Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Spinal stoop and text neck

Spinal stoop
Naomi reports a pain in her neck…
Fitness Fiend: You use a computer and you text. I’ve seen you. You spend a lot of time squinting at screens. Hunching over a computer, leaning over a mobile phone. Result is the same. Pain in the neck.

Text neck
Naomi: Have to see a chiropractor to straighten things out?

Fitness Fiend: Not always. Take frequent breaks and pull your chin into your neck when at the computer. Rotate shoulders. Sit up straight and hold phone high when texting.

If you are addicted to the chiropractor twisting your neck to make it go click as a quick fix, go ahead, pay the fee. The lower-key and more economic option is to do the preventive maintenance.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Computer Assisted Language Learning and Technology Enhanced Language Learning

Programmed learning
Techtalk on CALL and TELL…
Mark: Learning by computer has parallels with learning theories. Warschauer identifies three phases: structured learning of the 1950s and programmed learning by computers; then the community learning movement of the 1970s resulting in communication activities on computer; and an integrative approach since the 2000s incorporating multimedia and the internet.

Stephen: So CALL is not just computers now. Other technologies too…

Mark: Yes, TELL, or technology enhanced language learning.

Stephen: Computers used to be on the desk. Now a smartphone is a computer, it’s portable.

Mark: There’s still a need for computers, for accessing databases for example. There’s still a place for media rooms like a theater.

Stephen: But a lot can be done on smartphones or tablets. Teachers can run class management systems, communicate with students using social media, students can post work back.

Device proliferation is understandable. No one size fits all. But the mid-size tablets or laptop computers are surprisingly capable.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Modern or Postmodern?

Job Hunters
Discussion on post-modern photographs...

Jean: Why cut the pictures up into fragments? It is a postmodern approach.

Noam: But it doesn’t clarify, it tends to obscure. What are the principles of a postmodern approach to photography?
Blackboard Art

Jean: It deconstructs, and through many fragments we can see more. We can see many spaces, we can sense time passing.

Noam: I’m still skeptical.

Jean: Postmodernism is supposed to make us skeptical, to make us question. To see reality differently.
Modernism and postmodernism are movements particularly found in art, literature, architecture.
Modernism focused on simplification, minimalism and eliminating non-essential elements.
Postmodernism reacts against modernism and revives historical techniques.

Question: Are these pictures examples of modernism or postmodernism?

Friday, July 10, 2015

Quotes in biopics

100,000 English cannot control 
350 million Indians.
Directors weigh in on using quotations…
David: Biopics are a reconstruction of a person’s life. So the dialog is also a reconstruction.

We are governed by people who care more
 about feelings than thoughts or ideas.
Stephen: So Gandhi didn’t actually say, “100,000 Englishmen simply cannot control 350 million Indians, if those Indians refuse to cooperate."

David: Sometimes a good scriptwriter can summarize a hero’s thoughts.

Stephen: And sometimes the hero, or heroine, is a source of direct quotes. Margaret Thatcher actually wrote, “We are governed by people who care more about feelings than they do about thoughts and ideas.” So in Iron Lady, we had Meryl Streep say that.
A quote can be disputed (there is an argument over whether the speaker actually said or wrote it). Or it can be misattributed (somebody else actually said it or wrote it).

The Gandhi line is a quote we might wish he’d said, even if he didn’t.

And the Thatcher quote can be found in her autobiography. It is not disputed, misattributed or a line we might wish she’d said or written.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

French thinking -isms

Jean-Paul Sartre and 
Simone de Beauvoir
Richard and Philippe discuss French abstract thinking…

Richard: We French appreciate thinkers.

Philippe: Look at all the –isms we’ve invented.

Richard: Jean-Paul Sartre and existentialism.

Claude Levi-Strauss
Philippe: Claude Levi-Strauss and structuralism.

Richard: Jacques Derrida and deconstructionism.

Philippe: Not to mention Simone de Beauvoir and feminism.

Jacques Derrida
Richard: But would you include a painter? Like Claude Monet and impressionism?

Philippe: Hmm, is painting on the same level as abstract verbal concepts?
Two philosophers, an anthropologist and a sociologist revered by the French. Perhaps in other countries great thinkers are not always valued as highly.

Match the –ism with the definition…

For example…
1. impressionism         a. style of painting in which color captures light
                                           and expresses feeling
1a is correct
2. existentialism           b. women should be treated as 
                                            intellectual equals to men

3. structuralism             c. writing does not have just one meaning, 
                                            it depends on the reader

4. deconstructionism    d. people are free but responsible
                                             for their actions

5. feminism                    e. elements are understood in relation 
                                             to a larger system