Open Thinkering


Things I Learned This Week – #43

Slightly NSFW in a not-really-but-grannies-might-not-like-it kind of way.

Offline this week I learned that Malta is lovely, that according to Easyjet I’m just a bit of meat, and that, on the other hand, 5-star hotels do respond well to a bit of whinging… :-p


  • Need to backup your social media stuff? Gina Trapani shows you how.
  • Delivr is an easy, mobile-friendly way to share stuff.
  • Mac OSX is great to look at. Which is why Macbuntu bringing Mac visuals to Linux is awesome.
  • Want to lend out your Kindle books? Now you can.
  • What can you do with wifi other than access the internet? Here’s a list.

Productivity & Inspiration

  • I could listen to Stephen Fry pontificate for hours. And I love kinetic typography. This, then, is just wonderful:


  • Seth Godin makes a plea for efficiency from the start. Amen.
  • Leo Babauta of Zen Habits has a new book called Focus. It’s available for free or you can pay for extra stuff. Extracts here.
  • Michael Hyatt explains the 5 levels of delegation. Read and learn if you’re a leader.
  • David Seah has a series on rebuilding his ‘rituals’. His latest post is here. Interesting stuff!

Education & Academic

  • MXit is apparently what you use if you’re a South African teenager with a mobile phone. The great thing is that educators are starting to tap into it. One to watch out for.
  • George Siemens has a short but provocative post on his belief that universities no longer have the power to change the Higher Education sector themselves.
  • I met Thom Cochrane at mLearn 2010 this week. His presentation, showing a small pieces, loosely joined, Web 2.0, mobile-friendly approach to educational technology had me nodding in agreement.
  • Last Wednesday saw the result of the Comprehensive Spending Review announced in the UK. The Guardian reports that it’s likely to lead to the loss of 40,000 teaching jobs. Not good.
  • Martin Waller‘s Growing Greener conference about outdoor learning and creativity happened this week and was by all accounts, a great success.

Data, Design & Infographics

  • Looking for a super-easy way to create a shareable online image gallery. You’re looking for
  • Facebook is making the web look fugly now that everyone wants to integrate with it. If, like me, you’re no longer on Facebook, or you just don’t want the distraction, try Facebook Blocker. Awesome.
  • Africa’s this big (some other useful comparisons in that post, too):

The True Size of Africa

  • I’ve waxed lyrical about Cultured Code’s status board for projects before. Paul Lewis and I were even thinking of collaborating on an Open Source version of it. Looks like someone else had the idea, which has saved us some time: Boarrd
  • Flickr asked people to post photos on 10/10/10 to document what the world was doing on a day with such an aesthetically pleasing date. I liked ‘searching mushrooms‘ best (shame it’s not CC-licensed)



Zombie T-shirt

  • This is true. Especially given I’m nearly 30.
  • If, like me, you’ve an enquiring mind, you may have wondered how tall the red Angry Bird would be in real life. Turns out it’s around 70cm. So now you know.
  • Radical pessimist? This is your guide to the next 10 years. My favourite point?

The future isn’t going to feel futuristic

It’s simply going to feel weird and out-of-control-ish, the way it does now, because too many things are changing too quickly. The reason the future feels odd is because of its unpredictability. If the future didn’t feel weirdly unexpected, then something would be wrong.


Fear is proof of a degenerate mind. (Virgil)

Formula for success: under promise and over deliver. (Tom Peters)

Most people would rather be certain they’re miserable, than risk being happy. (Robert Anthony)

Start by doing what is necessary, then do what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible. (St. Francis of Assisi)

Each uneventful day that passes reinforces the steadily growing false sense of confidence that everything is alright. That I, we, my group, must be OK, because the way we did things today resulted in no adverse consequences. (Scott Snook)

(more quotations at my page)

Main image by me of the Grand Harbour in Malta

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