3.1304 OnLine Notes 90.1 (139)

Elaine Brennan & Allen Renear (EDITORS@BROWNVM.BITNET)
Thu, 19 Apr 90 18:35:07 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 3, No. 1304. Thursday, 19 Apr 1990.

Date: Thursday, 12 April 1990 1147-EST
Subject: ONLINE NOTES 1990.1


>From now on the Online Notes will appear on a quarterly basis rather
than each month as in the past.


Thanks to major support from Apple Corporation for the
establishment of three computer labs for language instruction and
one computer classroom as well as internal funding from the
University of Pennsylvania, we are moving forward quickly on
developing HyperCard modules for use in language instruction in the
fall, 1990.

Michele Proia of my staff has alreaday written some 20 vocabulary
and spelling stacks that use digitized pictures and sound to reinforce
vocabulary development. Michele is currently working on a pictorial
grammar and dictionary to be used in conjunction with any word
processing system under MultiFinder. This grammar/dictionary will
cover Capretz's vocabulary for our first year students.

Two other students, who are taking courses in computer-assisted
learning in the undergraduate school, continue to develop a dictation
stack for use in French, Spanish and German. The prototype will be
completed by May 1st. We expect that the teaching assistants in
languages will then provide the dictation lessons, both written and
audio, for student use. Such dictations will be finished by June 30,

A new program, Grammar Baseball, was completed and is currently
being tested. This program is based on various hand-held computer
baseball games, except that we pitch grammar questions along with
fastballs, curves and knuckles. So far, the teaching assistants prefer
this game over BINGO for learning numbers and even HANGMAN for

All the above stacks will be the basis for others in Spanish and
German that will be produced this summer. Support has been
awarded from the undergraduate education fund at the University of
Pennsylvania to help retool the above stacks for those languages. In
addition, work will begin in other languages this summer. For
example, Professor Roger Allen is developing a proficiency-based
reader for testing student knowledge of Arabic. The Hebrew division
of Oriental studies will shortly begin work on developing stacks for
first year Hebrew. The Classics Department received support to
develop geography stacks for its courses in Ancient History and

If you are interested in becoming involved as a beta test site for this
stackware, contact me (Jack Abercrombie) for details via the
networks (JACKA @ PENNDRLS).


CCAT is still committed to making its programs and data available to
the widest audience possible. Of course, such a service to the greater
scholarly community is a costly undertaking, and the staff at CCAT
has been seeking more economical ways to make the distribution of
texts and programs less costly in hours than the past. This is why
CCAT moved out of diskette distribution of biblical texts and sold the
rights of distribution to other vendors. This is also why CCAT has
established an Internet address for users at other institution to copy
both programs and texts. The Internet address is:
rm105serve.sas.upenn.edu. This Server also functions as the remote
Server for a computer lab in Williams Hall, the language building at
the University. Its second duty is to provide access to material for
external users.

To access rm105serve, dial up using Telnet if you want to browse the
directory or ftp if you wish to remove material from the Server. The
account external users may access is: GUEST. The password is:
WELCOME. You may copy anything in this directory. We just ask
that you send an electronic note to JACKA @ PENNDRLS just so we can
know who has used the machine.


This spring CINEMA, the video disc project, was used by students in
German 3 and 4 and an honor course in American Literature. Some
80 students in German watched either Three Penny Opera or M. The
students in the American Literature Course saw John Ford's The
Grapes of Wrath. In the case of all three films, students watch an
annotated version of the movie on one of two InfoWindow system.
(A third station is currently in need of repair.) At certain points in
the film, they may access other information such as texts, transcripts,
pictures, charts, graphs, and additional soundtracks stored on the
hard disk.

A survey of the students who used the installation still remains to be
studied in detail though a cursory view of the comments indicates
that the students were generally positive to this approach as was the
case last year and the year before. In fact, some students came back
on their own to watch the movies for a second or third time. A few
even brought their friends! As for the instructors, those in German
remain committed to this approach. Peter Conn in the English
Department however is less certain about this approach given the
current state of the hardware. He felt that improved resolution for
digitized images and freeze frame on CLV discs could make this
approach more viable than just simply giving hand-outs.

Funding continues to support newer efforts in using Cinema in other
languages. Sub-projects in Spanish, French, German and Arabic
continue to work on preparing Cinema presentations for the fall,
1990. Funding was recently awarded to Robert Kraft to develop
Cinema presentations for two courses, Christian Origins and The Life
of Jesus.

If you are interested in becoming involved as a beta test site for
Cinema, contact me (Jack Abercrombie) for details via the networks


Any readers interested in receiving our new IBM utilities disk, may
contact me (Jack Abercrombie) for details (JACKA @ PENNDRLS). This
disk contains a new version of SEEK and CONCORD. Both programs
are fully documented and work with TLG encoded material. Source
code is also available.