[Edu-sig] CP4E VideoPython learning to teatch / teaching to learn ..[xpost: was {'cpl',"don't laugh"}]

Steve Litt slitt@troubleshooters.com
Sun, 17 Sep 2000 14:22:18 -0400

Hi Jason,

At 01:56 AM 9/17/00 -0400, Jason Cunliffe wrote:
>Hi Steve
>> The first way I can help is by making sure your tutorial gets seen by many
>> people. Troubleshooters.Com gets about 900 distinct IP visitors per day.
>> The second way I can help is by doing the parts of the tutorial you don't
>> want to. The third way is by getting others involved. I have quite a few
>> Python friends, including one who is writing an outline processor in
>> (he can certainly help with the advanced part of the tutorial). Also, I
>> ask you various questions to prompt you to explore various Python "riffs",
>> and you can ask questions to get me to do the same.
>This are very kind and pragmatic suggestions.
>Scary too, as it put me on the line - but in a good way.
>I have never done anything like this, have very limited Python skills --
>hmm...in fact good reasons for trying!

I have a technique called "Rapid Learning" that anyone (any adult of normal
intelligence) can follow to quickly learn technology. It's basically
experimentation based -- it's not rocket science and we all use it. Anyway,
it's ideally suited to todays newbie who wants to be tomorrows ninja (and
write an authoritative tutorial). I'll discuss it with you offline.

>But I should do some homework, first look again at existing Python tutorials
>and more, yours included of course.
>I will definitely need help, but that might provide a good foundation to
>evoke the spirit of tutorial..
>The question prompts would be a good idea. and a Q&A dialogue is a good way
>to get the ball rolling.
>> I already have a very intro Python tutorial on the 'net at
>> http://www.troubleshooters.com/codecorn/python/pptut.htm. When you see it,
>> you'll notice it's a good foundation but completely ignores the wealth of
>> tools that ship with Python. It's that lack of coverage of the tools in my
>> existing tutorial that first called my attention to your post.
>aha.. its a good start.
>I have been wondering how one can have python tutorial work on-line in  web
>page for someone who does not even have python installed.
>In other words Python interpreter in a browser window.

I think that's overkill, especially because the host would get hit with
bigtime bandwidth charges (at least compared to a static page). The first
section of the tutorial simply explains where to get Python, and how to
install it, including .rpm, .deb, and ./configure,make,make install. Also,
remember that anyone with any modern Linux distro has it right on their
install CD.

Always remember that the reader can cut and paste code from web pages right
into his editor.

>Big scale this might be hard to do with rigor, but small scale, within the
>confines of tutorials it would be great if one could have example code, hit
><enter> adn get a live response or error back. It should be possible using
>Zope or JPython or something to pass input to Python and then catch the
>output and return that. Problem would be to allow people to make their own
>revisions adn see the effects, how to handle indenting etc..
>hmm.Not sure maybe this is crazy..
>Any ideas?

Like I said, IMHO (and I've been wrong before), the effort spent in the web
interface would be much better spent adding content to a static tutorial.

I'd envision the tutorial as starting with Python basics (much of which
I've already covered), and then have tutorials to cover each major package.
Then the question becomes, do we make a subtutorial per package, or do we
think of some kewl programs that illustrate packages.

And remember, I can probably get some more expertise into this tutorial

This is beginning to sound like fun.