Blog Archives

Coding is the new literacy – games can help

Ira Flatow of Science Friday (one of the best shows on National Public Radio), Interviewed Hadi Partovi of Code.org on the importance of teaching young people to code.  Code.org encouraged the development of CodeCombat – a game that teaches players to program in Java Script.  Learning to code helps students to develop Higher Order Thinking Skills and other crucial  21st Century Skills.

From Science Friday (NPR);

“With smartphones, tablets, and apps, coding is becoming the language of the digital age, but is the U.S. lagging behind? A panel of experts discusses how we can improve our coding literacy and close the programming gap among women and minorities.”

Produced by Alexa Lim, Associate Producer
Produced by Annie Minoff, SciArts Producer
Guests
  • Hadi Partovi
    CEO and Co-founder, Code.org
    Seattle, Washington
  • Jane Margolis
    Senior Researcher
    Graduate School of Education and Information Studies
    University of California, Los Angeles
    Los Angeles, California
  • Vanessa Hurst
    Founder, CodeMontage
    Co-founder, Girl Develop It
    New York, New York
Related Links

Code.org

To listen to the program on Science Friday click here;

http://www.sciencefriday.com/segment/01/24/2014/is-coding-the-language-of-the-digital-age.html

Play This Game to Advance Brain Science

Daniel Berger, a researcher at MIT, traced these neurons using the EyeWire game.

Yes, ordinary people, non-scientist can contribute to science by playing a game

of NPR, recorded a great story on how people playing games can contribute to science and learning.   In the first half of the story, He plays and describes the game EyeWire, in which you can contribute to brain research and learn about the nerves of the eye.  In the second half of the story he describes the game Foldit, in which you can contribute to Scientists understanding of how proteins fold and learn about protein folding yourself.

“People can get pretty addicted to computer games. By some estimates, residents of planet Earth spend 3 billion hours per week playing them. Now some scientists are hoping to make use of all that human capital and harness it for a good cause.

Right now I’m at the novice level of a game called EyeWire, trying to color in a nerve cell in a cartoon drawing of a slice of tissue. EyeWire is designed to solve a real science problem — it aims to chart the billions of nerve connections in the brain.”

This image represents a chunk, or "cube," of brain. Each different color represents a different neuron, and the goal of the EyeWire game is to figure out how these tangled neurons connect to each other. Players look at a slice from this cube and try to identify the boundaries of each cell. It isn't easy, and it takes practice. You can try it for yourself at eyewire.org.

“This image represents a chunk, or “cube,” of brain. Each different color represents a different neuron, and the goal of the EyeWire game is to figure out how these tangled neurons connect to each other. Players look at a slice from this cube and try to identify the boundaries of each cell. It isn’t easy, and it takes practice. You can try it for yourself at eyewire.org.”

Link to text and audio from NPR here;

http://www.npr.org/2013/03/05/173435599/wanna-play-computer-gamers-help-push-frontier-of-brain-research