Demo Edit 2 (Optional)

دوره: Writing in the Sciences / فصل: strong, active verbs / درس 7

Demo Edit 2 (Optional)

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It's actually fairly interesting when you hear me go through the demo edit, a couple of times I'll say something like I really like this sentence, or I really like how the author put this, I like this language. Just to give you a few examples before you watch this demo edit, the author wrote, antennas serve as electronic reigns, injecting small charges into the roach's neural tissue. So in test of the system, cockroaches fall in an S-shaped trajectory drawn on the laboratory floor and spent 81 seconds with 10% success rate to complete the route.

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This is the second of four optional modules that share a demo edit of a student’s work from a previous course. This second optional module is particularly interesting because it brought up a good conversation in that previous course about an issue that we’re going to be talking about in this course as well, which is plagiarism. It turned out that when I did the demo edit of this essay for the class, a couple of savvy students in the class noticed that the author of these essay had actually plagiarized a couple of lines, a couple of sentences, from a press release that was written about this research. And it was actually a really good teaching moment because we got into a discussion about what is plagiarism. It’s not okay to just lift lines from something that other people have written. I just want to point it out though as you’re watching this demo edit so you watch out for those plagiarized instances. And also start thinking about how to avoid plagiarism in your own work. It’s actually fairly interesting when you hear me go through the demo edit, a couple of times I’ll say something like I really like this sentence, or I really like how the author put this, I like this language. And it turns out that actually those are the instances that the author had plagiarized from the professional writer, from the press release. So I probably should have recognized that the style in those instances was actually different than the rest of the piece. Just to give you a few examples before you watch this demo edit, the author wrote, antennas serve as electronic reigns, injecting small charges into the roach’s neural tissue. The charges trick the roach into thinking that the antennas are in contact with a physical barrier, which effectively steers them in the opposite direction. So all of that language was lifted from the press releases. There’s some other smaller instances, uses an electronic interface to remotely steer cockroaches, creates a mobile web of sensors. There’s some other pieces of sentences that were also lifted. It’s great teaching moment just to be aware of plagiarism. And we’re going to be talking more about that and how to avoid that later in this course. So now pause the video, read through the paper one or two times and then restart the video and I’ll walk you through the edit. So now that you’ve read through the paper, it’s an interesting paper. It’s got a cool concept here. We’re using cockroaches as biological robots, biobots. So it’s got a really nice hook on this paper as well. And I’m just going to go through and edit it again looking for the overall structure, and also editing things line by line. So I’m going to go in and make a few edits here and there. I’m going to rearrange a few things. So one of the things you might have noticed is that the author has a lot of technical details about the device in the paper and that’s fine. They do a good job. I was able to understand everything even though there were a lot of technical details. So it wasn’t bothersome to have so many technical details. But I thought maybe we could reserve one paragraph for all of the technical details. So I’m going to move things around just a little bit, to put all sort of the technical details about the device in a single paragraph. So now I’m going to through again, and there’s a few places I might delete a few words here and there, and move a few things around. So in general, it’s reading really nicely, and these are just a few things to streamline it, and kind of reorganize it just slightly. So that the flow is just slightly better. So if I’m going to go through the first paragraph says, scientists are still looking for small size robots. There’re few words I can edit here. So scientists are looking, I don’t think we need the still, are looking for, and then we get small size robots. I actually think we don’t need the word size there because small implies size. So we could just say scientists are looking for small robots. That can navigate in dynamic and unknown environments. And this is a really nice language dynamic and unknown environments. That’s really good language. And I’m actually going to add one little piece to that because at the end of this paragraph, they gets to this idea about survivors and earthquake. And that’s a nice little detail that really grounds the reader, you kind of see how important this topic is. So I added just a little bit here. I added such as the aftermath of an earthquake. I got that little thought in early, and that means I’m going to be able to cut some material from the end of this paragraph. So it’s just going to streamline things a little bit. This challenge inspired these researchers from North Carolina State University to use cockroaches as biobots. I didn’t change much here. I just streamlined this, just slightly to turn cockroaches into biobots seemed like a slightly stronger verb than use. You could even probably come up with a better verb there to transform cockroaches or something like that. And then we get they developed a wireless biological interface that uses an electronic interface to remotely steer cockroaches. This is a little bit too wordy for the first paragraph where you’re really trying to draw the reader in. And so I actually don’t think we need all of this biological interface, electronic interface, they’re kind of vague. And the reader, the author is going to give us this in the next paragraph later on. So I don’t think we need all that. So the best concept, the best wording from this sentence is the idea of the remotely steering the cockroaches. I thought if we can just take those couple of words that would convey exactly what it is these researchers are trying to do. They’re trying to remote control cockroaches. So I don’t think we need these things about the interfaces yet, we can leave that for the next paragraph. But I’m going to start the next sentence with their remotely controlled cockroaches. So that gets the concept across really fast. Immediately you know what we are talking about. We are talking about remote controlled cockroaches. We don’t need to know it yet how it happens, but that’s the idea to make remotely controlled cockroaches. And then I like this idea of a mobile web of sensors. That’s a really nice way of putting it. So I’m going to kind of just start with their remotely controlled cockroaches and go right into that idea. So their remotely controlled cockroaches could someday, I think I’m going to put the word someday because it’s we’re not there yet. This is still preliminary, could someday serve as a mobile web of sensors. And we don’t need to repeat, that uses cockroaches, so we can get rid of that. A mobile web of sensors that collect and transmit data. And we’ve already got the idea of earthquakes in here, so I’m just going to say collect and transmit data from hard to reach places, something like that. And actually that idea of the survivors of natural disasters, that’s a really compelling detail. I’m going to leave that for the end of the piece so that we have something to end on that kind of wraps it back to the beginning of the piece. So this shortens up the first paragraph, just a little bit so we get right into it. We don’t get too much details, but we have a good picture in our mind of what the researchers were trying to achieve here. Then we go into the second paragraph. Cockroaches have antennas. I really appreciate, by the way, that this author made a good effort to use dashes and semicolons and colons. So it’s nice to see that they obviously watched the videos and thought carefully about it and try to implement some of these punctuation techniques. So it always feels great for a teacher to see somebody putting those things into action. I’m going to change a few things. So instead of dashes here, I think probably this is a little extra detail. So I’m going to put it in parenthesis rather than dashes because maybe the reader doesn’t care what the antennas are actually called. So cockroaches have antennas to sense I like that sense versus to sense. But that can sense, that’s a little stylistic. We actually probably don’t need the colon here. I do, again, appreciate that they tried to use a colon. But actually we can just go right into this it’s a very simple list. So, the colons actually not needed there. So cockroaches have antennas called cerci that can sense tactile temperature and humidity. And one thing I just want to point out there, there was a little bit of non-parallelism here. So, temperature and humidity are nouns. Tactile is actually an adjective. So we want to make that parallel by making this first item in a list a noun, so I’m going to call it a tactile input. And then we get researchers. And we might as well say the particular researchers. So I’m just going to use their last names. So those two researchers Latif and Bozkurt, I’m pronouncing that right. And then we can use these antennas to drive the cockroaches by sending a series of electrical pulses to it. So I thought here it would be a good place to put in creative, the fact that they developed a device, so created a wireless device. So let’s just say you’re up from what they did. The bulk of what they did, the gist of it, is they created a wireless device that attaches to these antennas. So let’s get that concept early on, too, so it’s easy for the reader to picture what’s going on. So these are wireless devices that actually attach to the antenna. So that’s get that early in. In the piece so that the reader has a very concrete picture of what’s going on here. And can deliver small electrical pulses that drive the cockroach. So this is kind of a high level summary of what their device does I like to put the driving the electrical, the electrical pulses drive the cockroach, rather than putting those concepts together the other way around. So that’s why I’m putting the electrical pulses before the driving. I think it just works slightly better there. So we now get kind of this high-level summary. We get a wireless device that attaches to the antennas and can deliver electrical pulses that drive the cockroach. So that’s really summarizing exactly what this device does. Then we’re getting a lot of kind of details about the system, I’m actually going to set those details off, and make that into a new paragraph. So, let’s have one paragraph that has all of the technical details about the device. For the second paragraph let’s keep it to a high level summary of exactly kind of what the device does. And I really like this sentence that they have down in this third paragraph. The charges trick the roach into thinking that the antennas are in contact with a physical barrier. Which effectively steers them in the opposite direction. When I read that, I finally got exactly how this device works. So, I thought that detail is really important that, to have early on because it really tells the reader exactly how this thing works. So, I’m going to leave the second paragraph at just that. It high level summary of what the device does and how it works. And its an easy to read summary so the reader can immediately picture how this thing works. Then we can go into that actual details about the technical parts of the summary. So the system consist of, I like device, let’s talk just about the device for the moment. So the device consists of a micro processor with Zigbee interface electrodes and a battery. The user controls the micro processor wirelessly using a Zigbee transceiver. I’m actually going to connect these two ideas. So, the device consists of this, and then the user controls the device with this Zigbee transceiver. I don’t think we need to say wirelessly again because we already said it was a wireless device. So we don’t to repeat ourselves, I’m going to end the sentence there. The fact that the microprocessor sends electric pulses to the cockroaches antenna using electrodes and the cockroach moves. Guess what? We’ve already said that in the second paragraph, so we don’t need any of that. So now we have talked about the device itself, the microprocessor, the transceiver, the electrodes, and the battery. So now this is a good place, actually, to move up something that the author had here below. The author talks about the particular microprocessor that was used in the device. So it seems to me that it would be perfect to discuss that right here. So I’m going to move that up from the third paragraph. So now, as long as we’re talking about the device, let’s talk about the microprocessor in the device. So the researchers evaluated, I’m going to change evaluated to tested, I like that slightly better, tested two microprocessors. I don’t think we have to say that control the electrodes. That’s implied, so we can just go right into this. We know there is a microprocessor, here are the two ones that they tested. And then they CC2530 was better because of these reasons. I’m guessing that that means they incorporated, that they tested two micropasages but they ended up using the the CC2530. So let’s say they incorporated the CC2530 in their final device due to these factors. In their final device due to its low weights, its Zigbee module connectivity obviously that we import. It has to connect with the Zigbee and then we get to any of the availability of 21 general purpose I/O. I wasn’t quiet sure what that is. So, I’m guessing here, I’m completely guessing here. And greater number of I/O parts. That was an exactly parallel either on I or ports maybe. So, I mean, I’m picturing like little electrodes here. So, I’m not sure that I’ve got this quiet right. So, I’m going to highlight that. So that the author can look at that and put it in a way that I can understand. I don’t think we need to know the details about the battery, so I’m actually going to cut that detail. So they incorporated the CC2530 in their final device due to its low weight, it Zigbee module connectivity. And the greater number of I/O ports, because they said there were 21. So I’m guessing a little bit and hopefully I got that right. But if not, I’m highlighting it so the author, when in their revision, can put something there that’s similar but is accurate if that isn’t accurate. So then we get to exactly what cockroaches the researchers here used. And so I’m going to just use their last name. Latif and Bozkurt used the Madagascar Hissing cockroach. I don’t think we need, during their analysis, right. We just need to know that they used it because of, again, I appreciate the author using the colon. But we probably don’t need the colon here because it’s a fairly simple list. So, because of its larger size, so speed long life span and robustness. And I like to have a comma at the end of a list. So that all looks good. Before the experiment starts they anesthetized., I think I’d just say we could kind of collapse this into, after anesthetizing. I spelled that right. After anesthetizing the cockroaches by cold treatment, we can just go right into that for 45-60 minutes. They need to anesthetize them before they attach the electrodes. They attached one side of electrode, we can go right into to that, so they anesthetized them. After they anesthetized them, then they attached one side of each electrode? Maybe one side of the electrodes? I thought maybe it’s one side of each electrode, again, I would double check that detail with the author. There, but it sounds a little better to say, once out of each electrode to the antennas. And I really like the wording here to serve as, electronic reins. I thought that was a nice way of putting it, but in fact we’ve already said that in the second paragraph. That it delivers the small charges to the rodents, the roaches neural tissue. So actually, I’m going to get rid of that. We just need to know that after they anesthetized these bugs they attached the electrodes to the antennas. And we don’t need to repeat again that it’s still delivering these small electrical pulses. Although I like that Visual of electronic rain. So if there was some way to work that back into maybe the second paragraph, I’d encourage the author to do that. There was some nice language. Now we get, in the next paragraph, we get to the actual test. So they made the device and then they were testing the device on actual cockroaches. And this is one part where I want some more details. I want to know more about what happen when they actually tested the cockroaches. So I’m going to say, in tests of the system, I’m going to be very explicit and let the reader know. So we developed this system, we also tested it. So in test of the system, cockroaches fall in an S-shaped trajectory drawn on the laboratory floor and spent 81 seconds with 10% success rate to complete the route. Now, I’m wondering if that’s an error. I’m going to push off this last parting thought and make that into a new paragraph. because this test in the system really deserves its own paragraph. I wonder if that was suppose to be 100% success rate to complete the route. Because if it’s only a 10% success rate, I’m thinking that that’s not very good. So I would highlight that and ask the author if that’s maybe an error? And if it was supposed to be 100%? Or if it’s only 10% success rate, I’d like to know a little bit more about why they’re still enthusiastic about this system. And we need a lot more details here. So what, What else did they test? Was that the only test they did? Give me some more details about exactly what happened, how promising the results were. because this is the proof of principle of the device. So we need a lot more details here about that part of the experiment, so I’d ask the author to add that in. And then this last sentence, this will become the concluding paragraph, will lead into the concluding paragraph. So this finding opens the door to scientists to start using insects and biobots. And there’s a little bit of grammatical error here in biobots. I might just kind of cut it there. And then it’s a new thought that the system’s weight is still a problem. So this one I thought I needed a little bit more setup for because I’m not sure why the weight is still a problem. It seems like the cockroach is pretty small, they have a pretty small device. So why is the weight still a problem? So I feel like we need a little bit more detail about that. You could put that in this second to the last paragraph. Or maybe start the class paragraph with, this system is still too large because, give me the why the system needs to be shrunk even further. So further research needs to reduce the weight of the system because, I need to know why. because I’m not sure why this isn’t already small enough. And then maybe a but to transition if we’re kind of saying that the negative and the drawback and what the challenge is. Maybe you need a but there to transition to that final thought that this is something still really cool. But this finding opens the door to scientists to start using insects as biobots. I would say as biobots rather than in biobots. And then, you could end there, maybe its nice to add one last kind of parting thought here. So again, I mentioned that I cut out of that first paragraph, the specific reference to the survivor of the earthquake. So maybe we could add something at the end to wrap back to the beginning. Some day, armies of cockroaches, May be the best hope for rescue for natural disaster survivors or something like that. Natural disaster. So maybe something like that, kind of get some hook back. Someday, armies of cockroaches may be the best hope for rescue for natural disaster survivors. So, turn it again, kind of wrap it back to that first thought. Just gives it a nice ending to tie it back to the beginning. So now I think it’s reading really well, it has a nice setup. We’ve got a nice introduction that pulls you into the piece. We got an overview of this device without too many technical details. We get a nice paragraph that delivers all the information about the technical details. We get how they actually attach it to the cockroaches. And then, we get some information about the first test of the system. That’s where I’d like the author to add a little bit more information and then we get kind of a parting thought. And maybe some of the challenges that remain.

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