Yesterday was week 14 for ds106, the last week of classes for my UMW students, and also the last of my semi regular live Google Hangouts pitched as a weekly “show”. Thanks to Brian Lamb, Todd Conaway, and stalwart student Nancy B for showing up.
The whole series is right here!
The viewership on the series is lower than the video for Aunt Bertha’s Toenail Clipping tutorial, but that was not the point. What was the point? Oh yes, since ds106 really has now scheduled classes nor weekly lectures via video, I wanted something that was “live” as an least an opportunity to offer at least some together moment in the class.
Oh, I made it a participation requirement for my students to cohost / be present for at least one show a semester. This provided me a way to ask them about the class and give them a platform to complain (the never did), and have speak for the experience in their own words, interact with open participants from the larger community– but mostly so I at least could know them a bit better, and vice versa.
Unlike spending thousands of dollars to film sterile fixed lecture (cough xMOOC), this was meant to be as conversational as face to face interactions, to be human to each other. It was not scripted.
I decided each week to make a 2-3 minute intro reel, always the same orm of intro, music, and exit, but each week I would insert some new clips of old commercials, educational videos, etc. I used three segments from the 1958 Promotion Bypass, a vintage film about management issues, for the dude in the suit behind the desk. My shtick was each week, I would re-write a script I would dub over his lines. This was a matter of counting syllables and re-writing it.
I ended up getting it so I could produce a new video each week in about 2 hours. For what purpose? My own amusement. But they were fun to do
After the hangout was archived by YouTube, I simply used the youtube editor to weld together the intro to the google archive recording.
I filmed these in my spare bedroom/office, using a reflector to bounce fill the window light, an worklight for a spot (super low tech by Andy Rush measures for sure). I’d play the music from my iPad out of some portable speakers.
So this was totally not necessary, but totally became a weekly obsession, and I got a lot out of the regular act of doing this week by week. It was worth it for me to at least have some talking time with the students. I call it flipping the video lecture– right into the trash. Online classes do not need lectures to transmit content. Or at least I think they don’t.
But what do I know? Aunt Bertha is killing me in the stats.
Thanks to people like Todd Conaway, Ben Rimes, Brian Lamb, Brian Short, Zack Dowell, Mikhail Gershovich, Jonathan Worth, Andy Rush, Giulia Forsythe, Jim Groom, Norm Wright, Daniel Zimmerman, Michael Branson-Smith, Bryan Alexander, Martha Burtis, and Haley Campbell for being guests.
And all my students for putting up with the weirdness.
But don’t mind me, ask Aunt Bertha.
Thinking back on the 10 year mark of this blog, I’ve noticed the decades for years ending on “3″ have been pivotal for me stumbling into some good things, in the usual unexpected ways. So I am due. Oh, I am supposed to be no expecting.
1993 was my second wet behind the ears year as a budding instructional technologist at the Maricopa Community Colleges (technically, I was a “programmer analyst/instructional systems”). It was October when my colleague Jim Walters from Phoenix College called me over at at event we were doing ther and said, “Alan, you’ve been tinkering with that Gopher server, here’s something you might like”. He handed me a floppy disk (old age marker) that was just labeled “Mosaic”.
That moment is indelible on me since he had a hunch, but did not try to sell me on a technology, he offered me a sly invitation to figure it out.
I was hooked on the visual web browser from first click. It was a short step from there to find the HTML tutorial from NCSA, the MacHTTP server, and I was running my first web server in November, 1993.
That was how I learned about the web- on the web. Hah, in that photo, my handwriting lists the first web server address I managed hakatai.mcli.dist.maricopa.edu — things were so open then, I could plug any machine into the network and make it a server. All the computers were assigned domains, and given my geology background, all the machines in my office were geological. There was topaz, garnet, sphalerite, quartz, galena…
A lucky early jump, a nudge by a colleague, and my path was started.
But here’s a funny thing about that early time– almost any new web server plugged in was worth announcing. There was a place to go to find out what the newest thing on the web, a hand coded page The NCSA What’s New page. The web was so new that one could almsot keep track of the major sites in your head. After submitting the URL for the server I had set up, our traffic jumped from 80 hits a month to over 100:
The first non-maricopa access was January 17, 1994 from the UK (dolphin.lancs.ac.uk), followed shortly by a few government labs, and early dot.com (saic.com), and look who visited at 7:30 PM on January 17 (david-halberstam.mit.edu), author David Halberstam clicking in from MIT. Wonder what he found.
The accesses continued to climb, 83 hits (Dec 1993), 1111 (January 1994), 2174 (July 1994), and the big jump to 24405 in August 1994 (These days, we get about 100,000- 120,000 each day).
Again, the web was small enough that just to say “We Have a Web Site” was big news.
It got big in 1994, the first book about the web (maybe, I am guessing if it was first, but John December’s The World Wide Web Unleashed was early:
And my MCLU webs site had a 2 page spread in it.
But the next 10 year leap… from 1993 first on the web, where all web servers are new, to 2003..
And like the web’s first days, just saying “I have a blog!” was new, novel, and something not many people were doing it. The “blogosphere”, like the early web, was a small place.
that wave carried me a loooong wave.
Both the 1993 and 2003 events were ones centered on something made possible by the unknown potential of the open web.
So now its, 2013, what is going to be the followup to those two cornerstone events? What will be the thing that happens this year, that I look back and marvel at how small and novel it felt, so innocent.
I just cannot accept that it will be MOOCs, but it does seem like it’s just enough to spout out, “WE’RE DOING A MOOC on _______”, as if that aline is novel enough to generate interest.
I can’t buy it.
Yet, I have to consider closely if Mike Caulfield expresses positive vibes for Yet Another MOOC. And I nodded agreement with the initial assertions of Cathy Davidson’s announcement What I Hope To Learn By Teaching a MOOC on “History and Future of Higher Ed”… yet something is wafting in the air.
And her attitude is to poke at the beast by engaging in it:
Personally, I’m skeptical of many MOOCs as they are structured now. This is precisely why I am planning to teach one. I am not someone who criticizes alternatives before I’ve explored them. And I really do not like to criticize nascent new alternatives when the existing system is not working to solve existing problems: by “existing problems” I mean the one I’ve outlined (higher education is unavailable to millions who want it), as well as the problem of much current education being out of touch with the needs, possibilities, methods, and modes of learning that students use out of school and that they need to use well for the world of work they will inhabit once they graduate.
Yet I am left with this question- why does she need Coursera? When I read the methodology, it’s the same old same old- video lectures and pushing the communication to discussion forums, plus multiple choice quizzes:
Can you imagine if 90,000 or even a measly 9000 people from all around the world filed such an ethnography of past education and present? Think about what we will all learn from this array of experiences.
Can you imagine the mayhem of trying as an individual to make sense of 90,000 people in a forum? I start reaching for the barf bag when there’s activity from a few 100. Have we not advanced at all past this communication technology of the 1980s? Yes, I read that she is trying to construct some different modes of prompts and different ways to structure multiple choice questions–
And this is always taken as a given:
Do MOOCs today bring down the cost of higher education? Not even close at present–it’s insanely expensive to build a MOOC.
My colleague Dan Ariely estimates it took about 150 hours of work by his team to build 1 hour of actual MOOC.
Why is it so freaking expensive? Maybe one order of magnitude less, but Alec Couros did it on a shoe string for ETMOOC.
Why does it take so many people so much time? Sure, in ds106, I am not trying to teach 90,000, but I’m doing an open course as a one man show. My weekly videos take about 2 hours or prep only because I insist on creating the silly intros that no one cares about.
just spoke to someonespending $3m plus on edX MOOC! This is MOOC madness
— Donald Clark (@DonaldClark) April 22, 2013
I am just gobsmoacked to understand how an online class can cost millions to produce. Is it gold plated? Does it have dancing bears balanced on a jet plane? What am I not seeing in the picture?
So here is my 2 pesos of insight. When they talk about the scalability of MOOCs, what scales is the teaching by packaging it into fixed bits, by reducing the interaction a teacher provides students (most MOOC profs have disclaimers promising that they cannot communicate directly to students), by reducing assessment to simplistic measures.
I am not really seeing the potential for learning as scaling as much as the teaching. And maybe that does not matter when all of this becomes since sick giant lumbering machine meant to pop badges and certificates out the rear end of the thing.
So here we are in 2013. Just saying “We Are Doing a MOOC!” is going to lose its punch as the flood levels increase.
And so, I am hanging in here for something else to be the Big Thing For Decades that End in 3.
Case I am sure as anything, that for me, at least, it ain’t MOOCs.
And if it is, well, I’m looking to find work at some place like Home Depot.
I was born in Dixie in a boomer’s shack
Just a little shanty by the railroad track
Freight train was it taught me how to cry
The holler of the driver was my lullaby
I snapped a series of photos of this freight train going by out on the Santa Fe tracks behind La Posada (a true western gem and proof that there is much more in Winslow than a tacky corner). The quick series was in hope of doing an animated GIF, as I fiddled in Photoshop, I wondered about applying filter effects on each frame, maybe trying to make it flash like an old movie. Well that did not happen, but a combination of the black and white adjustments and some edge filters gave it a surreal effect.
No real message here, just making a GIF.
And in a few weeks I will be headed in this direction from a train I will catch in Flagstaff for a kong journey…
I forgot my own birthday. No, not the human me, the blog me. Yesterday this pile of crud turned 10 years old. like Lorne Green would say in an Alpo commercial, “That’s 79 for you and me!”.
The first blog post here was I Blog Therefor I Am… on April 19, 2003. Then this blog was run in Movable Type likely running on an Apple X-Server sitting outside my office at the Maricopa Community Colleges. The launch fanfare only I would notice was:
This is the new hub for Alan Levine’s activities as instructional technologist at the Maricopa Community Colleges in Phoenix, AZ, replacing the mid 90s vintage home page, kept at:
from there commencing to explain the name of the blog, ending up with connection to a favorite storyboook:
D Blog S A B-S Blog.
O, S N-D!
You know what ten years of doing this means? I’m old.
And so it goes. Ten years in, still figuring it out. See ya in 2023.
I finished a book recently. One of those old style piles of paper bound in between thicker compressed fibers. I grabbed The Caspak Trilogy by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the first 9and title on the spine) being The Land That Time Forgot (also available from Project Gutenburg if you want to flip the bits).
It’s no literary tome (not that I would know), its basic adventure storytelling, paced out for the serialized story it was– and almost 100 year ago. Without saying much of the plot, some adventure seekers, plus a few Germans for tension, end up being marooned on a strange island full of strange beasts, including ones from dinosaur era. Each volume of the three is centered on the resourceful male hero, be it Bowen Tyler, Tom Billings (sent to rescue Tyler), Bradley [No Last Name] who turn out to be fairly interchangable. They are one dimensional, and the females even less as they end up being fawning objects.
But it’s fun stuff. I just chuckled at this terse low rating review on Goodreads:
Way too obviously eugenicist. Not politically correct.
C’mon, it was written starting in 1918! I am so surprised to not find political correctness before women could vote nor civil rights has even recognized. Give Burroughs some creative credit for creating an ecosystem that perhaps does not hold up to scientific scrutiny, but WTF its not a documentary. The environs of Caspak was enough to suspend my disbelief, which is what stories should do. The plot elements of the U-boats (which I mistakenly associate with WW2 but were definitely around in the first war, airplanes, air drills, etc.
And the island must have inspired some film maker who would later make a small flickr about a remote island full of living dinosaurs. Yet in the spirit of knowing everything is a remix, the mystery island idea was done earlier by Jules Verne and Arthur Conan Doyle.
my favorite character was the true hero, Nobs the Airedale. Hands down…. er paws down.
Okay, I know Burroughs mainly form hos most prolific work, Tarzan. But digging into his background, some gems. Born in Chicago, to a businessman who was a civil war veteran, Burroughs, like most young people, bounced around a bit, flubbed out of the military (though spent time here in Arizona at Fort Grant).
And his life changing moment came as a pencil sharpener salesman!
By 1911, after seven years of low wages, he was working as a pencil sharpener wholesaler and began to write fiction… During this period, he had copious spare time and he began reading many pulp fiction magazines. In 1929 he recalled thinking that
“…if people were paid for writing rot such as I read in some of those magazines, that I could write stories just as rotten. As a matter of fact, although I had never written a story, I knew absolutely that I could write stories just as entertaining and probably a whole lot more so than any I chanced to read in those magazines.”
So basically Burroughs saw a form of pop culture and got interested in making it. Did he enroll in a University? enroll in a MOOC? No, he studies the form, and started creating.
but he was savvy. He went against convention. With the success of Trazan, he might have pioneered the marketing we take for granted around successful media- merchandising (emphasis mine)
Burroughs was determined to capitalize on Tarzan’s popularity in every way possible. He planned to exploit Tarzan through several different media including a syndicated Tarzan comic strip, movies and merchandise. Experts in the field advised against this course of action, stating that the different media would just end up competing against each other. Burroughs went ahead, however, and proved the experts wrong — the public wanted Tarzan in whatever fashion he was offered.
So even if the stories were predictable, in the Caspak trilogy they typified the arc of an adventure story. Even if you knew the heroes would succeed, it was finding out how Burroughs would make it happen that was the fun part.
And then I see the story was made into a movie, perhaps cheesy, in 1975, with Doug McClure as the action hero:
Yeah the dinosaurs like like plastic toys! But its looking rather GIF ready… and that’s what counts.
The cable end with the black tape is what goes into my Alpine stereo deck in my truck.
When I got my iPhone5, with the smaller interface "Lightning" port, using it to connect to my deck (There is a standard USB port from the unit- STANDARD) resulted in tons of static over my audio.
Having purchased the #$*ing $30 adapter, the music sounds good.
The third party Lightening cable I bought for $10? Works about 40% of the time.
And you know what? Even with all this I would not trade platforms for anything. As much as it giles me, that’s so.
Paste a sucker sign on my butt and kick me.
Why he read all of the ancient and modern parables of the Wise One, especially borrowing attributes of those who took on Empires, like Jedi Yallow, for later training. He than sought out The Boing Boing Being in the deep depths of Hainault Forest, spending weeks at his feet, taking notes on his iPad.
This is a quick remix example for an exciting ds106 project, where our students are among the first to get a crack at remixing the portrait photos of Cory Doctorow that Jonathan Worth is sharing with the world for open remixing. Jonathan described it for us
and as well visited with me and my students during this week’s ds106 show. To be a base for the site, and knowing the flood of action once Cory announces this on Boing Boing, I suggesting hanging the web site on wordpress.com- with the name borrowed from internet speak and one of Cory’s books — For The Remix
The first set of photos is available at http://fortheremix.wordpress.com/photos licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (please no license debates, ok?). The original high resolution images (as large as 50 Mb) are stored on Amazon’s cloud.
For my students, they have a ds106 Mashup assignment they have to do for this last segment of the course.
And that’s where I want your help. We want to have a good variety of examples of remixes before we take the project to the wide open web. We are hoping people di more than simple images, like I did here, but actually think about making stuff. I’ll be nagging a lot of you ds106ers to do this. You have been warned.
Okay, for my remix above, the original image or Cory sitting on his chair reminded me a bit of Yoda:
I found an image of the scene where Yoda is teaching Like in the woods in a post from Death Star PR A Chronological List of Things Yoda Tried (and Completely Failed) To Do:
I was thinking at first that I would replace Yoda, maybe with a flip horizontal to match the angle Cory is sitting at. I took both into PhotoShop, and used the magnetic lasso to select around Cory’s shape and remove the background. When I started moving and resizing over the Star Wats scene, I realized hw was a better match to replace Luke, and the concept made sense- Yoda learning from Cory Doctorow.
I had to do a bit of clone brushing on the original layer to wipe out Luke’s foot, but it fit pretty good. Once I had Cory’s photo in place, I used Images -> Adjustments -> Hue Saturation checking the “COlorize” box to try and match the green hue of the star wars scene. Not too bad, eh?
I left a copy of my PSD file for anyone who cares to fiddle. Since the start wars image was low quality, I did te sloppy thing and up-sampled, which I know is not good, but sue me. I made a 300dpi version PNG at 3600X2842 px (7 Mb).
I just wanted to have one quick example out the door first! My next one is going to be an animated GIF..
This is for @pumpkiny, trapped in an edupreneur conference full of MOOC hustlers…
I could go for that, so who is going to be the 2000-teens version of Anita Bryant?
“He’s not a talking bird, he’s a thinking bird. He thinks MOOC”
Sorry, MOOC mocking helps me stay sane.
UPDATE APR 18, 2013: The archive lives! Watch the insanity!
A bit of shtick I used in today’s TCC World Online Conference keynote was an idea that settled in my noggin and would not shake loose. The session was billed as:
Dim the lights, cue the music, roll the open credits… but the ds106 show is not where the audience just sits quietly in their seats. You will not only learn how this open online course in digital storytelling works, but have a chance to try a few of the creative challenges and assignments we give to our students.
Digital storytelling 106 (ds106) offers a versatile opportunity to create a learning community. This open online course in digital storytelling is part of a networked architecture built of participants’ own blogs to which our web site subscribes and shares back content published by individuals. Special features of ds106 include an open assignment bank that participants populate, a daily creative challenge, and even its own internet-based radio station. You can tune in to the show at any time; we are located at http://ds106.us/ on your Internet dial.
I thought I could amp things up, or ham it up…. For what end? I don’t know. But it was the parallels I thought I saw in the plot of the 1976 movie Network where the sacred history of TV news was undermined by corporate interests with today’s “higher education is broken” mantra, where the sacred history of education might be undermined by corporate interests.
Well, they just wanted me to do something on ds106 and MOOCs, but they got:
This was a series of screen shots from the Howard Beale “I’m as Mad as Hell” segment from the movie, which I re-wrote:
I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad for online education. It’s a depression.
Education is broken or failed and most institutions will be made obsolete by some company with an X in its name. Student debt is out of control. Degrees will be replaced by badges. Cal State outsources online education to Pearson –pundits declare that MOOCs will make non-elite institutions irrelevant.
California legislators propose a New University to hand out degrees with no teachers, curriculum– just tests. Silicon Valley VCs are calling the shots, the mainstream press eulogizes education among the dead. Educators, do we toss out decades of research on How People Learn? Teachers, how does it feel to be made obsolete by Stanford and MIT superstar profs with their robo graders? We sit watching our iPads while some New York Times journalist tells us of some tsunmai that will wipe us out– as if that’s the way it’s supposed to be.
We know things are bad. Worse than bad. They’re crazy. Maybe you think is’s elsewhere that it’s going crazy– so we don’t speak out anymore. We sit in our offices as the world we’re living in is getting smaller and all we say is, “Please, at least leave us alone in our faculty lounges. Let me have my netflix, and facebook, and my iphone apps and I won’t say anything.”
Students, as one of 160,000 in a course, do you know what that makes you? INSIGNIFICANT!
Is this the form of learning you really want? video lectures from people who don’t know you, the only place to talk is sprawling discussion forums, and your achievements are based on multiple choice exams and machine graders?
Well I’m not going to leave you alone. I want you to get MAD. I don’t want you to protest. I don’t want you to riot. I don’t want you to write to your provost because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the OERs and the badges and the Courserans and the crying in the streets. All I know is first you’ve got to get MAD.
You’ve got to say, “I’m a human being. God Dammit, my learning has value.”
So… I want you to get up now. I want ALL of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now– and open a new browser window, launch twitter, and tweet: “I’m as MOOCed as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore! #2013TCC”
I want you to get up right now. Get up. Open that browser window, get to twitter, and tweet, “I’M AN INDIVIDUAL! MY LEARNING HAS VALUE! #2013TCC”
Things have got to change my friends. You’ve got to get MAD. You’ve got to tweet, “I’m as MOOCed as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!” Then we’ll figure out what to do about the flipped classes and the open textbooks and the grading crisis. But first get up out of your chairs, open your browser window, and tweet , “I’m as MOOCed as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!”
And it feels right. There is a lot of nodding to change, but as Stephen Downes deftly wrote it out, it seems like inside the walls, people are counting on the same old status quo, or those who can see the end of the line, a big canopy labeled “retirement”, feel like they just need to wait this out.
The shtick was just to get people energized! Someone in the chat room seemed uncomfortable with angry rants, I think she took me a bit literal. I’ve got ties with TCC back to at least 2003, it was nice to re-connect with colleague Cynthia Cologne, my Phoenix CyberSaln Pals did a Google Hangout and watched the show… and I had fun. So there.
The premise was as an alt version of the weekly live “shows” I run for class. This might have been the most prep I have done for a presentation in a long while. I actually planned it out in post it notes (influenced by Nancy Duarte’s resonate):
I envisioned a scene like a talk show, and decided to use my living room couch, so last week I hung a green screen behind, and took more photos that I feel like admitting of me in various poses
The white ones have been processed in photoshop to have the background removed, and are saved as transparent background PNG. I need some more practice on the green removal, most I had to hand erase some green fringe halos.
I built the presentation in Keynote, but doing a custom theme did not work out- I wanted to have the very back to be a city skyline (I used a cc licensed flickr image from Waikiki), the front layer to be the frame of an OLD TV set:
and I would drop my sofa/scene PNGs in the middle. Other slides would be just images placed behind the TV graphic. But keynote themes do not allow you to layer the images- background is background. So instead I made two standard slides I used and just duplicated as needed, to have screens like:
I wrote out all my scripts in the presentation notes field, and practiced it in rehearsal mode. I watched the Mad as Hell scene scores of times, and put it on my iPod to listen to in the truck during yesterday’s round trip to Phoenix.
Alas, I ran into a hitch with the presentation notes- A few of mine were longer, and all of the ways I tried to print them cut off the text. I could find no option to resize the text. I tried all of the print modes, even converted it to Powerpoint.
At about 30 minutes prior to show time I was trying to load it on my iPad to use as a prompt, but the freakin’ app just quit once I transferred the presentation over. My last ditch solution, short of improvising it all, was to load a PDF on the iPad, and use that as a prompt. It worked well, and I was able to toggle back to flip slides in Adobe Connect. It did mean I was less able to pay attention to the chat.
I also had the idea to stream the audio out to ds106radio, bit quite sue what it meant for Connect, but in theory it worked. I used Ladiocast, and set the system output to Soundflower 64, mixed that with my mic in Ladiocast, and streamed it out. I got a tad bit much mic delayed feedback when others were talking, but once I took the stage, I just dropped my audio monitor levels low.
The problem was my internet connection has been shaky, the tech was called out Friday and reported a “low signal drop”, that was supposed to be fixed out at the box. But the speeds have been pokier than the broadband I am paying for (I tested at 4 Mb down on a 30 Mb plan, and 1.5 Mb up). The problem seems to be that Ladiocast drops the stream much more readily than NiceCast, which sits there and tries to reconnect itself. I could not do the slide advance, script off the iPad, and keep reconnecting Ladiocast.
But that’s all the making of part. It worked well to go from my script, but add and modify parts as I went. I really wanted to not sound like I was reading, but not too sure how well that came off. A fun part was when talking about today’s Daily Create — I had set this one up to be a Writing one as it is easiest for a crowd to do on the spot. After explaining the Daily Create, I showed them today’s “Write a limerick about your shoes”, and challenged all 119 of those present to add one. Quite a few went nuts with tossing out lines in the chat.
So far, 14 have come in, and I am expecting fresh ones from 105 of you other TCCers. It’s fun as always to see regulars like Cris and Norm being part if it, as well as being happy to see my student Jazmin doing these although I did not assign it (someone send her 5 #4life points!).
Whew, this is even too much to write up! And I did not even mention creating the video for and running a ds06 show for class 4 hours earlier.
The closing part was setting up a 5 step challenge for TCCers to create a ds106 blog, sign it up for ds106, try some assignments, do a few daily creates, and stand by for what comes online in May, 2013–
I do not really want people to get MAD, I want them to get ds106 CREATIVE.
Thanks again to Bert Kimura for the invitation to speak at TCC!
You should be confused.
Today was a ds106 daily create monstrosity I can take responsibility for, and is one that busts my usual mantra of “things that you can create in 20 minutes”. Today’s assignment:
Lipdub a video of yourself in another language talking seriously about crickets.
This is likely one that came in originally as “do a lipdub video” and I felt needed a bit more of a …. twist. And to help people see that Google Translate as a small feature at the bottom right that does text to voice of what ever gets translated.
I started out by scrummaging YouTube for cricket videos. I found an interesting mini documentary by National Geographic, but it was too much humans talking. So I liked the simplicity and shortness of this video of a closeup of a cricket chirping
I downloaded with pwnyoutube as an mp4.
Then, what can the discussion be about crickets? Why not some philosophy? A bit more Google bopping and I found a segment on “Modes of Pleasure and Pain” from John Locke’s An Essay Concerning Human Understanding.
I modified a few words, replacing “man” with “cricket” and maybe “carapace” for “body”:
Pleasure and pain, simple ideas for crickets. Amongst the simple ideas which we receive both from sensation and reflection, pain and pleasure are two very considerable ones. For as in the carapace there is sensation barely in itself, or accompanied with pain or pleasure, so the thought or perception of the mind is simply so, or else accompanied also with pleasure or pain, delight or trouble, call it how you please. These, like other simple ideas, cannot be described, nor their names defined; the way of knowing them is, as of the simple ideas of the senses, only by experience. For, to define them by the presence of good or evil, is no otherwise to make them known to us than by making us reflect on what we feel in ourselves, upon the several and various operations of good and evil upon our minds, as they are differently applied to or considered by us.
The uneasiness a cricket finds in himself upon the absence of anything whose present enjoyment carries the idea of delight with it, is that we call desire; which is greater or less, as that uneasiness is more or less vehement. Where, by the by, it may perhaps be of some use to remark, that the chief, if not only spur to insect industry and action is uneasiness. For whatsoever good is proposed, if its absence carries no displeasure or pain with it, if a cricket be easy and content without it, there is no desire of it, nor endeavour after it; there is no more but a bare velleity, the term used to signify the lowest degree of desire, and that which is next to none at all, when there is so little uneasiness in the absence of anything, that it carries a cricket no further than some faint wishes for it, without any more effectual or vigorous use of the means to attain it. Desire also is stopped or abated by the opinion of the impossibility or unattainableness of the good proposed, as far as the uneasiness is cured or allayed by that consideration. This might carry our thoughts further, were it seasonable in this place.
Joy is a delight of the mind, from the consideration of the present or assured approaching possession of a good; and we are then possessed of any good, when we have it so in our power that we can use it when we please. Thus a cricket almost starved has joy at the arrival of relief, even before he has the pleasure of using it: and a father, in whom the very well-being of his offspring causes delight, is always, as long as his progeny are in such a state, in the possession of that good; for he needs but to reflect on it, to have that pleasure.
In Google Translate, I looked at a few options, and landed on Icelandic, which ends up (no idea how accurate this is, of course)
Ánægju og sársauka, einfaldar hugmyndir fyrir krikkets. Meðal einföldum hugmyndum sem við fáum bæði tilfinningu og vangaveltur eru sársauki og ánægja tveir mjög töluvert sjálfur. Því eins og í carapace er tilfinning varla í sjálfu sér, eða fylgja með sársauka eða ánægju, þannig að hugsun eða skynjun á huga er einfaldlega svo, annars fylgja líka með ánægju eða sársauka, gleði og vandræði, kalla það hvernig sem þú vilt. Þetta, eins og aðrar einfaldar hugmyndir, er ekki hægt að lýsa, né nöfn þeirra skilgreind, en leið að vita þá er, eins og af þeirri einföldu hugmyndir skynfærin, bara með reynslu. Til að skilgreina þá með nærveru gott eða illt, er ekki annars að gera þá vitað er að okkur en með því að gera okkur endurspegla á því sem við teljum á okkur sjálf, á nokkrum og ýmis starfsemi góðs og ills á huga okkar, eins og þeir eru öðruvísi beitt eða talið við okkur.
The uneasiness a Krikket finnur í sjálfum sér á fjarveru nokkuð sem núverandi ánægju ber hugmynd um gleði með það, er að við köllum löngun, sem er meira eða minna, eins og þessi uneasiness er meira eða minna vehement. Þegar af því, getur það kannski verið af sumir nota til athugasemd, að höfðingi, ef ekki aðeins stuðla að skordýr iðnaði og aðgerð er uneasiness. Fyrir alls gott er lagt, ef fjarveru hans ber enga displeasure eða verk með því, ef Krikket vera auðvelt og efni án þess að það, það er engin löngun það, né leitast eftir því, það er ekkert meira en ber velleity, hugtakið notað til að tákna lægsta stigi af löngun, og það sem er við hliðina á alls ekkert, þegar það er svo lítið uneasiness í fjarveru neitt, að það ber Krikket ekki lengra en sumir dauft óskir um það, án þess að meira effectual eða öflugum notkun leiðir til að ná því. Löngun er líka hætt eða dregið af mati ómögulega eða unattainableness hins góða fyrirhugaða, að svo miklu leyti sem uneasiness er læknaður eða allayed af þeirri umfjöllun. Þetta gæti bera hugsanir okkar enn frekar, voru það seasonable á þessum stað.
Joy er unun á huga, frá umfjöllun um núverandi eða fullvissaði nálgast eignar góð og við erum svo andsetinn af allir góður, þegar við höfum það svo í okkar valdi stendur að við getum notað það þegar við vinsamlegast. Þannig hefur Krikket næstum starved gleði við komu léttir, jafnvel áður en hann hefur ánægju af því að nota það, og faðir, í honum mjög vel að vera með afkvæmi hans veldur gleði, er alltaf svo lengi sem afkvæmi hans eru í svo ríki, í eigu þess góður, því að hann þarf en að fjalla um það, að hafa þessi ánægju.
In the bottom right corner is the “Listen” button so you can hear the computer voice read it to you:
To get it to an audio file, I used my copy of Audio Hijack Pro; you could also do something like use SoundFlower 2ch as your audio output and then open up Audacity, and use that same virtual sound channel as an input. Anyhow, I got an mp3 audio.
So I opened iMovie, put in the crickets movie, laid the audio track on top (setting the ducking so the cricket noise was reduced, added a title sequence… I was just starting to upload when I re-read the instructions- it was a lip-dub! So I went outside with the iPhone and did a bit of fake talking as a video. In iMpvie (with the advanced features enabled in Preferences), I dropped the me blabbing clip on top of the cricket, and selected the side by side option (I had to fiddle with the cropping of my video to nudge my head over).
A screenshot for my ds106 students (who ahem need to be doing this on their video assignments!)
And there you have it. Lipdub of icelandic lecture on the philosophy of crickets. Only in ds106.
There is room on the internet for everything not on the internet.
My sister emailed a link to a site with a scanned copy of the brochure for a 1973 Ford Maverick.
This was the car I drove out to Arizona when I moved there in 1987 with my dog Dominoe, flipping the odometer in Albuquerque, the one that did a few trips to Bishop, California for my Geology field work. So nostalgic.
I got $350 trade-in on it in 1989 towards a Chevy s-10 pickup. I’ve seen one old Maverick tooling round Payson, AZ.
For no real compelling reason, I decided to meld my own, old green Maverick Grabber into one of the pages from the ad, using every photo of it I could find in my flickr stream.
There might be a 1970s theme style assignment here worth putting into the ds106 assignment bank, but for now, it’s purely my own nostalgia.
This was the car whose 1980s photo in Death Valley found its way onto a German band’s CD cover, all via that expansive internet. Alas the band is gone, their web site now used for some travel agency. Such a fluid fickle thing that web, someone out there ought to maintain it.
You. And I. Enough surfers, likers, curators… need more web makers. Always.
Inspired by tonight’s #etmooc live animated GIF variety show from Jim Groom, Tom Woodward, Michael Branson-Smith, and Brian Lamb, I could not help but stay up later than advisable making a GIF. It’s a break in the action from grading. No, it’s just like an idea that gets in your brain, and will not stop til you frame it out.
I present, what happens when Educational Technology meets a MOOC in a field, you get E.T. The MOOC(ie).
This was done in Photnshop CS5 with a bunch of layer hi-jinks, starting with basic images of cow in field, and a PNG file of ET (useful for its transparent background). I separated the cow from the background, and backfilled it with some clone brush of the grass. I used two shades of blue and the Render Clouds to fill in the sky.
I had a GIF of a flying saucer from a preious project; I opened that in PhotoShop, copied all of the frames from the animation palette. In my cow file, I made copies of the frames, enough to have twice as many as the animation. I pasted in the spaceship frames (paste into frames option), and nudged it around in layers below the cow to make it land. I brought ET in at several sizes, and made hime waddle up from the ship (flipping it horizontal was cheat enough).
I duplicated the bigger versions of the cow and ET, so I had two layers, and in one used the puppet warp to bend their eyes toward each other. Then it was a matter of droppng in some text, turning layers on and off as needed, and chaning the frame timing to give it pause in places.
It’s a scarcy combination, but it really is friendly.
In the carefully controlled laboratory where I do my coding… no in actuality more like a scene from some ghastly middle school cafeteria food fight.
On dissecting the page structure I found the issue. My script was assembling all th enifo properly, but the XPath pattern I was looking for was not found– up til now my code looked to insert after the “tags” block on a flickr page, but this page was one where the owner had disabled tags (why, why, he open asks in frustration). In comparing a fe wplaces, it looked like a better spot to do this was below the “Additional Info” block.
I opened Firefox to test this, since I can jump right in to the script editor, and got it working. I uploaded the revised script to the UserScripts site, and then reviewed my own notes on how to get it into the Chrome Store. It looked good, everything worked.
Short note for Chrome users, sadly there is no update button, so you have to delete the old extension, go to the Chrome Store, and re-install it.
Then I wondered, is this worth blogging about? It’s rpetty minor, and I bet almost no soul on earth cares about this minute detail.
But blogging the process is important, even when I am still two days behind on grading my own students blogging (because they blogged so well, now I have more to read). And in even more irony, Giulia asked if I would use a photo with this post. “N, I probably will just do a screenshot.” But then I thought, why not? So I found the image above.
It was lacking my attribution insertion.
Because the photo had no “Additional Info” provided.
So I went back to the lan again, and moved the inserted content to come after the License block.
So if I had not decided to blog, and if I had not decided to include a photo in the blog (where I use my own script for the attribution), I would have missed my second goof.
Maybe there are reasons for things happening.
And thus, you can all see how datn efficiently I work.
I think it’s time for a nap.
UPDATE Feb 5 (later): I will beed to do more tinkering to make this a Safari Extension; Apple has its own hoops to jump through. I previously was able to install the Firefox script version using GreaseKit
I rather enjoy spotting juxtapositions, as when I opened a cabinet in Giulia’s kitchen, and noticed a tupperware containeer with a #ds106radio sticker sitting atop a copy of The Joy of Cooking.
That’s whats happening in a few hours, when I try out the new radio station platform that Grant Potter put into place recently for the radio station.
For those who broadcast, its really just a few settings changed in their apps/software (the server url, and maybe the mountpoint needs to drop a “/”). For listeners, they will have to tune into new urls (see below). There is a stream status page at http://ds106rad.io:8000, but ti does not yet indicate the presence of a live stream nor does the @ds106radio twitter bot.
Those recipes will happen in time.
So how to listen? This is key for my students, since they have a requirement to listen to an hour of ds106 radio this week, and yes, this can count.
- The only way to know I am live is to look for a tweet in the #ds106 twitter stream, but we are scheduled to go at 4:30pm EST
- The most direct links are the mp3 streams, you can load these in a web browser. We have two different bandwidth streams, so choose the 64k one if you are on a weaker connection. high bandwidth 128 kbps or lower bandwidth streams 64kbps.
- You can also load a setting for the stream in your media player such as iTunes, Windows Media Player, VLC via the links at http://ds106rad.io/listen. You will want to download a linked file as an .m3u file and load that in your media player.
You can find these links and check whats on the radio at http://ds106rad.io:8000, though as mentioned, it does not show yet when a live stream is on. You can listen any time, there is always content playing, not matter the time.
Perhaps with the recent Coursera MOOCastrophe its unwise to try an untested technology for a real class?
Nah, that’s how we roll at ds106. Right off the edge.
We futz, and we keep moving. That’s how you dance.
I get tired of those emails form people asking to blog about their product, or to include their infographic, or to buy ad space (for the latter I sometimes reply that my starting price is $10,000 per url per month, they usually do not reply).
The best are people who gush on how they love this blog, but they somehow miss this front page key warning:
Lately though, it’s not even worth my time bothering with a reply. That is my time. I would like to assume that a non reply is a message, “I am not interested.”
Some days ago I sent you my proposal for blog post deal but may be due to busy in other works or some other reason you did not replied me on blog post deal at $30.
So i am offer you again if you want then we can continue our negotiation. And this time i am sure we will done deal successfully.
You can view our article sample at here: http://www.simplybudgeted.com/2012/09/all-about-cisco-ccie-rs-certification/
Let me about your reply
This one I don’t even need to mock. It comes self-mocked.
Now I know my spelling is bad, but this message is almost un-intelliglble, and if this is your best foot forward, you’ve got a long way to go in this blogging business.
Of course, what do I know.
I’m not getting $30 per post.
Who’s next? Who wants to step past the sign?
Somehow I managed to do my homework ahead of time, since my intro video included the story of main main guitar, an acoustic I’ve had since age 15. I thought I would turn this inside out and talk about 2 guitars I do not have, since they have stories too.
Once in a year or two the natural progression on my new road to fame as the next Jimmy-Pete-Eric-Keith guitar star was to get an electric. Through an ad in the classifieds of the Baltimore Sun, I called the dude on a landline (just double aged myself), and bought this beauty, a blonde Telecaster:
I just liked to hold her, she was beautiful (and heavy). The amp that came with it was a Peavy Backstge. My career with it pretty much was limited to solos in my basement, save one party when some friends brought a keyboard and drumkit (parents were on vacation ha ha ha). When I moved west to Arizona in 1987 for grad school, it was one thing I decided I did not need. Arethe might spell it R-E-S-P-E-C-T, but my song is R-E-G-R-E-T. As sort of a way of keeping it in the “family” I sold it to my friend Kevin for a ridiculuous price, $25, with the quasi undestanding we would buy it back off of each other on a regular basis.
Except I did not stay in contact with him.
Fast forwrd to more recently, and Kevin and I met up when he was in town for a conference in Phoenix, and we’ve been well connected since; I’ve visted his home in Pennsylvania a few times. The good thing is the guitar is in his family, and being put to use by his son, Cal, who can really really play it well. When I visited in September of 2011, we went to Cal’s house, and I got to hold her again:
Cal, then a student at Penn State, played in a trio called Think Twice, Dublin, who play some rather avant garde complex music, beyond my 3-chord repertoire for sure. Cal has a deep music love, appreciation, and facility (as he shared some unique vinyl). Their web site then http://thinktwicedublin.bandcamp.com/ featured a photo of Kevin with the Telecaster back in the 1980s when we shared an apartment in Baltimore. Cal even has the original hard case, which was falling apart when I got the guitar in 1980. Long live duct tape.
A video of them, playing in the outdoors (I never got out my back door)
It is fascinating to watch a love of connection of music between my friend and his son- you expect music tastes to divide parents and children, but here it bonds, genuinely. I could not be prouder to be a small part of this chain, and as Kevin said last night to me and Cal (and agreed by us three), “The Tele is here, but it really belongs to all of us.”
When I wrote about this encounter in 2011, I mashed up my own then and now photos, 31 one years in the making.
Like the Dude, the Tele abides.
I could not be happier not to have it anymore. You might “keep” guitars, but the music is not ours to hold.
The other story, not so dramatic. I might have the timing off when I traded the guitar to Kevin, because it was earlier then I moved to Arizona when I picked up a cheap Fender Mustang as a less than decent replacement. It was okay to play since it was light, but it was no Telecaster, and it actually broke beyong repair.
Since I always had dreams of being Pete Townshend, on a party before a time I moved away (maybe that was when I went to New Mexico– for 2 days– another story, they wont stop connecting).
So for this party, I actually did get the guitar out of the basement– to smash it Pete style on a big rock in the yard. It’s actually harder to really bust it than it looks! Fender Electric guitars are solid! I carted around for a while a piece of it long gone. A very grainy scanned photo of the smashing event:
I am now, at 49, thinking again of getting an electric guitar, maybe I will keep it.
And play it.
For many reasons it was exciting today to visit with friends and former colleagies at the Maricopa Community Colleges, visiting Scottsdale Community College today for a fantastic format idea for an event they came up with for TechTalks 13.
It is vaguely familair to some guy named Ted, without the red logo and the staunch requirements. This was the baby and brainchild of Charles Pflanz, a series of 10 18 minute talks, and a refreshing change from the usualy conference format. Instead of th eusualy keynote and shuttling off to breakout rooms, the audience of 200+ stayed as one in the Performing Arts Center. Another really nice touch was having the opening and closing sessions be ones by SCC students. There were talks on filmmaking, gaming, MOOCs, online teaching, 3D printing, and the amazing closer on midi / guitar synthesizer music.
The whole event was extremely well choreographed, and a ton of people were there to help, a big crew of them in the PAC.
Kudos as well to friend and longtime Lisa Young for her high energy enthusiasm, organizing, and being an emcee.
I also got to hang out (and harass her for not doing more ds106) with Cheryl Colan and visit Rachel Woodburn in the Art Department and catch up on their digital storytelling class there. The faculty workshop stories I recall helping with back in 2006 are still on the MCLI web site, and hold up well 7 yeats later.
Charles invited me to do a talk, and I took some liberty in trying sometihng whacky on improv using my pechaflickr tool. The whacky part was I got the idea to actually use pechaflickr for my slides, so as I told the audience, I was nervouse because I had 43 slides to cover in 18 minutes, and this was the first time I had seen them.
What I set up was a launcher for a series of 5 different pechaflickr rounds based on the words in blue, with a variable number of slides and different intervals for ach one. This maybe was cheating as I was able to configure the toiming to come in under 18 minutes.
I went a little ove rgoofy, but it was fun. It was also impossible, standing on stage to see anything because of the intensite of the lights. That might have helped. A few photos came up that were just so bizarre I could not come up with anything.
I had fun! They are supposed to be posting a video recording on YouTube (insert placeholder here!)
And later in the day, Charles kept coming up and suggesting new (and novel) ideas on hwo he could see it beung used for his economics classes. The irony is when I first told him about it, he said it looked neat but wondered about the educational applications.
One of the new little addons I made to enable the site above is that you can now save the settings for a round and send it to someone else. So you can try running my set of slides on yawn (you will get different photos because it is random, but I bet half of the photos are of cats).
This was fun, but it was more fun to visit again with colleagues I knew from my time at Maricopa. And a bonus was getting to have a CyberSalon Hangout in Scottsdale with a big crew, meeting Todd COnaway’s buddy Thatcher from Yavapai Community College and (I am sorry I forgot) a ver nice woman from NAU who was eager to try some improv activities.
Heck, I even got to see a foil elephant.
It’s really late and I need to wake up stupid early, but when I saw Jabiz’s tweet, and his video, and his stack of papers.. I said I’m in.
I blabbed a bot in the video, compeltely leaving out that I live in a tiny town in Arizona called Strawberry (yes its real, look it up) (and I have snow outside my house right now, go figure). I’ve had the chance to hangout and play with Bryan a few times, and always learn alot. And I am going to visit Jabiz in March, so I’m looking forward to strumming his black shiny guitar.
Oh yeah, my real name is Alan Levine and I first found my way onto the web in 1993 and have never left, I hang out at http://cogdogblog.com/. Cya there
For open participants in ds106, we can dispense of the entire “I dropped out of another &$*#ing MOOC” because there is nothing to drop out from. No one-pace-for-all ramming speed schedule, no weekly lectures, no multiple guess quizzes.
We have a very easy to understand Getting Started Guide, itself with not one way to do this course but TWO, the Fast And Easy Way and the Blogging Way.
But here are ten things you can do to be part of ds106, without even signing up. How massively un MOOC is that?
(0) The Stephen Downes Clause Feel free to ignore all of the following and make up your own.
(1) Do one daily create a week. Just because it says daily does not require you to do it every day, it requires us to publish one every day! Each day at 10:00 AM EST, a brand new creative challenge, none of which should take more than 20 minutes to complete. It might be Photography, http://tdc.ds106.us/category/drawing/, Audio, Video, or Writing. You just need to post them on the designated social media site.
(2) Comment on a few student blogs. If blogging is old hat, you might have forgotten how electrinic those first comments can be. Pay it forward by giving feedback to our registered tudents, by they mine at University of Mary Washington, or Bill Generuex’s class at KSU, Briant Short’s class at the University of Michigan, or Michael Branson-Smith and Chloe Smolarski’s class at York College/CUNY. Even one comment is golden to these new bloggers.
(3) Do or Borrow a ds106 Assignment If there was a heart to the class it would be the Assignment Bank. This includes over 500 visual, design, audio, video, mashup, fan fiction, writing, web created by ds106 participants, plus connections to over 4000 examples created for these assignments. Sure you could call these OERs you could call them Fandangoes. You do not even need to have a blog connected to ds106, we have a loinked form on each assignment where you could submit a single response. Not sure whare to start? Spin the random wheel or see the ones that are featured.
Or follow the ds106bot on twitter- it tweets out random assignments.
(4) Answer questions or share resources in twitter We use a single hash tag for all things ds106. Students ask questions, people share related resources, or just informally exchange ideas. Take one day a week to pop into the #ds106 stream, how hard could that be?
(5) Create a New Daily Create You think our ideas are lame? You have something better? Toss one in vis our suggestion box and it should appear in the next weeks.
If you follow step (4) above, it just might lead to step (5). Ask Joe MacMahon:
@cogdog “Make a Poster of an Action Movie Starring Julia Child.”
— Joseph McMahon (@pragmanic) January 17, 2013
and a few days later? http://tdc.ds106.us/tdc381/
That’s how we roll.
(6) Tune into or take over the microphone for ds106 radio. We have a live web radio station, and not only is there music, shows, and people to listen to, anyone can broadcast at any time. Does Coursera do that? No. Does Udacity do that? No. Blackboard? Nope.
We do, we give it away. http://ds106.us/ds106-radio
(7) Create a ds106 Assignment Got a creative idea bigger than a Daily Create? Well, just make it part of the assignment bank (preferably doing it yourself so there is an example). That’s how we grow. Not by any mass replicant scaling, one creative brick at a time.
Now just tweeting out “This would be a cool #ds106 assignment” is not up to snuff for us. Step up and make something! And you may run into our snarky bot:
— DS106 Bot (@ds106bot) December 5, 2012
(8) Share ds106 work that inpsires you If you see something from a ds106 participant that causes a “WOW” reaction, then submit it to the in[SPIRE] site, our effort to collect the Best of ds106. This site itself was created by students in last year’s class.
(9) Help Us Figure out What to to with a subreddit One of our current students, asked us if we had a subreddit. Huh? Well, in fact there was one about two years old with only 2 things in it — http://reddit.com/r/ds106. So if you have reddit experience or want some, jump in and help us imagine how o use it. Maybe its a place to upvote good examples of digital storytelling. or away for students to get early feedback on their work. We don’t know, we are looking to you to help us make it emergent.
(10) Be part of our weekly show We are experimenting with a live weekly ds06 show via Google Hangouts. We have students from UMW, outside experts, and anyone else who wants a seat (if it fills, it can be watched via the YouTube stream).
(11) Remix an Assignment Ok it is wild enough we have over 500 different creative assignments, but then do the math on our Assignment Remix site which applies a random “card” and gives you the challenged to to that assignment in a new way.
Woah, how about those 10… turned up to 11. And I could go on.
So while other MOOCs cause feelings of remorse (or lack of remorse over the death of aprticipation), not ds106. In fact, the opposite happen. Drop the obligation, the breakneck pace, and you can do as little or as much as you want.
And pretty soon you are tweeting #ds106 $4life