I am struggling to  catch up from my vacation. One of the trailing points in my activity is blogging – both reading and writing. I’ve got over 500 blog posts (mostly in the education category – aren’t you all on vacation?) to read. But I’ve come up with a few things already that are worth giving some attention to.

The $40 Billion GorillaBen Chun had an interesting post complete with slide show on his talk titled “Bringing a $40 Billion Gorilla Into Your Classroom: Using Video Games to Teach Computer Science” with some links to some free resources he uses. $40 billion is the projected value of the video game development industry.

Learning Before Learning – A Canadian university student, Aziz, takes on the controversy about students learning things on their own before they are taught them in class in a post called “Learning Before Learning (or getting ahead of school curriculum)”. I have to think about this one still

Imagine Cup Advice – This year’s Imagine Cup recently finished up and involved students from around 100 countries this year. Two university faculty whom I respect greatly have posts about what it takes to make a successful team for a competition like this. Didith Rodrigo from Ateneo de Manila (Philippines) wrote her comments at a post called Moving forward from the Imagine Cup While Rob Miles from the university of Hull (UK) wrote a post called How to Make a Great Imagine Cup Entry A lot of their advice works for any important project (or start up business plan) that has to be presented to an important audience. Well worth the short reads.

Interesting Things Among My Team – I work with an interesting group of people just about any way you define “interesting.” A couple of them are up to special things these days. Clint Rutkas is getting very close to getting his self stabilizing skate board working. He’s got a video of him testing it on his blog here. Clint writes about some of his remaining issues here. I love that he admits in advance that his father is going to say “I told you so.”

The connection between music and math is fairly well known but there seems to be a connection between music and computer science as well. (I don’t just mean things like Dan Waters’ creation of Guitar Matey for the Xbox 360 using XNA either) DeVaris Brown who is a full time high tech member of the Microsoft team is also a professional DJ under the name DJ Fury. So when the Imagine Cup team needed a DJ for a major party in Paris they brought DeVaris along. The interview is here and you may find it very interesting just how computer technology fits into his DJ practice. He uses technologies like SilverLight and Popfly to bring his shows to the Internet. I wish I was a talented and as musical as DeVaris but I’ll probably have to stick with just being better looking. (I added that to see if DeVaris reads my blog. :-) )

Well I have a lot more catching up to do. More interesting stuff to blog about soon.