Archive for October 2006

Going Google

Tuesday, 31 October 2006

So, in the pursuit of being a tad GTD in my life, I wanted to reduce the inboxes/buckets. I’ve really enjoyed using TodoTXT and Remind, and lately I’ve been using NextAction. But one of the things I haven’t liked it trying to move the main file between computers (my eMac at home and the Dell at school). And though I like the GTD workings of the program, I realized that the moving back and forth is a bit tedious.

So, after reading about after stumbling upon Google Notebook when looking at the personalized homepage content, I decided to use Notebook as a GTD todo list and put it on my personalized page alongside my GMail messages. And really, Notebook works out well. I set up contexts as categories (much in the same way that I did in remindme) and would just delete the items as I finish them. The only draw back would be that there is no tracking of completed projects, but really, once you finish something, do you really need to track that? For me, the answer was “no”; the task is done and why should I hang on to the whole tracking thingy?

So, then I found Google Reader and the circuit is now complete: instead of using Flock‘s newsreader (kind of slow) or OMPLs NewsRiver, now everything is in one place and I can access it from one page.

I was reluctant to go with an all Google lineup, but, oh well, for now it works.

Now to evaluate how I do lesson planning (currently using OPML editor).


It’s Dell, but a bit funny

Wednesday, 25 October 2006

It’s worth the 4 minute watch: Dell promising to lead the way to non-propriety software land.

So long, and thanks for the fish

Sunday, 22 October 2006

.Mac didn’t give up on me

Originally uploaded by vergil66.

So, here’s my last letter from the folk at .Mac and though I am going to miss my address, I think I’m okay with the gmail account. Besides not figuring a way to do my backups yet, everything else seems to to be fine.
Peace .Mac…I was really pulling for you to do something more.

Video Gamers are what employers want

Sunday, 22 October 2006

From Public Education Network:

Scientists call it the next great discovery, a way to captivate students so much they will spend hours learning on their own. It’s the new vision of video games, reports Ben Feller. The Federation of American Scientists, which typically weighs in on matters of nuclear weaponry and government secrecy, has declared that video games can redefine education. Capping a year of study, the group called for federal research into how the addictive pizzazz of video games can be converted into serious learning tools for schools. The theory is that games teach skills that employers want: analytical thinking, team building, multitasking and problem solving under duress. Unlike humans, the games never lose patience. And they are second nature to many kids. The idea might stun those who consider games to be the symbol of teenage sloth. Yet this is not about virtual football or skateboarding. Games would have to be created and evaluated with the goal of raising achievement, said federation president Henry Kelly. There’s already an audience: More than 45 million homes have video-game consoles. Doug Lowenstein, president of the Entertainment Software Association, said there will soon be 75 million Americans who are 10 to 30 years old — an age bracket that grew up on video games. “We would be crazy not to seek ways to exploit interactive games to teach our children.”

Here’s the URL:

Peace from Columbus and the Fields

Tuesday, 17 October 2006

So, I got to run with Lori for 26.2 miles Sunday. Well, more like 26.6…

I had the parking lot picked out from last year and as we were pulling in, the friendly parking folks were charging $5 to leave out van there. Guess who had $5 cash on hand? Not Lori, not Chris.

(Insert panic music here…25 minutes to race time).

Lots of driving around, lots of one-way streets, lots of runners, but no free parking around. ATMs suddenly disappear and now it’s 7:45 and 15 minutes to race time. I suggest to Lori that I let her out and have her start and that I’ll catch up with her–not received well.

Then a turn, and parking lot right by the finish line and no sign of having to pay in advance. Parking the van and jogging to the starting line and suddenly we’re in the mass of humanity–7500 strong–and the plane is flying over and the gun goes off.

At least we were warmed up.

Good 13.1 miles, long stretch to 17, 20-25.2: really long, but we finished and Lori got a new PR…improving her time from her first marathon by 30 minutes.

Unforgettable experience.
Peace from Columbus and the Fields

Originally uploaded by vergil66.

What makes a high school great: ask Newsweek

Monday, 2 October 2006

I know that this is an older report, but I found two things interesting about this article:

1. No Indiana school made it in the top 100 high schools in the USA (according to Newsweek).

2. The way they initially figured the inclusion into The List:

With our Best High Schools list, NEWSWEEK recognizes schools that do the best job of preparing average students for college. By dividing the number of AP and IB tests taken at a school by the number of graduating seniors, we can measure how committed the school is to helping kids take college-level courses. We think kids at those schools have an edge, no matter their economic background. But many schools not on our list are also challenging students in innovative ways — proof that the national experiment in high-school education is just beginning. Ask yourself, “What is high school really for?” Then look around at the options available to today’s teenagers: diverse and compelling answers abound. Here are some of them.

So long, .Mac: I’ve enjoyed my since the beginning

Sunday, 1 October 2006

I was supposed to do a long run (2 hours) this morning, but about 3 miles into it (listening to a really good “Wait, wait…don’t tell me“) my mind said: “Hey, we’re tired and it’s dark and we voted and we wish we all stayed in bed this morning”).

So, no long-long run, but everything (physically) seemed to be working. (Note: we signed up for Columbus last night…14 days!)

And now on to the sad news: Goodbye to my email address that I’ve had since the beginning days of .Mac. Makes me really said because now I have to tell everyone my new address. In fact, my address before that was in the early days of the “email for life” (until they started trying to make money and changed the limits on how many emails could be forwarded to another account).

So, goodbye to some convenience (iPhoto and iMovie to .Mac was really nice). But, seeing that’s there’s enough stuff out there that does the same things for free, I can use the $99 for more important things (perhaps upgrading to Pro accounts on stuff I really use).

43folders had a piece on the stagnation of .Mac and I find that I concur with most of the post (I know I should say what I really don’t see eye-to-eye on, but I’m a bit tired from drinking coffee today). Until then, perhaps I share what I am using instead of Apple’s connection with the digital life.

Oh, I’ve been playing with MySpace and my stay has been interesting. If anything, it has been more of a 1st hand look at what the kids are doing these days.

Goodbye .Mac; thanks for the convenience attached with my Mac experience. I think you know that many of us were rooting for you, but not a lot was happening (remember all the downloads we .Mac members got?). Until the reunion, good luck and hopefully you don’t bump into your cousin: eWorld.