štvrtok 8. marca 2018

Dreaming big, Working big

Polar kraken, art by Mark Tedin
How big is big? is a question every kid or inquisitive person has asked. Gaming wisdom offers the following answer "It was big. Really, really, big. No, bigger than that. It was big!" (Wizards of the Coast). Now we know that big means as big as a polar kraken (or bigger).

What is big in education? I guess Fernando Díaz del Castillo H. from Gimnasio La Montaña offered a glimpse yesterday. As we were developing our curriculum we realised we needed software solutions. Since there were none that suited us, we build our own team to develop them. It looks like this has served them well.

And it might not surprise you that curricular innovation at La Montaña is partly driven by those techies.

streda 7. marca 2018

Insights from travels

Quite a few impressively wise people have remarked that a travelling mind is an agile mind. Little did I know that it also applies literally. Over a long day from Bratislava to Luckie Street in Atlanta, I have noticed the following:
  1. There is nothing like French style. This is their current safety demonstration video. Like it or not, but stylish it is.
  2. There is nothing like French style – revisited. For unfathomable reasons this morning (at ca. 10 a.m.) the number of police officers checking passports at Terminal D at CDG was one.
  3. A few bystanders in Atlanta offered to give me directions when they saw me looking around uncertainly. If you further add the people paid to assist you, it looks like the U.S. folk are helpful, and they want to be so.
  4. I heard that Innsmouth Darthmouth Dartmouth College stopped awarding college credits for AP Psychology, as their tests showed minimal retention of content and skills by the students who had taken it. 
  5. On a more personal note I finally got a chance to follow an online course. Given the fact this day has had 22hours, it is not so surprising. Still, every win counts.

piatok 7. júla 2017

nedeľa 28. mája 2017

Čo s časom počas skúšky

Protokol z dozoru na skúške.

Veľa ľudí si myslí, že písať písomnú skúšku nie je ktovie čo. Ďalší tvrdia, že opravovať písomné skúšky je tiež menej príjemné než jesť zmrzlinu pod slnečníkom. V tejto kategórii však za najobmedzujúcejší považujem dozor počas písomky.

Najtypickejšie obmedzenia sú: žiadna elektronika (zvlášť nie v online móde), žiadne knihy, interakcia so študentmi obmedzená na vety zo scenára v tvare: "Ostáva vám ešte 5 minút." Určite veľmi dôležitý je zákaz jedenia a pitia. Počas školenia som sa neopovážil zisťovať, či môžem (mimo skúšok z geografie, literatúry, hudby a psychológie) spievať Od Prešova a hrať pritom na rapkáč.

Čo sa teda dá robiť?
  • Napísať kreatívne vyznanie
  • Zamyslieť sa nad novými prírastkami do kalendára
  • Konečne si premyslieť ako viesť pravidelný meeting po skúške
  • Vymyslieť štruktúru dotazníka alebo hodnotenia
  • Snívať o lete
  • Oddýchnuť si od svietiacej obrazovky
  • Písať matematický dôkaz vety, čo neviem dokázať od univerzity
  • Smoliť básničky
  • Vykonávať dozor 

nedeľa 9. apríla 2017

A most frustrated medic

The bout after the resumption: Anton Kohutovič (closer), Róbert Haršány.
There was a moment in yesterday's Bratislava Fecht III – a HEMA tournament – when the inauspicious made the strongest impression on me.

piatok 17. marca 2017

Runners' "D" adversaries

Pete Pfitzinger is very clear about those in his books: he write about drivers, Dobermans and dehydration. I cannot but agree, all three can make your run a much worse experience if you are unlucky or unprepared. Over my last run, I encountered additional Ds worth sharing.

nedeľa 9. októbra 2016

Marathoning + data, practice and perseverance (part 1)

From https://ico.org.uk
This post has been long in the making. It started in October 2012, when I started to wonder how much preparation and training help to reach a marathon goal. Common sense would refuse such a question, but my Fall marathon in 2012 was such a disappointment, I started to doubt:


I intended to finish at 3:30, but hit a crisis at 31st kilometre, had to walk for a few, and then finished ignominiously at 3:52. However, I did improve my personal best next Spring, when I ran the marathon at 03:39:44 after running 463, respectively 480 km in the 180 and 90 days preceding the run.

I guess my belief in training very hard took another hit, when I managed to finish Two Oceans 56-ultra at 6:00:48 with some (clocked) 160 km in the preceding 6 months. I played soccer regularly, and ran infrequently, so that time looked far too good. 

I put the "training does not help" theory to the test in Fall 2014. I finished at 4:25, and felt I should quit running. Instead, I put the data together:

2014AprilCape Town06:00:4806:27125163.0

It clearly struck me my pace correlated negatively amount of training I put in: the corr. coefficient for 90d was -0.83 and -0.89 for 180d. Perhaps training does help, after all?

I managed to put in 170 km in the 90-day lead up to Kosice 2015, and barely made my way to the finish line at 5:36/km (3:55:57). Much better, but I felt 3:50 should have been met easily. Then came a similarly lukewarm Bratislava 2016: 03:51:39 at 5:29/km after 242, respectively 286 km.  I did feel I trained enough to finish at 3:45 (or better), but lost my way after half-way mark. (Does it help or does it not?)

I put in some training later in the spring, had a usually quiet (lazy) summer, an okay run-up to the race. I started wondering  about my goal pace the before the race. I had all this data:

2014AprilCape Town06:00:4806:27125163.0

The 90-day aggregate was nothing special (it was better in April), but the 180-day seemed quite decent. I also recalled I had been able to put in a 32k long run at 5:33/km, and had felt good at the end of it. In the end, I went for 5:19/km, which should result in 3:45, my third best result.

In spite of some difficulties (part 2), I finished with my personal best 3:38:30, at 5:11/km, and negative(!) splits. (This also confirmed that 180-d aggregate is a much better predictor of race pace.)

To be continued.