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Useful Code Snippets

This is a collection of useful functions or other snippets of code I have found on the web. All have proper licensing for reuse (most with attribution).

Home Schooling

This is a collection of resources for teaching your kids at home. Some are supplemental to regular schooling, some are specifically for home schooling. For the record, I don't believe in home schooling for many reasons, including the lack of socialization and the inability of one person (no matter how smart they are) to teach in one day everything that a child can learn at school in one day. But one doesn't always have a choice in how to proceed in life.

  • Bright Education Services and Testing - You have to pay for their services, but they offer online tests for Iowa and other standardized tests. The tests are their own questions, and the questions are not always written very well, but the summary statistics they give are very useful. I would recommend using them. I've found the best way to use them is to either (a) watch your child take the untimed test and work through the problems they have difficulty with while the test is going on, or (b) have them take a test and then go over the questions that they missed.

    If you want to time the test: for both english and math for the 6th grade level, if you give your child a 50 question test and time them so that they have to complete the test in 30 minutes, then based on calculations I made from information I found online, that is about the intensity of the real Iowa Basic Skills test.

  • Endless Exercises Fractions Fractions Fractions - Automatic generation of problems. Not printable in worksheet form.

Quotes & Proverbs

Some quotes I find useful, interesting, or inspiring.

  • "Absolutes are always wrong." -Anonymous
  • "Dream in a pragmatic way." -Aldous Huxley
  • "Aim high." -Motto: United States of America Air Force; and Cranbrook Schools
    • After all, if you don't aim high, then you guarantee yourself that you will never reach your dreams. If you do aim high, though, then even though you may not reach your goals, you at least get as close to them as possible.
    • This jives with the Huxley quote above, in that you still need to strive for possible dreams, and that, along the way, each step should be a pragmatic one.
  • "Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one" -Sam Rayburn
  • "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
  • "When we long for life without difficulties, remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and diamonds are made under pressure" -Peter Marshall
  • "The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not 'Eureka!' (I found it!) but 'That's funny ...'" - Isaac Asimov
  • "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush." -proverb
  • "Waste not, want not." -proverb
  • "A stich in time saves nine." -proverb
  • "Measure seven times, cut once." -Ukrainian proverb
  • "Haste makes waste." -proverb
  • "May you live every day of your life." -Jonathan Swift
  • "Aim for perfection, expect improvement." -anonymous
  • "Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us." -Jerry Garcia

Stories & Other Writings

Some stories I have written. I have no pretensions about being an author or a professional fiction writer. I just really like the stories and think other people might as well. They have a creative commons license, so feel free to rewrite them to make them better. If you want to sell your rewrite, just ask. The license simply prevents you from selling it without asking. Of course, if you change enough, you'll be creating a derivative work, and you don't need to ask for permission (it's covered under the fair use provisions of US copyright law).