Friday, December 19, 2008

Why I am all a-flitter about Twitter

It began simply enough. Quickly create an account and just check it out, I said. Just another social application in a sea of social applications, I said. But, noooooo... Twitter has become an obsession. A quick window of access to the willingly-shared thoughts of us lowly public servants to the lofty rungs of the political, social, and entertainment elite.

Twitter is a compromise between synchronous and asynchronous communication. It is not quite a chat and not quite a message board (aka., forum).

The real power of Twitter is that it allows you to...wait for it...LISTEN. It is a listening device. A pulse check of what is current and immediate. For educators, we know the almighty power of listening. It is the basic skill we beg our students to master.

This compromise between listening and acting is the essence of both life and social skills that we, as educators, ask of our learners. Twitter gives us a chance to practice this balance, ourselves. It helps us to understand, at a deeper level, what we are asking of our students.

Twitter allows us to efficiently opt-in and converse where we can contribute, and to opt-out and ponder the utterances from whence we can learn.

Twitter is a social technology for all teachers. Sign-up and give me a tweet @InstructorG

Update: Laura Fitton ( @Pistachio ) provides a clear and practical description of Twitter and the implications for profound personal and business use. Insight gained from this presentation is also meaningful to educators and education administrators.
He who listens to truth is not less than he who utters truth. - Kahlil Gibran
Stay tuned for additional posts about Twitter and its relevance as a "technology for all teachers".

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Backup Your Google Apps and Data - umm - NOW!

Those of you using the wonderful and free "cloud computing" services of Google, should be aware that even the most robust service may have down time or glitches. Be sure to backup your data from the "cloud" to a local resource.

Adam Pash of Lifehacker explains the options and procedures in precise and understandable terms.