[R] Problems for 13 year old

Chunlou Yung chunlou at yahoo.com
Sat Jan 25 02:06:02 CET 2003

Since we're on Programming For Kids, it's worth checking out StarLogo


It's a Java-implementation of Logo, geared more towards simulation/modeling
than traditional turtle graph. Intended for kids, 13 and up. Comes with
various projects such as SimCity-like simulation. Interactive.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: r-help-admin at stat.math.ethz.ch
> [mailto:r-help-admin at stat.math.ethz.ch]On Behalf Of James Marca
> Sent: Friday, January 24, 2003 06:03 PM
> To: r-help at stat.math.ethz.ch
> Subject: Re: [R] Problems for 13 year old
> At that age, I recall trying to program a spaceship fighting game in
> basic on the apple ][e (hopeless spaghetti that never ran, aside from
> the "hyperspace" effect at the start), and later getting very involved
> in programming robots in the game Robot War, which had a maximum
> number of instructions and a limited command set, which required
> programming in the pseudo assembly language to really milk the most
> out of your code.
> In short, I enjoyed programming games and moving pixels around.
> As to scientific computing, in a similar vein I can see a teenager
> becoming interested in generating fractal images, getting chaotic
> behavior from a simple iterated function, or simply plotting 3-d
> surfaces of sines and cosines.  These all fall under "changing colored
> bits on the screen as a result of some programmatic command."  Some of
> the clustering code is also pretty cool, I recall toying with the EM
> code and being pretty impressed by its ability to pick out similar
> pieces in noisy data.  The inverse of clustering is of course,
> generating noisy data, so that could become a game of sorts---try to
> stump the clustering code by generating data from more than one
> distribution.
> I use a GPS a lot with my work, and put that data into R for
> analysis.  Perhaps a handheld GPS unit can do the same thing, thus
> offering a source of data collection to dump into R for plotting and
> analysis.  If of course you have a gps unit.
> James
> At approximately Fri, Jan 24, 2003 at 08:20:20AM -0500,
> ggrothendieck at yifan.net wrote:
> >
> > I would like to teach some scientific/statistical computing to my 13
> > year old nephew and was considering using R for this.  He has a Mac G3
> > OS 9.1.
> >
> > I am looking for ideas for problems that would be interesting and
> > motivating for someone that age.  I recently taught him the basics of
> > HTML and noticed that he particularly was intrigued by the ability to
> > change colors; thus, perhaps problems that involve flashy color plots
> > would keep his attention.
> >
> > Thanks for any ideas.
> >
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