O'Reilly Squeak book?

G.J.Tielemans at dinkel.utwente.nl G.J.Tielemans at dinkel.utwente.nl
Wed Apr 17 20:12:49 UTC 2002


If someone writes a computerbook, clever boys and girls read it and start to
play; call it trial& error or problem solving or discovery learning or
constructivism or...

But what with all the other children? Can't we create guided discoveries
that brings them farther then these first tutorials. (Nothing wrong with
these tutorials for a start, those from Squeakland are still my favorites: I
even keep a computer with an old browser in my home to show them to others-
yes my wifes computer, but she does not know that.) 

Active essays could be the next step: "turning pages" in the game of life
tutorial of MIT (now visble on their Logo-site ) makes me think that the
black interaction-window in the page stays the same, while it under the hood
changes the settings, depending of the (whished) student activities on that

Some people write books you can buy in the bookstore... why are other people
then paying so much money to enter courses about that book? yes, coaching
and monitoring of your trials: in the old days we called these persons
teachers. (When we started as teachers with hobby computers in 1980's we
called our organisation Teachip)

If a publisher whishes to put a book on his educational list, then he asks
the author to write also a teacher guide for other teachers who want to use
that book in their classes and often also a studyguide for students: how to
use this book as you study. My favorite is still the "manual for people who
never read manuals".)

If we design tutorials for computers we still forget to design these
educational scenario's and end up with a new version of the Skinner Learning
Machine: offering content, control question, next block...

The training department of the American Army even tries to set a new
standard for this new Skinnerbox: SCORM 1.2 

Squeak will never fit in this standard. the Bond of free teachers IMS did
discover in The Netherlands another approach: EML, Educational Markup
Language (in XML): a language that allows you to describe in a formal way
the roles ot teachers and students in a learning situation: these situations
may even become more and more complex: roles can even interact with each

Now to my point: Learning Squeak beyond the first tutorials becomes also
more and more complex. Experts in Squeak could describe learning situations
on all these learning levels in EML and then implement it in Squeak (ending
up in Alice in Wonderland?)

- You can find EML on the website of the Dutch Open University: EML.OU.NL
- IMS will come with a test result around August 2002
- EML is open source

- it is the first release, so it needs lots of improvements and
- until now only the language and not the description of the virtual engine
is free 
- editing EML is done in an XML-editor, against a DTD (conversion to schema
is not yet ready)

- I dream from a multibar(music)editor in Squeak, using the metafor where
you can fill-in the activities for a (singer)-role, in sync with other
(singer)roles, composing nice learning-compositions...  

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Gvran" Hultgren [mailto:gohu at rocketmail.com]
> Sent: dinsdag 16 april 2002 21:20
> To: squeak-dev at lists.squeakfoundation.org
> Subject: Re: O'Reilly Squeak book?
> Hi all!
> If we are forging ahead on a book, couldn't we sortof try to 
> do it the "Squeaky" way?
> I would like the book to be written "inside" Squeak - 
> "literal Squeaking" or whatchamacallit. Some
> simple form of weaving a la Knuth perhaps.
> So, a question - what kind of formats do O'Reilly support? 
> LaTeX? Som form of DocBook or other
> SGML/XML source?
> It would be cool if we could write the book "together" in the 
> image using some simple form of
> locking in combination with the current updates-mechanism. Or 
> something. And when we think it's
> "ready" for print we push "Generate LaTeX" somewhere and voila.
> Perhaps I am way off - but just writing a book the old 
> fashioned way seems so... Non-Squeak.
> And it is doomed to become irrelevant after just a few updates! :-)
> regards, Goran
> =====
> Goran Hultgren, goran.hultgren at bluefish.se
> GSM: +46 70 3933950, http://www.bluefish.se
> "Department of Redundancy department." -- ThinkGeek
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