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As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Greg the dogsitter
Date: December 16, 2005 08:57AM
(I'm sorry. That's a mean way to write a thread topic. So anyway.)

...analogies as a way of explaining things.

Let me share one example. There are others, but I have to "get back to" "work."

I do a bit of volunteer work for the local library. I teach courses in basic computers and basic internet use. Actually, that's what I'm supposed to teach. Since there are only one or two people per class, I just ask them, "So what do you want to know?" and then we go from there.

Anyway, one fellow wanted to know about computer guts and their operations: hard drives, memory, CPU, megahertz, gigahertz, etc. He had developed this huge analogy of computer processes to a warehouse with workers, and these workers would then go faster and faster, bringing you these little bits of information...ick. The problem is that the analogy didn't actually explain anything about computers, and it really didn't help him grasp what was going on.

If I'm explaining thing A, then I explain thing A. Now, I might say that thing A works in a similar manner to thing B, but they better have the same sort of physical properties. So I might compare a hard drive to a cassette tape, but wouldn't really compare it to a filing cabinet. At least, not if I catch myself. :-)

Also, beyond a certain point, analogies aren't useful, because none of them are perfect. So the newbie keeps mapping new information onto old information, and eventually that doesn't work.

So my task is to explain thing A, maybe using small, non-technical words. Comparisons are okay, and simplifications are okay. But I think using an analogy doesn't fulfill my responsibility, as it doesn't leave the student with a stronger grasp of the topic.

Of course, this is just my opinion. But it's totally correct.

GtDS
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: bangman
Date: December 16, 2005 09:13AM
Easy pops.....

Throw down a 40, listen to some Snoop, and get your swole on!




---------
3GHz - The clock is STILL ticking Steve.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 16, 2005 09:14AM
Is this a good place to throw in a "Bling, Bling"?





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: As I get older, I become more intolerant of . . .
Posted by: h'
Date: December 16, 2005 09:17AM
intolerance.

A good analogy can be an extremely valuable tool.

Why put so much energy into outlining what bugs you about other people?



I suffer from the same sensitivity that you do. A few nuggets of wisdom were shared with me and I'm "trying" to incorporate them into my life. First, remember that nobody can hurt your feelings unless you let them. You can always reject what is being forced on you emotionally.
Second, nothing changes unless you change it. If you don't want the behavior to be repeated then you need to take action. Otherwise the kid has learned that his behavior is the way to get things done, because everyone lets him get away with it.
In the meantime I sympathize because I've been there.
-beerman
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: MGS_forgot_password
Date: December 16, 2005 09:17AM
rgG Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Is this a good place to throw in a "Bling, Bling"?

Just don't throw in an "-izzle"

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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: bangman
Date: December 16, 2005 09:18AM
Hehehehehehehe.

Nice one rgG!

Fashizzle.....



---------
3GHz - The clock is STILL ticking Steve.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Gutenberg
Date: December 16, 2005 09:23AM
A good analogy is pretty good. A bad analogy, like your fellow's, just confuses things, and unfortunately getting someone to drop the bad analogy is pretty difficult. I feel your pain. I am glad I don't feel ho'ard's dyspepsia.
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Re: As I get older, I become more intolerant of . . .
Posted by: Greg the dogsitter
Date: December 16, 2005 09:24AM
h' Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Why put so much energy into outlining what bugs
> you about other people?

Huh?

Edit: ho'ard, why do you think that's what I was doing?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/16/2005 09:48AM by Greg the dogsitter.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: JoeM
Date: December 16, 2005 09:45AM
It's like those knuckleheads that think they can use that POS M$ Word to create DTP projects and expect me to...






















....um............nevermind.




JoeM
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Greg the dogsitter
Date: December 16, 2005 09:50AM
JoeM Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's like those knuckleheads that think they can
> use that POS M$ Word to create DTP projects and
> expect me to...

But, but...you can paste images into Word, right? And then just blow up those images to make them bigger, right? Some "expert" you are!

<sits back with coffee>
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Buckeye_Sean
Date: December 16, 2005 10:05AM
Uuugh, sounds like my life. I just spent 20 minutes trying to figure out why a screened element (set up in publisher) was printing out in this weird stochastic pattern. Got worse when I distilled it to a PDF. Why? Cause the dumbass used a transparancy setting of 86% instead of just changing the friggin' tint.

These days, everyone with a computer is some hot-shot designer. Most days, I just don't know why I get out of bed.




––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
MacBook Pro 2.0GHz quad-core Intel i7
IMac 27" 3.4GHz quad-core Intel i7
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 16, 2005 10:23AM
I once had a client want to change the color of a carpet swatch we were printing in a brochure. It was a 4/color separation, of course. He wanted to change it from say blue to pink and just couldn't understand why we couldn't just change the ink color. I tried to be nice about it, I really did.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: December 16, 2005 10:24AM
<Most days, I just don't know why I get out of bed.

Becuase they pay you...

If they didn't pay ME, or if I had some company in bed other than my cat, there's days I wouldn't!






Paul F.
-----
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
----
Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

--

--

--
Eureka, CA
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 16, 2005 10:27AM
Max will scratch you tonight for that last comment. Paul.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Robert M
Date: December 16, 2005 11:37AM
Greg,

Just a correction. A hard disk drive is like a filing cabinet and not like a cassette tape. Like in a filing cabinet, a hard drive holds files. Like in a filing cabinet, these files are organized within folders. Like in a filing cabinet, these folders and be further organized. Like with a filing cabinet, these files and folders can be accessed and moved around easily without erasing the entire drive. You can't do any of the above with a cassette tape. So, if you want to compare a hard drive to a cassette or filing cabinet, definitely use the filing cabinet. It's far more appropriate.

Robert



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/16/2005 11:38AM by Robert M.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Greg the dogsitter
Date: December 16, 2005 11:45AM
Robert M Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Just a correction. A hard disk drive is like a
> filing cabinet and not like a cassette tape.

I was going for the magnet comparison. [computer.howstuffworks.com]

I believe (and though I disagree with you, I don't mean this harshly at all) is that it's easy enough for most people to understand that a hard drive works like a cassette tape, in that it uses a magnet to store information. With a cassette tape, that information is interpreted by the machine as sound. With a hard disk, the machine interprets the information as instructions for how to, say, run a word processor.

I believe the file cabinet analogy (which I've certainly used) doesn't necessarily make things more clear, and it's far simpler to just state that the computer can easily move information from one spot on the hard disk to another.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Robert M
Date: December 16, 2005 11:57AM
Greg,

Very true. A hard disk drive is definitely more like a cassette if you're going for a magnetic comparison. My mistake for missing the reason why you chose it - It was in your post. Sorry 'bout that! That's as far as you can take the analogy, though. I'd move to the file cabinet comparison when people want to understand how to use the hard disk drive in the computer.

Just saying you can tell the computer to move information from one place to another on a hard disk drive doesn't help them understand the organizational aspects of the task. That's where the file cabinet anaglogy comes in handy. It made all the difference when I did computer seminars to seniors.

Robert



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/16/2005 11:58AM by Robert M.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Todd's keyboard
Date: December 16, 2005 01:03PM
As I get older, I realize that Moe wasn't such a bad guy after all.

(Did I first come across that on a Mac forum somewhere?)

Todd's keyboard
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: ka jowct
Date: December 16, 2005 01:09PM
But, but...you can paste images into Word, right? And then just blow up those images to make them bigger, right? Some "expert" you are!


Exactly. And another thing, I don't know why people pay photographers when you can just pull all your JPEGs and GIFs right off the Interweb.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: $tevie
Date: December 16, 2005 01:45PM
I once had an account executive promise our client that one of the colors we would use in their 4-color brochure would be gold.


rgG Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I once had a client want to change the color of a
> carpet swatch we were printing in a brochure. It
> was a 4/color separation, of course. He wanted to
> change it from say blue to pink and just couldn't
> understand why we couldn't just change the ink
> color. I tried to be nice about it, I really did.






Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/16/2005 01:48PM by $tevie.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: JoeM
Date: December 16, 2005 01:58PM
ka jowct Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Exactly. And another thing, I don't know why
> people pay photographers when you can just pull
> all your JPEGs and GIFs right off the Interweb.

Then there's: "...but we really like their logo...couldn't you just change it a little?...they'll never know:







JoeM
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Harbourmaster
Date: December 16, 2005 04:34PM
Guitarman... ;)




Aloha, Ken


“I have developed significant attachments to several members even though I wouldn't recognize them if I sat next to one on a park bench. I'm often tempted when in an airport to walk around, hollering "The Løpe", to see if anyone other than the Homeland Security people will acknowledge me. ” - The Løpe

“Human rights can only be assured among a virtuous people. The general government ... can never be in danger of degenerating into a monarchy, an oligarchy, an aristocracy, or any other despotic or oppressive form, so long as there shall remain any virtue in the body of the people.” — George Washington

“Public virtue cannot exist in a nation without private virtue, and public virtue is the only foundation of republics.” — John Adams

“Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.” — Benjamin Franklin

"Every single terrible thing you see on Facebook — be it some sort of horrible right wing nonsense or a confusing and annoying product decision — is made in pursuit of growth. Every bit of damage that Meta has caused to the world has been either an act of ignorance or deliberate harm, at many times tweaking the product to make it harder or more annoying to use so that you will log onto Facebook or Instagram multiple times a day and spend as much time on there as possible." Ed Zitron
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Big Daddy Cool
Date: December 16, 2005 07:16PM
Stevie:

I've got a great CMYK Gold that we used to use for clients that didn't want to pay for the 5th color.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: hwystar
Date: December 17, 2005 01:50AM
Greg the dogsitter Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Robert M Wrote:
> -----------------------------------------------------
> > Just a correction. A hard disk drive is like a filing cabinet and not like a
> > cassette tape.

Greg, if you are talking about the logical way that a hard drive stores and organizes data, then the file cabinet analogy is the best one.


> I was going for the magnet comparison.

If you are talking about the physical way that a hard drive writes raw bits and bytes to media by flipping magnetic charges or not, then the cassette analogy is valid.

Quote

I believe (and though I disagree with you, I don't mean this harshly at all) is that it's easy enough for most people to understand that a hard drive works like a cassette tape, in that it uses a magnet to store information. With a cassette tape, that information is interpreted by the machine as sound. With a hard disk, the machine interprets the information as instructions for how to, say, run a word processor.

Actually, it is the logical component of the computer, the software (the OS, to be specific) that interprets the digital raw data on the hard drive as instructions to do something useful. (Actually it is typically operating instructions contained in the BIOS or firmware usually in EEPROM or PRAM memory that contains the instructions that allow the computer's OS to know how to read the hard drive or how to access and pass data to and from a software application such as a word processor, or a hardware device or port.)

Quote

I believe the file cabinet analogy (which I've certainly used) doesn't necessarily make things more clear, and it's far simpler to just state that the computer can easily move information from one spot on the hard disk to another.

The computer doesn't actually typically move data from one physical place on the hard drive to another, unless it is during the process of defragmentation. When you move a file from one "location", one folder, to another, or move it to a different path on the same drive, the OS just changes a "pointer", or reference to the location of the file in the directory, to point to another folder location or path, and leaves the actual data in the same place. But it is now "filed" in a different folder, or under a different name, path, etc. Unless you copy it to another physical hard drive, that is.

The pointers in the directory tell the computer OS where the address of the starting point of each and every file (or piece of a file, if it is fragmented) on the hard drive is located physically and logically.

The actual physical organization of the data on the hard drive is accomplished by the directory, and not actually by physically arranging the data and re-arranging it as in a file cabinet. But the logical organization of the data on a hard drive is quite similar to the file cabinet in every way, as RobertM stated above, correctly.



hwystar
___________________

teelblue">"The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who loves his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair." ~H. L. Mencken Ibid.: "The Coolidge Buncombe", pp.411-2
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: RgrF
Date: December 17, 2005 02:37AM
Greg the dogsitter Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> (I'm sorry. That's a mean way to write a thread
> topic. So anyway.)
>
> ...analogies as a way of explaining things.
>
> Let me share one example. There are others, but I
> have to "get back to" "work."
>
> I do a bit of volunteer work for the local
> library. I teach courses in basic computers and
> basic internet use. Actually, that's what I'm
> supposed to teach. Since there are only one or two
> people per class, I just ask them, "So what do you
> want to know?" and then we go from there.
>
> Anyway, one fellow wanted to know about computer
> guts and their operations: hard drives, memory,
> CPU, megahertz, gigahertz, etc. He had developed
> this huge analogy of computer processes to a
> warehouse with workers, and these workers would
> then go faster and faster, bringing you these
> little bits of information...ick. The problem is
> that the analogy didn't actually explain anything
> about computers, and it really didn't help him
> grasp what was going on.
>
> If I'm explaining thing A, then I explain thing A.
> Now, I might say that thing A works in a similar
> manner to thing B, but they better have the same
> sort of physical properties. So I might compare a
> hard drive to a cassette tape, but wouldn't really
> compare it to a filing cabinet. At least, not if I
> catch myself. :-)
>
> Also, beyond a certain point, analogies aren't
> useful, because none of them are perfect. So the
> newbie keeps mapping new information onto old
> information, and eventually that doesn't work.
>
> So my task is to explain thing A, maybe using
> small, non-technical words. Comparisons are okay,
> and simplifications are okay. But I think using an
> analogy doesn't fulfill my responsibility, as it
> doesn't leave the student with a stronger grasp of
> the topic.
>
> Of course, this is just my opinion. But it's
> totally correct.
>
> GtDS

Seems what your reaching for here Greg is teaching techniques. Regardless of subject matter, the teacher/instructor has to be able to build in feedback checks. These are simple stops that allow you to question the student to see if they are understanding the current subject matter.

The moment you see they are not is the time to stop and use other tools. Analogy is a powerful teaching tool. The student and teacher have to have some common ground for it to work. When it doesn't, stopping to ask them to explain something they know to me, hopefully, something I know little about, can work wonders.

By observing the way they try to teach you, you may be able to reverse engineer and understand how that particular person comes to understand and absorb material.

It doesn't always work, but mostly it does. You don't use it unless other methods haven't worked and it does take time, patience and a real want to teach someone something new.

Now if I could only have used it on that damn Weimaraner before all the French Provincial furnishings were in splinters. . . . .





"Who's more foolish - the fool or the fool that follows him?" - Obi Wan Kenobi



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/17/2005 02:53AM by RgrF.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: MysteryGuest
Date: December 18, 2005 02:35PM
Big Daddy Cool Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I've got a great CMYK Gold that we used to use for clients that
> didn't want to pay for the 5th color.
-----------------------------------------------------

Nobody ever wants to pay for that fifth color. Come on, share! I usually just pick a Pantone metallic PMS and convert it to CMYK. "Works" as well as anything else I've tried.
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Big Daddy Cool
Date: December 19, 2005 10:15AM
MG:

Believe it or not,

15C, 30M, 60Y, 0K

Works great for 4/C "gold"
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Gutenberg
Date: December 20, 2005 11:37AM
Thank you, Big Daddy Cool, you just saved my Christmas bacon.

Love and kisses, Gutie
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: MysteryGuest
Date: December 27, 2005 03:11PM
Thanks, Big Daddy Cool!
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Re: As I get older, I have an increasing dislike for...
Posted by: Big Daddy Cool
Date: December 31, 2005 02:20PM
my pleasure
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