Hi. Talk to me...


(Button code stolen from Lucario621.)

Alright...

Please talk to me about this whole college decision. I hope it's worth my while to try and get top 3% for MIT! :D

MIT and college in general

I have this really intense love/hate relationship with MIT. I was a complete nerd as a kid, and also a mathematician, and constantly felt like I was on the wrong planet until I got to MIT, where for the first time I felt there were other people like me. I still feel really at home there. On the other hand, it's a very intense place. I always felt -- I think everone always felt -- like I constantly had to prove how smart I was. Not just in classes, I'm talking about sitting around in the dorm. (I still believe that I was the very stupidest person who ever got in.)

Probably neither half of that is quite so intense today. For one thing, half the students are now women. (My entering class of 1000 had 20 women.) I'm guessing that that means people are both a bit less nerdy and a bit less competitive. But MIT students still compare trying to get an education at MIT to trying to drink from a firehose.

The faculty care more about the student experience than they used to, also. The whole freshman year is pass-fail to try to reduce the pressure in the transition year. (Every single MIT freshman was the smartest kid at his/her high school, so it's a shock when they discover that they're not the smartest kid at MIT. Even at Berkeley we have the same problem.)

Berkeley is a great school and we have great students, but MIT students really are smarter than anyone else, I think. That shouldn't scare you away; it's a really exciting environment where everyone is constantly doing amazing work.

On the other hand, MIT is all about science and engineering. If you're also interested in, say, music, or theater, or history, or literature, besides being interested in computers, then you might choose a place like Berkeley, which is strong in /everything/.

College in general: You should definitely visit a bunch of colleges, on a weekday so you can attend classes, but also find out how to talk with faculty and students while you're there. Do your homework before you make travel plans; for example, I'm on campus MWF so if you came on a Tuesday wanting to see me or attend my class you'd be out of luck.

But you should be aware that your choice of college is going to turn out to be important in ways that you can't possibly predict. For example, as a freshman I kind of accidentally found myself hanging out at the Artificial Intelligence Lab. There I met a group of really terrifyingly smart people, but also I learned a bunch of attitudes about life that have profoundly shaped me. I came there because I wanted to maintain a mailing list for the school radio station on a computer, and that was the computer I could steal time on. (This was when computers were huge and cost a million dollars.) One day I found a bug in their text editor, and when I dutifully reported it to an official system person, he said "I'm busy, why don't you fix it yourself?" I think I said something like "huh?" because I was shocked that I would be allowed to mess with system software, and also because I first had to learn PDP-10 assembly language programming, but he showed me where the source files were and off I went. Years later when I became a teacher, I came in with the attitude that kids could do anything if I didn't get in the way. The point of the story is, when I was a high school senior making college decisions, I had no idea that I would end up a teacher, or that the AI Lab even existed, and none of what turned out to be crucial about college came into the decision at all. It was pure luck. And the same will be true for you -- you're basically making a blind choice.

About how hard you should try to make the cut: You should of course be the best you can be, independent of what college you end up at. I don't think this has to mean taking 17 A.P. courses; that's fine for some kids but if you're really strongly interested in (let's say) computers, you might be better off taking courses in that at the local university, with one strong focus instead of A.P. everything. I had the incredible good luck to grow up in New York, where I could attend the Science Honors Program at Columbia, in which they teach advanced college-level courses to high school kids on Saturdays. I mostly did math: number theory, group theory, Hilbert spaces, point set topology... I don't even remember all of them, but I learned way more in that program than ever before or since. (They also introduced me to computer programming.) If you don't have a program like that available, you might have to fight your way into the local university's regular classes.

These days, people who want to go to a great college tend to apply to 20 of them. This is really bad, because the same kids get into all the colleges but only actually attend one of them. But it's one of those situations in which you as an individual can't buck the conventions, so I'm confident that you /will/ apply to Berkeley as well as MIT. :) If you get into both of them, sure, go to MIT if you want. But the best thing will be if you've spent some time hanging out with MIT students, hanging out with Berkeley students, hanging out at that other college down on the peninsula, etc.

Okay, that's my general college lecture. Now ask specific questions if you want. —Brian Harvey (talk) 00:13, 26 August 2010 (UTC)

Wow!

Thanks for typing all that! It really makes me think. To be honest, I've never really considered in-depth what I want to do if I don't get into MIT. That's always been my long-term goal. I always thought that if I tried my absolute best and made it obvious I saw MIT in my future, then that would be good enough.

Unfortunately, there are probably hundreds of other kids with the exact same idea. Berkeley sounds like a great backup plan. Honestly, I think having loads of kids smarter than me would be a good experience, and I don't have it much right now.

Of course, I'm only going to Berkeley if you are still teaching there when I go. :P

But then again, this is all years away for me. Though I like to plan ahead. :)

Reply...

I don't know. Grades are emphasized so much these days. It's hard not to go to school and not think about grades.

In middle school so far I haven't had much else to think about. My electives are an absolute BORE.

"This is how you organize files on the computer. This is how to properly use the schools computers. This is how you make a presentation in PowerPoint."

I've been able to do all that and more since I was 8. Unfortunately, I go to an average public school. I'm not going to be so ignorant to say that I don't learn, but I learn the curriculum at a much faster pace than most teachers allow. They have to slow it down for other students. I understand that. And I'm certaintly not complaining.

But it is with these things in mind that I strive so much to get good grades. That is what keeps my from being bored each 50 minute class period of the day. My teacher asked for 3 paragraphs. I gave her three pages (typed in Calibri 11). So it isn't REALLY the grades themselves I'm obsessing about. Though I'm sure at some point in highschool that it will become that way.

Algebra has been HEAVEN for me so far. We learn a new concept EVERY SINGLE DAY, and I actually...

HAVE TO THINK!

Unfortunately, I can't do what you did (read a whole book or something) because our lessons go from day to day. We never see what we're doing for more than a day ahead. But honestly, I don't think I'm smart enough to read a whole year's worth of lessons in one go anyway. :)

Once I get into high school, hopefully I'll find more classes that suit me. But right now, I'm way ahead of everyone else.

Reply...

I do live in a city with a serious college. It isn't a brilliant one, but it is pretty well known. But I don't really want to go to UT (University of Texas). That would make me too ordinary. :P Plus, after eighteen years of the same city, I'll probably want to move on.

My parent's can't really teach me. My dad is really smart but he works most of the day, and my mom says that we are already more intelligent than she is. Plus, I usually end up teaching myself at home. Which is why I really want to be home-schooled. :D

Private schools aren't really an option. Both my parent's went to private schools when they were kids and didn't think much of it. Although we are a Christian family, we don't really think there is any point hiding ourselves away from the negativity in the world. That's not what Jesus commanded anyway. But aside from that, there is also the biggest factor; expense. My parents have no shortage of money; we are pretty blessed, but most good private schools have ridiculous fees, and we'd have to multiply that by three, for my siblings and I.

As for the algebra book, I'll see what I can find. :)

Politics

People expect too much from a president. No one is perfect, and you have to remember...

AT LEAST THEY'RE TRYING TO DO GOOD.

It's not like they've got some evil plot to take over the world.

Now, the PATRIOT act. Honestly, if you aren't a terrorist, or you disassociate yourself with people in crime, you have no reason to have your phone taped into. Electronic surveillance can only be used as a last resort in serious criminal cases.

Next, Bush didn't send troops to Iraq for his own benefit. Not from anything I've seen. The best alternative reasons for why he did it I've seen is oil, which the US hasn't ever taken.

So, I don't really think these conspiracy theories are logical...

Politics

Eavesdropping NSA? There are definitely NO provisions for that in the law, or even in the PATRIOT act. So if they are doing that, then shame on them.

George Bush did not give tax cuts just to the rich. We had tax cuts too! And you'll note, no matter WHO he gave it to, the US economy grew after that.

Maybe they did plan to go to Iraq before 9-11, but George Bush also said "I did it because God told me to." Which isn't going to be anything to you, but if God really did tell him to, then so be it. I'll never really now if God did however, so I just have to remember that Bush had America's best interests at heart.

Discussions on talk pages

Hey,

It's nice to see that you're having an enjoyable conversation on your talk page, as well as with Shadow_7283 and his talk page. Sadly though, talk pages on the Scratch Wiki are not necessarily places set up to discuss politics. Perhaps you should try finding another website or community whose focus is on politics, and go there for your discussion :).

Thanks,
Lucario621 (talk | contribs) 23:36, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

You know...

All this debate on where political discussions are allowed and where they aren't kind of makes me miss Instant Messaging.

Of course, that's a think of the past now. (It makes me feel old) :D

IM Reply

People feeling safe on the internet? With Google out there, not likely. :P

Hello. :P

Hello, Brian. You may remember me as one of the first testers for BYOB 3. (Well, my username is on the certificate.) I'm really impressed with BYOB so far, and I just want to say, "Great job!" to both you and Jens. (And any other people you've got working on the project, if there are any others besides you and Jens.) I haven't been on the forums recently because my mom put a new internet safety program on my computer, and it blocks the Scratch Forums. (Oddly though, I can get on the TBG Forums.) Something I have to say: There should be a difficulty setting. "Easy", for young children (probably not too many complicated things, maybe just the original Scratch 1.4 stuff and the "Build a block" feature), "Beginner" (for beginners at programming, a few complicated features to learn), "Intermediate" (for the average programmer), "Expert" (for the expert programmer) "Pro" (for the expert expert programmer) and "Developer" (for developers, obviously). I've also seen the preview picture of Snap (I'm liking BYOB's new name, doesn't confuse people with "Bring Your Own Beer", which is what I got in a web search for BYOB. XD), and I have a question: Are you still using Smalltalk (if so, very impressive), or have you gone to Flash like the Scratch Team?

Oh, and don't just put "Hi. Talk to me..." at the top of your talk page. You're much more lively than that. :P
ElectricSparx (talk | contribs) 17:04, 18 November 2011 (UTC)

Oops, I just discovered this message from over a year ago -- apparently email notifications of changes aren't working for me. So, hi! Snap! is implemented in Javascript, so it runs in everyone's browser, even people with Apple products. Say more about the difficulty setting thing; why does it hurt a beginner to see blocks s/he hasn't learned to use yet? People don't get scared away by the List blocks in Scratch...
Bharvey (talk | contribs) 16:19, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

April Fools Template

Hey Bharvey! :) The April Fools template is there so that on the 1st of April, the page with the template gets temporarily replaced with the April Fools version. User:Jvvg/AF/Snap! (Programming Language) is the April Fools page that will temporarily replace the real page, Snap! (Programming Language), on April 1st. Is it ok if I return the April Fools template to the page?
EH7meow (talk | contribs) 17:48, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

I have undone the undoing of his edit to your edit. Bharvey seems to be a very old Wiki member, might not be up-to-date on our latest stuff.
Turkey3MiniProfilePic.pngTurkey3Sig1.pngTurkey3Sig2.pngTurkey3Sig3.pngContributionsTurkey3Sig5.png 19:19, 19 June 2017 (UTC)
Oh. Whatever.
Bharvey (talk | contribs) 20:45, 19 June 2017 (UTC)

Replied to your post

Hi I replied to your post here: https://en.scratch-wiki.info/wiki/User_talk:CrazyBoy826#Changing_the_title_of_the_Snap.21_page
Jakel181 (talk | contribs) 19:06, 6 August 2018 (UTC)

Nevermind I found that You are the Source :P Sorry about that.
Jakel181 (talk | contribs) 19:11, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
Remember to use wikilinks ([[User talk:CrazyBoy826#Changing the title of the Snap! page]]) instead of entering the URL.
CrazyBoy826-Icon.png CrazyBoy826 Talk | Contribs | Scratch account 01:54, 9 August 2018 (UTC)

I'd like you to clean up Snap! (programming language)

Hi, I saw that you've been recently revamping the article Snap! (programming language). I like how much content you're adding! You're definitely good at documentation. How are you and Jens these days?

My point is, a portion of what you're adding goes against Wiki guidelines.

  • For some reason, you insert many spaces between sentences. I don't know how old you are, but the modern convention is to use one space after the period, not two or three. I'd like it if you could change multiple consecutive spaces to just one. (I'd do this myself but I barely have enough time to leave this message.)
  • The article has a lot of second person ("you"). Unless the article is a tutorial (and mostly even then), we do not allow second person in articles. This article is obviously not a tutorial. This is what I'd like you to focus on, both retrospectively and in future edits - no second person!
    • The ways to convert to third person are as follows, in order of preference:
      • Change to passive voice ("you can do this" -> "this can be done")
      • Change to direct third person ("you can do this" -> "users can do this" or "Scratchers can do this")
      • Change to fourth person ("you can do this" -> "one can do this")
  • We have a wikicode style convention that I recommend you follow so that other editors can improve the article better. I just ran my bot specifically on the page, and it has fixed what it can, but it also left a {{bad style}} template (at the bottom) that I'd like you to pay attention to as well. The template will show you what's wrong.

A final warning: we stopped allowing articles about Scratch mods/derivatives a while ago. Existing pages were grandfathered in, but it may be the case that we end up deleting them completely. The consensus when we decided not to allow new ones was that mods and derivatives should be documented on their own sites, not on a wiki dedicated to pure, unmodded Scratch. Looking at the first few paragraphs of the article, there is already a manual - I recommend you add the content from here into that manual, or if that's already done, just keep in mind that your work may be removed at some point in the future.

If you can clean up the article based on the above points, I'm positive the article would be much easier to read, edit, and use. If you don't have time (though I suspect not, considering the times at which you have been editing it), then I can do some of those things, but I can't guarantee I can preserve the original meaning of the article. Therefore if you can do it, please do. :) Thanks!
Kenny2scratch logo.jpg kenny2scratch  Talk  Contribs  Directory 
11:21, 5 December 2018 (UTC)

Ah, looks much better now! Thank you for your edits, the article is essentially complete now (unless there's more content yet to add that I don't know about :)). It's rare that we have contributors like you - experienced and can generally figure things out quickly. Thank you :D
Kenny2scratch logo.jpg kenny2scratch  Talk  Contribs  Directory 
11:51, 7 December 2018 (UTC)

Please remember to sign your posts

Hello, I'm WikiMonitor, a bot that patrols the Recent Changes. This is just a friendly reminder that it appears you forgot to sign your post in revision 215219 of User talk:Kenny2scratch. Please fix this by adding four tildes (~~~~) at the end of your post to insert your signature and remember to sign your posts in the future. Signing your posts is important as it allows other Wikians to see who made a post. Thanks!
This message was sent by an automated bot run by jvvg. You can contact him on his talk page with any concerns.

WikiMonitor (talk | contribs) 20:43, 5 December 2018 (UTC)

Could you compress files before uploading?

Hi, it's me again. Just letting you know: although storage is cheaper these days, network bandwidth is not! As an example, the File:BYOB1.png that you uploaded was 360 KB, but if it had been compressed (which is now the case, thanks to my bot) it would be 57 KB. Storing the images isn't as much of a problem, but transferring a 360 KB image to a client's computer takes a lot longer than a 57 KB image!

Could you compress files before uploading in the future? I recommend https://tinypng.com for PNG and JPG files. This way we don't waste storage space uploading a new version. Thanks!

P.S. Could you also, as often as possible, upload only once? You reuploaded File:Mapblock.png 6 times. I can guess why: probably you were confused as to why the image didn't update. The reason: caching! Use Ctrl+F5 to hard refresh after uploading a new file version. Then everything will look right. Additionally, you don't need to include a file description and category with every new version upload, only something more equivalent to an edit summary. Only the first comment is used as the file description.

P.P.S. In case you don't check Special:RecentChanges, I replied to you on my talk page.
Kenny2scratch logo.jpg kenny2scratch  Talk  Contribs  Directory 
11:37, 6 December 2018 (UTC)

I saw the other reply, thanks.
Yes, I learned from your user page that you're colorblind. We're actually trying hard to address visual impairments in general, the big gaping hole in accessibility for Scratch and friends. (I should really talk about the keyboard editing feature in the article... Thanks for reminding me!)
Yes, I eventually figured out about flushing the cache. But I've reverted to my last mapblock.png because that whitespace at the top serves to line up the three pictures better. Otherwise the middle one (which is mapblock.png) floats too high in the air. If there's a better way to address that, please let me know!
Oh, about "It's your wiki," I meant that in the plural, as in, it's not my wiki. If this were Wikipedia they probably wouldn't let me edit an article about Snap! in the first place!
I hadn't noticed how many spaces the phone leaves in the message, but my point was that that handling of two spaces reinforces my habit of typing two spaces at the end of a sentence.  :-)
Was there a reason you commented out the picture above the TOC? Never mind, that wasn't you. Sorry.

Bharvey (talk | contribs) 17:03, 6 December 2018 (UTC)
I've employed a new positioning trick and reverted the mapblock image back again. Does that look good? (Might have to hard refresh again to see the updated image.)
Kenny2scratch logo.jpg kenny2scratch  Talk  Contribs  Directory 
11:53, 7 December 2018 (UTC)
Yes, that's fine, thanks!
Bharvey (talk | contribs) 21:12, 7 December 2018 (UTC)

Please don't make several edits in a short amount of time

Hello, I'm WikiMonitor, a bot that patrols the Recent Changes. This is just a friendly reminder that you should try to avoid making a lot of edits to one page in a short amount of time. Specifically, you made a lot of edits (6 in the last hour) to Snap! (programming language) recently. Please use the "Show preview" button before submitting edits to prevent this in the future. Thanks!
This message was sent by an automated bot run by jvvg. You can contact him on his talk page with any concerns.

WikiMonitor (talk | contribs) 22:03, 7 December 2018 (UTC)