Pulling live data from USGS to Swift Playgrounds

While presenting last weekend, I was inspired by a presenter who was pulling earthquake data from the United States Geological Survey, an activity which is showcased in Unit 5 of Intro to App Development. This chapter deep dives into Closures and Extensions, as well as, showing how to decode JSON feeds. I then extended this idea to plot the month’s most significant Earthquakes using MapKit.

Classifying Satellite imagery using Machine Learning

I have introduced this project as a means to introduce students to Machine Learning terminology as you gain an understanding of the Machine Learning toolsets. Students don’t need to use any mathematics, you certainly don’t need to know how to write compilers and you don’t need to write an algorithm to use the classifier.

Exploring Art in Virtual Reality

Recently one of our Year 9 students chose to create an animated sculpture entirely in Virtual Reality using the Tilt Brush software.  This has given new insights to what is possible with Virtual Reality and how staff and students will utilise this exciting technology.

Color Switch with Swift Playgrounds

Color Switch is a popular game with over 125 million downloads worldwide. The game is simple and creates attractive visuals using only simple shapes such as circles, lines and squares that are brightly coloured.  We can easily create this game using a "Blank" template from the Starting Points in Swift Playgrounds.

Playground Subscriptions

At Apple's World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2018 it was announced there is now support for third-party subscriptions within Swift Playgrounds. As someone who uses Playgrounds for coursework to match the Australian Digital Technologies Curriculum it is a welcome relief that we can now push updated Playground Books to students.

Swift Playgrounds in the Classroom

Over the past 6 months I have been writing a multi-touch resource to help guide teachers through the growing number of resources available for teaching Swift.  I have been writing the book with two fellow ADE's from the other side of the world.

Probability with Swift

I have recently remixed and reworked a mathematics investigation which was originally written for Scratch with my ex-colleague Jan Honnens .  The main purpose of this activity was to showcase the capabilities of Swift Playgrounds and how to bring new life into old resources with multi-touch interactivity to give students the necessary feedback to engage with course material.

Developing Swift Playgrounds Course Material

Since the release of Swift Playgrounds at WWDC in June 2016 I have been madly learning how to develop playgrounds so that I can utilise them in the courses I teach.  This has meant not only learning the markup, but also converting my resources over to Swift 3 with very limited documentation.  In this article I would like to share some of what I have learnt from developing these playgrounds and the surrounding course material.