10 April 2012

Drinking the Kool-aid

Hats off to the marketing people at Apple.  They have convinced many people that the future of education lies within the slender confines of the iPad.  The past is just that, the past.  Clinging to such archaic remnants is almost anti-American.  However, I see and value the past that Apple thinks is useless.

My school is becoming an iPad school next year.  While I look forward to the common platform that students will have, I lament the things that I cannot do with them in my classroom.  Sites such at PhET and Open Source Physics which use Flash and Java do not work on the iPad.  The educational value of these sites is without parallel online.  I had hoped to incorporate some of these applets into the electronic textbook I wanted to modify for use in my classroom.  I am unimpressed with the physics textbook that they offer up as an epitome of an iBook. 

So, one of my summer projects will be to learn JavaScript and figure out how to add such applets to my ebook.  The last full-scale language I have programmed in is Pascal.  While I have recently written some basic shell scripts for my Linux computers, big programming is another thing.  So, thank you Apple for making me learn new things.

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