[ale] [OT] Software and file formats for on-line/correspondence chemical education
glallen01 at gmail.com
Fri Jan 20 15:04:49 EST 2012
LaTeX had some Chemistry tools available.
Although there is a bit of learning curve, LaTeX does have distros for
*nix, Mac and Windows, and it's also standard use for Math/Physics
journals, so it's good to learn for anyone pursuing a science
education. Cost = FREE.
The package you need:
The software you need:
On Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 12:53 PM, Charles Shapiro
<hooterpincher at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hmm. The trouble with OO Draw et cetera is that they don't really
> allow for version control, which I think is ultimately where you're
> I'd recommend the GIMP ( http://www.gimp.org/ ) if it's really
> important to keep everyting in one file. GIMP implements "layers", so
> that you could have the drawing and then successive edits on top of
> it, each encapsulated in a way that you could roll back or forward as
> a unit. The GIMP won't allow you to organize your edits
> chronologically though. That means you'll have to wrangle that part
> of your requirements separately, by establishing a naming convention
> or something. Plus, your students are going to have to learn a
> (probably alien) software package. The GIMP is available for all of
> the major OSs, however, as is Open Office.
> Have you considered using an RCS for this? Seems like it you had a
> Subversion ( http://subversion.tigris.org/ ) repository set up
> somewhere that your students could get to, they could just check their
> assignments in, then you could edit them as you wish and check your
> edits in on top of their original work. That'd provide a really clear
> trail of who did what when, and you could still be pretty agnostic
> about what kinds of files you were handling. There're even some
> places on the web that'll manage the SVN repository for you I believe.
> The subset of subversion commands you really need to know to talk to
> a repository is pretty small, and setting it up on winders is
> relatively trivial. Might be worth a look.
> -- CHS
> On Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 11:56 AM, Wolf Halton <wolf.halton at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 10:20 AM, Tom Freeman <tfreeman at intel.digichem.net>
>>> I have accepted the job of teaching an on-line chemistry course for majors
>>> next fall, with the requirement that the course be written this spring.
>>> I for see an issue which I could use a whole heaping bunch of help with,
>>> specifically ensuring that the students engage in using/generating the
>>> visual aspects of chemical "language" and formally engage in showing
>>> (documenting and defending) numeric problem solving. I am not being paid
>>> enough to accept just showing a picture to the student, and accepting a
>>> multiple guess regurgitation. I expect details given without hints from
>>> The education technology types at the school have ideas which partially
>>> get the problem solved, if we only accept Windows on all sides. Since I
>>> use Linux (Ubuntu and Fedora mostly), with a little Mac work to help my
>>> own children, setting a requirement to use Microsoft products only
>>> _really_ has my back up, and heels dug in. Plus, I need to avoid more cost
>>> to the student, as it looks like budgeting for this course is potentially
>>> headed north of $600. Achieving sufficient interactivity to accommodate
>>> online office hours in Moodle using Eluminate is a real positive here.
>>> What then am I looking for? Software which reads/writes a useful,
>>> well defined file format which will support a work flow pattern which I
>>> will attempt to describe below. Obviously cross platform availability; at
>>> least including Linux/Unix, Mac, and Windows having software available,
>>> with IOS and Android availability a plus. I'm open to commercial software,
>>> but in the interest of holding costs down and personal values, I really
>>> want open-source, with zero-cost ("free beer?") running a close second.
>>> Plus I want it robust as a get out, since the students I've had so far in
>>> class can break just about anything just by walking past it.
>>> With respect to the work flow, the current idea is that the student will
>>> perform some task any way that they can. Unless it is already in an
>>> appropriate form, the student will then scan their work, and upload the
>>> resulting file to me. Using a tablet & stylus, I then annotate the
>>> student's work with circles, arrows, and indications of doom and dispare,
>>> followed by returning the file to the student. At which time the cycle
>>> will repeat until exhaustion or learning occurs, or a grade is assigned.
>>> If possible, and it may not be, within the file being transferred, I would
>>> like to keep the individual entries separate, such that the teacher's
>>> notes can be easily obscured in order to view just the student's work. (In
>>> my seated classes, any work performed in red gets a zero, since _all_ my
>>> comments/notes/grading gets done in red. As a result, both the student and
>>> myself have a chance of determining got what right/wrong and where. I want
>>> to retain this ability.)
>>> So far, I _think_ the Adobe pdf format has the capability to handle my
>>> needs, but I haven't proven it by discovering which software used how will
>>> cause this to happen, especially happen reliably.
>>> If anybody on this list can make sense of the above word salad and suggest
>>> a possible solution approach, I'd love to hear it.
>>> I thank everybody here for the use of their bandwidth and their patience
>>> Ale mailing list
>>> Ale at ale.org
>>> See JOBS, ANNOUNCE and SCHOOLS lists at
>> What kind of thing are they doing?
>> OpenOfficeDraw can let them make sketches
>> Dia can let them make more organized diagrams (replaces visio)
>> What MafiaSoft product are you attempting to substitute?
>> This Apt Has Super Cow Powers - http://sourcefreedom.com
>> Advancing Libraries Together - http://LYRASIS.org
>> Ale mailing list
>> Ale at ale.org
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