imageOptim

I know we are in the days of lots of free space, but it is worth remembering when blogging (or making webpages) shrinking images is worth doing for your visitors.

I don’t always do it, but today as I updates a Glow Blogs Help page, I saved nearly half the space by using, ImageOptim — better Save for Web.

There are other tools, but this one is free & open source, works on a Mac, but lists and links to windows & linux tools.

IMG_5868

Dean Groom on Poekemon Go:

Teachers should care about Pokémon Go! – after from the initial network effects (craze) as it is a good way for kids to develop socially. It isn’t designed for education and certainly presents the all too common accessibility issues of commercial games – but THIS game leads you to start thinking about why games, play and learning are important – and how they can be connected with helping children deal with saturated media cultures – Great!

from: Should teachers care about Pokémon Go? | Playable

There is a lot more to think about in that post.

As usual with games, my mind wander and my eyes glaze, I’ve never caught the game bug (although I am interested when I read something like the above).

My first though was it is a wee bit like golf, a good walk spoiled. I am now wondering if some of my own behaviour fits the pattern.

fr_593_size640

  1. I wander about outside, searching, looking at the map on my phone
  2. I capture images
  3. Share and store online, socially, flickr, instagram.

Featured image my own, IMG_5868 | John Johnston | Flickr CC-BY, sort of hunting idea. The kind of Pokemon I look for.

pionmac

After 38946 gifs and 24660 jpgs my Raspberry pi has stopped taking photos.

I am not sure why but it stopped recognising the camera module. I’ve decided to give that a rest while keeping the pi going as a server for other things. I’ve also moved it from the windowsill to a better position on my local network.

It is still running my River5 which I wrote about Raspberry River and a basic web-server: john’s pi server.

I’ve now added Dave Winer’s blogging software 1999.io: johnjohnston which has been running for nearly a week. Setup notes: 1999 set up on my pi

This has given me a chance to play (a little) with all the pieces, node, git, the pi and a new blogging system.

1999.io is quite opinionated software and has some differences from systems I am more familiar with. I’ve written some notes 9 Thoughts on 1999.io & Comments, Rivers and Glossaries. It is helping me think a bit about how software affects us.

I’ve also bought a Pi NoIR camera which I’ve used on my other pi, grabbing photos every minute of the bin outside our window in the hope of catching some foxes. It is not posting to the web, but over the network to my mac. My poor craft skills mean it was balanced on some cardboard and slowly slipped through the night. No foxes were photographed on the first try. I’ll be getting a better mount and trying again.

I’d like that, second, pi to be portable with a few buttons to do different things, start timelapse, grab and post a gif, etc. I’ll need to learn a bit more.

solid-links

This is a experiment, I’ve generated a list of my recent (last 6 weeks) Pinboard: bookmarks tagged ‘facebook’ and post them below.

This will hopefully be a useful reference for me and perhaps others.

I’ve been thinking about Facebook quite a bit recently. I still only visit occasionally and feel fairly negative about it. When I do visit I often see interesting things about folk I know, but not enough to make me visit more often. I also recognise that it can be used for really interesting projects for example the EAST Project we talked about on on Radio #EDUtalk.

The video, linked to by Alan, held my attention for the full hour (I find it hard to watch online videos for more than a few minutes).

The Featured Images is Soild links | SONY DSC | Bernard Spragg. NZ | Flickr used under a public domain license. Stamped with the stamped attributor version of flickr cc attribution bookmarklet maker.

CharlieChaplinEatingMachine

Yesterday I tweeted a link to a great post, the transcript of a talk about some social aspects of technology and how allowing technologist to lead our progress might have negative impacts on our privacy and lives, here is a quote.

Those who benefit from the death of privacy attempt to frame our subjugation in terms of freedom, just like early factory owners talked about the sanctity of contract law. They insisted that a worker should have the right to agree to anything, from sixteen-hour days to unsafe working conditions, as if factory owners and workers were on an equal footing.

Companies that perform surveillance are attempting the same mental trick. They assert that we freely share our data in return for valuable services. But opting out of surveillance capitalism is like opting out of electricity, or cooked foods—you are free to do it in theory. In practice, it will upend your life.

Remarks at the SASE Panel On The Moral Economy of Tech

This spoke very much to some thoughts I’ve been having about our relationship to technology companies. Some of these were sparked  by Dean Groom, Why not to buy Minecraft Education Edition.  Some more idaea were discussed at the Always on (them) event at the University of the West of Scotland and I am in the midst of exploring those in a few microcasts, tagged DigitalUWS & microcast (one down a few more to go).

I’ve not come to any great conclusions but I do think it is something we should be thinking a lot harder about.

More grist arrived today from Stephen Downes:

I can see how the presentation would engage school leaders looking for a way to address current trends in learning, but they need to look beyond the single-vendor approach proposed here, and they should be clear that technology companies are service providers who are held accountable for delivery, not partners taking a hand in pedagogical and educational decisions.

Looking back to move forward: A process for whole-school transformation ~ Stephen Downes

I know myself enough to recognise that I am somewhat enthralled by technology and software. I certainly need to think about my relationship, on so many levels, with the technology I use. Should we be addressing this in the classroom with our pupils?

featured image is probably walking a copyright tightrope, but seems appropriate

IMG_0079.jpeg

On Thursday I attended the Always on (them): Digital and Social Media use in Education event at the University of the West of Scotland. This was organised by Professor David McGillivary.

I only stayed for the morning as I had to get back to run a twilight course. Very disappointed to have to leave early as the morning set up some great questions for discussion in the afternoon. I was speaking just before lunch and as I listened to other speakers I had to update my talk on the sly.

I recorded the audio for all morning speakers for edutalk, I’ve now posted them with a DigitalUWS tag.

In my presentations I briefly described my own history of blogging and podcasting at Sandaig, Glow Blogs and ended with some questions. Preparing for the talk allowed me to think sound some ideas that have been buzzing in my mind for a while. I hope to tease them out in a few subsequent posts or microcasts.

My rather rough slides at: Always On

Audio, from Edutalk:

And the questions I ended with:

ARE THESE IMPORTANT QUESTIONS?

  • Are we getting the best out of Social Media?
  • Should pupils be more involved in posting?
  • Do we read others productions or are we using SM as a broadcast?
  • Are we aware of the costs & implications of using free commercial software?
  • Do we need to teach, copyright, ownership, where is my stuff?
  • Long form via short form, where is your attention at?
    Media, 140 chars vs Video vs Audio vs Long Form?
  • As professionals do we have enough understand the tools and their affordances?
  • Do we know any more about Internet Princes than youngsters?

I think these are important questions and the answers to some are simple but others are very complex indeed.

I referred and pointed to a post I read on the way to the event:
Stereotype Threat and Police Recruitment | Hapgood
Where it said:

We get hung up on “ease-of-use” in software, as if that was the only dimension to judge it. But social software architectures must be judged not on ease of use, but on the communities and behaviors they create, from the invite email to the labels on the buttons. If one sentence can make this much difference, imagine what damage your UI choices might be doing to your community.

I believe we need to think a lot more about the software we use and the effect it has on communication and on us. Hopefully I’ll think a bit more about this in some subsequent posts/microcasts.

If you didn’t make the event I’d recommend listening to the audio and the Twitter stream #DigitalUWS has some good stuff too.

Featured image, my own photo, I though my lock screen image is relevant to some of the things I was trying to talk about.

cc-by-sa

Alan asked, Call / Plea / Beg for Responses: What If Creative Commons Certifications? for some feedback on Creative Commons. He is working on a project to educate folk about Creative Commons.

Here are the Questions:

  • Who are you? Introduce yourself, first name fine, where in the world you live, what kind of work you do.
  • What role does Creative Commons play in the things you do? This could be related to work/teaching, but also in terms of media sharing for content created. Or it could be “none”.
  • What would it mean to you to have a Creative Commons certification? What would you do with it, how would it play into the things you do. What is its value? And like in Bill’s video, that answer might be “nothing”.
  • What might it look like to earn a certification? Imagine, project a vision for what it would take for you to get a Creative Commons certification, how/where is it done (in person, workshop, course, online)? How long does it take? What kinds of things are you doing to earn it?

Alan suggested spending around 5 minutes recording. I spend a little more and my recording was shorter. I’ve taken a oblique shot at answering the questions, having a wee bit of fun. Here is my video:

 

On reflecting I should have spent a bit more time on this, but hopefully folk will get the idea. I like creative commons, publish using that license and consume a fair amount of cc material.

Some of the audio is a bit muffled, the video in the first section is poor, but I like the “poem” and the idea. The major faux-paux is the badges in the 3rd section, which is a public domain image, not one with a CC license.

Here is the text of the second section:

Creative Commons how do I love you, let me count the ways:

I love how you decorate my blog posts,
How you provide me with a grist for my mash ups,
You allow me to share and be shared,
Give me hope for a world that is less greedy.
You articulate freedom,
Win by losing,
Hint at the richness that the digital may provide,
You alliterate a connection to the best of the past, level the creative field,
And enrich the world.

Hopefully the hints at the levellers (not the band), and the commons on both of which my knowledge is slight and romantically tinged.

The Third and Forth Questions I try and combine:

These next two questions I though I’d tackle together.
I don’t have many certificates. I’ve passed the odd exam, got a degree but these have never really driven me to learn.
I’ve had a look at open badges and earned a few mostly tyre kicking.

What does drive me to some extent is approval from peers and betters. I like being involved in a community. I learn slowly in bursts and revisit things. I’ve learnt a bit about creative commons over the years, mostly by using and making and doing.

So rather than earn a certificate I might like to be loosely joined to a community with room for practise, play and learning. I would probably like a sticker or a t-shirt, I would not want a test.

My main though around creative commons is about sharing resources to be used creatively. I love to play with media and make things, Creative Commons is one of the things that really help. I don’t have any great claims for their worth, but I learn by doing. As a final aside I read this in the Observer today:

We’re creating more and more, this is the interesting thing, if you track the number of songs being written every year, there are millions and millions. We’re on a curve where basically everybody in the world will have written a book or a song or made a video, on average. Most of this is going to have a very small audience but that’s fine. Who cares? I think it’s OK that most of it is crap.

from: Digital prophet Kevin Kelly: I’ve learned a lot from Spielberg | Books | The Guardian

How nice if CC helps us move to a world where creating is not limited to the chosen few.