As Computer Coding Classes Swell, So Does Cheating by Jess Bidgood and Jeremy B. Merrill

New York Times May 29, 2017

This is an interesting article depicting an area that I had not thought of in regards to cheating.  Since I have not had opportunity, yet, to explore code beyond the basic HTML where everything is fairly routine I was unaware of how different each code can/should be from programmer to programmer.  This article explains that with the uptick of enrollment, complexity of homework, and availability of collaborative resources it becomes very easy for students to take shortcuts or blur the line between asking for help and plagiarizing.

I am glad that I read this articulate article, it helped me to gain insight into an aspect of coding I was unaware of.


How to Felt in a Jar

Use a plastic jar, marbles, wool and a bit of hot water.  Tie the wool into a ball shape, put it into the jar and shake until partially felted, or felted to the amount you want it to be.  I am going to set this up as my second felting project along with landscape felting (needle felting scenes onto wool sheets).

Fiber Artist Feature – Nicole Frost Frostyarn

This artist entered into the fiber arts field due to a friend giving her some yarn and advising that she utilize that since meditation was not likely to hold her interest.

She has been doing so for nine years, since she became sober and moved home.

Her inspiration is space themed items, though the batts in the article seem to be more victorian inspired.  She is of the opinion that ‘More is More’.

This is a great article, it really makes me think about other peoples creative journeys.

The Pressure to Publish in Journals Drives too Much Cookie Cutter Research

This seems to be a very interesting article.  The first few paragraphs outline how real life research questions become academic topics mainly aimed toward publication rather than information gathering.

This is a particularly telling paragraph:

“Steadily the report was shorn of the information needed to make it useful. And thus the government could pay many tens of thousands of taxpayers’ pounds, yet end up with a bland, deliberately incommunicative report, crafted to be hard for academic referees to criticise.”

Academic research is a very competitive field.  I enjoyed reading this article and it does bring up an ethical issue as well.  Is your responsibility to your own career and being published in a big journal or to the investor who is funding your research?  While it can be argued that the two are not mutually exclusive, there is a conflict there.    Certainly food for thought when directing my students toward research, also something to consider when telling the students during the analysis process using CRAAP; “To test for accuracy see if this agrees with what you know about the topic then decide if it is new and innovative or inaccurate.”

Fixing ‘Failed’ Fiber

This is a fantastic article that explores how fiber ‘mistakes’ can be easily fixed with a drum carder.  Everything from a splotch of too bright color to a bit of felting in the dye pot can be fixed with a drum carder.  The too bright color can be mellowed out with a few passes through the drum carder and carding the fiber can fix some of the felting by reintroducing air.  Admittedly if the fiber is too felted all you will be doing is breaking apart the fibers and introducing ‘nepps’ into your batt.  But really those can also be called ‘texture’ and creating an ‘art batt’.  This is also a great reminder for me that dimension can be added at other points in the creation process other than the dye bath.  *Don’t forget the sparkle*

Three Tips for Dyeing Dimensional yarn

How to dye yarn so full of color and life that it glows
Three tips to dyeing yarn with depth and dimension
By Brenda Lavell

This is written by the creator of Phydeaux Designs & Fiber; she is releasing a course on fiber dyeing that I recommend.

The first tip involves mixing colors of the same family or layering them imperfectly to create dimension to the project you are working on.

Shadows create dimension, and so using a gray can do the same for your yarn/fiber. (remember you can add but taking away is much harder).

*The entire article is fascinating and has a lot more tips and tricks than I put here.  These are just my notes*