“Ends are always followed by beginnings. Something new could start now, right here! There really are so many wonderful things. “
- Tim Walker
Last year I wrote about paying attention. Most of this year felt like a prolonged exercise in attention: the trees in different colors in the neighbouring park, break making, walking the same loop around Helsinki, living on an island in the middle of the city.
For the past ten years I’ve had anything between 50 to 70 speaking engagements and a 150 travel days each year. From workshops for teachers to high-production keynotes for business conferences events have been my bread and butter.
2020 changed this. I won’t be traveling for at least the rest of the year and most likely international conference travel won’t resume for 2021 either. Luckily, producing and delivering the charm, warmth and energy of live events in a virtual setting is a very interesting professional challenge.
“Instructions for living a life.
Tell about it.”
― Mary Oliver
2019 went past so quickly. I moved on in someways, moved backwards in others. There was work I would have liked to achieve and life I would have liked to live, but I think I’m starting to find vocabulary for both.
Or: I’m not very young anymore.
Or: there were more things I distinctly feel like I chose, including wallpapers, reading routines and people I spend time with.
Or: from little things, big things grow.
Love Letters for Computers is a ten part YouTube series intended for primary school educators, covering the basics of computer science. But what makes it a love letter?
For the last five years I’ve been traveling around the world and working with primary school teachers from Melbourne to Tokyo, from New York to Tbilisi, helping them see the world of computer science the way I see it: as something beautiful, lovable and playful. I wanted to remind teachers how much technology can be about passion, people and their big ideas. …
YLE kolumnit kerättynä yhteen — olkaa hyvä.
Fortnite on paikka, ei peli (22.4.2020)
Ruutuaika on osa pidempää leikin jatkumoa (7.5.2019)
Tulevaisuus on teinityttöjen (23.1.2019)
This is the fifth year of going through the past year and probably the hardest one to date. So much happened, and it’s so easy to just list doing-ness (as opposed to other kind of growth). I spent a lot of time thinking about physical spaces, maps, exploration, structures and how to keep maximising curiosity and maximising freedom. Discovered a lot.
“Listen; there’s a hell of a good universe next door: let’s go.” — e. e. cummings
In a recent Cambridge study, a group of British children was shown picture cards, each depicting a common species of plant or wildlife. The researchers also showed the kids a second set of cards, each featuring a species of Pokémon character.
Overwhelmingly, the children aged eight and over were better at identifying Pokémon species like Beedrill, Weedle, or Bulbasaur than natural organisms such as oak trees, weasels, or badgers.
In his essay, Badger or Bulbasaur — have children lost touch with nature?British writer Robert Mcfarlane expresses concern over what is happening to British children’s knowledge of nature. Their accuracy score…
I’ve never once worried about my online security. Sure, I could have a clever password strategy, set up VPN, encrypt my hard drive or tweak my browser settings, but as a result I’d create a joyless and pessimistic world-view. And who would want to hack a children’s book author anyways?
So what happens when someone who thinks she has nothing to hide gets hacked?
My work is about explaining the world of computer science to children in fun ways. For that cyber security offers a colorful playground with concepts such as honeypots, trojan horses, firewalls and script kiddies? Throughout…
When I first started writing books about technology for kids, I knew almost nothing about pedagogy. For me, computing was magical, charming and imaginative — but the materials teaching it often dull and uninspiring. I enjoyed programming, but mixed Piaget to Papert, didn’t recognise computational thinking from constructivism.
I’ve often thought what would have happened if in the 1960s the founder of Marimekko, Armi Ratia had been interested in programming instead of fashion as way to create a “cultural phenomenon guiding the quality of living”.
But an equally interesting question might be how would computers see Marimekko today? Last weekend I got to judge a hackathon at Marimekko and since I’ve been itching to try out neural networks in practice, I decided to do a quick Sunday evening project to see if I could give an answer.
The name Marimekko famously came from Armi scribbling names on a…