Perl 6 - the future is here, just unevenly distributed

IRC log for #webwork, 2012-09-16

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20:17 Paul_Pearson joined #webwork
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22:16 Paul_Pearson Here are some observations I have about using the Library Browser to select calculus problems from the OPL.
22:16 Paul_Pearson 1. Duplicates need to be handled.
22:18 Paul_Pearson 2. The current hierarchy is too broad.  For example, in the product and quotient rules category, there are 241 questions.  Sifting through all of these questions is painstaking.
22:21 Paul_Pearson 3. Should sections be split into subsections?  For example, the derivatives of polynomials and exponential functions section has 303 questions in it.  Some are derivatives of power functions, some are derivatives of polynomials, some (like 7^x + 2/x^3) are outside of this category.
22:24 Paul_Pearson 4. When I'm searching the OPL using the meta data, I would like to be able to search for problems by what type of question they are.  For example, sometimes I really want a problem that has a graph in it, but I have to sift through several hundred questions to find one.  Perhaps classifications such as symbolic, numeric, graphical, application, etc. would be useful subsections.
22:28 Paul_Pearson 5. Under the advanced search, the search by keywords feature looks promising.  However, I don't know what good keywords to try are, and keywords are usually vague and non-specific.  Users probably expect that a keyword search will yield results similar to a google search, only to find that it's more like an old card catalog with half of the drawers missing.
22:31 Paul_Pearson 6. We ought to collect information about how people currently use the Library Browser and get them to recommend ways to improve its utility.  (Then implement it!)
22:33 Paul_Pearson 7. Mathoverflow allows people to vote comments up or down, and perhaps the best or most used questions would rise to the top if we implemented some way for instructors to vote on questions they see in the Library Browser.  We should tell them to vote on questions only after having used them (so that they can vote down questions that have bugs, ambiguities, or other issues).
22:41 Paul_Pearson FYI: I just posted the comments above to the webwork-devel email list.

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