Posts Tagged ‘education’

CANTO Regional E-content Competition

// April 11th, 2012 // No Comments » // Technology

Got this in the SlashRoots mailing list. Decided I would share it with everyone:

CANTO Coding Competition Flier

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Updates Updates!

// March 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Cool Stuff, Dmitri's racing news, Life, Technology

So this blog has pretty much been a ghost town for a while. That’s both good and bad. Good because I have been too busy to update it. Bad because I have been too busy to update it.

What’s new?

Well several things. This should probably be broken into several posts but……. well maybe I will do that later.

In January we successfully had Slash Roots Developers Conference, which is also the Developing Caribbean Open Data Conference. This was held simultaneously in Jamaica, Trinidad and The Dominican Republic. Check the details at Much props to the organising team and MSB for pulling off this event.

February brought many challenges. In the space of one month I lost my Grand Aunt and Grandfather. Very difficult time. I think I will have to do several posts on this. Both of them achieved great things technically and introduced technology to Jamaica. But most importantly they are family and friends.

During this process I was also reminded of the lesson to keep the balls juggling. I nearly lost a major customer due to things falling behind during this difficult time. Lesson learned. No man is an island, we all need help and we all need to appreciate those who help us. Also communication with customers is key.

March so far has been very busy, not much I can speak about due to NDA’s. However I can tell you I was invited to lecture at UTech on March 5 and 8 on innovation and how it promotes entrepreneurship. Much thanks to Lisa Shaw for inviting me, I had a blast interfacing with the third and final year students. So many students planned to start their own business and some even shared their ideas with me. Really cool stuff, right here in Jamaica. Look out world!

Big event for March so far was rolling during a rally on March 4. I was co-driving for Thomas Hall in his Toyota Starlet. Basically we went around the corner sliding a little wide, the back tyre caught a rock and we started the tumble. Thankfully we are both fine with no injuries. Thomas is trying to get the car repaired for the next event. In the mean time we have to buy new safety gear. Photo below:

Sorry about the long read. I have installed the WordPress app on my tablet. Will try doing some shorter, more frequent updates for the rest of the year. In the mean time, live long and prosper!

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Slash Roots 2012: Developing The Caribbean

// January 23rd, 2012 // No Comments » // Technology

Slash Roots Poster

Click for High Res

World Bank Open Data evangelist, Dr Tariq Khokhar will deliver the keynote address at the Opening Plenary of the Mona School of Business-hosted SlashRoots-Caribbean Open Data Conference, which is being presented under the theme, “Developing the Caribbean.” Describing his interests as being “where technology, transparency, poverty
and data meet”, Dr. Khokhar will speak on the topic: “Open Data: The New Revolution”. The Conference which takes place January 26-27, in the Faculty of Law building at the Mona campus, opens on the first day of the University of the West Indies’ “Research Day.”

As a co-organizer I invite you to attend the conference for the keynote address and more. Please see below:

Agenda for Jamaica:

Event Registration:

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Talent or Hard Work?

// November 30th, 2011 // No Comments » // Life

Recently I got an email with this article and comments. I thought it would be interesting to share and get the views of others:

I read this interesting study on whether talent or hard work counts for the most in achieving success. of course, hard work won out over talent. Here are some excerpts:

People of great accomplishment tend to be highly intelligent. Yet, the view that creative geniuses accomplish more on account of their inherent ability does not stand up. When intellectually gifted children were followed up in middle age, their creative achievements were astonishingly small according to a celebrated study by Lewis Terman. High intelligence may be necessary for creative accomplishment but it is clearly not sufficient. Achievement in most creative fields calls for a lot of work and effort. Mastery requires many years of single-minded pursuit. Music and performance arts are something of an exception where child stars emerge much more quickly thanks, presumably, to specialized talents with which they may indeed be born given that musical ability runs in families. For most other endeavors, achievement is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration.

The concept of genius is nothing but comforting fiction. For it helps explain why most of us do not achieve at the highest level in our chosen field: we are not geniuses. The trouble is that there is little compelling evidence in psychology for any such latent superiority. The concept of the genius may be comforting to the rest of us. Yet, it remains a fiction.But the following excerpts on IQ and financial success were also very interesting:

An interesting article by the economist Garett Jones of George Mason University on “National IQ and National Productivity,” essentially shows that a nation’s intelligence level is associated with a number of important economic outcomes. (Me: hence what is happening in Ja. with

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our educational abyss within the general population.) In the article, Jones stresses that “policymakers should include measures of national average IQ when reporting a nation’s level of human development” as at present no nation appears to do so. He also points out that one way of raising a nation’s IQ level is to allow smarter immigrants into the country. (Me: This is not a new concept, for years company’s have sought the brightest employees that they can get to increase their growth and profitability. Look at Apple. Or even IBM, worldwide as here in Ja., which has kept IBM relevant.)

Now psychologists Heiner Rindermann of Chemnitz University of Technology and

James Thompson of University College London have published a paper in the journal Psychological Science on the concept of “Cognitive Capitalism: The Effect of Cognitive Ability on Wealth, as Mediated Through Scientific Achievement and Economic Freedom.” The authors examined cognitive ability datasets from over 90 countries to show that average IQ is essentially the decisive factor of human capital and that it is really the top 5% of a country’s population – or the smart fraction - that largely impacts a nation’s wealth. The authors write that “Cognitive ability influences wealth through its effects on high achievement …” (Me: that is high achievers are generally smarter people. As the first paragraph says: People of great accomplishment tend to be highly intelligent.)

Dr. Rindermann told me that because the modern cognitive demands of work and everyday life are growing, essentially “wealth has become cognitive wealth,” and in particular “high ability wealth” or the smart fraction of the population is what matters. It is the absolute ability level of this fraction of the population that makes the difference (to a country’s wealth).

The article then goes on to speak of China — with a larger ‘smart fraction’ of people — as compared to the USA and the inevitable outcome.

Do you agree?

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12 Dozen places to educate yourself online

// November 10th, 2011 // No Comments » // Cool Stuff, Life

Just a quick post sharing a link my friend @skreech2 sent me recently.

It features 12 dozen places to educate yourself online. Personally I am a fine of MIT’s Open Courseware, but the link lists several other sources covering:

  • Science and health
  • Business and money
  • History and world culture
  • Law
  • Computer science and engineering
  • Mathematics
  • English and communication
  • Foreign and sign languages
  • Plus More

Hope you enjoy!

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