Winter holidays are great. We get a chance to stay up late and sleep in for a few days. It’s decadent, a thoroughly guilty pleasure. The only problem with this kind of arrangement is that we enjoy our sleepfest too much. We indulge just long enough to get out of the habit of waking up when we normally would. Later, when we have to return to our workaday schedule, sloughing off slumber is all the more difficult. Alarm clocks help. Even so, a little bit of assistance in the form of a bedtime calculator is extremely prudent. Here are a few resources designed to help the most determined dozers disembark from a cruise through Dreamland:
I am going to try to return to blogging on a regular basis.
In many ways, I feel like an alcoholic climbing back on the wagon. I’ve been away from this blog since April of this year. Why?
With the economy being what it is and needing to keep my bills paid, I’ve been holding down three jobs (one full-time, the other two, part-time). I all but gave up on sleeping this year. People I know who I run into want to know where I’ve been and why I haven’t been posting anything. I wince when they ask and tell them the truth: I have been too damned tired. I seem to have lost myself in any number of one of jobs. On one had, I am grateful I am able to provide for my family. On the other hand, I hate that my work has whittled away what little time I had for blogging. I also know that complaining will do little to alleviate the problem.
So, I am going to try to do this yet again. I recently began working my way through P2PU. I am so glad that I did! The experience required me to create a blog where I can document my progress. I’m doing it in fits and starts. Creating and posting to that new blog stirred up a desire to come back here and bring Preclectic back to life. I know that consistent blogging will keep my mind and skills sharp so I’m going to try.
Apps for Autism (originally broadcast in October 2011 on CBS’s 60 Minutes) explored how tablet computers and special applications allow those challenged by ASD to communicate more efficiently and effectively.
Picture AAC app (from Hearty SPIN) is an iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch app that helps nonverbal individuals with autism and other special needs to communicate effectively using pictures.
I’m back. I took a break from blogging last week to celebrate my birthday. An occasional guilt-free period of goofing off does the mind and body good. Rest is also wonderful tonic for a worn out brain. Want to maximize your shut-eye? If so, visit Sleepyti.me Bedtime Calculator.
I’ve just finished reading Alex Goldmark‘s uplifting article for GOOD, The Next Time You Cut Your Finger, Save a Life. Go read Alex’s work! What makes this story so compelling is how wonderfully simple and powerful an idea be. You’ll also get to know Graham Douglas. Graham has a brother who, despite daunting odds, was fortunate to find a donor match for bone marrow. The treatment helped Graham’s brother survive leukemia. The experience inspired Graham. He focused on how to find even more potential donors. His approach was both unorthodox and brilliant.
Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab is developing a number of impressive virtual reality environments. From the looks of the lab’s work, some pretty realistic experiences are being created. I wish this kind of technology could be used to develop immersive learning experiences for students outside of the university setting. Imagine elementary, middle, and high school age learners experiencing a virtual visit to ancient Çatalhöyük, Egypt, Greece, and Rome or making a microscopic journey through the circulatory system.
A side note: As host Sumi Das toured the lab in the SmartPlanet video shown below, I noticed that an Xbox 360 Kinect sensor was part of the equipment that Prof. Bailenson and his crew are using. This makes wonder of if, after a number of iterations, this kind of technology can be made more accessible to others by way of off-the-shelf components.
The KeckCAVES at UC Davis is working on software designed to interact with three-dimensional data in real-time.
The Virtual Reality Education Pathfinder (VREP) is an educational initiative and partnership between government, education, and industry that is committed to bringing a new kind of learning and teaching to schools across the country.
Symcat is not a doctor. It is, however, quite an impressive “disease calculator” that uses information from patient records to estimate what might be afflicting you. Now, if Symcat’s makers can just give their creation a holographic interface like Star Trek Voyager‘s photonic physician, The Doctor…