to make practical recommendations for how these needs can be met. They published their report in February 2011.

More recently the media scrum round the launch of the minimal computer called the Raspberry Pi seems to add to the feeling that the there might be a change in the way ICT is taught in our schools.

The launch of this single-board computer has the potential to trigger a renaissance in home programming by children. With a price-point of just £22, it is an affordable way to give the coding bug to a generation that are typically seen as hard to prise from their gadgets, but who often have little or no knowledge of what makes those gadgets tick

Even the government has noticed. In Februray 2012, Michael Gove (love him or loathe him). said

“Imagine the dramatic change which could be possible in just a few years, once we remove the roadblock of the existing ICT curriculum. Instead of children bored out of their minds being taught how to use Word and Excel by bored teachers, we could have 11-year-olds able to write simple 2D computer animations using an MIT tool called Scratch.”

Third times a charm, they say. I say it’s time for a change – less Powerpoint, more programming.


Moved

This blog has moved to http://www.hyperoceanic.com.


Books for sale

I’m selling a couple of big boxes of technical books over the coming months. If you’re looking to pick up some well kept books on object-oriented programming, design or project management, please have a look.

Amazon.co.uk storefront for Hyperoceanic


Is Groove skipping your files during synchronization?

Groove support forums user AdamK might have found the reason why Groove sometimes stops synchronizing files in shared folders  – a hidden “Temporary” setting for files on your hard drive. When Groove sees this setting, it decides to skip the file, but the error message displayed does not make it clear why the file is being skipped.

Right now, Adam doesn’t know what causes the files to be marked Temporary, but he’s found a commercial utility that will reset his files, and more. Snag is, it costs $24.99, which you might not want to pay- especially if you’re planning on migrating away from Groove anyhow.

Licensed Bambuco users can email me for a script that will turn off this setting for you automatically, free of charge.


Bambuco available (again) to qualified customers

I’ve spent some recently on rebuilding Bambuco, the scripting engine for Groove that allows organisations to easily move information into and out of Groove.

If you are evaluating your investment in Groove and are looking for options for migrating your data out of Groove, we are probably the strongest-placed organisation for you to talk to. We could, for example help you

  • move your documents out of a Groove files tool into a SharePoint Document Library, or into a corporate document repository, or even just a network share
  • Copy your data from Groove Forms into a database or SharePoint List,
  • Extract your list of Contacts and import them into Outlook.

More details here: http://www.hyperoceanic.com/services.aspx


Project Brimham Update – installing the dev system

After a brief family break, I’m back on with Brimham. The first task is to configure a new virtual machine for development – I like a separate Virtual PC install for every project so I can guarantee no version conflicts between third party stuff.

Installed:

Windows 2003 Enterprise
Firefox
SQL Server 2008 with all the options
VS2008
ASP.NET MVC
MVC Contrib Release and Extras
Castle Project 1.0 RC3
ActiveWriter
7Zip

Still Needed:

TortoiseSVN