Required end-of-course blog entry: a bit elliptical…

So, what do I think of blogging.  Was it a useful part of the course?

I was thinking of starting a blog anyway, as

  • I write as easily as I speak – and I talk a lot, even if it is mostly inside my head while I do housework;
  • I have many thoughts which my children wouldn’t be bothered reading now, but might like to read one day;
  • I listen to, read, and watch a lot of information texts, and remember and  integrate much of it to new (to me) ideas –  before children, I wrote Science Fiction for fun;
  • I know a lot about many sorts of topics (or will find out by the next day); and
  • I am (I’m sure you noticed) very, very egotistical.  One day, when someone asks what my favourite subject is I will no longer resist the temptation to say “Me!” (Well, really, the latest shiny idea/factoid I’ve come across.) Therefore, I suspect that what I have to say is worth recording to raise the median value of web-writing.

So, commanded to blog, I blogded (new word).  Not as well as Tom’s “Bloggy blog Bloggy” http://tom-coolbiatch.blogspot.com or Simon’s http://simonkidd.wordpress.com/category/education , but still ….

So I yarned to a friend, as though we were on a long walk, pausing to see what others said, or to look at the scenery, and then talk some more about what I saw.  That was easy.  The hard part comes  from my ability to pick up ideas but inability to recall references, even if I did copy them down: sure, I have some references, but which one of a hundred said what?  I don’t know what I’ll do when I no longer have access to the University journal search facility…

Sometimes it chewed up time I should have spent on something else; other times it got persistent ideas out of my head so that I could sleep, concentrate on an assignment, or just free up working memory.  Those ones are probably my subconscious at work…

Hating to chew over old writing (I reread for accuracy more than style, deep review is for Summer holidays – psychoanalysing takes energy), I’m not sure whether I established “my voice” online.  I have as many voices as Peter Sellers, representing many aspects of my personality (and subconscious, which has personalities and bulk-processing space of its own); which ones snuck out as I wrote?  I’m not sure I want to know … But then, perhaps, as “many voices” is a part of my nature some shifts in style are good reflections of me.

Well, whichever voices I used, I think it helped that I had to try to use the readings, experiences, and tools.  No way would I have experimented with them all without (Hm!) strong encouragement.  As it is, I’ve even got around to trying “delicious” (and getting past the confusion from it changing its spots {or, indeed, dropping them] to a plain word.).  Next week I make the tags into a cloud …

I doubt I’d have got around to making a video with minimal technology, let alone post it to YouTube, even though I’d been peeved by the lack of a clear explanation of the topic in the “kids ed” sites I browsed.

I think the best parts of feedback were when someone (usually the lecturer) gave a relevant reference for further reading.  So why didn’t I do that for others? HM?  (My superego is looking over my shoulder … I hate it when she does that.)  Well, I’m a little shy of coming the heavy on colleagues.  I’d rather respond to the good bits, and give “places to look” only if asked.

Mind you, I think Twitter fed to the blog is a handy way of quick record-making when you don’t want to make a full delicious record, and can draw things to the attention of any interested enough to check it.  My dream is to have someone check my tags the way my housemate checks GRINDING .  Sigh …

I’m looking forwards to future web improvements, so that things can be more easily embedded.  Big thumbs down to Wetpaint’s free version, unwilling to embed and with appalling flashy ads – discretion sells, folks, I’m moving my wiki out as soon as the rush is over.

WordPress is a bit clunky, but I think I’ll stick with it for the foreseeable – I’ll use it as a contact point for CC, at least.  Unless my subconscious has other ideas …

At least I know that, whatever new tools come along, I can figure out how to use them and explain their use to others.  Hey, today I showed a PP student who had trouble with the mouse how to use the start-button (with wiggly window pattern) and the keyboard to log off.  I showed another how to use the shift key to type BIG LETTERS, and to use the arrow and backspace keys too!  Next week I’ll show them how to get to the desktop without stopping the program they’re in:  they want to share their saved work, and haven’t figured how to do it without stopping the current project.

So much room for development…

Ciao for nao

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