Sunday, September 30, 2007

Desktop vs Online

Argument with a friend - I say pretty soon we won't need to purchase software, we will be able to create and save all documents online. She says no, because of security. Too easy to hack your online stuff. Would you put your journal online? OK, maybe not. But I would create and save a lot of what I do online. And I will be able to access and use my stuff with something a lot smaller than a laptop, like an iPhone. This is good, because my purse and my laptop case are both too heavy - with gadgets and with paper!

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Does everyone know about Zoho but me? This is every app you might need, all free and online. So why do we need productivity software any more? OK there are some bells and whistles still missing, but you can create, save, upload and download docs, spreadsheets, slideshows, databases, project management software, etc.

How did I learn about it? A Canadian guy, principal of a school in Saskatchewan, posted a reply to a question I asked on Classroom 2.0.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

More on Social Networking and Ning

I'm at the ACSA Conference, and working on my Web 2.0 for Administrators workshop that will happen on Friday. I just have to make another plug for Classroom 2.0 on Ning. A few days ago, while I was thinking about and planning this workshop, I posted a forum topic on Classroom 2.0 asking about Web 2.0 tools for educational administrators. I have a couple of replies so far, not a lot, but they are very useful. People have lots of knowledge and are willing to share. Gotta love it!

I also used the same site to check out a discussion of which free wiki host is the best for education, in order to respond to a question on an email list. While I was there, I noticed that a colleague had joined the community and left a message, so I went to her home page and sent her a friend invitation. So that's a lot of use out of a site for one day!

I also wrote an article about Ning for the CATESOL News, which will come out in November, I hope. One thing I realize about Classroom 2.0 is that its founder does a lot of work to keep it organized, keep discussions going, respond to communnity needs, and generally promote the community. In exploring other Ning sites I see there are a lot of junk sites, and sites that never got off the ground. The tools are there, but it takes a person, or people, with enthusiasm, commitment and hard work to make a community happen.

Friday, September 21, 2007


Alan Lew has a blog post about Twitter, where he has pulled together a bunch of references and discussions, and suggested various educational uses. Twitter is blocked at my work as we have youth correctional sites on our network, so I can't use it as much as I'd like to, Can't even grab a screen shot for this post. But I'm interested in how learners might use this service. It is writing, after all. Is Twitter part of the new literacy?

Monday, September 10, 2007

SL Video by Kids

I was just starting to get discouraged about the usefulness of Second Life in adult education, but Barry Bakin posted about this video made by kids doing a project on child soldiers made me think again. It's tough subject matter, reflects some real research, and tells a story. I would like to know what the process of making it was like. Can you see your learners doing a project like this?

Barry found this video on a blog by Kevin Jarrett, who has taken a semester leave to investigate Second Life for education, and is blogging about his experiences.

Doonesbury on Second Life

Did you catch Doonesbury on Sunday? Funny contrast of the generation that is into Second Life, and online life in general, and the generation that doesn't really get it. It also reflects how unapparent it is to the naked eye how much life takes place online. I think about this when I have spent a whole day sitting at my computer. I stand up at the end of the day and stagger out of the office, feeling the intensity of having communicated with many people, research topics, written documents, edited photos and maybe even videos, organized events, attended events, learned about new technologies, participated in national discussions, on and on. But to the observor it looks like I didn't do anything but sit there. How odd is our productive life these days??