Living in the “Industial Era” in the 21st Century

Today, I am planning to begin my route into AngularJS. Currently, I am searching for a job and due the fact that I do not know AngularJS have closed to me many great opportunities. It did not matter if I am a nice guy, if I am a fast learned, or if I was in charged of developing and maintaining critical systems that cost and/or generated thousands of dollars at my previous jobs. My lack of knowing a framework such as AngularJS have being the major reason for being rejected. At least, that is the reason I was told.

We still behaving like in the “Industrial Era”, even do we are leaving the “Information Era” and getting into the era of “What to do With so Much Information Era”. In this new era, you are required to learn, re-learn and even forget faster than never before. The technology you are using today, can be easily replaced by something else, quite fast. Programming languages, libraries, and frameworks can be learned thanks for the available tools such as Internet, books, and so for. How to do clean, reusable, and expandable code is different matter. That takes time, experimentation, practice, and experience.

If you are interested in learning on how to recognize in which era you are and which era you are getting into, read “The Third Wave” by Alvin Toffler, author of “Powershift“, “Future Shock“, and “Revolutionary Wealth“. I would advice to take attention on how the author identify each era, instead of just reading for knowledge gathering.

My learning process have always being to get involved into some major project. There is nothing better than real life experiences. They beat any tutorial you can find. You have to learn fast and do thing right from the beginning because people depend on you and you should try to be always a professional. However, I do not have a real life project right now and money is running out. Therefore, I will have to do with tutorials and perhaps some fake project that force me to cover everything needed to be learn.

Lucky for me there is always an image that give me hope:
never-give-up

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Educational Revolution Must Start from the Top and Go All the Way to the Bottom

http://www.noodle.org/publish/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/ted-talked.jpgIf you stop for a second and watch the TED talks about education, you will witness professionals talking about the issues we have in education and ideas on how to solve them. All of them provide a wonderful argument and their ideas are marvellous; however, they all fail to point an important piece for this educational revolution to succeeded which is asking where to start doing these changes. Most speakers in TED talk about changes from kindergarten up to High School; however, they do skip the level of education at university level. From these levels of education is were we must start the educational revolution, not the other way around. Here are the two main reason why we should start from there:

  1. Lets assume you have an student who had grow up in this new educational system. What would happen to that student when he goes to the university and encounter that they teaching using the old methods of education? Is he going to be able to adapt?
  2. Most of the educators that are teaching in schools today, they learned how to teach when they were students at the universities. If the classes at the universities do not use these new methods of education then how do you expect to see them applied at the schools?

The universities are the parents of the educational system. They must provide the correct example if we wish for the children, the schools, to follow. If we keep this current old system running in our universities then any hopes for an educational revolution is wasted. The educational revolution must start in our universities now if we wish to see any changes at our schools in the near future.

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Time to Updating The Outdated Education

ted talks logo modified.fw Since I was a child and up to my adulthood, a question always popped my head: “Why the educational system in which we are raise up, suck so much?” It sucks from the moment you get inside and keep sucking even when you are at the university.

Doesn’t matter where you go, the system is the same. A system that invited students to quit learning and just focus them on following a “script”. A system which destroys all the motivation that students could have in learning to just made them focus on getting “good grades” or being punish otherwise. A system that doesn’t reflex the natural way of learning. This made me always to fix the educational system.

For me  being an educator is to have fun finding new ways to transmit the knowledge to the next generation in hopes that they can go further us.  I had help many friends and strangers and always made me happy that they could get to my level faster and keep going. For years, I always wanted to educate the next generation in a different way.

Many told me to become a  a teacher or even a professor; however, I cannot do that because I cannot work on a system that is outdated and doesn’t wish to change. A system that will destroy my motivation restrict me and crush me. A system that is all about politics and not education. I had witnessed what happens to those who wish to become instructors and get trained. They become one more of the bunch. Of course, there are exceptions but they are few.

I have lost of being an educator until a few days ago. I was watching some videos related with education at TED talks (http://www.ted.com/playlists/24/re_imagining_school.html). A series of 12 videos that pointed out some ideas of how to improve education. These talks confirmed my believes that to change education, the only way to do it is from outside. These talks motivated me again to follow a path that I quit long time ago.The path to find new and exiting ways to educate.

A new kind of revolution is needed now. One that focus on new ways of educating. A flexible and stronger system using what we know today about the human mind and use it in favor of educating the next generation. It is time to say “enough is enough” and stop these fiasco we called educational system and replace it with something new. I am glad that I am not the only one out there wishing for this to happen. I though that I was alone but I am not.

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The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Journal

02/25/2013

I wish to do my master degree in computer science; however, there is a requirement I need to fulfill first which is the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This exam is a requirement for many universities.

In some universities, you don’t need to take the GRE before starting your master; however, this condition apply only if you are starting your master degree right after you graduate with your bachelor degree. The only rule in many universities is that you accomplish the GRE before you finish your masters.

In my case, I decided to get a job instead of continuing with my education. I don’t like loans or owe anything to anyone; therefore, I need to make sure I have the funds to continue my education without getting in debt.

What I found while investigating  the GRE is:

  1. The SAT and GRE are made by the same company.
  2. The GRE is not an intelligence test. It doesn’t measure your IQ.
  3. The material covered on the GRE is not necessarily relevant to your master’s degree.
  4. The GRE requires a different way of writing an essay from that which will be required in your master’s program.
  5. The GRE goes over material you learned in high school.
  6. The GRE does require you to take the test fast, VERY FAST.
  7. The hard questions in the GRE are those in which most people have troubles answering correctly.
  8. The easy questions in the GRE are those in which most people do answer correctly.
  9. The GRE can be considered a harder version of the SAT.

 

The GRE is divided in the following sections:

  • Analytical Writing sections
    • Analyze an issue
      • An opinion is presented on an issue. You must respond to that issue.
        • Take a position.
          • You may agree or disagree.
        • Provide evidence supporting your views.
    • Analyze an argument
      • You must evaluate a given argument.
        • This section do not require you to agree or disagree.
        • Asses the author claims and evaluate the evidence provided.
  • Verbal Reasoning sections
    • Reading Comprehension
    • Text Completion
    • Sentence Equivalence
  • Quantitative Reasoning
    • Quantitative Comparison questions section
    • Multiple-choice questions sections (two sections)
      • Select one answer
      • Select one or more answers
    • Numeric Entry questions

03/02/2013

For the quantitative reasoning part, the following topics must be cover:

  • Arithmetic:
    1.     Real numbers
    2.    Integers
    3.    Decimals
    4.    Fractions
    5.    Ratio
    6.    Percent
    7.    Exponents
    8.    Roots
  • Geometry
    1.    Lines
    2.    Angles
    3.    Triangles
    4.    Quadrilaterals
    5.    Polygons
    6.    Circles
    7.    3D figures
  • Algebra
    1.    Coordinate geometry
    2.    Solving
      •    Linear equations
      •    Quadratic equations
      •    Linear inequalities
    3.    Functions
    4.    Graphs of functions such as lines, V-shaped, parabolas, circles, etc.
    5.    Rules of exponents
    6.    Operations with algebraic expressions
  •  Data Analysis
    1.    Counting methods
    2.    Random variables
    3.    Probability
    4.    Probability distributions
    5.    Data interpretation using numerical and graphical methods
    6.    Distributions of data

(To be continued)

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