learning to knit and code

This 2013 article, Can Learning to Knit Help Learning to Code? recently popped up in one of my social media feeds. It discusses how an electrical engineering professor took a knitting class and discovered how knits and purls are much like binary and written pattern instructions are regular expressions. The article also looks at some new research to how handwork relates to education in terms of developing both fine motor skills and diagrammatic thinking.

I believe strongly in multidisciplinary approaches to learning for everyone — children and adults.

psg-codingI believe my exposure and focus from an early age in music, crochet, being in the workshop with my dad, extensive reading, and loving maths, have helped me find this unique balance and likely helped lead to my interest and ultimate degree in computer science. Today I spend quite a bit of my time working to make technology approachable for small business owners in the fiber and needle arts.

For example, when I was writing up the pattern for Ayrton, I wrote a few lines of perl to work out the repeat language. Here’s a small snippet:

#!/usr/bin/perl
# Penny Shima Glanz, penny@littleacorncreations.com
# Aryton
# version 2016-02-28
use strict;
... snip ...
while (($rnd <= 99) && ($rnd%2==1)){
	print "Rnd $rnd: ";
	$sm_total=$sm_total+($sm_repeat);
	$lg_total=$lg_total+($lg_repeat);
	print "(K".$patt_count.", yo, k".$pattern_d.") to end of rnd. ($sm_total ($lg_total) sts.)\n"; #YOINC rnd
	print "(K".$patt_count.", yo, k".(++$patt_count).", k2tog) to end of rnd.\n";
	$rnd=$rnd+2;
}

(All of this said I believe strongly that we should be teaching computation thought before programming, but that's a discussion I'll write up soon elsewhere).

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One Reply to “learning to knit and code”

  1. Yes! Very thought-provoking. We have a lot of art and science going on in our house too. I love it.

    Reply

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