Wednesday, January 20, 2010

My Life....In Cell Phones

I sit here in bed thinking about how my life has changed (technology wise) since I was just a young lad.  First I realized, I would not be sitting in my bed, because I would not have had a computer small enough to have in my bed, of course then I also would not be able to type this blog, because the concept did not exist...because neither did the Internet...for the average person.  I remember a recent post on Twitter by Steven Anderson about receiving a Commodore 64.  I remember doing homework on that, but more importantly I remember playing Wheel of Fortune on a Gold and Black screen and thinking "Man, this is awesome!"

Oh my, how times have changed.  My computer is now my cell phone...or is it my cell phone is now my computer.?.  I remember getting my first cell phone.  It was a Mitsubishi (So old I can't find a picture of it).  It was through what is now T-Mobile (Is it sad that I cannot remember just 10 years ago the name of my first cell phone company...Voice Stream maybe?)  I remember thinking..."I am the man.  I have a cell phone.  No one has one of these."  At least no one I knew had one.  My dad had the first Motorola Flip phone and had it wired through his car so that he could speak "handsfree."  I had 100 minutes of talk time (of course now I got 4000 in rollover stored up...or something like that).  I remember my mom telling me that it was not worth it because that equals out to just over 3 minutes per day that I can use the phone, not to mention Roaming was a huge deal....not to mention coverage.

Next I got the Nokia...yes...that Nokia. Man was it great! The Nokia that allowed you to change the faceplate.  I think I had 4-5 different ones.  I had a Red one, a Fraternity one, one for U of L and WKU.  And before you ask, I also had the Swivel Clip.  And yes, I thought I was the man....again.  I remember walking around college with that on my hip and thinking, "I must look like a professional with this cell phone on my belt."  That Nokia was the best phone ever.......

Till I got my first Flip Phone, a Samsung.  Man was it great!  All these neat colors and ring tones.  I could even upload pictures to the phone.  Everyone around me was getting a cell phone.  This time...I had 150 minutes...2.5 hours of talk time.  Hard to imagine these days that was enough.  But that Samsung was great.  Small, no case needed, no clip needed.  Fit right in my pocket.  Didn't have to worry about locking the keys either.  What a great phone...That Samsung was the best phone ever......

Till I got my LG Camera Phone (Off Ebay).  Man was it great!  I could see the number who was calling...on the outside!!!  Not only that it had a camera on it!!  I mean come on, what a great invention.  I could take pictures of people and then when they would call me, I could see the picture I took of them...because we all know I did not know their phone number...or recognize their name!  That Nokia from 3 years before seems so lo-tech.  That LG Camera Phone was the best phone ever....

Till I got my Motorola RazR.  Talk about slick.  Man was it great!.  Black, shiny, camera, speaker phone, plays music for ring tones, and ultra slim.  I have hit the JACKPOT!  Everything I could ever want in a phone I got in the Razr, plus I got 250 minutes now!  I was the man.  I remember at this point Text Messaging was all the rage.  I thought I would never do that.  The point of the phone is to talk to people.  If I want to text, I will send an email.  That Razr was the best phone ever....

Till I got my Blackberry Curve.  Man, a full keyboard!  Text messaging is awesome.  Forget what I was saying about it before.  I could also sync with my computer and keep all my appointments on it.  I could even get my email from work.  I was completely connected.  I could check Facebook, Keep up to date with ESPN, what else could a man possibly want.  That Blackberry was the best phone ever...

Till I got my IPhone.  Seriously, what was my life like before this phone...Computer...TV...Game-Console...Calendar...To Do List...Newspaper...Chatroom...Atlas...Camera...Video Camera...MP3 Player...Weatherman...Voice Recorder...Accountant...I think you get the point.  So needless to say in 10 years look how far our phones have come.  It has to make one wonder...where are they going to go now?  What else do we want from our phones.

Then you have to ask...how will Cell Phones change the methods of teaching students?  Current Events, History, Calculators, Periodic Tables, Books, at their fingertips.  The technology needs to be accepted, encouraged, and managed.  We are blocking a vital tool to our students education.

And to think, in high school I thought I was the man because I had a Pager!

One Word, So Little Time






Ever been in the computer lab and the assignment doesn't quite take as long as you thought?  Or maybe you have some students who get done faster and become trouble makers?  Use this site to fill that gap in time.  OneWord is just what you think it is.  It gives you One Word.  It then gives you a Text-box for you to type a response to that one word.  You could free write and create a story from that word.  You could also create a poem where the One Word is the focus of the students poem.  Needless to say the website makes a great time filler...in any subject.

Once your students submit their response they can then see other responses as well.  It will refresh a word each time.  You might find that students really enjoy using the site with the opportunity to express their creativity.

Certificate Street



Great website for teachers to use to create simple certificate for their students when they achieve goals or accomplish tasks in your room.  Catergories are abundant and options for the certificates make it very appealing.  The web-based software is fairly easy to use.  Hover over the certificate to get a better view and then download as a PDF that you can then edit to meet your needs.  Does require color ink in your printer, but it sure does beat the templates available in Word or Publisher.  See below for categories.


Wiki Wednesday #3 - Educational Origami







Nominated and won the Best Educational Wiki in 2008 and 2009, the Educational Origami Wiki is loaded with useful information related to integrating Information and Communication Technologies in the classroom. The site takes a look at 21st Century education from many different perspectives. 21st Century education is changing the lives of students, teachers, parents, and even the classroom.

Through this wiki you will find an abundance of resources related to Blooms Taxonomy and how it changes to relate to 21st Century learners and educators. As educators we all know about Blooms Taxonomy. We all had it drilled into our brains in college. the question still remains though is how has Bloom's Taxonomy changed because of 21st Century Education?

The wiki also takes a deep look into Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants, and Digital Citizens. How are they impacting education? How have lives changed because of these groups?  I especially like the Mind Map showcasing how a Digital Native uses their hours through life.  It also has very useful statistics that realtes to Digital Natives and Technology.

I highly reccomend you visiting the wiki and seeing what might be beneficial to your classroom, school, teachers, or students.  It is very well organized and up to date.

BumpTop - A New Desktop..3D!!!

Every once in a while there is that software that comes around that you look at and think...that is cool.  You then ponder, how could I use it to make my life easier.  For over 10 years Windows has had the same Desktop view.  No change.  Same folders, same windows.  Nothing but Blah.....Times are a changing.  One of the newest ways to improve the view of your desktop is BumpTop.  It is available for both Mac and PC's.  Imagine your desk...your actual desk being turning in to a computer screen.  The software has some great features and creates a 3-d desktop.

Here are some features:
- Drag and drop to a USB that FlashDrive...without opening a window or anything
- Swipe over and organize/pile documents, photos, links, etc. together
- Automatically upload to Twitter and Facebook from the desktop.
- Pin notes to side walls and then view those walls. 

My best advice is to watch the video below....Seeing is understanding.

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