Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Additional Assignment #1

Pitcairn Islands map
Search Engines

Google Squared has the ability to provide students with information in a unique and helpful format.  It presents students with a table and gives them the information that they asked for and even more. This extra, well-organized information would help them if they were doing something like a research project.  Wolfram Alpha provides kids with more than enough information.  It gives you as much information as you ask for and then goes into detail.  It answers questions you probably didn't think to ask and makes tables and charts regarding that information.  Students can use this as a valuable source for facts and even copy and paste charts onto research projects.  

Before this assignment, I had never heard of Google Squared.  However, I had heard of Wolfram Alpha before.  I used it when I was in a math class to help me with my math homework.

After watching Dr. Strange's video, my thoughts on the "Did You Know?" video have changed.  Information can be thrown at one in many different ways.  Sometimes the way we perceive data is not actually the truth.  After hearing that English is spoken more than we thought in many other countries, we immediately find this unbelievable, but we are not thinking about population sizes.  Once we find out that extra information, it makes sense to us.  Statistics can be misleading.  I have learned, from this exercise, to think about outliers and unstated information when I hear statistics.  I have also learned that research using websites like Google Squared and Wolfram Alpha can help in the search for valuable and informative facts.

It says something really amazing about Steve Jobs that he can create a seemingly complicated computer and have a kid learn how to use it within seconds, but I think it says even more about the complexity of the human brain.

1 comment:

  1. Excellent Kathryn! It is important to know the facts but also to consider how they are presented. "Did You Know" contained some good information but I think in some cases leaves the wrong impression. SS