30. July 2007 · 1 comment · Categories: Issues

This You Tube video produced by an American high school girl has a great twist on information literacy. It’s not just about an important skill to help in education — it’s a skill for life!

And by the way — the first quote she uses is from her science teacher – who did not back it up with references to the source of the statistic…

27. July 2007 · Comments Off on RSS advertising – it was just a matter of time… · Categories: Issues

RSS Advertising

As I was trawling through my RSS feeds via my iGoogle interface, I saw that ads have infiltrated RSS — although I had to scroll to see the branding.

I suppose it was going to happen – maybe it did and I’ve just noticed.  For some reason, it makes me sad.

I wonder if it’s something that can be filtered out– or if you’re stuck with it when using RSS feeds as content on a web site.

And will this potentially restrict educators from using feeds from certain sources? Hmm…

21. July 2007 · Comments Off on Shame on you NY Times and Michiko Kakutani! · Categories: Issues

Y’know – perhaps the Harry Potter series is one of the most profitable entertainment media franchises to come along in a while — but when I’d heard there were spoilers due to an online book store screwing up and delivering the book a few days in advance — I was picturing mean-spirited nobodies trying to get a quick burst of site visits or 15 minutes of fame. 

I would have thought that spoiling the last book of the Harry Potter series was beneath the NY Times and its book reviewer.  Apparently not.  In a cynical bid to sell papers and get traffic to their site, they showed disregard for the millions of kids not to mention the millions of adults who love this series and published a long winded review that brought out several key plot points two days before the book was available.

Oh well, a good conversation starter for a business ethics class I suppose.  Just because you can, does it mean you should?

15. July 2007 · Comments Off on You can pick your tools · Categories: Issues, Technologies

In communication and education, we are bombarded with an ever-increasing barrage of you-beaut tools, tricks, tips and sites designed to make our communications and teaching more effective.

To illustrate the point for a presentation I was planning for earlier this week, I was going to print out a blog post publishing links to web 2.0 sites that had left comments perpetually open for others to add their “favourites”.  I didn’t end up doing so because when I did a print preview — there would have been 49 pages of 11-point font.

Is there any wonder that when people who play at the cutting edge come back to people trying to accomplish something concrete and tell them there’s yet another new tool to explore, the people who are trying to teach or communicate groan, moan and complain? Then the cutting edgers write the practitioners off as luddites and the cycle continues.

While one group might not be able to always see the forest for the trees, the other group has such an aerial view that they can’t see the swamps, undergrowth and forest regulations/restrictions that are taking up the tree people’s time and energy.

Just a thought on a Sunday night…

08. July 2007 · Comments Off on Talking ’bout my generation – not! · Categories: Issues

In an attempt to design products, services and marketing messages tailor-made to entice particular age brackets of people, it would seem that the “generations” are getting re-segmented.

Being born in 1965, I’ve found myself over the years being lumped in with Baby Boomers (people born 1944 to 1965) and Generation X (people born from 1965 to 1979).

I’ve rolled my eyes as grey-bearded grampas tell me about “baby boomers like us” and shaken my head in confusion when people in their late 20s tell me they’re not ready to get married by they’re having a baby together.

Now it seems, there is a generation Jones – people only up to 11 years older than me – and our “shared formative experiences” make us a more our “generational personality” more unique. We’re apparently a force to be reckoned with and are early technology adapters that have the money to buy the toys and, in the US, we got the democrats back into power.

Fortunately for us, there is a social networking web site that “gets us”.

Maybe they can explain me to me, because when I go to the web site of the man who “discovered us” – I am left “jonesing” for more information. But perhaps that is because I’m typical of my generation?