Replied to 30 and Counting, Episode 5: Leaving Facebook… and replying over email? (30andcounting.me)

In this episode, I talk about my plans to leave Facebook and how I plan to in some ways replace it with a monthly newsletter. Then I brainstorm about how to receive replies and reactions from it.

I really like this idea Eddie. I guess it builds on the idea of creating custom web actions? I am not sure I would necessarily know where to start but interpreted that it is in part built around information in the URL. I currently use Tinyletter and haven’t explored MailChimp completely, but is this solution built into the template or your original posts?

Look forward to following your journey.

Replied to Creativity Tips Vlog Series: 1-10 #LDvid30 (AmusED)

Thanks to the inspiration of @karenmolonely of Sydney and my friend Helen Blunden of Melbourne I’ve taken up the challenge of recording a short (under 3 min) video each day and contributing t…

I love this Amy. It reminds me of microcasts. The rawness and reflective nature. I am also reminded of George Couros’ idea of #EDUin30 based on Twitter’s constraint of 30 seconds.

Another thing you could do is add your videos to Huffduffer using Ryan Barrett’s bookmarklet for video. This would allow you to create a quasi-podcast from your vlogs, although it would be temporary as Barrett only holds the audio stripped from YouTube for 30 days. It is a start though.

Replied to Issue #149 of the TL;DR Newsletter – rethinking the simple bare necessities. (TLDR)

Interesting view from Tom Hulme of Google Ventures arguing that teaching kids to code isn’t the future proofed ticket to future jobs as framed by many people. Deep machine learning will likely automate the writing of code relatively quickly. Creativity is going to be far more important in a future where software can code better than we can.

Wondering Ian if ‘coding’ can actually be a part of creativity? In my current work, I need to think creatively to design a solution that can accommodate a number of scenarios and situations, while at the same time being relatively simple. For me, this is about working within the constraints. I may not know how to code my solutions, but I am not going to buy a future where I have no knowledge of the way things work. I work with too many people who think they can make decisions (creative or critical) without understanding the context at hand.
Replied to 🔖 Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith by Chris AldrichChris Aldrich (Chris Aldrich | BoffoSocko)

Bookmarked Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era by Tony Wagner, Ted Dintersmith (Scribner)
From two leading experts in education and entrepreneurship, an urgent call for the radical re-imagining of American education so that we better equip students for the realities of the future.

Chris, not sure if you are interested, but Benjamin Doxtdator wrote what I thought was an intriguing review of Most Likely to Succeed. Thought I’d share.
Replied to Stop dreaming, Australia: Google is staying in Sydney by John McDuling (The Sydney Morning Herald)

Amazon, for example, is currently auditioning 20 US cities to be the location for its second headquarters in North America. Those shortlisted include “rust-belt” cities such as Pittsburgh, Indianapolis and Columbus, Ohio (although two decidedly ‘global’ cities, New York and Washington DC, are the firm favourites to prevail).

The reaction from Australian cities to whispers that Google could leave Sydney suggests the search giant could have conducted a similar bake-off in Australia if it wanted to.

Maybe Google could move to Federation Square in Melbourne? It would seem that is a space for sale.
Replied to Gonski 2.0: Promoting a deficit view of Australian teachers (the édu flâneuse)

Of course we can and should improve Australian education. Of course we should have high expectations of students and educators. Of course we should develop our knowledge of effective teaching, learning and leading. Of course we should continue to develop our engagement with research and evidence. But Australian education is not a factory model of mass education production. It is not a calamitous problem to be solved, a bunch of broken individuals to be fixed, or a commercial opportunity ready to be flooded by corporate solutions. Australian teachers, school leaders and schools deserve trust, respect, support and involvement in policymaking.

I am really interested in your point about rhetoric. Another interesting read on the topic of testing and improvement is National Testing in Schools. I was really struct by the influence that NAPLAN has had on the way we speak about learning and education as a whole, especially Nicole Mockler’s chapter. It feels that this report continues some of this.
Replied to 5 Useful, Free Photo Apps for Teachers and Students (Primary Tech)

In this post, I’m going to share five apps to do with photography and images that I’ve been exploring lately.

I feel like these could be useful to help teachers and/or students overcome certain obstacles … or just have fun being creative.

This is an interesting collection of apps Kathleen. I think that what you use often comes down to which platform you are on.

I have collected some options and alternatives to Google Drawings, but these are usually web-based (although what is ‘the web’ when a Chromebook can run Android apps.)

In regards to Adobe, I wonder if the ‘school managed accounts’ can be used beyond just Adobe Spark?

Replied to Vic budget 2018 (danielbowen.com)

Essendon and Watergardens DDA, business cases for Broadmeadows/Pakenham, improvements Kananook and Seaford $16m — I’m a bit surprised Watergardens needs major works given it was only built in 2002. Does it suffer from capacity problems?

Dan, I wonder if the changes to Watergardens relates to issues around accessibility. It is currently built around steps and lifts. When the lifts break, as they seem to, it can be a problem.

This issue is only amplified by the capacity on the Sunbury line. I would imagine that this is only going to increase with the development of land between Caroline Springs and Melton. Really they are in need of ramps similar to Sunshine Station.

Replied to 👓 The Web We Need to Give Students | BRIGHT Magazine by Chris AldrichChris Aldrich (Chris Aldrich | BoffoSocko)

Read The Web We Need to Give Students by Audrey Watters (BRIGHT Magazine) “Giving students their own digital domain is a radical act. It gives them the ability to work on the Web and with the Web.”

I must admit, I hadn’t read that post before. However, I did enjoy her book on the importance of domains though. I think that there are many cross overs between a Domain of One’s Own and the #IndieWeb.
Replied to Treading on Dreams: The Art of the #lookdown (AmusED)

Recently on a trip to Vancouver, Canada and Australia I decided to make a point of archiving some of the magnificent surfaces beneath my boots, and entitled the series #thesebootsaremadeforwalking.

It is fascinating to think about this idea Amy, having been in the middle of a conversation when you spotted your unicorn:

Amy's Canberra Unicorn

I had a similar experience with Alan Levine when I met up with him in Melbourne:


“Pick Your Lift” by cogdogblog is licensed under CC0

Having followed both of your work for some time, it was intriguing to see it all unfold serendipitously in real time.

In part I guess this falls under the wider notion of transparency, yet is somehow different. It is the context that often sits outside of the page (or post). Rather than worrying about which ‘tool’ the artist uses, it provides an insight into the life of the artist.

When I think about my own habits, I feel I am curious when it comes to the digital world, but could be more open to the physical world. For example, I recently discovered an initiative via Ian O’Byrne where trees in Melbourne are assigned an email address. To be fair, I love to go walking, but am often to busy in thought to notice the thriving world around me, let alone at my feet. This initiative at least helped call that out.

I found this the best thing about your sessions in Canberra. It is almost as if they provide ‘permission’ to somehow let go and be curious.

Maybe like Adrian Camm’s ‘permission to innovate’:

Permission to Innovate (Adrian Camm)


Permission to Innovate

Maybe you could give out literal permission to be curious cards?

Replied to #WhyITeach by John Wigg (Mr Wigg)

I teach because I love being a child’s advocate and helping him/her realize his/her own potential.

I remember deciding that I wanted to be a teacher when I left school and although I became a teacher, my reasoning for why I wanted to teach considerably changed. I started out with an interest in History and in hindsight, probably subject knowledge and skills, yet when I finished my studies I was more interested in creating the conditions for others to wonder.

I think I teach (or am involved in education) to support others in reaching their potential, but also in engaging in interests. I remember being told once that the word essay is best understood as ‘your say’. I have never actually found a reference for this, but the lesson stuck.

Syndicated at Read Write Collect

Replied to Have we moved on from the Cambridge Analytica scandal? (My Thoughts…)

This week has been fascinating, it appears that things have begun to recover after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which then led to the #deletefacebook movement. This movement seemed to have a small, but noticeable impact for a moment on the pages that I support.

Although it is easy to ‘delete Facebook’, doing so without a replacement fails to recognise its place – positive or negative – in our life and society. I remember when I used to live in the Victorian country side being amazed by the amount of Weeping Willows growing along the open channels that carried water between the various properties. An introduced species, they actually sapped up a lot of the water. I once asked the Outdoor Education teacher I was working alongside why they did not just remove them. He explained that to simply remove them actually causes even more damage through erosion. What is needed was to plant something next to the tree that would be able to take its place and fill the same purpose. Delete Facebook was therefore never going to work without there being a replacement in its place.

The Luddbrarian suggests that what makes the current campaign different is that the data breaches allowed Trump to win. This overlooks the problem at the base of such automated solutions.

Facebook offers people an easy way to stay in touch with friends, Facebook offers people an easy way to stay on top of the news, Facebook makes it easy for people to share photos, Facebook makes it easy to plan events (and to say whether or not you’re going to the event), Facebook makes it easy to promote your new creative project, and so forth. In order to obtain these “goods” on offer from Facebook a user must deal with the “bads” of Facebook – but that is why the bribe exists and how it operates. The offer of the good is used so that people overlook the bad.

What we need is to widen our technological imagination and consider how Facebook could be better. For me, the #IndieWeb is a part of that.

Replied to Uncanny EdTech (bavatuesdays)

Uncanny Learning

Although the zombie apocalypse did not occur in 2012 (as much as I am aware), many of these futures sadly seemingly are coming into fruition. From net neutrality to Web 2.0, many ‘promises’ have failed. One highlight was the mention of Wordle. The uncanny aspect is that it feels like a conversation that is needed today as much as ten years ago.
Replied to Setting up WordPress for IndieWeb use by Chris AldrichChris Aldrich (Chris Aldrich | BoffoSocko)

This was a really helpful walk-through Chris. I agree with your point in the IndieWeb podcast that it could be compressed into half an hour, but I always thought that was the point of adjusting the playback speeds?

I just had a few thoughts / questions while watching / listening:

    I never realised that I could add all my Rel=Me links within my profile, does that mean that I do not have to go through all the rigmarole of adding them to my ‘child theme’? That definitely makes it a lot easier to setup.
    I am really interested in modifying / developing a custom post kind, but what happens when David Shanske updates the plugin? How do I set up to allow for updates and customisation? Is this some sort of ‘child theme’?
    I wonder if it were possible (maybe in the IndieWeb multisite or something) to customise the ‘Welcome’ box when you first start WordPress? Imagine if the information that is detailed in the IndieWeb plugin area could be placed there, front and centre?
Replied to An Indieweb Podcast – Episode 3: Syndication by David ShanskeDavid Shanske (David Shanske)


Show notes

Another great listen David and Chris. I have taken to using Post Editor Buttons Fork plugin to add custom code, such as embedding audio and syndicating to #IndieNews. I am happy with any other solution, especially as I imagine Gutenberg may break my buttons?

I am really interested in your work in combining Bridgy Publish and Syndicated Links. I currently use SNAP for Twitter, Flickr and Diigo, Mastodon Autoposter and Jetpack for G+. (I could never get Bridgy Publish to work, but after Chris’ recent walkthrough, I think that I need to have a second look.) I find it really tedious to remember which ones to turn on and off for each post. I really like the idea of one space to control them all if that is what you are proposing.

Replied to Blogging Q&A (freetech4teachers.com)

Richard, as always, I love your openness to not only share resources, but also your thoughts. I really enjoyed your Q&A and agree with your recommendation of Edublogs and WordPress.org. I also really liked your point about having a notebook for ideas. I must be honest, I use Trello to keep my ideas, but the point is that things come to life long before the literal blog post starts.

My only concern was your comment from Guy Kawasaki to just write great posts and people will find them. I disagree. Not because I think that I write great stuff that has not been found, but rather because I do not think that it is that simple.

I really liked a post Bill Ferriter wrote on this topic, in which he said:

Audience is a function of the content that you create, the consistency of your creation patterns, the length of time that you’ve been creating, the opportunities that you have to be in front of audiences in the real world, the relationships that you have with people who have audiences larger than you do — and, as frustrating as it may seem, serendipity.

His answer is instead to ‘Bring Your Own Audience’. As he explains:

The most powerful members of your audience are those people that you ALREADY have an intellectual relationship with. Maybe they are folks in your school that you have lunch with every day. Maybe they are buddies from other schools in your district that you meet for beers a few times a month. Maybe they are colleagues that you hang with once per year at teaching conferences around the country.

Those are the people who are the most likely to stop by your blog or respond to your Tweets and challenge your thinking — so instead of trying to build a huge audience of strangers, concentrate on building a small audience of peers.

I think that whether it be blogging in the classroom or starting a professional blog, the best thing that you could do is find a few people who you really want to share with and start there.

Replied to #rawthought: Weed or Wish: Sunday Morning Metaphors (AmusED)

what if what we thought was detrimental was really beneficial?
what if the messy was better than the perfectly manicured?
what if the foreign (or at least outside influence) was better than the domestic?

Amy, this reminds me of your post about balance and seasons. So often we focus our attention of giving student choice and action, without scaffolding to that point.

We cannot just rip the ‘weeds’ out. There must be flowers in their place for the bees. This is not about ignoring the weeds to me, but accepting then for now for the place they serve.

I think that Benjamin Doxtdator captures this in a recent post on instruction in the classroom:

There is a strong and powerful role for direct instruction and using model texts, but this must take place inside a larger liberatory project that aims to undo deficit theories of language use.

It is about the intent and sometimes that is where the wish lays waiting.

Replied to How I Set Up My Indieweb WordPress Site – 2018 Edition by David ShanskeDavid Shanske (David Shanske)

For anyone who comes here considering trying my setup, I’m always available to help. For those who are trying my plugins…they are still being refined, but feedback and contributions(of code) are appreciated.

Thank you David for the updated post. I really should write a similar post for prosperity. One question, what are your concerns with SNAP? I think it could be better, but is 10x better than Jetpack in regards to customisation?
Replied to Blog Celebration: 10,000 Comments and Counting by Kevin Hodgson (dogtrax.edublogs.org)

Social media platforms have overtaken blogging in many ways. People (and not just the young kids) are more apt to use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr (sort of a blog), and more, and the decline of RSS readers (I still use one) as a way to gather aggregated feeds from blogging writers and educators is less a reading experience for many. Blogging isn’t dead, not by a long shot, but it has faded a bit into the busy background of the social media landscape.

Well done Kevin. Your dedication is an asset to the blogging community. I wonder what this space will look like after another 10,000 comments?