Author Archives: ehmatthes

About ehmatthes

Teacher, hacker, new dad, outdoor guy

Unfinished Projects: One last programming lesson from my dad

Last night I got to hold a fresh copy of the first book I’ve ever written. It was an amazingly satisfying experience. As many authors will attest, the journey from submitting a proposal to holding the finished book was much … Continue reading

Posted in family, programming | Leave a comment

How advertising ruined the rickroll

I’m currently teaching a class called Who owns you? In this class students take a critical look at the apps we use on a daily basis, and they can learn to build their own simple apps if they want. To … Continue reading

Posted in education | Leave a comment

Ever’s First Starship

Ever has made many small ships, but this is his first larger ship that has a nice degree of symmetry, that he’d like to be able to build again. We decided to take it apart step by step, and take … Continue reading

Posted in family | Leave a comment

The CyberConstitution Class

Each fall I teach an Introduction to Programming class, and it’s always fascinating to see the connections students make as they experience their first real exposure to programming. Today I introduced the concept of classes, and we ended up in … Continue reading


Posted in education, programming | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Processing a long list efficiently in Python

This post was inspired by Brandon Rhodes‘ excellent talk at Pycon 2014,  All Your Ducks In A Row: Data Structures in the Standard Library and Beyond. Python’s lists are dynamic.  You do not need to declare their length ahead of … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

The education community needs a better online discussion tool

I just finished building Educator News, and I’d like to explain a bit about why I built the site. It’s an early draft of what I want it to be, but the basic functionality is there. If you would like … Continue reading

Posted in education | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Ninety Days on Github

Ninety days ago, I unknowingly started my first real Github streak. I didn’t really decide to start a streak until I was about 17 days in, but since then I’ve been very conscious to keep it going. I’ve thought about … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Github streak days 31-60: What I’ve learned

About two months ago I started writing some lessons for an Introduction to Programming class I was about to teach. I was using IPython Notebook to write those lessons, so I decided to put the notebooks on GitHub. I worked … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What I’ve learned from my first 30-day GitHub streak

Today marks the end of my first 30-day streak of making contributions on GitHub. I had no intentions of starting a streak, but now that I’ve got one going, it’s addictive. More importantly, I find I am learning a great … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How IPython Notebook and Github have changed the way I teach Python

I teach in a small high school in southeast Alaska, and each year I teach an Introduction to Programming class. I recently learned how to use IPython Notebook, and it has completely changed the way I teach my classes. There … Continue reading

Posted in programming | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments