Changella

Community to encourage student entrepreneurs to dream, design, make, and learn

3 Free Visual Analysis Tools to Help You Gain Insight Faster

Visual analysis of DNA

Visual data analysis help organizations make decisions and learn faster by leveraging our natural ability to visually detect patterns quickly.This presentation reviews the motivation to visual analytics research.  We also review demo visualizations from D3JS.org, Google Charts API, and other tools.

Check out D3JS.org to learn more about their awesome JavaScript visualization tools.

Programmer visualization tools

Visualization tools for non-programmers

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Photo attributed from lenards

 

Simon Sinek: How Great Leaders Inspire Action

Image from https://twitter.com/AngelaMaiers/status/230334473017884673/photo/1

Why should we communicate starting with “WHY?”

  1. In the context of leading, the average presentation can spend a lot of time down in the details.   The inspired teachers and leaders talk about why they believe a particular lesson is important.   This can also help leaders to discover common ground with the audience.
  2. By encouraging yourself to start with “WHY”, you can start to find wasteful activity.   If a task or lesson does not create value, why should I do it?
  3. The question of “WHY” is often related to the question of personal mission.   How does this lesson or task fit into my personal mission of life?   If my daily activities do not line up with my life mission, what can i do to change it?
  4. I love Simon Sinek’s comment on Martin Luther King Jr.    Martin Luther King gave the “I have a dream” speech.   He did not give the “I have a plan” speech.
  5. The world needs your inspiration.
The following talk by Simon Sinek has been a great inspiration to me.

Abstract: Simon Sinek presents a simple but powerful model for how leaders inspire action, starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers — and as a counterpoint Tivo, which (until a recent court victory that tripled its stock price) appeared to be struggling.

 

What is your passion?  What inspires you to make and create?\

 

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If you have a dream, stop waiting for it. Make it!

Start

In one of my favorite podcasts on open source software, Tim O’Reilly, publisher, speaker, and thought leader in open technology, challenges us to create a world where we “create more value than you take.”    This core idea appears in many contexts.    The agile leadership movement challenges teams to increase communication, accountability and create “value” using regular iterations of time.    In the culture of Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy challenges leaders to become “servant leaders.”   In the act of becoming a servant leader, you become a teacher and a guide to your teams.  Servant leaders find success in helping their teams become the best version of themselves.  Becoming service oriented is a great place to start!

During our family road trips, my wife Sarah and I are very reflective in our conversations.   While taking our kids to the zoo, we started to reflect upon the following question:  What does our dream job look like?  What type of work helps us feel passionate and excited about our day?   As we talked, I sketched out this funny little sketch.

Agile, Creativity, Business

During my most potent and engaged times of life, creativity, agile culture, and a spirit of caring for our community have been the magic ingredients of those moments.

  • As a choir director, I started learning the craft of continuous and incremental improvement with our team of volunteer music ministers.    I loved how collaborative and fun our choir was in making music.
  • As a software developer for a distance learning company, we were not supporting a cold sales process.   Our team was helping to connect adult learners with hope.   With the hope of getting a better education and degree, these learners can help their families and careers to thrive.
  • As an agile coach for a research institution, I really enjoy helping our software teams serve the community with creative software solutions.  It’s especially fun to help organizations find ways to streamline their processes and push the boundaries of knowledge and technology.

In regards to creativity and entrepreneurship, I have been delighted with the trends of the “Makers” movement.    In his book “Makers”, Chris Anderson explores trends in open innovation, 3D printing, CNC machines and open source that are leading to a new industrial revolution.    After reading parts of this book, I just can’t wait to start designing toys with my sons, printing, and playing with them.  Researchers and hackers in this space are creating computers that cost $35, quad copters, robots, R/C cars, and much more!   This space is ripe with opportunities.

In this blog, I hope to serve my readers with practical ideas for encouraging creativity in business.   I will share useful apps and lessons learned for Agile teams.   I hope to explore ideas that help organizations become more innovative, attract a tribe, and foster a culture of continuous learning.   I hope this content helps motivate you to start.   If you have a dream, stop waiting for it.   Make it!

 

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Photo taken from http://www.flickr.com/photos/jakeandlindsay/5524669257/sizes/m/in/photostream/

How to Build Your Mobile App using HTML

Are you looking for an easy way to get started building mobile apps?   In this post, I would like to introduce you to a tool called JQuery Mobile that empowers you to craft mobile applications using HTML and a little bit of JavaScript.   This free tool builds upon the strengths of the jquery programming community who do a solid job of creating fun and well documented programming tools.

JQuery mobile works well in the following cases:

  1. Information apps: The application that you’re building is informational in nature.   If you’re trying to build a game or the next “Angry Birds,”  Jquery mobile is not a good fit.   This tool works well if your creating e-books, apps for conferences, promoting a band, or capturing information using simple forms.
  2. It’s just HTML: Learning Objective C or Java can be intimidating to people just learning how to program.   I greatly appreciate that JQuery mobile provides a solid place to start for novice app builders.
  3. Get started at no cost: What do you need to get started? A text editor, a web browser, and your creativity.  (notepad++, textwrangler for Mac, etc.)

In the following code sketch, I will outline how to create a simple application.   The app will show you how to create buttons on a list view, create a pop-out window, include text and images, and enable your users to navigate from one page to another. If you need training on HTML or JavaScript, please visit CodeAcademy.com for additional teaching.

In this  example, we will build a simple app to help promote a group or club.   It will consist of four pages: home, events, contact us, and news.   These pages will look something like this when we’re done. You can also check out a demo at this link.

Home screen

Home page

Contact us page

Events page

Events page

For a comprehensive introduction to JQuery Mobile, please visit http://learn.jquery.com/jquery-mobile/getting-started/

The HTML to create this small application is shown below.  How does this code work?

 

 

 

<script type="text/javascript" src="http://code.jquery.com/jquery-1.8.3.min.js"></script>
&nbsp;
<script type="text/javascript" src="http://code.jquery.com/mobile/1.2.1/jquery.mobile-1.2.1.min.js"></script>
<div data-role="page">
<div data-role="header">
<h1>My Group App</h1>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="content">
<ul data-role="listview" data-inset="true" data-filter="true">
    <li><a href="#events">Events</a></li>
    <li><a href="#contact_us" data-rel="dialog">Contact us</a></li>
    <li><a href="#news">News</a></li>
</ul>
<img style="padding: 10px;" src="img/student_group_pic.jpg" alt="" align="left" /> Etiam a lorem id nisl porttitor scelerisque sed vitae dolor. Nunc gravida leo quis dolor pretium sed eleifend nisl commodo. Cras id imperdiet tortor. Sed convallis massa vel sapien ullamcorper convallis. Vivamus elit odio, suscipit quis adipiscing at, dignissim interdum arcu.

</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="footer">
<h4>Look forward to seeing you soon!</h4>
</div>
&nbsp;

</div>
&nbsp;
<div id="contact_us" data-role="page" data-add-back-btn="true">
<div data-role="header">
<h1>My Group - Contact us</h1>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="content"><img src="img/student_group_pic.jpg" alt="" />
<h3>Contact Us</h3>
Etiam a lorem id nisl porttitor scelerisque sed vitae dolor. Nunc
gravida leo quis dolor pretium sed eleifend nisl commodo. Cras id
imperdiet tortor. Sed convallis massa vel sapien ullamcorper
convallis. Vivamus elit odio, suscipit quis adipiscing at, dignissim
interdum arcu.
<ul>
    <li>Mary Jane -- President -- <a href="#">E-mail</a></li>
    <li>John Smith -- Vice President -- <a href="#">E-mail</a></li>
    <li>Simon Flat -- Communications -- <a href="#">E-mail</a></li>
</ul>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="footer">
<h4>Look forward to seeing you soon!</h4>
</div>
&nbsp;

</div>
&nbsp;
<div id="events" data-role="page" data-add-back-btn="true">
<div data-role="header">
<h1>My Group - Events</h1>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="content">
<h3>Events</h3>
<ul>
    <li>Event 1: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.</li>
    <li>Event 2: Quisque ut metus eu leo interdum volutpat.</li>
    <li>Event 3: Vestibulum accumsan erat vitae leo imperdiet faucibus.</li>
</ul>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="footer">
<h4>Look forward to seeing you soon!</h4>
</div>
&nbsp;

</div>
&nbsp;
<div id="news" data-role="page" data-add-back-btn="true">
<div data-role="header">
<h1>My Group - News</h1>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="content">
<h3>News</h3>
<ul>
    <li>News 1: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.</li>
    <li>News 2: Quisque ut metus eu leo interdum volutpat.</li>
    <li>News 3: Vestibulum accumsan erat vitae leo imperdiet faucibus.</li>
</ul>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="footer">
<h4>Look forward to seeing you soon!</h4>
</div>
&nbsp;

</div>
&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

In the HEAD of the document, we include JavaScript code references that enable JQuery mobile to function. JQuery mobile tries to use standard HTML structures to enable you to craft mobile user interfaces. If you removed these code references, you will notice that the web page reverts to standard web browser rendering rules.

&nbsp;

<script type="text/javascript" src="http://code.jquery.com/jquery-1.8.3.min.js"></script>
&nbsp;
<script type="text/javascript" src="http://code.jquery.com/mobile/1.2.1/jquery.mobile-1.2.1.min.js"></script>

To create a button that moves the user from the home screen to the “Events” page, use the following code. The “#events” string corresponds to the “id” attribute of the page “events”. To see an example of opening a dialog box, look at the “#contact_us” link to see how that was done.

<ul>
    <li><a href="#events">Events</a></li>
</ul>

The following code is responsible for creating the “Events” page in the application. The code sets the header, footer, and content of the page. The content of a JQuery mobile page is just HTML. To make it easier for the user to return to the home screen, I added the “data-add-back-btn” attribute and set it to true.

<div id="events" data-role="page" data-add-back-btn="true">
<div data-role="header">
<h1>My Group - Events</h1>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="content">
<h3>Events</h3>
<ul>
    <li>Event 1: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.</li>
    <li>Event 2: Quisque ut metus eu leo interdum volutpat.</li>
    <li>Event 3: Vestibulum accumsan erat vitae leo imperdiet faucibus.</li>
</ul>
</div>
&nbsp;
<div data-role="footer">
<h4>Look forward to seeing you soon!</h4>
</div>
&nbsp;

</div>
<!-- /page -->

So… How do you make this HTML app available in the Android or iOS app store? Check out our post introducing PhoneGap.

Let me know if you have any questions or comments!

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7 Life Changing Lessons From Dave Ramsey on Business Leadership

John Maxwell on Leaders

My wife and I are raving fans of Dave Ramsey, Chris LoCurto, and their team.   As a teaching organization, they communicate their lessons about financial peace, leadership, and business development with clarity, passion and energy.   After listening to one of their Entreleadership lessons, I always feel I have a few ideas that I can use in my family and team today.

So, why should you care about Entreleadership?

  1. I believe that leadership and education are highly correlated crafts.   You stand out in business when you care and you have the heart of a teacher.   John Maxwell in his book “Developing the Leader in You” has a great quote:  ”The growth and development of people is the highest calling of a leader.”   A great deal of the book talks about creating great teams.
  2. Organizations rise and fall on leadership and influence.   I believe that the Entreleadership team has collected some great wisdom on leadership and coaching.

Here are my seven favorite Entreleadership podcasts.    They have been life changing for me.  I hope they kick start your leadership for 2013.

  • Start With Why with Simon Sinek: Dave defines EntreLeadership, and Simon Sinek joins Jon and Chris to talk about his book: Start With Why.
  • Servant Leadership with Dan Cathy: Dave describes “servant leadership” and why it is the only kind of leadership that works. Jon interviews Dan Cathy, President and COO of Chick-fil-A.
  • Start with a Dream & End With a Goal with Jon Acuff: Setting a true goal stretches you. It makes you reach for something that’s just beyond your reach. You have to be deliberate! Dave teaches today about how to set a goal as well as achieve it. As a special guest today we will also be talking with Wall Street Journal Best Selling Author Jon Acuff about his new book Quitter: Closing the Gap Between Your Day Job & Your Dream Job.
  • Fear and Opposition with Jon Acuff: On today’s episode, Dave Ramsey shares on taking risks. Jon Acuff joins Chris LoCurto in the studio to discuss succeeding in the face of fear and opposition.
  • Personal Selling with Michael Hyatt: Michael Hyatt joins Chris LoCurto live in the studio to talk about his new book “Platform.” Dave Ramsey shares a lesson on personal selling.
  • Recognition with Leadership Freak Dan Rockwell: In this week’s episode, Dave will talk about the power of recognizing your team and catching them in the act of being awesome. This always leads to amplifying the success of your business. Blogger Dan Rockwell (Leadership Freak) will also be in the studio as a special guest.
  • What Makes a Great Leader? with Dave Ramsey: If you want to develop your leadership abilities or if you’re a business leader who wants to develop your team, this episode provides the answers and foundation to get you moving in the right direction. This week Dave Ramsey will be our guest discussing everything from his personal leadership style to what separates great leaders from good leaders.

What other resources do you use to improve your leadership and coaching?

 

 

Join Google Developer Group at Mercer University

Google Developer Group

Welcome To Google Developer Group at Mercer University
https://sites.google.com/site/gdgmerceru/

We extend a warm welcome to software professionals, students, web designers, web programmers, and people excited about technology.

Come help us plan the first year, hear about cool Google technologies, and see Google Glass. Proposed themes for the Fall:
Web application development using Google App Engine

When:

  • Tues, August 20th
  • 6:30 pm – Networking
  • 7:00 pm – Google Glass introduction

Sign up for the event!
We appreciate you joining Google+, adding us to your circles, and signing up for the event here by August 13th. This will help us plan arrangements for food and refreshment during our networking time.
Sign Up! https://plus.google.com/events/c0v3565uuav5kcvh471qnksug8k

 

Where:

Learn more

 

I’m really excited to be supporting the students and community at GDG Mercer University.   It’s going to be a great season of making cool software with Google technology.   What Google or Internet technology are you interested in learning?   Leave us a comment on this post.

 

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