Friday, December 30, 2016

All I want for Christmas is Tweets

In 2016, I joined the technology era of 2006 by getting myself a Wii and now a Twitter account.  Hooray!

This summer, I promised myself that I would sign up for Twitter after I submitted my tenure portfolio.  Well, I turned that all in back in October, so this is overdue.  Here's my Twitter-Sphere Presence: CGTKyle

I find myself noticing CGT things that don't quite warrant an entire blog post.  Then I forget about those things.  Now I can quickly say something about them in an attempt to garner attention.

I expect that I'll also be tweeting about general board games, teaching, voting systems, CS and math, and more.  Yikes.

My first tweet announced a little page I made for CGT events:  I realized that I always needed the links to these previous and coming events.  As is common for me, I coded the whole thing up in Javascript (feel free to look at the underlying code) so events like CGTC II is currently in the "Future" section, but should move to "Past" after it's happened.  We'll see whether I did that right.  (Also, you should all be going to CGTC2!  I'm very disappointed that I'll be missing it.)

I think I'm missing some meetings on there (there was something at Kamloops a few years back, I believe) so help me fill it out.  I hope there's something coming up this summer also (I think Games at Dal will have to wait until 2018.)

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

LaTeXing Lecture Notes

I've been working hard the past 2.5 years teaching a bunch of new courses and improving old courses.  One of the things that's helped a ton is converting hand-written lecture notes into LaTeX. 

Many years ago, I started working on a style file to add a bunch of commands for lecture notes.  Most important, I created a question command to facilitate Socratic-style lectures.  I later modified this so that I could set a flag indicating that the output was for students.  Then it would hide the answers to those questions.  I started posting these versions online for students.

I've been adding stuff to this, but recently really wished I could add exercises that would put all the answers in an appendix, but hide those answers in the student version.  I recently discovered the exercise package (thanks, Stack Exchange) which can do this automatically.  Using that, I updated my style file, and recently posted the code on GitHub.  (If you're not familiar with GitHub, I made my own landing page.)

I find that it's really convenient to teach from the pdfs on a tablet, and it saves me tons of paper.  The only issue is that it's a bit more difficult to make notes on the pdfs than with a regular pen and paper.