An Inkling of C. S. Wyatt
the online portfolio of a…
Writer? Programmer? Entrepreneur? Teacher? Consultant? Researcher?
Yes, and another dozen labels could be added to that list. Given the opportunity, I'd pursue degrees and training in a dozen fields — because everything is connected, somehow. I consider myself many things, with more interests and passions than time. Others can try to decide if I am an educational technologist with an interest in writing, or a writer with an interest in technology.
One label that always applies to me: curious.
Descriptions of how labels might apply to me reinforce the connections among the areas of interest. As a freelance writer and freelance developer, I am self-employed. As a teacher, management skills prove useful. When I worked in the financial industry, writing skills helped me translate complex compliance issues into understandable language. My passion for economics connects to the cognitive sciences and computer modeling, as well as philosophy. I cannot be one thing, because every passion I have in life draws from the others.
Writer and Editor
I am a freelance writer and editor. Writing is about the words for me; having my name on a byline, cover, or playbill matters less to me than that the words find an audience. I prefer to work in relative anonymity, and thankfully do so most of the time. My wife and I do offer editing and writing services, generally on a confidential basis. Having my name on a book or in a byline is not my primary motivation for writing.
However, as an academic scholar, I am something of a “public intellectual.” An online portfolio is expected of university instructors with interests in new media and digital compositions.
While in junior high school, I started helping friends and neighbors use first-generation personal computers. I taught people to program BASIC on everything from Apple IIe to TI-99/41 systems. While in high school, a science teacher and I cofounded a software business. After college, I co-owned and managed a retail computer store. I still do some freelance development, and even some hardware repair.
My technical background reflects my curiosity and enthusiasm for programming and new media. I have maintained a Web presence since 1994, using this site as a platform for design experiments and the learning of new technologies.
How can we best use technology to help students? Too often, new technologies have been rushed into classrooms without a clear pedagogical purpose. My academic research explored the why and how to use technology in classrooms — and when virtual classrooms might be best for some students. Though I love computers, that alone is not justification for using them in our schools.
I believe we should teach introductory programming skills to all students. Learning about technology improves math, science, and reasoning skills. We should teach students to critically analyze new media, as we have long taught students to be critical readers of the printed word.
Autism Related Blog
“Autism researcher” appears last because it is the most challenging label to explain in two paragraphs. My research focuses on how autistic individuals learn to compose written language and how to best nurture those skills. I did not intend to research autism when I entered graduate school. What I discovered is that the science and technology fields I love include many people with cognitive differences, including autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).
When gifted people, including many savants and geniuses, cannot explain their ideas to others, we risk losing the benefits of their insights. Helping these people approach writing as they might other pattern-based problems, offers them a path towards intellectual and financial independence. Meeting brilliant men and women who struggle to communicate socially and professionally has forced me to consider what personal traits society values most.
Screenplays, a non-fiction work on education, two short story collections, and several client projects currently receive most of my attention as a writer. Additionally, I contribute a monthly column on technology and life to Visalia Direct magazine, write short stories for two online publications, and provide confidential writing and editing services.
I always have various projects on my desk: novels, plays, software ideas, database applications, and various articles I have written. As mentioned earlier, I never have enough time for all my interests.
- Tameri Guide for Writers — I know this project will never be done, but it is probably the most interesting and challenging. My goal, starting in 1997, was to convert any class I taught about writing to Web content.
- The Existential Primer — The project that started it all. In an age of Wikipedia, blogs, and other forms of community editing, I still retain editorial control of The Existential Primer. It is important to me that the site be easy to read and appreciate, while being as accurate as any text on philosophy can be.
- 2012 June
- Major change to CSS to accommodate devices from phones to wide screens. The old template was fixed-width and did not work on many tablets or phones.