Teaser Image

Teaching Machines

A Hack Education Project

The School of Journalism is holding its commencement ceremony this week, and even though I’m not graduating I’m going – I guess it’s worth taking part in some sort of end-of-Spencer ritual. I’ll have more to say elsewhere about “what happened” and “what’s next,” but I thought I’d quickly note...

I am working on (the book proposal for) Teaching Machines, and I plan to include a chapter on Norman A. Crowder, inventor of the TextTutor and AutoTutor. Image credits: ad in Popular Science, 1961 Much of my research on other twentieth century inventors of teaching machines involves my visiting university...

I wrapped up my visit to The Ohio State University Archives today. (And I’m already planning my next trip to a university archives – that would be Harvard in May.) Among the materials I went through today were the correspondences between Sidney Pressey and several manufacturing companies, as he tried...

Tomorrow is my last day at The OSU Archives, and I know that I’ve saved the best for last – or rather, the way in which Sidney Pressey’s papers are arranged, I will finally get to all the correspondence surrounding his attempts in the 1930s to commercialize his teaching machines....

As I noted earlier this year, I am taking Sam Freedman’s “book writing” class this term – taking it as an independent study, to be clear, which means I have to write a book proposal in the next week or so. I’m spending my Spring Break, in part, working on...

The spring semester at Columbia School of Journalism starts this week, and I’m enrolled in Sam Freedman’s fabled “Book Writing” class. Although my Spencer Fellowship proposal didn’t involve writing a book, I plan to focus on getting a solid proposal and chapter done on Teaching Machines. (Don’t worry. I am...

I’ve made some changes to this site, most obviously updating the header image. Thanks to Bryan Mathers. (Why a pigeon?) Those who look closely will also note that I have also changed the copyright information. No longer is there a Creative Commons license on Hack Education material. This really doesn’t...

I’ve created a timeline for “The History of Teaching Machines” as part of my research for my book Teaching Machines. (To be perfectly honest, I made this timeline in order to procrastinate revisiting my draft.) Like “The History of Pearson” timeline I recently created, I’ve used timeline.js to build this...

For a couple of years now, as I have researched this book, I have written a series of stories that uncover some of the history – lost, forgotten, ignored, dismissed – about teaching machines. I'm procrastinating working on the book right now by refreshing the website. But here's a list...

I have added a script to my websites today that will block annotations – namely those from Genius and those from Hypothes.is. I have been meaning to do this for a while now, so it’s mostly a project that comes as I procrastinate doing something else rather than one that...