hacking

How to teach hacking in school and open up education

open education

Whatever you may have heard about hackers, the truth is they do something really, really well: discover. Hackers are motivated, resourceful, and creative. They get deeply into how things work, to the point that they know how to take control of them and change them into something else. This lets them re-think even big ideas because they can really dig to the bottom of how things function.

Furthermore, they aren't afraid to make the same mistake twice just out of a kind of scientific curiosity, to see if that mistake always has the same results. That's why hackers don't see failure as a mistake or a waste of time because every failure means something and something new to be learned. And these are all traits any society needs in order to make progress. Which is why we need to get it into schools. » Read more

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Dries Buytaert keynote: Drupal more than content management

DrupalCon Portland 2013

I arrived a few minutes early to the main hall of the Oregon Convention Center in preparation for Drupalcon's opening keynote by Dries Buytaert. A random mix of music chosen by the community via Twitter using the #DrupalRadio hashtag played through the hall as people filed in with anticipation.

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Civic coding strengthens open source skills

civic hacking in government

I’ve been thinking a bit too much lately about GitHub and Drupal.org. More broadly, I’ve had my mind on open source + community. Sometimes this is called social coding.

Social coding can take on a variety of shapes and sizes but is short-hand for what I can describe as loosely coupled, sometimes geographically distributed collaboration and coordination around open source projects. Civic coding is a form of social coding focused on municipal projects. Civic coding is a big part of what we do in the Brigade and why we’re running The Great American Civic Hack this summer.

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Big data in modern biology

open science beaker

There is now no question that genomics, the study of the genomes of organisms and a field that includes intensive efforts to determine the entire DNA sequence of organisms, has joined the big data club. The development of prolific new DNA sequencing technologies is forcing biologists to embrace the dizzying terms of terabytes, petabytes and, looming on the horizon, exabytes.

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Growing the next generation of open source hackers

favoring open source

As a parent of three (children aged: 10, 7, and 5), I'm eager to share with my kids the values that attracted me to open source and the hacker ethos: sharing and building great things together, taking control of your environment, and embracing technology as a means of expression, rather than as media to be consumed. In other words: » Read more

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Open source cufflinks, space station notification, and other last-minute Father's Day ideas

Sunday is Father's Day in many parts of the world, and while it's never too late to pick up another tie for good ol' dad (the 8-bit version is always a good choice), I've got a few more open source suggestions for you.

iCufflinks » Read more

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How hackerspaces make any city an open source city

At SCaLE 9x, Leigh Honeywell gave a keynote on the history and future hackerspaces. (Watch the video.) She provided a history of the hackerspace movement both inside and outside of the US and its slow but steady spread through the world. She also talked about some of the things that hackerspaces are known for, and some notable things that the hackerspace she co-founded, Hacklab Toronto, had done. » Read more

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