Re-doing the Three-Minute Pitch
It's time to revise Software Carpentry's three-minute pitch. Here's what I think I need to say; as always, comments would be welcome.
Opening slide: large logo, the title "Computing Skills for Scientists and Engineers", and a small block at the bottom with the date and license.
Our mission is
- to help scientists and engineers be more productive...
- ...by teaching them basic computing skills
The problem is
- that scientists and engineers spend 40% or more of their time wrestling with software...
- ...but more than 95% are largely self-taught...
- ...so they spend hours doing what should take minutes...
- ...reinvent a lot of wheels...
- ...and still don't know whether their results are reliable or not
- combines short, intensive workshops...
- ...with self-paced online instruction...
The benefit is
- more confidence that computational results are correct
- and significant increases in productivity...
- ...a day a week is common...
- ...and 10X isn't rare
Our workshops cover
- the core skills a researcher needs to know in order to be productive in a small team:
- using version control to manage and share information
- basic Python programming
- how (and how much) to test programs
- working with relational databases
- using the shell to do more in less time
- Basically, everything you should know before you tackle things with "cloud" or "peta" in their name
Our online instruction
- goes into these topics in more detail...
- ...and continues with:
- program design and construction
- matrix programming
- using spreadsheets in a disciplined way
- data management
- development lifecycles
Our content is
- all available online...
- ...under a Creative Commons license...
- ...so you are free to re-use and re-mix it
Our work is supported by
- The Sloan Foundation
- The Mozilla Foundation
And has been supported in the past by
- Michigan State University
- Indiana University
- Queen Mary University London
- The Software Sustainability Institute
- The UK Met Office
- The MathWorks
- The University of Toronto
- The Python Software Foundation
- The Space Telescope Science Institute
- Los Alamos National Laboratory
We also depend on contributions from people like you, who
- give us feedback...
- ...create lessons and exercises...
- ...and organize and deliver workshops
For more information, to get involved, or for help organizing a workshop, please
- visit us online at ...
- ...follow on Twitter...
- ...or email