Teaching and doing mathematics remotely

Surely the remote-education and remote-collaboration problem must be solved by now, right? There is a seamless blend of augmented reality and the networks? But no, it turns out that all our social networks are distraction machines.

Background

How To Run A Free Online Academic Conference: A Workbook.

Yvonne Lai, Ray Levy, Help! I need to teach my course online and I’ve never done this before.

Terry Tao’s blog post attracts some interesting commenters making suggestions.

samjshah does a high school match teaching roundup after going deep-end on it.

For bad internet

Richard Wong suggets how to record things for the internetally challenged. Teaching in the Time of Coronavirus, Part I, noting the importance of:

  • posting your lecture notes online
  • making lecture slides (and posting them online)
  • recording your lecture

Whiteboard

Interactive scratchpad Collusion, Bitpaper (approx USD1/page) is a collective sketch page. desmos is an online collaborative graphing calculator. Blackbaord Collaborate is a collaborative whiteboard solution. This is the one my campus supports. I cannot work out how to access it for ad hoc discussion though, as opposed to for as part of a course. Also, it fails to provide a useful general solution, as it is only available licensed per department for USD9000/year, so normal civilians need not apply.

Videoconferencing

There are many generic videoconferencing options. I like Jitsi since the other ones are privacy horrors.

Webcams

A good first approximation to “which webcams are linux-compatible” is the Linux UVC lists. Confusingly, the recommended webcam app for Ubuntu, Cheese never works for me, which might persuade me my webcams don’t work. But they work in everything else. A good alternative “pro” test app is guvcview which additionally has extra diagnostics.

Screencasting

obsproject is a maximalist open-source screen broadcasting package that does everything including running VST effects on your audio stream. Windows/Mac/Linux.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:obsproject/obs-studio
sudo apt update
sudo apt install obs-studio

Richard Zach gives us a set of recommendation for screencasting/conferencing that actually run on Linux, which is necessary for me since it looks like I won’t have the money to fix my Mac any time soon.

Kazam is a minimalist screencaster for linux.

Graphics input devices

See graphics input.