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Westfield Middle School Explodes Twitter with CM News

“Journalistically-Talented” 8th Grader from Westfield, Indiana Takes CM Tweets to a Whole New Level

Typically we like to keep our CM Blog posts short and sweet, but not this one. Ms. Stephanie Walker has been trialling Civic Mirror this year with phenomenal success… So much so that they have accepted our offer to become Indiana’s first CM Showcase School new year.

What’s more is that, Paige Kuper, a “journalistically-talented” 8th grader (to quote Ms. Walker) has captured the students building and then running their various simulated nations in a series of Tweets. In this post we’ve collated them for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy! And great work Westfield Social Studies teachers and students.

Student Journalist: Paige Kuper

Paige was, and still is, a proud resident of the USJE and served as a senator for two years.

She enjoys finding solutions to the complex problems within the country, writing their histories, sketching and writing, and keeping the people updated through the newspaper.

She lives happily with her eccentric CM family of eight and her real family: her parents, two brothers, and puppy.

She thanks the Civic Mirror creators for this opportunity and tells her fellow citizens #USJErocks!​

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Civic Mirror Successfully Migrates Hosting to the Cloud

Written by Daniel Lindenberger
–– Lead Civic Mirror Programmer

At Action-Ed we’ve recently made the jump from traditional servers to Cloud Computing via Amazon Web Services (AWS), and we couldn’t be more excited about it. We thought we’d share a bit about why, and how this will make for a better customer experience.

As Big as We Need it to Be!

With a class-based simulation like Civic Mirror, we can often go from one or two people looking at the site to a few hundred people furiously trading, posting, and working in their country in a matter of minutes. At times, a single click by one of those people can start a cascade of more than a hundred database requests, and a tremendous number of calculations. This means on any given weekday we range from needing a fairly simple system to an extremely powerful workhorse. AWS Cloud computing has allowed us to increase our server power, and in the near future will allow us to vary our server’s abilities to meet the needs of the moment.

Experimenting Made Simple

The nature of AWS cloud computing allows us to easily make an exact copy of our main server, and try out different things to see what works best. Upgrades to the operating system, web server and other elements of the server become easy to compare and if they don’t work, we simply disappear the new server. We can try different architectures – does one more powerful server work best, or three interconnected servers with different roles? These experiments can be done relatively quickly, and we can easily switch to any configuration that shows improvements.

We’re already seeing substantial improvements from our initial cloud server, and this only means good things for Civic Mirror’s uptime and reliability. Stay tuned, we’ll be unveiling a few new improvements soon to the underlying systems that let Civic Mirror run so many simulated countries across the world all at once.

Daniel Lindenberger
Lead Programmer,
Action-Ed Learning Resources, Inc.

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The Troubles at Flinterland as Documented by Citizens (Students)

The students in educator Michele Flintermann’s class have been having some learning fun with the Civic Mirror education program. These students have outlined the troubles in their simulated country, Flinterland. One student is complaining about a monopoly. Another student thinks the prime minister is to blame because he lets the rich live in luxury as the poor languish in hunger, while the last student asks for the ultimate result of having incompetent leaders who can’t enforce equitable distribution of national resources- a revolution! See their articles below.

 

Written By: Students from Meadowridge School, BC

Simulated Country: Flinterland
School: Meadowridge School w/ Ms Michelle Flintermann
Location: Maple Ridge, BC

Tyrannical owner of power plant monopoly January 25, 2017

Written by: Nicholas z

David Guo, so called “Member of Parliament”, owner of the power plant monopoly has been wrongfully abusing his private owner abilities. He has overpriced his goods, so much, that the fellow comrades of Flinterland are unable to purchase these E/I units without depleting their family fortunes.

This greedy, atrocious, vile, inhumane and barbaric man has driven many citizens to financial ruins in search of the mythical E/I unit.
One could compare this to Sir Walter Raleigh’s search for El Dorado. While the majorities in the country are practically homeless and hungry, he has accumulated immense wealth and power for himself.

This is very shameful, and treasonous against the citizens of Flinterland. How could we allow such an obnoxious, distasteful man to represent the common people of Flinterland. You could compare this man to the likes of Ebenezer Scrooge, the greedy, Christmas-hating man of Charles Dickens’ classic novel “A Christmas Carol”. As a great man once said, “IT’S TIME TO STOP”, these gruesome, dreadful, and monopolistic practices of this man must come to a halt!

In the beginning, all was common to man, but what has happened now? All is common
to the select few who are able to purchase these E/I units at overly inflated, monopolistic prices. Together, the just citizens of Flinterland must band together to defeat this malevolent, aristocratic, and bigoted man!

 

Tyrannical Prime Minister, February 2, 2017

Written by: Jageur M

Trouble arose in Flinterland as soon as the first year had ended. Many family members had died, and the people were blaming the Government. People were outraged that the government was distributing seized food units at such a high cost, soon, once the food units were distributed to the rich, storing and consuming the extras, the poor had starved. More than 10 family members had died in the first year of Civic Mirror, and the citizens are outraged.

Over the past 2 days, our Prime Minister, Ivan Zhang, has been pummeled with comments about dying or dead family members and how he was a terrible Prime Minister.

The scared and hungry citizens of Flinterland hope that everything will be alright.

Viva la revolucion!!! February 1, 2017

Written by: Nicholas z

Our Prime Minister, Ivan Zhang has openly admitted that he does not care about his citizens. He is a corrupt, wicked, uncaring, terrible student. Thus he is Ivan the Terrible reborn!!

We the citizens must fight against this oppression by electing a new Prime Minister, and MPs. Viva la revolucion!!!

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Conviction of Fraud in Moockistan

MoockistanThis post is about the simulated country Moockistan, which is a country created by Mr Trnt Goldsmith’s Class in Waverly, NE. We had featured an earlier post  about Moockistan, but we feel you might benefit further from reading what the class has been doing since. We also like how the student has left us in a dilemma, wondering what will happen to the judge, who is corrupt despite being the one in charge of justice.

 

Written By: Hayley

Simulated Country: Moockistan

School: Waverly High School w/ Mr Trent Goldsmith

Location: Waverly, NE

The Supreme Court was in session this week in Moockistan. Only one court case was brought to the Judge. However, before the session could proceed, the Judge made a generous demand. He desired $1,500 in payment for his services to Moockistan, which the President had no choice but to accept.
 
With the payment received, the court hearing ensued. The former president of Moockistan was accused by the current President of stealing government funds before he was impeached and lost access to transactions from the federal bank account. The thief made off with $9,819.
 
It was hard to believe such a feat could be possible, but the President had solid evidence: a transaction report stating that the ex-president had made a trade from government to himself containing the money. It was a hard argument for the defendant to counter, considering his plea of innocence. The only piece of proof he had to support that claim was a ‘witness report’ that bluntly stated he just ‘didn’t do it’. It wasn’t a mystery what side the jury was most likely leaning towards, though they carried out their meeting for the final verdict, regardless. Conversation filled the waiting time, including a sarcastic comment from the president regarding the current situation.
 
The Judge didn’t take too kindly to this, finding it ‘disrespectful’. He was quick to fine him $150 for the offense. It was difficult to believe that the Judge would make such a bold stance against his commanding figure. However, with the threat of impeachment to the wind, there wasn’t much risk.The jury returned with their ruling: guilty. No one was surprised. The judge left the decision of punishment to the government, who ruled that since the former president lacked the amount of money stolen, his farm would be taken as equal payment. But what would be done about the judge? That is yet to be seen.

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Chronicles of “Turtle Island,” a CM Country from Madison, WI

Student-Journalists from Malcolm Shabazz City High School Reporting…

665Simulated Country: Turtle Island
School:  Malcolm Shabazz City H.S.,
Instructor: Mr. Aaron Kaio
Location: Madison, Wisconsin

We received so impressed by the many great news articles from students at Malcolm Shabbazz running our social studies simulation that we simply had to publish them all.

Enjoy!

– – –

turtle-islandTorment in Turtle Island, Jan. 4th, 2017

Written By: Piper Gilkison
Triumph turned to agony in Turtle Island as one of the main farms goes unpowered in the year 2000. This lead to many food-related deaths, causing mass chaos.
Overall, we are still recovering at a nation but we keep our hope close to our chests. To send help, text 1-800-TURTLELOVE or call in now!

 

Government Health Takeover, Jan. 4th, 2017

Written By: Frances Turiel
shabbazz-studentDue to decisions made in the previous year on Turtle Island, many citizens died from receiving lack of healthcare. The Government of Turtle Island proposed taking over, or buying, the healthcare hex from local citizen, Shaun. Last year, though the healthcare hex produced the maximum amount of units, the hex owner in-took more units than he gave out. Doing so, there were deaths within three different families.

The Government of Turtle Island offered to take over the hex but, many citizens and other members of the house are in favor of privatized businesses. Many people, including Franny of the senate whom suffered a loss from lack of healthcare, aren’t in favor of all government owned business but wants to introduce business regulations. She stated earlier this year, “though I make up the senate of Turtle Island, completely Government owned businesses would end up being in control by one person. Many people who make up the Government don’t have say in distribution of Government owned Hex’s”.

Another member of the senate, Pepper Fair, is in favor of complete Government owned businesses. She believes, in quote, “I want nationalization because nationalization would produce equity within the majority and minority”. Through the Government regulating the units produced and needed, she believes that everyone would receive an equal amount of necessities.

Local Shaun, who is also the healthcare hex owner currently, believes that all business owners should be entitled to their own regulations of distribution and production. Though, he is considering selling his healthcare units to the Government in the following year.

 

13 Found Dead on Turtle Island

turtleWritten by: Sean Braun, January 4th, 2017

In Turtle Island a government decision fatally killed over 13 people leaving families devastated. The Turtle Island GOV chose to develop a new hex instead of power thanes farm killing many people, Although the new development will help in the future these people did not deserve to die and there was a better way to develop.
Vote Sean 2001!

 

Income Disparity in Turtle Island

Written by: Dana Nelson, January 9th, 2017

o-inequality-gif-facebook

In Turtle Island we have a member of society with more money than the government. Yes, you read that right. We have a citizen with nearly $4,000 more than the government.

We also have a citizen with $409.

Income disparity is a major issue in Turtle Island.

There are multiple ways we can address this issue. We can leave it to the people or we can ask the government for help.

One of our citizens has started a charity, but it is unclear if it is continuing into the next year.

The government has passed legislation to help encourage charities to start, but this is the extent of legislation passed to address this issue.

The question is, who do we need to ask for help, the people or the government?

 

Trouble in Town Hall!

Written by: Lucas Spencer, January 12th, 2017

turtle_islandIt is the year 2001 on Turtle Island, the second year since the creation of our growing country. Unfortunately, the Hidden Agendas of the citizens continue to clash, and our country is suffering because of it. In the year 2000, 15 of our citizen’s family members have died due to disputes and lack of resources between business owners. Undoubtedly a tragedy.

Development of an E/I hex has helped, but the environment is on the verge of suffering due to the future development that private owners have produced on their own, despite the government and the citizens agreement to prioritize an Education hex. Thus, our Town Hall meeting is getting quite “spicy” as citizen Isabel O. stated. Luckily, our citizens stand by and advocate for one another when conversations get heated during the Town Hall, however some of the heated moments occur because of personal attacks.

Both Turtle Island and the Civics Mirror program pose the dilemma dealt across the board: do we come together to run a successful country, or separate to win the game?

 

An Empty Shell! (Tempers Flare Over Education)

cm_blog_imagesWritten By: Lucas Spencer, January 12th, 2017.

Tempers rise as a citizen leaves Turtle Island, after an argument between the people and the government to grant him the Education Unit that he needed at the time, instead of someone who is consistently present and active in Turtle Island decisions and was desperate for their final unit! Now he is gone and the education was wasted! Our citizens who were refused Education lost points and continue to lose their temper. Did the government make the right decision? Or have we failed our citizens?

 

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Happy New Year Super-Awesome Civic Mirror Users!

pioneered_final

Have a Great 2017!

We just want to thank all of our users for using the program. Without you guys, Civic Mirror and this transformational social studies program would not exist. Thanks for your continued support, and we look forward to working more with you in the future.

And if you want to share this program with someone you know, please encourage them to register and request a CM Free Trial!

To showcase just how awesome our users are…

Here’s a video created by a student explaining what Civic Mirror is and her experience with it. We think this is way cool.

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The Developing Nation of ONSRUD8 Flourishes But Requires Help On How To Best Encourage Cooperation

Written By: Dimiter Kramer

helpSimulated Country: Onsrud8
School: Deer Path Middle School West, w/ Mr. Kevin Onsrud
Location: Lake Forest, IL
We have started off joyfully in the humble nation of Onsrud8. Members have formed into groups that openly trade and give to the fellow man. However, the wise watchers of this small country (including me) have predicted that these relationships will soon go sour, in both demeanour and economy. What should we do? Who will help, if anybody? What will happen to Onsrud8?

Posted in From the CM Trenches | 3 Comments

The Free Land of Terra Aliena

cage_birdWritten By: Kade Patterson

Simulated Country: Terra Aliena
School: Jacob Hespeler Secondary
Instructor: Dave Lambert
Location: Cambridge, ON

Terra Aliena, like any nation with a heavy government presence, has had it’s troubles with fascists trying to take control, but after it’s recent changes a new day is rising. After previous lapses in judgement and general dissatisfaction with MPs and the PM, the people of Terra Aliena were ready for a change, ready enough to take up arms, by the beginning of 2002 a revolution is brewing.

The revolution is fighting for the right for citizens to vote on all laws. This idea is quick to see action, as in 2003 a crisis vote is called, however it may have been rushed a little, as it is just barely prevented.

However the views and feelings of the rebellion are still alive and kicking, as later in 2005 citizen Kade Patterson proposes a law to MP Chance Tabor in private, this Law would allow citizens to vote on laws which involve a direct change in the political system, instead Chance decides to propose that citizens be allowed to vote on all laws.

With his superior speaking skills and debate experience, the government decides to finally let the people decide how to run their lives. And thus Terra Aliena transitions from an average representational democracy into direct democracy. Where will the future take us? All that can be said for certain is that, we are now as free as the wind and shall see where that blows us.

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Dictatorship Brewing in Moockistan

Written By: Hayley Christiansen

Simulated Country: Mookistan
School: Waverly High School, w/ Mr. Trent Goldsmith
Location: Waverly, NE

fascist_uprising

The Winter of 2001 kicked off with a bang during the legislative session. Citizens appeared to witness the session of the newly elected government officials today. Everyone believed that the session would run as any other would, but these expectations were shattered as the first course of action was impeaching the current president. He was accused of not taking action to improve Moockistan at all, such as with the energy crisis last year or helping homeless people find shelter to live in, as he said he planned to do.

This may not have been entirely unexpected, but the next actions of the meeting were a surprise blow to citizens. The Senate began their proposals and suggested multiple laws that would ultimately send the current Democracy on the road to destruction. The first law stated that there would be no further elections for government officials. Therefore, the current members of congress, regardless of their actions or public discontent, would be able to withhold their positions. But, there is still the option of impeaching, correct?

mookistanWrong, for the next law passed prevents any impeachment of government officials. The chaos still didn’t stop there, for the next movement by Senate eliminated the Crisis Vote. This is a method displeased citizens could utilize to start a revolution to overthrow an unjust government. But now, with that option unavailable, there is no hope for the citizens of Moockistan to have a voice in government affairs.

This basically sealed the deal for the impending Dictatorship to become the new government system. An additional law passed now requires all citizens of Moockistan to salute their government officials, or be fined a shocking $100 as punishment. All of these new laws, plus a free market system with monopolies, are truly signs of dark days ahead for the young country of Moockistan as Spring time approaches.

Posted in From the CM Trenches | 7 Comments

A Lethal Monopoly Plagues Moockistan

Written By: Hayley Christiansen

Simulated Country: Moockistan
School: Waverly High School
Instructor: Mr. Trent Goldsmith
Location: Waverly, NE

mookistanThe nation of Moockistan is in mourning this week as three residents of Apartment building D4 were left without power, despite the terms of their tenancy agreement stating it was the responsibility of the landlord to purchase electricity.

The owner made an appearance in court as an angry citizen protested that this went against one of the amendments established by legislation early in the year of 2000, “All trades must be upheld and followed through”. However, the supposedly ‘neglectful’ landlord pleaded guilty, claiming the blame for this disaster truly belonged to the owner of the electrical company. Under oath, he stated that he had offered an astounding trade of $3000 for one electrical unit and was still waiting for a response, even after sending multiple messages inquiring of the trade.

Upon questioning, the owner of the company, which is currently a strong monopoly, informed that he had received the trade and did have an available unit for purchase. However, he didn’t feel the landlord’s need for electricity was good enough and he was saving it for a ‘just cause’. Even after asking about the importance of the lives of three people inhabiting the apartment, the owner responded by arrogantly expressing his lack of care for the lives of the citizens. The bold statements left the courtroom in complete shock. But considering the current market of Moockistan is free, there was nothing that could stop this selfish owner.

court-legal-scales-justice-gavel-web-genericThe trial concluded with the landlord being found guilty for violating the agreed upon contract. The money towards rent was refunded for residents, but that wouldn’t help save the family members who were lost. No other shelters were available. Most also remained unpowered, thanks to the tyranny of the electrical company. The debate for change in the monopoly is a hot topic. Rumors have been circling the government of ceasing a factory once the newer addition opens in winter of 2001.

 

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