About Me Blog The Project Final Report Links My Mentor

DREU Blog: Week 6

Back to Week 5

Monday, June 21st

I can't believe it is week 6 already. This summer is going by so fast. Today was the first day of a two day workshop. It was for teachers who already knew Alice and wanted to learn some more advanced concepts. Most of the teachers were involved with some sort of computer or technology class or afterschool program. A lot of them were interested in how to make games. Collision detection and scene changes were two ideas they wanted to learn more about. We printed off several different tutorials so they could choose which one they wanted to go through on their own.

Tuesday, June 22nd

For most of the day, the teachers went through tutorials on their own and asked questions when they needed help. One teacher did my catch tutorial so it was good to get her feedback and see which parts were hard to understand. In the free time I had, I started making a tutorial for my plotting points world. I also started making a game that is similar to Mario but with a fairy.

Wednesday, June 23rd

Today I started off by catching up on my blog. I hadn't written anything in about a week so I had to add things for all those days. I also spent a lot of time making videos of some of the sample worlds. When you export a video from Alice it creates an .mov file and Professor Rodger wants .avi files since they are smaller. So I downloaded a conversion software which ended up not working. So, I decided I would just create the .mov files and give them to Liz and have her make them .avi. But even that was difficult. Apparently, Alice is very buggy when it comes to making videos. I had Alice freeze several times while making videos. It was also difficult because a lot of the worlds were games so I would play the world, recording it, but I would end up loosing so I would have to create another video and try to win. Alice also seems to have trouble when you make a second video for one world. Today, I also realized that there are some requirements the CRA has for me to do this week since I am about half-way done. There are several questions they want me to answer about how my experience is going, so that took a while.

The talk at lunch today was about Natural Language Processing. The Undergrad who presented uses mainly Twitter and Wikipedia to get her sample text from. She talked about how software can be used to take text and understand what it means. She mentioned a super computer that has competed on Jeopordy against top players. One of the difficult things with Twitter especially is that people make typos or abbreviate. This sometimes makes it difficult for the computer to interpret the text.

Thursday, June 24th

Today I edited my catch tutorial and made the changes that I thought of when the teacher went through it. I also worked on my plotting points tutorial. That is mostly finished now. Then I worked on my Mario/Fairy world, which ended up becoming a Ninja world. I changed it so that the screen is always moving to the right like it is in the original Mario. Right now there is one box which, when you jump to hit it, releases one of three objects randomly. I haven't set it up to do anything yet when the ninja comes in contact with the item yet. After working on that for a while, I started looking at what Spanish world I can do. I started one of my previous ideas, then realized that it was just an applied version of the quiz tutorial. Most of the other ideas I had were like that too. So I'm not sure what I'm going to do next.

Friday, July 25th

Today I worked on my ninja game. I was working mainly with collision detection. I finished most of it, but discovered a lot of glitches with it at the end of the day. That is one difficulty I seem to run into when using Alice to make more complicated games.

Go to week 7