My Week Ending 2021-02-07

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.


  • I’m sure that the folks in Ottawa were happy to see school open for their children; the people who have to get up to speed quickly are bus drivers
  • So, Bernie Sanders’ mittens went viral. Who made them? Find out about her here


  • With all the anti-Google stuff that’s going around, they should do this before they’re forced to
  • So, here’s an example from Australia. I don’t know that I would switch to Bing; I’d quite happy right now with Duckduckgo


  • I had a request from a former colleague about publishing a book online for kids and suggested this
  • I like this concept – the west end of Windsor has been the ignored part of the city and deserves an upgrade


  • I’m a sucker for stories about the best and the worst. Not that it’s necessarily true but interesting. This time, programming languages. Scratch?
  • I’m torn with this new feature to Vivaldi. I like the concept but don’t know if I’m ready to give up the screen real estate


  • If and when this becomes available in Canada, educators will like it as a tool to fact check
  • My new winter coat arrived just in time for this attack of the Polar vortex


  • Finally, someone lets us know that learning Scratch won’t make you a billionaire and says it out loud
  • So, we’re living in COVID times, why not make a meme of it for teachers and parents?


  • I don’t use Microsoft Office apps at the best of times opting for LibreOffice or Google Workspace. Apparently Google Workspace is getting even better
  • I never was a fan of Pokemon Go and I’ll bet these folks from Kingsville aren’t in a hurry to play it again either after their fine

Blog Posts on
doug … off the record

My daily contributions to this blog are linked below. If you’re looking for a week in review for doug–off the record, you came to the right place.

#FollowFriday – February 5, 2021

voicEd Radio

On this week’s show, Stephen Hurley and I chatted about foxes, phone calls, history, JK, and debt

The show is available here:

Noa Daniels – @noasbobs
Richard Erdmann – @rerdmann
John Hoffman – @UncommonJohn
Amy Bowker – @amyebowker
W!ll Gourley – @WillGourley

Intro Song:

Closing Song:

All of the podcasts are archived here. The show is broadcast LIVE almost every Wednesday morning at 9:15 on voicEd Radio.

Technology Troubleshooting

Coats are a technology, right?

I got a new coat this week – just in time for this polar vortex. It came with a hood and a fringe around it. It didn’t come with a user’s manual though!

And I had a problem with it. It seemed to go over my head too far. The problem was that the fringe limited by vision. My wife said “deal with it”.

I just had a look at the coat and there was this odd little thing that, upon further inspection, appears to be an adjuster. I’ve tightened it which should solve my problem. I’ll find out later at the next dog walk.

Video of the Week

Strange? Fascinating

Photo of the Week

I am NOT a groundhog.

Thanks for reading.

Please join me daily for something new and, hopefully, interesting for you. I honestly and truthfully appreciate your few moments reading my thoughts. Time willing, this summary appears every Sunday afternoon.

Be safe.


This blog post was originally posted at:

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

Whatever happened to …

… astroturf?

Today’s the big day – SuperBowl Sunday. Tampa versus Kansas City. The game will be played at Raymond James Stadium and it will be played on a grass field. The field was rated highly by NFL players.

So, why aren’t all playing fields the same? Some have natural turf and some have artificial. I’ve been to a number of fields and have seen various turf types. The most impressive is the home of the Arizona Cardinals who play inside. But, between games, the grass field is stored outside. I happened to be in Phoenix for a conference and we had a tour of the place and the field actually was outside during our visit. It was so impressive.

In the early years, it was felt that you couldn’t do natural grass indoors so a product called AstroTurf was installed at the Houston Astrodome. There were all kinds of challenges playing on this field including a new injury type – turf toe. The product is now made by a number of manufacturers. Imagine inventing artificial grass.

The concept of an artificial turf though lives on – you see it in a large number of stadium like the Rogers Centre (I still call it SkyDome), Ford Field, U.S. Bank Stadium (whatever happened to the Metrodome? Oh yeah) and so many others. My dad used to call it indoor / outdoor carpeting.

The advantages of an artificial turf seem to be ideal for television. The field can be painted with uniform colours. Players don’t dig out clods of dirt; they seem to skid along the surface nicely; and I recall reading that receivers can run faster on it.) You can also move big equipment over it without damaging the surface. I was on the field at Wrestlemania at the Silverdome and it was like walking on a semi-soft parking lot.

It doesn’t lend it self to classic games though like the Mud Bowl.

So, how about sharing some of your thoughts while you wait for your chicken wings to arrive?

  • do you have a viewing preference?
  • you’d think that artificial turf would be great for northern outdoor stadiums so explain Lambeau Field in Green Bay or Soldier Field in Chicago?
  • all of the fields in the Canadian Football League have artificial surfaces except one. Do you know which that is?
  • will you watch today’s game? will you at least watch the commercials looking for the next great one like the Apple from 1984

Finally, who are you picking? Tampa Bay or Kansas City?

As a long time Minnesota Vikings fan, I don’t really have a huge preference but I’m picking Kansas City.

OTR Links 02/07/2021

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