My Week Ending 2019-05-05

Here’s a summary of some of the things I learned and published this week.


You can follow my daily readings as they happen here.  Below are a selected few, with commentary, from the past week.

  • If you’re interested in keeping score with all the changes that have taken place with the current Ontario government, check here. I thought I was up to date but no.
  • I get a kick from doing quizzes like this. Purported to be a Mensa test, I did pretty well.
  • It’s tough enough to offer a complete set of courses for some school districts at present. It’s going to get worse. Northern boards are concerned.
  • Probably not a big deal for many but when Windsor makes it on the Simpsons, it’s big news around here.
  • I would have guessed four but Google Assistant tells me I’m wrong. Verified here.
  • Well, everyone except Computer Scientists, I suspect.
  • Perhaps not the definitive list – everyone has their own thoughts – but it is a pretty history.
  • If you’re new to Flipgrid or are just curious, this summary should serve you well. There’s always something to learn.
  • It’s just posturing. If you take this stuff to seriously, your blood pressure will go through the roof. It takes two to tango, as they say.
  • This is a reminder that losing a teacher is more than just losing a body at the staff meeting.
  • I’m looking forward to see what Microsoft considers expendable as they work on a Lite version of Windows.
  • Does your password pop up in this list of weak passwords? If it does, you might want to up your game.
  • It’s so nice to see that Computer Scientists are recognized in this post. What state will be next?
  • Been there, done that says society. But, if you want to find out how, the manual is now for sale.

Blog Posts on doug … off the record

My daily contributions to this blog.


voicEd Radio

My on demand radio page can be found here.  

Opening song this week:

The latest #TWIOE show features blog posts from:

Technology Troubleshooting 

We love McDonald’s coffee.

We’re not a fan of long waits in drive throughs.

So, often I’ll park and go inside to order the coffee. The local McDonald’s restaurant is right across the road from the high school and the kids have really taken to the electronic order board. I was interested until I read this story. In fact, when that story came out, there were lots of others reporting the same thing.

Shortly thereafter, there were articles calling it a hoax. But, a hoax with some truth behind it.

This morning, I happened to read this somewhat related story.

It’s directed to society in general but it certainly spurred some comments from teachers about things that teachers touch all the time. Phones, iPads, art equipment – Anne Shillolo and Lisa Corbett just kept piling on.

I do know that, in my lab when we shared computers, I would spring for packages of Lysol wipes and would encourage students to wipe the keyboard before logging in.

Do you buy into the theory that teachers are more resistant to bugs than society in general? If you do, there certainly would have to be a sliding scale depending upon the age of the students you teach!

Video of the Week

Photo of the Week

On Saturday, we took the dog for a walk at the Leamington Marina and saw this. The ferry to the right is the Pelee Islander. For years, it’s made the trip to Pelee Island. (I’ve done that many times!) The one on the left is the new Pelee Islander II. It’s huge in comparison.

I had to snap a picture with my phone.

  • It was the first time I’d seen them together.
  • My first reaction was that the new boat had its mouth open and was going to swallow the original.

Please join me daily and I hope that you check in next Sunday for a summary of my week.

Thanks for reading.


This blog post was originally posted at:

If you find it anywhere else, it’s not original.


Whatever happened to …

… disk activity lights?

If you’re reading this post on your phone, a MacBook, or a Chromebook or even a modern personal computer, you may not have even noticed but those of us long in the computer tooth will remember.

A few years ago, all Windows/Linux PCs had a disk activity light. It let you know when your computer was reading or writing to the hard drive. Particularly with Windows, there really was no point of asking the computer to do anything until the light had stopped flashing/flickering.

Or, if you were working and all of a sudden your keyboard or mouse was unresponsive, you’d look at the disk activity light and saw it flashing which was an indicator that it had better things to do than work with you.

Every now and again, I’ll indulge myself with a stroll through a computer store and, on my last tour, noticed that none of the Windows laptop computers had activity lights.

Now, I didn’t do an exhaustive check of every computer (I wasn’t alone and academic things like this are waste of time for her…) but I did look at some Microsoft, Dell, Acer, and some Asus PCs. Nothing flickering in sight although they all had a promotional slideshow running which should have generated lots of disk activity.

Never the less, it was always a good indicator of how your computer was working.

For a Sunday, your thoughts…

  • I’m a Macintosh, Chromebook user and life is just supposed to be this way?
  • Other than monitoring Windows, did anyone really care about this feature?
  • Was it a hangover from desktop PCs?
  • Are today’s hard drives and solid state drives so fast that it’s really not needed?
  • Did someone have a stroke from looking at it flashing and so it was decided to be a health hazard?
  • Was it a feature that a manufacturer could save some money on during production?

I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on this topic. I should point out that there are various pieces of software that you can download and run on your computer to indicate disk activity if you miss it!

Please respond in the comments below.

Posts like this are a regular Sunday thing about here. You can read about all of them here.

This post originally appeared on:

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not original.

OTR Links 05/05/2019

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