My Week Ending 2022-12-18

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. They’re posted to the blog daily under the title OTR Links.


  • Some verbs to spruce up your writing
  • How to speed up the Google Chrome browser – maybe it works but you’ve got to remember to do it – I’m not sure it does what I want it to


  • 553 cars stolen in the last month in Mississauga / Brampton? Wow.
  • Who doesn’t like a good science story? Here are 10 of the best from the past year


  • I had a good laugh at this although it is at the expense of Americans and I do have some good friends south of the border
  • My reason is that I do like to get a new laptop periodically and a replacement MacBook is just so expensive


  • In case you were going to grab a taxi thinking you’re going to be in the Cash Cab, think about scammers
  • Windows 11 gets a screen recording tool built in


  • This will be sad. The big church in Stoney Point has long been a landmark that I look for when heading out along the short of Lake St. Clair
  • Free STEM education for K-18 students from Purdue University


  • I think that unseating Google Maps as your go-to mapping application is going to be tough, even for these big hitters
  • Like so many people, I believed that Musk was all in the favour of free speech and yet reporters are now banned


  • I’m not convinced that a flipable device is in my future just yet. Beyond the details in this article, I’m afraid that I would just break it. I’m so used to tapping my pocket and feeling the big device there
  • I think I’ve always done this to help myself learn things; now I learn there’s an actual name for it

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 – December 16, 2022

voicEd Radio

This Week in Ontario Edublogs is a blog post/show/podcast that features great writing from Ontario Edubloggers. Stephen Hurley and I use their writing as the basis for a conversation.

Featured Bloggers:

  • Vicky Loras – @vickyloras
  • Aviva Dunsiger – @avivaloca
  • Lisa Corbett – @LisaCorbett0261
  • Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTL
  • Noa Daniel – @iamnoadaniel

This week’s voicEd Radio show:

A playlist of the songs of Peace that we open and close the show with.

Technology Troubleshooting

I thought it was a rule.

If you’re running any software on a Macintosh, the close button should be on the left of the window. In the Brave browser, it is.

But, and I think it’s a big big, it’s not consistent. The little X that lets you close a tab is on the top right of the tab you want to close.

Why wouldn’t it be on the left?

Video of the Week

I’m a little infatuated by Ingrid Andress’ version of this song. She has such a wonderful voice.

Photo of the Week

Jaimie and I were out for a walk on the new trail by the Libro Centre. Someone had taken the time to do this with tree twigs.

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:


Whatever happened to …


Peter McAsh is on a roll this week with this being his second suggestion for a blog post. Thanks, bud.

For me, backchanneling is one of the very best uses of social media.

It’s a simple concept – a conference or a speaker or just a few friends agree that they’ll use a hashtag – we primarily used Twitter and share our thoughts about the message being delivered as a speaker delivers it.

Gone are the days of sitting through an entire session and the speaker asks

Are there any questions?

And, as you flip through your notes looking for something that you wanted to ask, the speaker is thanked by someone, given their gift, and then escorted from the stage.

By backchanneling, you can immediately share your thoughts and questions and allow others to take them and elaborate. It gives you a bigger payoff for the price of attendance.

For those who were not able to attend in person, they have the opportunity to at least follow the discussion and maybe even join in.

A good speaker/organizer will encourage it and use them as a way to consolidate the learning at the end rather than “are there any questions?”

Peter and I actually did this recently – I had intended to attend the Annual General Meeting for ECOO but had to get an oil change for my car instead. He nicely backchanneled his interpretation of what was going on and I got caught up on this later.

If you want to see backchanneling in action, here’s the discussion hashtagged from the Western Regional Computer Advisory Committee’s Symposium 2010. Doug Sadler and I co-chaired this with Ian Jukes and Angela Maiers as our keynote speakers. We used the format of a morning keynote and an afternoon keynote. We also asked the keynote speakers to also do a breakout session called “A conversation with …” and the backchanneling was helpful to support that conversation.

I used this blog post to check out the presenter gifts. We had an artisan in Wiarton make original content and they were stamped with our seal. You can see what was given this year at the link in Urs Bill’s tweet.

You can read/reread the entire backchannel here.

It works well and others would like to have the same success.

For a Sunday, what are your throughs?

  • Why don’t we see backchanneling used as much these days?
  • When was the last time you saw a backchannel seriously in action?
  • If you’ve backchanneled a message, what tool did you use?
  • Have you ever gone back and reviewed a hashtag from a conference you once attended or wish you had attended?
  • Do you see any way that backchanneling could be used for bad instead of good?
  • Of course, you can backchannel a traditional conference but where else could you use this technique?
  • When will we see the return of the face-to-face learning conference?

I’d be interested in your comments on this. Please channel them to me in the comments below.

This is a regular Sunday morning post around here. You can check them all out here.

OTR Links 12/18/2022

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