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(Slashdot)   I was told there would be no math textbook written in a weekend   (news.slashdot.org) divider line 14
    More: Unlikely, textbooks, Richard Feynman, math textbook, calculus  
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2227 clicks; posted to Geek » on 30 Sep 2012 at 1:43 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-09-30 02:03:21 AM
If school districts did textbooks that way, it would be amazing.
 
2012-09-30 02:04:37 AM
Few things are more frustrating than a typo in a math book.
 
2012-09-30 02:07:55 AM
Statistically, the odds are that they won't Finnish in time.
 
2012-09-30 03:02:08 AM

Chabash: If school districts did textbooks that way, it would be amazing.


I'm strongly in favor of a federal textbooks that are open source (by law, all government works are in the public domain).

Think about - it's easy for kids who move because they'll continue using the same curriculum, we can mitigate the effects of politicization of textbooks at the state level like the horrendous standards used in Texas for history books, and when we have one set of textbooks, we can easily get experts in education to write really good books, unlike most McGraw-Hill textbooks, which are full of errors or use poor teaching methods.

And when the textbooks are open source, you can do all sorts of fun things. Like school systems might decide giving every kid an e-book with a large screen is cheaper than buying textbooks. iPads would provide so much functionality to teachers on top of just the textbooks, like quizzes that score instantly, and it would be so much easier for kids to carry one kindle or whatever than a set of textbooks. Or parents could choose to buy e-books or continue paying the textbook rental fees. Large school systems (like NYC), might decide it's cost-effective to run their own printshop. Poor school systems might decide that having color isn't cost-effective for a math textbook where it adds nothing to education and could save money by buying black and white versions, unlike the expensive full-color glossy for everything textbook publishers sell.
 
2012-09-30 03:02:16 AM

Temporal_Mechanic: Statistically, the odds are that they won't Finnish in time.


Something something Russian stolen from the slashdot thread
 
2012-09-30 03:02:51 AM

Charles_Nelson_Reilly: Few things are more frustrating than a typo in a math book.


Uggh I hate that. Especially those ones that keep misspelling it "maths".
 
2012-09-30 03:31:58 AM

The All-Powerful Atheismo: Something something Russian stolen from the slashdot thread


My apologies if my joke was poorly calculated and derivative.

/DNRTFSDT
 
2012-09-30 04:12:31 AM
Who keeps greening all these Slashdot links? I don't have anything against slashdot, but it's a tiny blurb and a link to the ACTUAL article. The only value added are the comments which, you know, is kinda why I come here. So WTF? Can we just get a direct link to TFA?
 
2012-09-30 08:03:31 AM

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: Chabash: If school districts did textbooks that way, it would be amazing.

I'm strongly in favor of a federal textbooks that are open source (by law, all government works are in the public domain).

Think about - it's easy for kids who move because they'll continue using the same curriculum, we can mitigate the effects of politicization of textbooks at the state level like the horrendous standards used in Texas for history books, and when we have one set of textbooks, we can easily get experts in education to write really good books, unlike most McGraw-Hill textbooks, which are full of errors or use poor teaching methods.

And when the textbooks are open source, you can do all sorts of fun things. Like school systems might decide giving every kid an e-book with a large screen is cheaper than buying textbooks. iPads would provide so much functionality to teachers on top of just the textbooks, like quizzes that score instantly, and it would be so much easier for kids to carry one kindle or whatever than a set of textbooks. Or parents could choose to buy e-books or continue paying the textbook rental fees. Large school systems (like NYC), might decide it's cost-effective to run their own printshop. Poor school systems might decide that having color isn't cost-effective for a math textbook where it adds nothing to education and could save money by buying black and white versions, unlike the expensive full-color glossy for everything textbook publishers sell.


I hate to turn this in the direction of the politics tab, but the answer is simply that millions of Americans would not stand for it. You're talking about the Federal Government convening a panel of experts to create the textbooks that will become the standard for all public schools nationwide. Even if no school districts were compelled to participate, the right (and maybe the far left) would be apoplectic. Since our system of government favors the vocal minority, any attempt to do something like this would be DOA.

/don't think it's a bad idea myself
//also think all public schools should be federally funded
///it's simply not fair to poor kids that they get shafted while the rich kids get pampered
 
2012-09-30 08:24:43 AM

fergalicious: //also think all public schools should be federally funded


You're right that it's not politically feasible. I just think it's a good idea. Two completely different things.

And yes, funding schools primarily through property taxes is an incredibly bad idea for many reasons. We should spend roughly the same amount on all non-disabled students, whether they're in Alabama or Beverly Hills.
 
2012-09-30 11:42:35 AM
Volunteering your weekend to speed-write an entire math textbook, wow that's a solid gold among the nerd Olympics if I ever did hear of one.

/and a noble task none the less.
 
2012-09-30 01:34:25 PM

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: Chabash: If school districts did textbooks that way, it would be amazing.

I'm strongly in favor of a federal textbooks that are open source (by law, all government works are in the public domain).

Think about - it's easy for kids who move because they'll continue using the same curriculum, we can mitigate the effects of politicization of textbooks at the state level like the horrendous standards used in Texas for history books, and when we have one set of textbooks, we can easily get experts in education to write really good books, unlike most McGraw-Hill textbooks, which are full of errors or use poor teaching methods.

And when the textbooks are open source, you can do all sorts of fun things. Like school systems might decide giving every kid an e-book with a large screen is cheaper than buying textbooks. iPads would provide so much functionality to teachers on top of just the textbooks, like quizzes that score instantly, and it would be so much easier for kids to carry one kindle or whatever than a set of textbooks. Or parents could choose to buy e-books or continue paying the textbook rental fees. Large school systems (like NYC), might decide it's cost-effective to run their own printshop. Poor school systems might decide that having color isn't cost-effective for a math textbook where it adds nothing to education and could save money by buying black and white versions, unlike the expensive full-color glossy for everything textbook publishers sell.


Welcome to my favorites. I've had identical thoughts for a very long time.

Suppose I'm living in Greensboro, NC and have children in grades 9 and 6. If my job forced me to move to, say, Spokane, WA, there's no reason I shouldn't be able to withdraw my children at the semester, enroll them in a new district in a completely different state, and have their education pick up exactly where it left off. Sure, there will be some divergence in middle- and high-school electives, but 99.9% of core curriculum should be standardized across the country.

I'd also be in favor of finding a way to reward wealthy suburban public school districts for "adopting" a poor inner-city or depressed-rural district. Want to replace your 2.5-year-old Macbooks with new iPads? Great! The US Dept. of Ed. pay will 10-20% of the cost of the iPads, if you send the Macbooks to your "sister" district. Win/win.

Also, when are we going to seriously discuss moving everyone in this country to year-round schooling? Our kids aren't spending their summers working on the farm anymore.
 
2012-09-30 01:45:18 PM

fergalicious: I hate to turn this in the direction of the politics tab, but the answer is simply that millions of Americans would not stand for it. You're talking about the Federal Government convening a panel of experts to create the textbooks that will become the standard for all public schools nationwide. Even if no school districts were compelled to participate, the right (and maybe the far left) would be apoplectic. Since our system of government favors the vocal minority, any attempt to do something like this would be DOA.

/don't think it's a bad idea myself
//also think all public schools should be federally funded
///it's simply not fair to poor kids that they get shafted while the rich kids get pampered


And from a purely libertarian standpoint, the argument is, in fact, completely valid. It would have to be done when actual liberals are in power, and there's more than enough centrists compromising with them to push the legislation through. You sell it to the states through a broad public campaign, highlighting the benefits to its portability and leveling the playing field for college admissions.

Funny thing about so-called libertarians these days... most simply don't understand that humanitarianism trumps libertarianism in all situations.
 
2012-10-01 01:36:56 AM
I attempted to read the textbook -- the strange thing is that it is not quite as dense and hard to understand as the textbooks we saddle students with today -- between a P-----n text and this text, the folderol that P-----n authors are compelled to add does as much to obscure the material of their text as the Finnish language does to obscure the textbook-in-three-days.

I kid, but just a little.
 
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