Tag: Twitter (page 4 of 11)

A story of three requests.

I’m paraphrasing, but I received these three requests today via Twitter direct messages, leading variously to an email, an instant message conversation and a Google Doc.

Can you guess which I responded to?

Request 1

You know someone I know. I’m a teacher and we’re trying to do xyz – we’ve tried everything, asked our techies and we’re stumped. Could you help?

Request 2

Doug, I know you’ve said recently on Twitter that you don’t like doing what I’m about to ask, but I’m going to ask anyway. Could you pimp xyz for me? It replicates the functionality of one of the biggest websites in the world but it’s OK because there’s a competition. Perhaps you could add it to ‘Things I Learned This Week’?

Request 3

Can I twist your arm to join in a conversation next week? Here’s a link…

<follows link to Google Doc>

Here’s the plan: I’m asking a bunch of people I know and respect write a guest post each around topic xyz, also posting it on their blog to start a conversation. I won’t edit your post because I trust you.

Guessed yet?

Top 10 Links I Shared This Week – #3

Apologies for not posting this, I was travelling from Malta…

You know the routine by now, I use bit.ly Pro to find the links that people have clicked on most often when I’ve shared them on Twitter.

I urge you to click on the Hawthorne Effect link if you don’t know what it’s about. Researchers especially should avoid claiming wonders if they haven’t taken it into account!

Name / Link (clicks)

  1. Things I Learned This Week #42 (63)
  2. DailyNote WordPress Theme (43)
  3. Dilbert on engineering, sales & marketing (39)
  4. Edtech companies: inspiring or conspiring? (29)
  5. Notifo: a notifications inbox (21)
  6. Meeting with Ed.D. thesis supervisor: restructuring (16)
  7. Doug on Productivity – Episode (15)
  8. Tesco to sell Samsung Galaxy Tab for £529 (14)
  9. Ed.D. thesis restructure (13)
  10. Wikipedia: The Hawthorne Effect – (9)

Notifo: a notifications inbox

Twitter’s great. It’s of particular use for me at work for short messages instead of emails for answering quick questions or getting time-sensitive information.

But here’s the problem:

  1. I want to find out immediately if someone sends me a message on Twitter.
  2. Twitter has turned off the ability to receive @ replies by SMS (you can only get DMs that way)
  3. Sometimes I confuse DMs with SMS which can be, er, sub-optimal.

That’s why Notifo is great. I’ve signed up and receive free notifications on my iPhone when someone sends me an @ message or DM on Twitter. Clicking on the notification takes me to the Twitter iPhone app, so no confusion with SMS!

There is a way to get Notifo to push any type of RSS feed to you, but it’s not straightforward unless the site’s using something like the WP-Notifo WordPress plugin. Let’s hope they sort that straight away.

If you’re looking for a site to test Notifo with, try this one! Click on ‘Subscribe’ in the left menu bar and then enter your username in the box. Every time I publish a post you should be instantly notified of it via Notifo.

Let me know how you get on! 😀

Top 10 Links I Shared This Week – #2

I forgot to do it last week, but it’s back (albeit with a slightly different name) this week! The following are the 10 most popular links I shared on Twitter, as tracked by bit.ly Pro. If you want to know how to get your own custom URL shortener, there’s a guide at chrisrat.com (seemingly down at present – Google cache here, although sans images)

Name / Link (clicks)

  1. Things I Learned This Week – #41http://dajb.eu/b62DRG (70)
  2. Google Books – Library – Mobile Stuff / http://dajb.eu/dougsmobilebookshelf (30)
  3. Crime software may help police predict violent offences / http://dajb.eu/9nWAjN (26)
  4. Easily-adaptable WordPress Loop Templates / http://dajb.eu/9GXoZk (26)
  5. Got 5 seconds? Help with the redesign of this blog! / http://dajb.eu/cjtvwR (17)
  6. Testing on the Vodafone 360 Handset Cloud Service / http://dajb.eu/c04WFe (15)
  7. Innovating e-Learning 2010 Online Conference : JISC / http://dajb.eu/9pEdpn (10)
  8. Doug on Productivity – Episode 3 / http://dajb.eu/bBvl9w (10)
  9. Open Learning: the journal of open and distance learning / http://dajb.eu/crDmnC (10)
  10. Get a Skype button / http://dajb.eu/94jBfr (8)

Last time around I wrote this at lunchtime, scheduling it for 5pm BST (GMT +1). This time I wrote it at the same time but scheduled it for 3pm. Let me know what you prefer. 🙂

10 Things I Shared This Week – #1

Two indisputable facts:

  • People like something to read at the weekend.
  • I share a lot of links on Twitter, usually whilst using TweetDeck.

Connecting the dots, I thought it would be useful to rank the most-clicked links that I share for those people who may have missed them. To cut a medium-length story short, any links I do share are shortened to the custom form dajb.eu/xxxxxx. This enables me to track them using bit.ly Pro (free!).

Here’s the 10 most popular links I’ve shared since Monday:

  1. Athabasca University Press – Mobile Learning (http://dajb.eu/aye3Ew) – 83 clicks
  2. #uppingyourgame: finished and now on sale! (http://dajb.eu/ai7Tnt) – 46 clicks
  3. Doug on Productivity – Episode 1 (http://dajb.eu/9xc1R4) – 44 clicks
  4. The truth about blogging (http://dajb.eu/9OIRMZ) – 35 clicks
  5. Things I Learned This Month – September 2010 (http://dajb.eu/9PgdLK) – 33 clicks
  6. Mapping stereotypes by alphadesigner (http://dajb.eu/93yVWi) – 33 clicks
  7. 3 reasons teachers should smile (http://dajb.eu/919q6f) – 29 clicks
  8. Pigeonhole Live / Fast Company (http://dajb.eu/cdFznh) – 23 clicks
  9. dougbelshaw.com/ebooks (http://dajb.eu/dougsebooks) – 23 clicks
  10. Netbook Choice – Toshiba Libretto W100 (http://dajb.eu/97QLfJ) – 21 clicks

Is this a useful thing to do every Friday afternoon? Let me know in the comments! 😀

#uppingyourgame: finished and now on sale!

I often say “I’m delighted to announce…” but it’s rarely been more true than today.

Over the course of the last ten months I’ve been developing a new publishing model called OpenBeta. The idea behind it is to gain readers from the beginning of the process who can give feedback and watch the book as it progresses. I’m pleased to say that 49 people joined in with the first OpenBeta project: #uppingyourgame: a practical guide to personal productivity.

It’s available as a paperback (via Lulu) or as a PDF over at a new site I’ve put together: dougbelshaw.com/ebooks. There’s also an affiliate scheme you can get involved with and instructions for converting from PDF to ePub/Kindle formats. Check it out! 😀

Add to Cart
eBook (£7.99)

Want a free copy of #uppingyourgame? Tweet the following and if you’re number 4, 8, 15, 16, 23 or 42 to do so I’ll get in touch for your details!

Checking out @dajbelshaw’s new eBook – #uppingyourgame: a practical guide to personal productivity – http://bit.ly/dougsebooks

Embedding a live Twitter search in Keynote 09

Sometimes a simple idea strikes you whilst planning a presentation. This time it was:

Why can’t I embed a live Twitter search in my slides?

Although I never used the functionality, it turns out it was entirely possible to do this in versions of Keynote before Keynote 09 using ‘Web View’.



Undeterred, I came across this post which provides a Keynote 08 file consisting of a single Web View-enabled slide which, happily, works in Keynote 09.

This means that during my ALT-C 2010 presentation for JISC Advance I can show tweets using the hashtags #altc10 #ja in order to get some live feedback. Note that you if you embed a search from the Twitter homepage you’ll have to replace the %23 with # and %20 with a space in the URL that’s pasted into the Keynote Inspector box.

Here’s the result:

Questions? Ask away in the comments below! 😀

You are what you habitually do.

I’m not alone in taking a book/my Amazon Kindle to the doctors/dentists/airport or somewhere else we’ve come to expect delays.

But what about other times? What about queues? What about unexpected delays?

Howard Rheingold, a bit of a hero of mine, tweeted this yesterday:

I try to see underheads ahead of me in line who fumble for their checkooks, change, as opportunities for mindfulness in the moment …so when I am delayed by circumstances beyond my control, I try to ask myself what I might not be noticing in my environment.

Instead of seeing unexpected delays as being the result of some malevolent ethereal force it’s a much better plan to have an idea of what can fill that time. Some suggestions:

  • People-watching (why do people do what they do?)
  • Writing down/expanding upon thoughts in a notebook
  • Talking to other people (i.e. practising striking-up conversation)
  • Pattern-spotting (how many x are there? what does that remind me of?)

Why not checking email/Twitter/other technological things?

You are what you habitually do. (Aristotle)

I’m aiming to become more creative, aware of my surroundings and reflective. Are you?

5 genuinely useful Twitter tools.

There’s eleventy-billion Twitter apps, tools and services all vying for your attention. Some of them are pretty, some tell you some type of score (as if Twitter was some kind of competition) and some, well, some just seem to be side-projects for bored programmers… :-p

But the following five Twitter tools are those that I find genuinely useful. They add value to my little social networking world. 🙂

1. Mr Tweet


There’s plenty of services that will help you find people to follow, but I find Mr Tweet usually gets things spot on. It’s also really easy to follow people directly from the website.

2. Packrati.us


You can configure Packrati.us in many ways, but I’ve got it set up so that anything I ‘favorite’ on Twitter automatically gets added to my Delicious links. This makes composing my Things I Learned This Week posts a whole lot easier! 🙂

3. Trick.ly


You don’t always need industrial-strength encryption to share something. There are definitely times when a shortened link coupled with a password (you can provide a clue!) does the job.

4. Screenr


If a picture paints a thousand words, a short video must paint a million! Screenr allows you to create quick screencasts and share them via Twitter. Great for everything from remote support to e-learning opportunities.

5. TwapperKeeper


If you create a hashtag (for example #movemeon that I helped make into a book) then it’s good to have an archive of tweets for future reference. TwapperKeeper does just that.

Which Twitter tools do YOU find useful? Share them below! 😀

Twitter is not the best CPD you’ve ever received.

I see this a lot:

  1. Someone is demoing Twitter.
  2. They ask their network why they use Twitter.
  3. People respond “it’s the best CPD I’ve ever received”

No. It’s. Not.

It might be the best Continual Professional Stimulation (CPS) you’ve ever received but development is more than getting a bunch of ideas. Development is:

[The] act of improving by expanding or enlarging or refining.


[A] process in which something passes by degrees to a different stage (especially a more advanced or mature stage).

That’s why TeachMeets, for example, are better CPD for those who present at them than for those who attend. Those who merely read tweets or attend TeachMeets are being professionally stimulated but not (necessarily) developed.

Happily, many of those who experience CPS end up undergoing CPD as they put those ideas into practice, reflect on it (via their blog, TeachMeet, etc.) and then make it better.

That’s development.

That’s CPD.

That’s all. 🙂

Image CC BY-NC TarikB