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Topic: OT- Hey did you know

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    OT- Hey did you know

    That today is National No Housework Day? That's right! Ya don't have to clean the house today or anything inside there of.
    Hmm, kind of conjures up some icky thoughts.
    Reminds me of last night.
    And the conversation;
    "Don't you have some chores to do around the house?"
    Stepdaughter. "I have homework."
    "Homework is homework. I'm talking about housework like cleaning your room."
    "Homework is housework!"
    Oh my God ... where's the screechy saxophones when I need them!
    Styxx

  2. #2

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    I think that calls for heavy percussion...


    .

  3. #3

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    I've heard that conversation!!!

    Usually she is sitting at the computer trying to keep me from noticing that she has 22 AIM windows and at least one instance of some peer-to-peer "sharing" program open...

    "Can't you see I'm working on my english project??"

    Still, step-daughters are a special gift!

    Bill

  4. #4

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Hmmm... when I was in high school... which was almost 2 years ago , I hardly ever AIM'ed anyone unless I was working on a group project. And yet, my siblings were addicted... oh well, I use forums I guess.

    Anyway, I also remember that the homework in high school was often utterly pointless, especially English which is the most useless class in existence.
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  5. #5

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Quote Originally Posted by SeanHannifin
    Anyway, I also remember that the homework in high school was often utterly pointless, especially English which is the most useless class in existence.
    GO SEAN!!!!
    Especially those coloring assignments...ARG!!
    Actually, I don't get all that much homework, that is, in terms of time spent on homework. The brain work is usually good enough to get me to understand what I'm doing in the class. But when you bring coloring and other artsie things into it, the brain work goes down and the time goes up. I hate that.

    -Chris

  6. #6
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Exclamation Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Quote Originally Posted by wst3ae
    I've heard that conversation!!!

    Usually she is sitting at the computer trying to keep me from noticing that she has 22 AIM windows and at least one instance of some peer-to-peer "sharing" program open...

    "Can't you see I'm working on my english project??"

    Still, step-daughters are a special gift!

    Bill
    Woe what's this? A new one on me, "Peer-to-peer sharing" programs? Would you mind explannin dat un?
    Styxx

  7. #7

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Quote Originally Posted by cptexas
    GO SEAN!!!!
    Especially those coloring assignments...ARG!!
    Actually, I don't get all that much homework, that is, in terms of time spent on homework. The brain work is usually good enough to get me to understand what I'm doing in the class. But when you bring coloring and other artsie things into it, the brain work goes down and the time goes up. I hate that.
    Hmmm... taking art classes? I don't think I did much coloring after 2nd grade...

    I had some... er... not very good teachers in high school. They seemed to believe teaching involved only reading from a textbook and assigning work which was to be easily checked by the answers in their teacher editions. (I had some awesome teachers, too, of course.) Then there's this whole 'well-rounded' concept which forces students to waste time with material they will never use. I think by the time high school comes around, students should be allowed to specialize more in the material they are interested in. Anyway, I could go on and on about the problems I see with public education these days... (at least in Virginia) (maybe someday I'll write a book about it )
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  8. #8

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Quote Originally Posted by Styxx
    Woe what's this? A new one on me, "Peer-to-peer sharing" programs? Would you mind explannin dat un?
    You may not want to know<G>... there are a number of networks that allow people to download various files from a number of other computers. They are called peer-to-peer because there is no central server.

    Sadly, many folks have discovered that this arrangement makes it very difficult to track down sources of pirated intellectual property. This is the new "Jolly Roger Central", and has survived much longer than Napster.

    There are a handful of legitimate services - most of the bit-torrent participants provide only legally released material. The same is true of archive.org, and probably a couple of others.

    And there is an amazing wealth of material available, although it leans heavily towards more popular genres. Still, I have found some real jazz (Miles Davis shows that he allowed to be shared) and bluegrass (Tut Taylor kitchen tapes that he himself released) treasures!

    My own favorite was Limewire. It was a really cool community that started out as a way for people to distribute their own work, but it has shifted, and there is an awful lot of stuff there that is probably not public domain!

    E-Mule is another one that started out with the highest of ethics, but from what I've read, a lot of the content may not be legal. I have heard that the folks that started it are trying to clean it up, and I wish them well.

    There are probably a lot more, gnutella comes to mind, but being a greybeard I am not as up on this as my 17 year old<G>!

    To Sean's comment... there are cut-offs, but I think it might be more time than age specific. In my last job I managed a team of programmers who were largely in their early 20s. They always had an IM window open! They chastised me for actually getting up from my desk and walking up to 12 feet to talk to them!

    I must admit that when anyone was working remotely I did find it to be quite useful, the biggest benefit was that it was very easy to swap code snippets for review.

    As far as homework goes... I have to disagree with both Sean and Chris. While there is some small amount of homework dispensed as busywork, the vast majority serves a purpose. Sometimes that purpose is simply developing some self discipline<G>, but that is a valid purpose, as no one will watch over you when you are in college, or worse, out of college!

    NB: my degree is in physics, and I have a brother who is an engineering professor. We've discussed the value of problem solving for more than a minute, and we agree (pretty rare actually) that there is simply no better way to learn mathematics than solving - or attempting to solve - LOTS of problems. The more problems you solve the better a mathematician you will become, and that is valuable for math majors, science majors, and computer science majors!!!!

    And please, take another minute to consider your English course... 20 plus years out of school I still find that some of my english lit classes were my most important classes. They taught me to think critically. And I learned to write, a skill that has proven more valuable than all of my physics classes (not that I ever expected to make a living as a physicist, but that's a topic for another thread!)

    Bill

  9. #9

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    Quote Originally Posted by wst3ae
    As far as homework goes... I have to disagree with both Sean and Chris. While there is some small amount of homework dispensed as busywork, the vast majority serves a purpose. Sometimes that purpose is simply developing some self discipline<G>, but that is a valid purpose, as no one will watch over you when you are in college, or worse, out of college!
    Unfortunately a vast majority seemed to be busy work at my school. If the purpose is to develop self-discipline, there are more engaging ways to go about that, and I think a good deal of that is up to the parents anyway, not the teachers through silly homework.

    Quote Originally Posted by wst3ae
    NB: my degree is in physics, and I have a brother who is an engineering professor. We've discussed the value of problem solving for more than a minute, and we agree (pretty rare actually) that there is simply no better way to learn mathematics than solving - or attempting to solve - LOTS of problems. The more problems you solve the better a mathematician you will become, and that is valuable for math majors, science majors, and computer science majors!!!!
    I'm no physicist, but I'd certainly agree with you that problem solving is important. Still, there are more worthwhile ways to go about teaching this than simply saying "ok, do problems 10-20 on page 55." For what you learn to be transferrable, you must see how it can be applied. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I had teachers that openly admitted that they didn't have a clue how their subjects applied to anything. I generally did not favor teachers who simply lectured material I could've gotten straight out of a textbook. And I would rather not spend time and effort learning something simply because I might apply it in the future, because I might apply many more things that won't be taught. I'd rather spend time learning things I'm interested in myself, and exploring those subjects. This 'well-roundedness' is only important if there are elements from one subject you can transfer and apply to what you are interested in. It is utterly pointless to simply learn a fact for its own sake, for then there really is no sake! People say "learning never ends"... well, school does, so I do not believe that school itself is the essential ingredient to learning. Likewise, there are many things you just can't learn by simply reading a book (or listening to a teacher, or doing bookwork).

    Quote Originally Posted by wst3ae
    And please, take another minute to consider your English course... 20 plus years out of school I still find that some of my english lit classes were my most important classes. They taught me to think critically. And I learned to write, a skill that has proven more valuable than all of my physics classes (not that I ever expected to make a living as a physicist, but that's a topic for another thread!)
    Hmmm... English when I took seemed to be more focused on reading the old popular works (popular to the literature world at least) like Shakespeare, Dickins, Hawthorne, etc, and then learning what you should think about them. Though there were writing assignments, I would not call it a writing class, as that was never the main focus. And when these assignments did come about, you were not to write about anything interesting, but rather you had to write about which ending of Great Expectations was better or something... (in which case the answer would of course be the original ending).

    Then again, I'm not sure how or if this all applies to people who have no interests and would rather spend their time sitting in front of TV all day. I have music I'd like to write, books I'd like to read, short stories I'd like to write, programming and artificial intelligence I'd like to explore, a chat room I'd like to chat in tomorrow... etc... Writing an essay on the political tactics used by Dalits isn't exactly useful or interesting to me. If one would rather sit in front of TV (or AIM) all day, perhaps busy work is very good for them. (Of course, there are some good shows on TV that don't necessarily lull the mind into a passive inactive observing state, so TV is of course not inherently bad. And AIM can be good when you are arguing about philosophy...)

    Anyway, I can't say what I'll say in 20 years... but I don't think I'll change my mind...

    Whew, sorry, looks like I got carried away! I told ya I could go on and on about it...
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  10. #10

    Re: OT- Hey did you know

    This really doesn't have as much to do with my complaints, but it was an interesting coincidence: the cover story for cnn.com today: http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/04/09/time.cover/index.html

    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

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