My Week Ending February 11, 2018


Readings (You can follow my daily readings as they happen here)

  1. Good teachers always have approaches that work the best and certainly something that applies in all subject areas is the success that comes from creating something.  If you believe this, then why do we just use applications for consumption rather than creation.  This is a pretty good list of ways to turn that around.  I’m not sure that I would label them all as “new” although I guess they could be new to some.
  2. I suspect that there are two camps when it comes to the Google Chrome browser – those who love it and those who hate it.  Then, there’s this Chromium thing.  This is a good post describing the relationship of the two.  It would have been a good exercise to go further and look at other browsers that are based on Chromium.  (Like Opera that I’m using right now)  Wait, just search for it.
  3. You’ve got to love a school organization that respects community instead of just closing up shop and busing students elsewhere.  If you can’t find a way to make a school with 400 students viable, it must go to your soul when the number becomes 89.
  4. I don’t think you want to read this if you want your child to know her times tables and to be able to recite Shakespeare from memory.  The students that we see today are on the cusp of something new.  We’re not that far from welcoming the class of 2030 to our schools.  Gulp. What will their needs be?
  5. I can’t read enough about Blockchain.  It’s such an abstract concept to me.  I like the feel of money.  Here’s another explanation.
  6. We need to celebrate great teaching and often it’s done with rewards.  This time it’s Rebecca Hainnu.  Stories like this are inspirational.
    Rebecca Hainnu “recognized in her own community, region, territory and beyond, as a phenomenal, outstanding educator”
  7. I often wonder if school districts using only commercial products creates an environment of illegal sharing of applications.  We talk about the expense of buying the hardware creating a digital divide but some software can be pretty pricey.  Should we look more to Open Education Resources?  I think so.  More variety, more opportunity to use appropriate resources, more opportunities for developers and creators…
  8. Nobody likes cooties.  Who doesn’t remember shunning people in class that had cooties?  Crime Prevention Ottawa has this colourful CootieCatcher poster among a lot of other resources to help students stay safe online.
  9. I know that you’re wondering what to get me for Valentine’s Day.  Here’s a list.  I’m not picky.  I’ll find a use for any/all of them.
  10. Not another Powerpoint!  If you get that response everytime that you assign a presentation, maybe it’s time for a change.  How about Sway instead?


Blog Posts on doug … off the record


voicEd Radio

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Technology Trouble Shooting

A little tape – I’ll probably get stopped every time I go through an airport check point but hey.  I needed a solution.  When I replaced the hard drive in my MacBook Pro, it went well.  Except that when I put the screws back into the bottom of the computer, there’s one that keeps falling out.  I don’t know if it’s different from the others or if it just got stripped somehow.  I think my solution is rather genius.  I just put a small piece of electrical tape over it.  Problem solved but it looked ugly.  So, I put little pieces over all the screws.  Now, it just looks rugged.

Weekly Challenge – I always thought time was time but it’s not on this computer.  I have it set to dual boot Windows and Linux Mint.  Mint boots just fine.  Windows, however, boots and the clock is five hours ahead.  I used to go in and reset it manually which was a pain.  Now, I go to the chain the time setting and toggle automatic time setting off and on and somehow it works.  I’ve read articles that indicate that Windows and Linux read the clock differently.  I just find that bizarre.


Video of the Week – It’s my blog so I can call this GIF a video – it’s me with my phone (and no tripod) capturing artist Cameron Steltman painting at the OTF Curriculum Forum.  It was truly ad hoc otherwise we would have cleared the background of glasses and breakfast dishes.  I used Stop Motion Studio to create it.



My Favourite Photo This Week


It’s Black History Month in Canada.  This was the display that greeted us at the Amherstburg Public Library.



Thanks for reading.


Whatever happened to …

… CDs and DVDs.

From the Padlet, comes this query.

Screenshot 2018-02-10 at 06.37.06

There’s a lot to be taken away from this.  Do you remember music stores or video stores as well?  You could go there and buy or rent a music or video media.  These stores were a real disaster as time and technology moves on.  I can still think of a couple of music stores but that’s about it.  Video stores?  Definitely a thing of the past.

Computer-wise, there was a time when this was how software was distributed.  The real advantage as well was that you could put this original media in a case and it was there if you ever needed to reinstall software.  In fact, I have cases and cases of them and, quite honestly, like the suggestion above, I haven’t opened them in years.  So long, in fact, that they’d be just a waste of time.  Even if I was to install the software, there would be a large number of updates just to get it up to today’s standards.

When I was on the OSAPAC Committee, that was how we got software out to the province.  It was also a method that I had working for the School District as I would master and distribute a “Teachers’ Essentials CD-ROM” for every fall to get everyone on the same page with things like Report Card software.

What’s happened?  As I think we all know, access to the internet and high speeds changed everything.  Now, when you want software, you just go to your “store” and download it.  Or, run it through the cloud.

It’s the nature of the teacher beast that we hoard things like this so it was comforting to know that I’m not the only one with a “collection”.  There was a time when I did my backups to DVD because it was such a reliable medium.  But, today, it’s difficult to find and certainly a premium to buy a computer that even has a CD/DVD player installed.  It’s also now just an option on many cars.  The upgrade to satellite radio seems to have replaced it.  Oh, and then there’s a USB port to plug in your media player.

Teachers are creative sorts and I know that these old medium are now materials for projects.  They make intriguing mobiles or wheels for your own truck/car.  I know that I’ve even used a few of them placed together to level a desk.

What are your thoughts for a Sunday?

  • Do you still have a collection of CDs or DVDs sitting within reach?
  • Does the computer you’re using right now have a CD/DVD drive?  (Mine doesn’t)
  • Have you ever done a personal backup of your data to DVD?
  • Have you ever ripped a CD to your MP3 player for portable music?
  • What innovative ways do you have for using your old media that saves them from a landfill.

Please share your thoughts in the comments below.  I’d like some good ideas for what to do with my collection.

And, if you have an idea for a future post, please share it to the Whatever happened to … Padlet.

OTR Links 02/11/2018

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.