Sunday, December 05, 2004

Update on Progress (or lack thereof)

Yes, I know. The whole point of a web log is that regular posts are supposed to be made, but I've been busy. My wife Sandy told me that she thinks that if I want to work on a software project, it should be one designed to help online adjunct professors. The fact that she is herself an online adjunct professor is probably coincidence. I asked what the course management software that the colleges she teaches at use (WebCT, Blackboard, Prometheus) don't do. She said that they all focus on one course at a time. She still has to use many paper documents to coordinate all of the classes she teaches. Sometime, we will look at all of the forms, spreadsheets etc. that she uses and see if they can be integrated into a software project. Meanwhile, I am continuing with computer programming studies. I got my grades for the final exam and the course in Data Structures. I got an A on each. However, I never really got polymorphism working on my last assignment, and the program did not do what it was supposed to do. I could have made it work without object-oriented programming, but the whole point of the assignment and the class was to teach me object-oriented programming, so making the program work without it would miss the point of the assignment. So, now I am working on Computer Organization class and have asked for authorization to order the materials for Windows Programming with Visual Basic, so that I will finally know how to create a progam with a graphical user interface. I am not going to give up on getting the program for the last assignment in my last course working, but I have to make some progress in courses that I haven't finished before going back to one that I have finished to finish learning it. Obviously, I believe that there is more to education than getting a grade.

What else is going on? We are still waiting for the call to let use know that our adoption of our infant son has cleared the Guatemalan bureaucracy so we can bring him home. Several other parents who began the process at about the same time we did are completing it, so it looks like it should be soon. I also found out that I will be going to Falls Church, Virginia on the week of January 24 to learn about "electronic folders" that the Social Security Administration is going to use in its efforts to go paperless. It is a "train the trainer" event. For several months thereafter, I will be spending a week a month going to other hearing offices to train the people there about electronic folders. I was asked for a "wish list" of locations. I put Indiananpolis and Fort Wayne, Indiana on my wish list to have the opportunity to visit my son Robert and daughter Rebecca at taxpayers' expense.

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