Showing posts from March, 2013

downloading folders from google drive.

I wanted to download some course material on RL shared by the author via Google drive using the command line.  I got a bunch of stuff using wget a folder in google drive was a challenge. I looked it up in SO which gave me a hint but no solution. I installed gdown using pip and then used: gdown --folder --continue if there are more than 50 files you need to use --remaining-ok and only get the first 50. In such a case its best to download using the folder using the UI and decompress locally. Decompressing from the command line created errors related to unicode but using the mac UI I decompressed without a glitch.

Moodle Time Lines

Teaching History ? One of the requirements for the historical courseware project is to add a timeline for each unit. A time line allows a teacher to capture   the order of events in a way that students can visualize. While events can be ordered in time, they can usually be located in space as well. To account for this duality timelines can be be paired of with a map as well. Putting the two together and we can get interactive animated maps. But this is not the end either. Events on a Time lines may be clustered to indicate types of historical patterns. Last but not least a timeline can be enhanced with some kind of thematic data which is associated with the events. If the events are appropriately tagged then the time line can be faceted accordingly. Date presented in this fashion becomes a powerful dynamic visualization tool more so it it can be made  interactive. Bellow is Charles Minard 's innovative  chart of Napoleon's Russian campaign. This iconic time l

Fixing Multi language support in Moodle

Last week I was asked by +Charles Matthews  to review WM.UK upcoming Wikipedia tutoring system being developed on on the open source Moodle system. I've been thinking of different option to better support Wikipedia coaching in different languages  I have been reviewing and testing Moodle in the last few weeks to that end. I'm really interested in developing course ware for both English and Hebrew editions (as a start). Multilingual content While Moddle is internationalized, support of multilingual content requires using a somewhat clumsy technique. One need to use html and store different languages content in top level div elements. Then you have to switch on Moodle's multilingual filter which can hide all the language version which are incompatible with the language selector's settings. However due to a bug the the html editor mangles the html code and mangles the top level <span> element required. <span lang="XX" class="mult

Social network analysis with Gephi

Social Network Analysis or (SNA) is one of the most powerful tools available in the Social Sciences today. It allows to identify key players in a system, find structural holes and many other aspects of a society which are less accessible without the network paradigm. Gephi is an opensource package written in Java which is aimed at performing SNA. I came upon this in the recommendation of the new Coursera course on SNA . Gephi was selected due to its many features, because it is free software and since it cross platform. Another of it its advantages is in visualization. Here is an image of a classical data-set showing the dining school partners. This is a directed graph with 26 vertecies and 52 nodes indicating each girl's top two preferences for a dinner partner. The data was collected circa 1905 and published in the 1950. The outgoing degree is therefore 2 but the incoming degree varies from 1 to 6 showing that some girls (Eva and Marion indicated in cyan) are more popular

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