I don’t know about you, but there’s a few selected articles and other stuff on the web that I reference on a regular basis.
Whether it’s via social networks like Twitter and Google+ or face-to-face, there’s plenty of resources that I need to find quickly and show people. I’ve tried a number of tools for doing this. I used delicious for years but, for one reason or another (mainly when it left the Yahoo! stable) I no longer really use it. And yes, I’ve got Thought Shrapnel but nowhere for the best of the best.
So I need somewhere I can go to find things that I want to show other people, and FAST. And where better than my own site?
Well, typing, but we tend to look at the future through the rearview mirror (to slightly misquote Marshall McLuhan). I’m almost finished the draft of my JISC Mobile & Wireless Technologies Review. I’ll share it, of course, when it’s finished! (16,500 words and counting…)
Spending time with my Dad
He goes back to the UAE today, but it’s been good to have my Dad around for a week due to Second Eid.
Buying a Sony Vaio P Series
You know that stuff I sold via #twebay? I used it to fund an 8″ Sony Vaio P Series ultraportable. I found one for £350 on eBay with the extended battery and in immaculate condition. I love the fact that it’s got 3G and it’s lighter than an iPad yet has a keyboard that’s almost full-size. Tip: when deleting things ready for sale, remember to remove your media player history.:-p
Starting some consultancy work
Those who have read my blog for a while – certainly when I was working in schools – will know how I’ve railed against consultants in the past. The trouble was that I’d only come across the shiny-suited types, those that are parachuted in, say nothing much and then you never see again.
Working with consultants on JISC projects couldn’t be more different. They’re often the most dedicated, hard-working and passionate people you’ll ever meet. Which is why I’ve started doing some consulting for a consultant. If you think I might be able to help you in #uppingyourgame (in a productivity-related way or otherwise) click on the Work with Doug link.
Top 10 links I’ve shared this week
The following links were those most clicked on (according to bit.ly Pro‘s stats) when I shared them via Twitter this week. I don’t include links back to this blog and the numbers this week show that I haven’t been as active on there as usual due to writing #jiscmobilereview!
Links given with number of clicks given in brackets:
Although working from home this week didn’t produce quite the number of words towards my Ed.D. thesis as I’d hoped, it nevertheless did result in a bit of a breakthrough. I now know why we’re not all talking about ‘digital literacy’ in the UK.
Selling stuff via #twebay
I’ll explain how I went about doing this in a separate post but, having already sold one or two things to Twitter followers this year, I had a go at selling a bunch of stuff using nothing more than Google Docs and TweetDeck. Check out http://dajb.eu/twebay – there’s still some stuff available!
Buying a car
I think quite possibly I have got the bargain of the year: a 1.7-litre Ford Puma (with the ‘luxury pack’) for £350:
There’s a large chance I was swayed in my love of Puma’s by the advert for them featuring Steve McQueen (which was on TV in 1997/8 just before I learned to drive):
Top 10 links I shared this week
As I explained earlier this week, it makes sense to combine my new ‘Top 10 Links I Shared This Week’ series with these weeknotes. The following links were those most clicked on (according to bit.ly Pro‘s stats) when I shared them via Twitter this week. I don’t include links back to this blog.
Links given with number of clicks given in brackets:
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)
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:
On a personal note, I learned just how delicate the balance is that keeps our world ‘normal’ (think volcanic ash cloud) and that the gadgets which provide the most satisfaction are those where you identify a problem, research solutions, and then make your purchase. :-p
I found this presentation about perceptions of the role of technology in 2020 interesting – especially the shift over the last 10 years in attitudes to the internet ‘endangering reading’:
Stuart Ridout wrote a useful post about spotting email hoaxes this week after his mother-in-law got scammed. Even my wife had to come and ask me yesterday after a professional-looking email from HM Revenue & Customs claimed she was due a £1000 tax refund. Some might call this ’email literacy’. I wouldn’t be one of those people. I call it ‘digital common sense’. 😉
Not too sure whether to follow a given individual on Twitter? Try foller.me! (which says this about me – including the following Twitter follower map)
My colleague @andystew shared this video with me this week. Sometimes, even if you’ve planned things up to the hilt, you just have to steam on in there. LLLLLLEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOYYYYYYYYYY JJJJJJJEEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNNKKKKKKKIIIIINNNNNNNNSSSSS!!!!!
Football Manager came out for the iPhone this week. And I bought it. And still remained productive. Check. Me. Out. (context: I almost failed my GCSEs, A Levels and degree because of various iterations of this game – it’s that addictive…)
Will Richardson linked this week to a Cisco-sponsored report entitled Learning from the Extremes. Much as I found We-Think by co-author Charles Leadbeater a tortuous and platitude-riddled affair, I’m looking forward to going through the report in more detail. A great point is made on p.16 about it not being education we need to reform but society:
Spreading learning is not just a question of providing more teachers and schools. A parallel process of social and cultural change is critical, so that learning is taken more seriously at home and in society. An educated society does not just have an effective school system; it has a culture that values learning.
There’s also great advice – and a quotation from Socrates – in Harold Jarche’s post ‘Shape Patterns, Not Programs’. If only the following were universally acknowledged:
Consider how one rears children. They are not little machines waiting to be directed by higher headquarters. They are people learning how to be free and responsible citizens. Their future emerges; it is not designed.
Data, Design & Infographics
The Infographics Showcase aims to collect the best infographics and data visualizations on the web, including this motion graphic on wine-making:
The following infographic shows how much artists earn for various ways of listening to their music (of course, if you buy a CD you’re paying the artist once to listen to it thousands of times; with Spotify you’re paying the artist each time you listen – via your subscription):
(click on image to see full – very tall – version)
Processing is an Open Source programming language and environment for making kick-ass visualizations. There’s a great guide to getting started with it here. I’ll be going through this over the next few days so watch this space!
A big mark of privilege is that social and economic networks tend to facilitate goals, rather than block them. This makes it easier to ignore the social and economic networks around us; and it makes it easier for the privileged to imagine their accomplishments are the result of their own pure merit. Imagine two roads: one smooth, well-paved, well-maintained, the other lumpy and full of cracks and pits. Most people will drive over the smooth road without even noticing it – but that doesn’t mean that the smooth road hasn’t facilitated their driving. Nor does it mean that the person driving on the smooth road has more merit, as a driver, than someone stuck on pothole avenue.
The most significant things I’ve learned this week have been snow-related. Have a quick look at the above YouTube video of me building an igloo. That took me 7 hours! Instead of getting all philosophical and talking about how good it felt to create something out of nothing and how I started to feel ‘at one’ with the snow, I’ll reflect on some practical considerations:
I should estimate how long things are likely to take before they start
The size of an igloo depends on the angle of the walls – easy to forget!
There are lots of different types of snow.
Igloos are actually quite warm!
I considered sleeping in it, but having worked on it for 7 hours straight every single muscle in my body hurt. I went in the bath, read my book and went to bed… :-p
Here’s a brief overview of other stuff I’ve learned this week, broken down by category.
Wirearchy is “a dynamic two-way flow of power and authority based on information, knowledge, trust and credibility, enabled by interconnected people and technology” that is replacing hierarchies in forward-thinking organizations.
This resonated with me – via Jennifer Hagy @ indexed
The ever-relevant and insightful Harold Jarche looks back at Seth Godin’s predictions for 2009 from 5 years ago (startlingly accurate) and his own from 2007, as well as looking forward to new and emerging business models.
Mashable reflects on ways social media has changed us. This post makes a lot of sense and I’m going to start to use the term ‘ambient intimacy’ to explain a lot of what goes on, online. It makes sense. 🙂