So where do I start. Im always in the middle of things. ive been in the middle of things for so long that I dont even know how to start things anymore. Im in the middle of my mom and dads divorce. Im in the middle of military and college life. Im in the middle of friendships. And now in the middle of two friends who are dating. Life can be funny that way. It seems like all my choices lately have been 50/50. One flip of the coin, thats it. It gets so crazy, I just for once would like to enjoy being on one side for once. You know, enjoy being something other than the equalizer. Well, hell. Maybe Im always in these positions because Im so good at playing them out. Yea sure its fine for most of the time, but it sucks always getting caught up in tailwind of it all. Im always being blasted for “consorting with the enemy.” But thats not fair. I once heard that your either one or the other. You cant have both. But I feel like thats not always the case. Why cant you have both when its not greedy? Its fine to go in the food line twice if your going back for your friend, so why not in my life? Just for once I’d like to have my cake, and eat it tool.
Multimedia is media and content that uses a combination of different content forms. The term can be used as a noun (a medium with multiple content forms) or as an adjective describing a medium as having multiple content forms. The term is used in contrast to media which only use traditional forms of printed or hand-produced material. Multimedia includes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content forms. Multimedia is usually recorded and played, displayed or accessed by information content processing devices, such as computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live performance. Multimedia (as an adjective) also describes electronic media devices used to store and experience multimedia content. Multimedia is distinguished from mixed media in fine art; by including audio, for example, it has a broader scope. The term “rich media” is synonymous for interactive multimedia. Hypermedia can be considered one particular multimedia applicationTeachers and students are broadcasting live to large and global audiences using live streaming tools, podcasts, video and screencasts. I have heard of all these tools, but have never used them. Video publishing is one that I am very familiar with because I watch many educational YouTube videos on a daily basis. Youtube is very helpful because there isn’t anything you can’t learn how to do if you watch YouTube videos. They are informative, funny, and relatively short.
The social web has become a catalyst for collaborative and social learning. The social web has turned learning into continous conversations among many participants. Facebook for example is a microblogging and social networking service site; it is one of the best ways to share and discover information. Teachers have used this site to follow each other in order to: ask questions, give answers, link to great blog posts or resources, or share ideas for projects as they go through the day. I checked out this cool wiki recommended by Will Richardson , in his book Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts and Other Powerful Web Tool for Classrooms; the wiki consists of Twitter Collaboration Stories written by educators; its professional, yet cool.
for those who are wary about using twitter, or would like to learn how to use one, here’s a crash couse below.
A growing trend in today’s classroom is the Interactive White Board. It is estimated that there are 1 and 7 classrooms that have a IWB within the classroom. The concern or debate on the growing trend is if the the IWB’s are actually contributing to the classroom. Some have criticized them by saying that IWB’s are just large interactive computer screen that locks teachers in a 19th century style of teaching. In a sense the statement is true but like all tools it really depends on how you use it. If a teacher can figure a way to make the IWB relevant to the class and both educational, you could essentially create a neat and interesting way to get student involved in class. Imagine a class that requires a lot of hands on like an automotive class. The teacher can use the IWB so that more students can be involved and still get the same quality as if it were 1 on 1. Of course there are consequences to it but as stated earlier, it really depends on how they are used that really matters. IWB are fairly advanced pieces of technology that can very well be standard in every classroom. Check out the video below for a demo.
Little Brother is a young adult novel by Cory Doctorow. The story focuses on Marcus Yallow and his classmates after they are detained by Home Land Security after witnessing a terrorist bombing in San Fransisco. They are subject to interrogation and torture and after 3 days they are finally released. Upon their release Marcus discovers that San Francisco has become a police state and everyone is being constantly monitored. Due to one of his friends not being released, Marcus decides to start and lead a rebellion against the state. Gifted as a techno savvy, he is able to form a network called X-net. With it he recruits other teens and they defuse and hack the DHS’s monitoring equipment and cause confusion amongst the DHS. Through the process his friends and family are tested and his original friends, Van and Jolu, eventually drop out of highs school due to fear. His relationship with his father also deteriorates though his mother still supports him. The final confrontation occurs after Marcus finally admits to the torture he went through to a reporter and is detained by the DHS. He is eventually rescued and the DHS leave town though no one is arrested for their crimes and Marcus’s life returns to normal.
All around Little Brother was a great read. Though short, it makes an interesting and current story. The main focus being a war between homeland security and the common people can easily relate to many current trends. I also thought the extent the DHS were willing to go in order to get answer’s gave the novel a gritty and dark feel which I liked. What I really enjoyed was Marcus’s character as his technology prowess was a major contributing factor to the rebellion. It reminded me of today’s battle against piracy with the FBI and hackers as no matter what the FBI do, the Hackers always find a way to rebel and get their message through. I would recommend Little brother to anyone who is looking for a realistic young adult novel that focuses on current problems that the U.S. is facing.
We are currently living in what is called the Society of Authorship. Basically, any and everyone has the ability to post, change, and update data on the web. Sites like Wikipedia and twitter have grown tremendously by allowing users to post and update data for all users to be able to use. The most shocking is the slow reaction in the school environment as some teachers and school board are reluctant to integrate Web 2.0 into the curriculum. This could cause a problem with our society as we could soon fall behind.