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Learning by Failing

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I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work. –Thomas Edison

There are a lot of great quotes about failing. The University of South Alabama’s still new football team lost to Kent State this weekend. This is their second loss ever. The final score was 33-25. The score does not really tell the whole story, Kent State took an early lead for most of the game. USA came back with a vengeance but ran out of time.

I wish they could have won, but I’m not disappointed in the team. They are still finding their way. This is the first season for away games, and to play bigger and more established teams. I guess the main thing is that we will see what they learn from this. Learning by failing is a tried and true technique. Learning by failing is important because failing shows you what you don’t know. Many things that are now considered normal and acceptable were once considered impossible. What if Wilbur and Orville Wright had given up on flying after their first couple of attempts didn’t work out?

It seems to me that how you fail can tell a lot about how you will succeed. If something doesn’t work, do you still keep trying it the same way, or do you try to innovate? Do you dig in or give up? Failure can be a very frustrating experience, but if you keep on trying and finally achieve success it is a great feeling. Sometimes you never succeed, but you may have learned about related things that help you with something else. No matter what, it seems to me that it is better not to view failure as a curse but more as an opportunity.

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MOOCs are like Chinese Buffets

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#change11

I liken MOOCs to the Chinese buffet that our family enjoys.  There are dozens of various dishes, and many that I want to eat a lot of.  So I developed a strategy.  First I just get vegetables that are not fried or coated in sauces.  Hot and sour soup is a must.  Next is an eggroll and those dumpling things, etc…This way, at least I can try to claim some healthiness and I don’t feel like a glutton.

Of course, Chinese buffets are great for people watching!  I live in the lard belt and there are a lot of very overweight people here in L.A. (lower Alabama) and South Mississippi.  I see many people that have just one plate that is just piled with food. Sometimes the food is layered on top of other food!    How can they eat all of that food? Don’t they know they can just eat a few things and then go back for something else?  Some of them DO GO BACK and then I wonder how they move for the rest of the day and if they eat dinner.

I took to heart the orientation material from week 1 and decided what I wanted to get out of this course.  At least I tentatively decided 😉  Now that we are in the throes of the course, I think that some things are becoming obvious.  MOOCs are good for self-directed learners and people who are motivated and interested in the topics.  I wish I could sample everything but I can’t put that much on my plate, so I won’t.  If you see me and think I need to try something, just let me know and I’ll go check it out!

To Do List

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Must get a decent picture for my header. 

Think of a recipe to post

Study study study

MOOC! MOOC! MOOC!

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