Tuesday, December 2, 2014

formIngester and formCreator Add-ons are in Beta and open to Trusted Testers!!

In what started as a quick post in the Google+ Community Apps Scripts for Education - Builders and Users about how to create a Google Form from questions in a spreadsheet has spawned my two newest Add-ons for Sheets: formIngester and formCreator.

These 2 Add-ons work in tandem and are the building blocks for an Forms Add-on I have been working on:
formIngester will take the question properties from a Form in your Drive and populate the spreadsheet.
formCreator will take the question properties from the spreadsheet and populate a Form.

These 2 Add-ons are not in the Chrome Store yet as they are still in Beta and I would love to have some Trusted Testers to help me fix any bugs that exist (I am sure there many to find ;)!!

If you would like to join the Trusted Tester group follow these links to request membership:

formIngester Trusted Tester Group
formCreator Trusted Tester Group

Here are some quick tutorials on the Add-ons:





Monday, November 3, 2014

g(Math) will now create individualized, differentiated quizzes and grade them mathematically!!

The latest feature addition to g(Math) for Sheets is the one I have been waiting the longest to complete and port over from my scripts workflow: individualized, differentiated quizzes with a mathematical grading!!

The g(Math) for Sheets QuizNinja will create individualized quizzes that can be differentiated with random questions. The grading aspect also uses a mathematical aspect so if the answer is 4x, it will be marked correct if you put in any value equivalent (like 4*x, x*4, x4, 3x+1x, 16x/(4x), etc...). It is not flawless, so please check to make sure that anything marked incorrect is actually incorrect. I understand this is not ideal, but I feel like it is better than previous available options.

You can check out the full Help documentation at:
 http://www.gmath.guru/quick-quiz-creator/#/quizninja-for-individualized-forms/

Thursday, October 23, 2014

g(Math) for Forms has launched!!

I am proud to announce that after months of work and some great advice from the Add-on team in NYC, g(Math) for Forms is part of the Google Forms Add-on launch! g(Math) for Forms can do everything its Docs and Sheets sistren (or brethren depending on how you feel about g(Math)) can. It can create math expressions, graphs, and statistical displays and insert them directly into your Google Form! 

Check it out at: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/gmath-for-forms/pfpepkdookmfefmppcknaobckehpjgcj?utm_source=permalink

Here is the g(Math) help page: http://www.gmath.guru/gmath-for-forms/

You can check out the tutorial video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7oh2h3ZW8w

Let me know what you think

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

New Script that will create Google Forms from questions in a Spreadsheet

There was a query posted in the GEG Singapore about automatically creating forms from spreadsheet questions. g(Math) kind of does this, so I threw a script together that will create a form from a highlighted range. It will even create multiple choice questions from option in the sheet (I am especially proud of that aspect).
Check it out here and make a copy to play around:
http://goo.gl/ZOQucA

How to do it:

1. Create your questions in a Spreadsheet, picking the type of question from the dropdown in the cell in column C.

2. Click on the Add-on menu and run the script to create your quiz.

3. The sidebar will pop open prompting you to select your question range.
4.Select the questions that you want to use:
5. Click on Proceed and then name your quiz.


6. Click Create Form and wait for the magic to happen. You will get a popup box with the link to Edit your quiz and you will also find it in your Google Drive.




7. Send it out to your students!




Wednesday, October 8, 2014

New feature in celebration of g(Math)'s 50,000th current user: Statistical Displays

I am continually blown away by the rise of current users of g(Math). Today g(Math) passed 50,000 current users!
To celebrate I am launching another aspect of g(Math) that has been missing from Docs and Sheets, statistical displays. 

You can now select a table in your Doc and create statistical displays from the data. Currently, there are three options:
1. Histograms
2. Box and Whisker Plots
3. Bar Charts
If you have a specific type of display you would like to see, please ask!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

BlogPostTitle

sansei words seeing sure many watch forward cloudintelligent
adventurous funny red dedicated spaniardhow good stuck thisnot
lights gamei want swiss fun today traffic sarcastic
dadlooking

Thursday, September 25, 2014

g(Math) is updated to include plotting points from a Table in a Doc with a new help website, gmath.guru!

I am excited to announce the latest update of g(Math) now can plot data from a table in a Doc! All you need to do is select the table and then click on the Get Points from Table button. It will take the column on the left to be the x values and the column on the right to be the y values. Once the points are in the Sidebar, you can plot them with g(Math).


You can also do this in a Sheet by selecting a range of cells and then clicking Get Points from Selection.


You can find more about this new addition on my new Help website: gmath.guru

Saturday, September 6, 2014

DemoSlam!!

far happycake two daysmaking right pictures joyfulfar silly
charming awesomei smart caring five friendly pepinohellocake myself
fun live slam behind planeholy energetic favouritejenfieinspiring brainy
happy shoes pepino four google three formgoogle melepepino
love unhinged lovepig dayhandsome hope courteous apple functional
travel twitter cow homeomgomgone pie great carefree enthusiastic
jim eat

DemoSlam!!

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Monday, September 1, 2014

Wow! Thanks to my PLN for all the support, feedback, and communication!!


I am humbled by the amount of feedback and support I have gotten through my PLN this past year. The best Professional Development conference I attended was the 2nd Singapore GAFE Summit almost 1 year ago to the day. The main thing I took from that conference was that I needed to share what I am doing in the classroom. The response I have gotten has been amazing! In that time, my blog has gotten over 30,000 views, my Google+ over 600,000, and my g(Math) Add-on for Docs and Sheets has over 30,000 combined users. I have collaborated with some amazing people that I don't really know in person as well. Thanks to +Andrew Stillman+Jay Atwood+Simon Tyler+Will Sappenfield+Ann Witherspoon+Jennifer Magiera (although my 30,000 views is nothing compared to your 1,000,000!),  +John Taylor+Isso Shimamoto+Chuck Pawlik, and many, many others who have helped/inspired/collaborated with me!!!
I am truly excited about presenting 3 sessions this weekend in the 3rd Annual Singapore Summit!
  

Thursday, August 28, 2014

g(Math) updated with better user interface and scatterplot Trendlines!

I have updated g(Math) in the Add-on store and it should be reflected in your Doc if you have installed g(Math).

Some of the new features:
1. Instant preview of your expression without clicking on the Preview button.
2. The LaTeX entry area will now always stay at the top of the sidebar for easier viewing.
3. The buttons are more closely aligned with a scrolling feature on the sidebar.
4. You can do a linear Trendline in your Scatterplot!

I will be updating the g(Math) Help page to reflect the latest version over the next day or so and I am also finishing up some major upgrades to g(Math) for Sheets.

Please let me know if you have some other features or prebuilt buttons you would like to see!




Thursday, July 31, 2014

#GTASYD Application!

tl;dr: Here is my #GTASYD Application Video!!!



Full version: So I finally submitted an application to #GTASYD. Last time around on the #GTASYD I got hung up on perfecting my video using scripting and wasn't happy with the result and never submitted it. Then I submitted for GTAMTV and GTAATL this year and was not accepted for what I believe was a bad video.
This time I was determined to plan ahead and spend enough time to produce a video I was happy with. I wanted to create a video using only Google Apps Script and I was satisfied with the animation result. It took me over 500 lines of "hacky" code (it definitely is not pretty in some sections) and my wife can attest it probably took that many hours as well. The animation wasn't as smooth as it was during my other dry runs, but it was sufficient. I would have liked to perfect it, but needed to submit :)

So, the nitty gritty parts that were difficult:

  • Digitizing the Google Logo: I uploaded the logo to the Wolfram Programming Cloud and wrote some code to pixelate it to the correct size and reduce the number of colors. My code then determined the color of each pixel and saved it to an array. 
  • This array was coded into the Google Apps Script and I used some loops and the .setBackgroud method to prepare the colors. 
  • The animation proved to be a little tricky. I ended up creating a new line before line 1 and then coloring line 1 with the appropriate colors to create the scrolling effect. 
  • The rocket moving through the scrolling was also another challenge. I needed to delete it and redraw it in the same position, which in effect moved it through the background that was scrolling down. 
  • I ran out of coding time (as I said it was well over 100 hours) for the ending and had to Insert an Image for the Moon and statements. I would have liked them to be backgrounds in the cell and have them "sparkle", but at least there is room for improvement
I am thinking about creating an Add-on for Sheets that will digitize the images since I have most of the work done programmatically using the WolframCloud, but that is low on my priority list. I have a lot of changes/improvements for g(Math) and a Cryptography Add-on for Docs that I am working on with higher priority.


Monday, July 7, 2014

g(Math) and g(Math) for Sheets updates!

tl;dr: g(Math) is updated to zoom in on different regions of the graph and you can also plot points as well as any number of functions!

full version: The top request for g(Math) and the one I have been working on the past few weeks unsuccessfully was to alter the graphing part of g(Math) to allow the user to specify a range other than the standard window of -10 to 10. I have updated g(Math) with this new graphing capability and it should be live in the next few minutes. If you already have installed g(Math) and g(Math) for Sheets you don't need to do anything. If you haven't installed it yet, what are you waiting for? :)




The Wolfram Cloud for Wolfram Language was launched last week and I was ecstatic to see some of the possibilities of creating your own Instant APIs! The first Instant API I was able to deploy allows this option and more!

In addition to allowing you to specify your viewing window, you can also plot a list of points on the same graph as well! Just fill in the box with a list of points of the form {x,y} separating each point with a comma.
For example: {3,2},{-4,1},{2,Pi}


Yes, you can use Pi to specify the axes and plot points using it! I will be publishing an in-depth guide to the new extensive feature that are enabled by using my API and I am working on entering the functions through a more intuitive interface as well, but wanted to get this update out there as it is my most requested feature by far.


I have tons of great stuff for g(Math) in the pipeline thanks to the API capabilities of Wolfram. Some of the ideas I have cooking:

  • Solving equations for a specified variable (YAY!!)
  • Individualized Quizzes with g(Math) for Sheets (I know this has been in the pipeline for a while...)
    • Better automatic grading of these individualized quizzes (This is what I am most pumped about!!) 
  • Normal Distribution Displays
  • Creating 5-number summaries and other Statistical Displays
  • Other requests??
If you want to see a new feature or have an update request, please let me know via google.com/+JohnMcGowan or on Twitter: @jmacattak.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

g(Math) for Sheets is now live in the Chrome Store and it can create Forms with Math!!

tl;dr version: You can create a google form containing math easily and quickly using g(Math) for Sheets Add-on by using the g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator!
Get it here:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/gmath-for-sheets/ghgaamjabigfohnmniiffhbfmkecanmi?utm_source=permalink

full version:
I am humbled to have such an overwhelmingly positive response to my g(Math) Google Docs Add-on. There are over 5,000 users from over 100 countries in the first 2 weeks!
I am even more excited that g(Math) for Sheets is now live in the Chrome Store. It has the same interface and features of g(Math). It will insert your math expressions or graph directly into the selected cell as an image.
The part I am most excited about is the g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator part of g(Math) for Sheets.

How do you create a form easily that contains math?
1. Use g(Math) to create math in your Spreadsheet and then select g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator from the g(Math) menu.

2. Select the range of questions that you want to make into form questions.

3. Click Preview. It will confirm your selection and ask you if you want to Proceed to make a quiz using that question range.
4. Click Proceed and enter the Form Title name in the box.
5. When you click Create Form, my minions will make your Form containing the questions you selected in your highlighted column. You will see the message popup in the bottom of the Sidebar to see that it is working.
6. After the Form is created a Popup Window will tell you the URL to edit your form.
7. Go to the Form to further edit your questions if needed. I made the directions of each question Solve to streamline the quiz creation process. You probably want to edit the question directions. 
8. You will notice that there is a response box under each question. This is actually a blank question with a text response. You can change this to Multiple Choice if you want (or any other type of Form question that is allowed). You cannot insert images into Multiple Choice options yet. 
In the form response destination, each of the question responses in the header row will be blank, you need to manually type in the question you want to use (or use g(Math) to insert the image in that row).

Live Form:
Response Spreadsheet:

Now you can create Google Forms containing math easily!!


Monday, June 2, 2014

g(Math) for Sheets Help

Thanks for installing my Add-on! g(Math) can directly input graphs and complex math into a cell in your Google Spreadsheet. All you need to do is click on a cell and then Insert your math expression or graph into that cell. When you insert the expression or graph, it will insert as an image using a Spreadsheet formula. The row and column will automatically resize bigger to help you view your image better.
The benefit of entering the math expressions and graphs into the Spreadsheet is you can use them to create questions in a Google Form!

Some Help tips:

The full complement of LaTeX commands are not supported, although many are. If you are having difficulty finding the LaTeX command you want to create, check out these resources:



For gGraph: You must have your equation in y= format. Also, if you want to multiply two terms together you must use the * operator. So if you want 3x, you must type 3*x.
You can now plot 2 functions on the same graph by entering in a 2nd function in the optional area!


For g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator:

g(Math) inserts an image into a cell using a formula. The g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator knows this formula and puts the images into a form with a blank question text item underneath it to allow for the response.
In the response destination form, you will need to add your own question description in the 1st row. You can edit the form to allow for multiple choice responses instead of a blank text item.

I tried to create a Quiz Creator that would be the simplest to use and generate valuable information in the form as seamlessly as possible. As such, the directions for each problem just say Solve. You will need to edit this for your purposes. There is a more advanced Quiz Creator in the pipeline that will use a template to allow for more robust question creation.

How do you create a form easily that contains math?
1. Use g(Math) to create math in your Spreadsheet and then select g(Math) Quick Quiz Creator from the g(Math) menu.

2. Select the range of questions that you want to make into form questions.

3. Click Preview. It will confirm your selection and ask you if you want to Proceed to make a quiz using that question range.
4. Click Proceed and enter the Form Title name in the box.
5. When you click Create Form, my minions will make your Form containing the questions you selected in your range. You will see the message popup in the bottom of the Sidebar to see that it is working.
6. After the Form is created a Popup Window will tell you the URL to edit your form.
7. Go to the Form to further edit your questions if needed. I made the directions of each question Solve to streamline the quiz creation process. You probably want to edit the question directions. 
8. You will notice that there is a response box under each question. This is actually a blank question with a text response. You can change this to Multiple Choice if you want (or any other type of Form question that is allowed). You cannot insert images into Multiple Choice options yet. 
In the form response destination, each of the question responses in the header row will be blank, you need to manually type in the question you want to use (or use g(Math) to insert the image in that row).

Live Form:
Response Spreadsheet:

Now you can create Google Forms containing math easily!!


Possible Errors:

Some reasons you might get an error during Form Creation:

  • You can only select math expressions or graphs that were created with g(Math) for Form Questions.
  • You cannot have any blank cells selected.
  • You must select cells that are consecutive. The easiest way to do this is click and drag or click-shift-click. 
Please let me know if you are having difficulty and I will try to help you out!
google.com/+JohnMcGowan
@jmacattak


Monday, May 26, 2014

g(Math) is updated and can now plot 2 functions in the same graph.

Thanks for the continued positive feedback. I have updated g(Math) to reflect one of the most requested features, plotting more than 1 function on the same graph. You should see the latest version in your Add-on menu in the next 60 minutes!
I am working on other features, like changing the color of the functions. Other features are proving to be difficult but I am trying to add them, like labeling the graphs and changing the scaling of the graph. I am continuing to add prebuilt LaTeX codes as requested and believe I am caught up. If you would like to see something added, please let me know.
Also, g(Math) for Sheets is in the final stages and should be live by Wednesday!!
Please keep the feedback coming and I will try to add the changes if they are possible!

Friday, May 23, 2014

g(Math) has been updated in the Add-on store.

Thanks to the overwhelming positive response to my release of the g(Math) Add-on. I have received lots of great feedback and I have updated the Add-on to include a lot more Prebuilt LaTeX expressions. 
You do not need to do anything to get the newest version of the Add-on if you already have installed it (which is a huge benefit that I see about Add-ons)
If you have other expressions you would like to see added, let me know!
I am in the process of adding the functionality to graph more than one equation on the same same graph and it should be updated by the end on the weekend. 
Additionally, g(Math) for Sheets should be live in the next week which will allow you to create Form questions using g(Math)!!

Monday, May 19, 2014

g(Math) is now available as an Add-on live in the Google Chrome Store!

I am super excited that gMath is now available as an official Add-on live in the Google Chrome store. You can now add it to your Add-on list when you access it from a Google Doc.

1. Click on the Add-on Menu in a Google Doc and choose Get Add-on.

2. In the Add-on Menu scroll down until you see gMath (it will soon be searchable).

3. Click on the Free button in the gMath block.

4. Now an authorization window will pop up. 
5. Click Accept and it will take you back to your Google Doc. If you see the box describing gMath, it was successful!

6. Have fun using gMath! If you have an issue, you can let me know by clicking the Help button and Report an issue. 

7. If you would like to give me feedback on what you like or what you wish you could do, let me know at google.com/+JohnMcGowan, +John McGowan or @jmacattak on Twitter.




Thursday, May 15, 2014

Create a Google Site for each student from a Spreadsheet.

Last night in our Singapore Google Apps Scripting Lab, +Nathan Horne had an idea to create individual Google Sites based off of students in a spreadsheet. We messed around with the SitesApp and kept getting error codes that we couldn't figure out.

I was able to figure out the errors. It was the site name. You can't have spaces and you can't have capital letters and some special characters in the URL (the 2nd parameter). 

Here is a sample spreadsheet that works:
http://goo.gl/bjbWxL

You might need to make a copy and run in your own domain, not sure about that.
One issue that I would fix to make it better is to allow you to put the name in Caps and figure out how to change it to all lower case letters. 
I would try to use a loop and the method .toLowerCase(). 

I think this would be a cool way to have student grade sheets and haven't explored the option before (or the SitesApp). Thanks for pointing us in that direction +Nathan Horne! I was also wondering about creating a Google Drive folder and embedding it in that site and then using a DriveApp method to put assignments in there or use Doctopus Add-on to send to student Assignment folders created in gClassFolders. This might be a nice way to communicate with parents!

g(Math) Help

Thanks for installing my Add-on! gMath can directly input graphs and complex math into your Google Doc.

Some Help tips:
The full complement of LaTeX commands are not supported, although many are. If you are having difficulty finding the LaTeX command you want to create, check out these resources:



For gGraph: You must have your equation in y= format. Also, if you want to multiply two terms together you must use the * operator. So if you want 3x, you must type 3*x.

There has been a lot of interest in changing the axes and zooming in on different windows of the graph. Currently, I am unable to make these changes. Essentially because it is hard. If you want a robust grapher, check out Desmos or plot.ly. They are super awesome!

Some user created tutorials:

+Jeremy Bell's tutorial:
http://jeremyteachhacks.blogspot.sg/2014/06/how-to-create-math-documents-quick-and.html

+Phil Ballard's review:
http://www.mousewhisperer.co.uk/drivebunny/add-on-review-gmath-for-google-documents

+Greg Lawrence's tutorial:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6bKSkgV2ak

+Michael Mitchell's tutorial:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eoyliyh7xw

+Kevin Fairchild's video help:
http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLto2no0G6EAwH1z9Br39pqmqNiS38VKmP 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Singapore Google Scripting Lab

Captionless Image

Come to our Google Scripting Lab!


When: Thursday, May 15 from 5:00-7:30


What: We will be getting down and dirty with Google Apps Script codes.

Coding experience needed: None!


Bring: An idea of how you would implement a Google Apps Script to help your teaching process. We will try to find a script that works for you or try to help you code your own.There will be code snippets available for use as well as help with the documentation that Google supplies.


Why: Ideally, you will leave with working code or an idea of how to progress on your code and a community to work with!

Optionally bring: A pot luck dish to share.


What is your name? *

Awesome aspects of gMath and how it helps me create digital math content.

I have been using gMath to create digital math content for my classes. Today I realized a really cool feature that I didn't know about it, creating custom text characters.
In my Algebra and Pre-Algebra classes, after solving an equation I make my students check to see if the value of the equation they got as a result is valid if they substitute it in the original equation (typical Algebra check method).
I don't like to use the = sign during this work process because we are checking to see if they are actually equal. I use an equal sign with a question mark above it.
I can create this sign in gMath by typing \stackrel{?}{=}. You can use this LaTeX command to create almost any custom text item with one character stacked over another!
\stackrel{?}{=} will give this character:
My usage:
I am pretty pumped about how effective gMath has been and how it has simplified my workflow, allowing me to use GDocs more. It is also progressing in the publishing stage and will eventually be available in the Add-on store, reducing the number of steps necessary to use it to create content.