I’m sure this is not what the developers had in mind but it was my first impression when playing with Weavesilk.
That doesn’t look too painful, does it?
I played around with the web version and was really intrigued. There also is a version for iOS.
For the doodler, it’s a fun little gadget to play with to draw cute images.
For the mathematics teacher, it’s a very visual tool to investigate reflections and patterns.
For the computer science teacher, this is inspiration for a problem to solve. In fact, I had a problem that I used with Grade 11 students when we were talking about pixel graphics. It had multiple levels of difficulty.
- the simple and introductory activity was to write a program that input a path of coordinates and draw the image and its reflection in the x-axis. I didn’t care if they drew the original and then the reflection;
- the medium activity was to modify the introductory program to again, input a path but this time draw the image and its reflect in both the x-axis and the y-axis and it needed to be drawn pixel by pixel. This upped the ante a bit;
- the over the top activity was to again modify the original program, input a path that reflects in both x and y axes but also to introduce y=x and y=-x to the equation. This creates some beautiful (and entertaining) results.
And then, of course, there were the mandatory artistic touches. Controls to clear the screen, change background colours, random drawing colours, sound effects, and background music all served to enhance the program.
Beyond the drawing, one of the things that I really liked about scaffolding a problem like this lies in the description of the medium and over the top activities. Hopefully, you’ll notice that the instructions didn’t say “write a program” but to “modify the introductory program”. Not only did it introduce a more difficult concept but it reinforced the concept of program modification and the reason why you want to document your application development. You don’t always have to start from scratch.
- WeaveSilk Try it! (fillthepot.wordpress.com)