If you’ve never heard of Humble Bundle, I’d just like to say your welcome for the gift I’m about to give you.

The Disney character Maui bows and tells Moana,
Maui sings “You’re Welcome” to Moana.

Describing Humble Bundle to the uninitiated is a bit difficult because I’m not sure there’s anything else quite like it out there. Humble Bundle offers video games and ebooks for purchase in themed “bundles” (hence the “Bundle” in their moniker), the proceeds of which will at least partially go to support a charity of your choice (hence the “Humble”). I recently bought a “Women of Sci-Fi and Fantasy” book bundle featuring Octavia Butler, Robin McKinley, and Kate Elliot, among others.

Currently, they’re offering a Book Bundle of books about the programming language Python, and I’m tempted.

Now, I’m not much of a programmer. I know a handful of HTML and CSS, but it’s a pretty dusty handful. But I know enough to have attended a Python workshop at the University of Minnesota in the summer of 2016. Well, I knew enough to follow the major concepts of the workshop and to get my code to (sort of) work, but I didn’t really gain a deep understanding of how Python works, or how to make it do precisely what I want it to do, so I’ve steered clear of using it so far.

What I did understand was that Python could be a major boon for writing researchers and rhetoricians–specifically, Python can enable researchers to collect publicly available data in large quantities (e.g., Twitter and Facebook data) and it can help researchers organize, analyze, and model data (Python played a part in Hayes’ [2012] update to the Hayes and Flower [1980]1 cognitive process model of writing). Don’t ask me how because I don’t know yet. But I’m going to buy this Humble Bundle Book Bundle and find out.

I’ll let you guys know what I find out.

 

1Hayes, J. R., & Flower, L. S. (1980). Identifying the organization of writing processes. In L. W. Gregg & E. R. Steinberg (Eds.), Cognitive processes in writing (pp. 3-30). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

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