So I went ahead and upgraded my Lenovo X1 Carbon ultrabook to Windows 8 this week. Before you begin judging me, I had my reasons. My father-in-law bought a new computer, which of course came with W8, so either way I would provide tech support, so I figured I better know what I am talking about. So you see my Start page to the left. Overall, so far, I like it. Of course there are lots of things I would like to do to better rearrange stuff, but, being Windows, most of it is locked down. Usually many hacks will come as well, I guess it’s just early in the process. Anyway, I will mess around with it for awhile, and then share my experiences.
So we finally moved into the gaming era, albeit quite late, with the acquisition of a wii over the holiday. The girls are quite the dancers and bowlers already! That got me thinking what are we doing with gaming in our schools? I will assume you hear about the interesting things they do with World of Warcraft in Pender County, North Carolina. Lots of teaching of history, math, and science using a popular role playing game. How about a school that uses gaming exclusively as their curriculum, as in the Quest for Learning School in Manhattan? And now we see many schools offering video game development using Microsoft’s XNA Game Studio (ok, so it’s Microsoft) through Computer Programming courses in their Career-Technical Programs.
I love all of this! Why do we continue to think we need to prepare students for taking on huge debt for four years of college they probably mostly will never use. Yes, we still need doctors and lawyers, but if a high school grad can design a game or an app and make a decent salary, why does this upset us? I have seen time and again students design Apple or Android apps, sell them for $0.99 a piece and make awesome crazy money. Why do we not want this? In programming you need logic. You need math, especially in the spatial sense. Problem solving. So many skills. Let’s move more and more in this direction. Higher Ed will feel threatened, surely, but they also need to change with the time. Maybe 1 or 2 year programs to further a student’s knowledge. Don’t stick them in a 4 year program and take electives that have no relevance to their program. Yes, they may lose some money, but that’s the way of the world!
So you use a variety of Android devices. It only makes sense to use Google Books to access content. Google Books has come out with some new features, including read-aloud. Check out the video for more!