School’s out Friday

If you’ve been trying to impart the digital literacy message as long as I have, then you’ll appreciate a new video to help you spread the good word. Data to go from the UK’s Cifas (Credit Industry Fraud Avoidance Service) is very effective. Ramming home the message that protecting your privacy settings on sites like Facebook is an essential life skill in a world where what we share or inadvertently reveal about ourselves can be used by fraudsters is something that deserves airtime in classrooms today.

While some may think there are a gazillion digital literacy/safety videos out there, the reality is somewhat different. The true reality is that once you’ve shown a video to a group of kids and it’s made an impact, then it’s done its job and they aren’t going to be tolerant of you rolling it out at your next opportunity to help them in understanding what it is they need to be doing to protect their privacy or reputation in online spaces. Setting up a YouTube playlist is a good idea to store the ones you know about and sharing this with your parent community can also be beneficial. Good reminders to myself to do that very thing.😉

Enjoy the weekend – the end of the holiday period for Victorian teachers. Back to the grind on Monday!🙂

School’s out Friday

This will brighten up your weekend.

Meet SpotMini, the latest robot from Boston Dynamics. This one can pick itself up after a fall, negotiate tricky spaces in your dining room and can even stack your dishwasher. A less attractive and embryonic version of Rosie from the Jetsons. I’m not sure about you, but if you’ve seen the state of my kitchen when I return home from a long day at work you would understand why I’m thinking SpotMini is a more than attractive option right now!

On another note, is it any wonder Google is off-loading Boston Dynamics? There has been speculation that peoples’ reactions to these robots fall into the ‘freak people out’ category and Google is distancing itself from them as a result. The reality still is that these robots are not making conscious decisions to rise from a fall or place a glass in a dishwasher. Human beings program them and control these actions.

We’re still a bit of a way until we see Rosie in our households, so until then, I’ll continue picking up after every member of my household and stacking and unstacking the dishwasher. Nothing like a decent bit of manual labour to distract you from the baggage of a hard day’s work.😉

Have a good weekend. Revel in your humanity and stack the dishwasher by yourself.🙂

 

School’s out Friday

Hey, it’s Friday. I don’t know about you, but I sure could do with a laugh, and Chewbacca Mum manages to make me smile every time I see her. Combine her with James Corden and there’s a Friday night treat to see us into the weekend.🙂

My advice for this weekend ahead.

Chill. Sleep. Laugh. Eat chocolate. Appreciate your family. Spend time with good friends. Head out for a coffee. Catch a good film.

I intend to tick of a few of these. I hope you can too. Enjoy.🙂

 

School’s out Friday

There’s nothing like the the passing of an iconic popstar who inhabited your formative teenage years to make you sit back and take stock. Prince’s music formed part of the playlist of my youth. I can remember dancing to 1999 at nearly every party I attended in my 17th and 18th year. I always thought he was so clever to have written a song in 1982 that was guaranteed to be played at near on every New Year’s Eve party in the modern world at the turn of the century. And yes, there I was in 1999, dancing to just that song as we nudged closer to the rise of the new century.

It’s been a bit of a year for it. David Bowie, Glenn Fry, Alan Rickman. I suppose every year is much the same really. People who occupy our screens and playlists meet their demise and we ponder our own uncertain fate. I quite like this quote about death from Terry Pratchett

“It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it’s called Life.”
Terry Pratchett, The Last Continent
Make it count. Enjoy the weekend ahead, and the rest of it for that matter.

School’s out Friday

Now, I’m not sure how the leadership of Brigham Young University are feeling about this video given that the two young men (who attend the university) are not current missionaries, but I’m thinking that it’s done a power of good for the young elders who are out there knocking on doors hoping that someone invites them in to discuss ‘The Book of Mormon’.

Posted three days ago, 729,793 views to date – a bit of marketing genius right there. Great piece of storytelling. The narrative arc  flows.

NarrativeArc

Nice analysis activity of new media storytelling for your next English class.🙂

Have a great weekend. If they knock, maybe it’s time to open the door…

 

 

School’s out Friday

Yes, it is April the 1st. Yes, this is one of Google’s April Fool’s day pranks.

Surprisingly, it doesn’t look as ridiculous to me as does the image below taken of an audience wearing the Oculus Rift headset.

Oculus rift

It’s probably best summed up by this comment from Matthew Humphries;

Almost like intensive farming, only with humans hooked into a virtual world.

Unfortunately, reality, not an April Fool’s Day joke.

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t see this catching on to the extent that some of the pundits are suggesting. I certainly don’t want to be restrained in a headset device like this to experience virtual reality. Call me old fashioned, but give me unrestrained real world experiences any day of the week.

Enjoy the weekend. Head outdoors, appreciate the world we live in, headset free.😉

School’s out Friday

I think I’ve mentioned before how I read a lot of Stephen King’s novels when I was a teenager. I worked at a bookshop from the age of 15 through to 22, and one of the perks was being able to take a book off the shelf and read it, provided you tried really hard not to bend the spine so that someone felt like they were buying a pre-read book when they eventually purchased it!

One of the Stephen King books I read at that time was called ‘The Dead Zone‘, a story about Johnny Smith, a school teacher who was involved in a car accident that resulted in him acquiring a brain injury that gave him the power of premonition. In it, he shakes the hand of an upcoming Senate nominee, Greg Stillson, and he sees him in the role of President ordering nuclear missiles to be fired. This lands him in the ethical dilemma of wondering if he can change the course of history if he stops him in his course to election.

I’m not sure if you’re making any parallels to events transpiring right now, but for weeks I’ve been wondering if Stephen King is thinking he may have written a prophetic novel with the rise of Donald Trump as he comes closer and closer to Republican party nomination for President.

Trump tweet

It seems I’m not alone. Doing a Twitter search for ‘The Dead Zone’ this afternoon saw countless tweets from people thinking the same thing. Then I saw this.

Stephen King tweet

Seeing this from The Economist’s Intelligence Unit only further increases my sense of foreboding about the state of US politics.

Donald Trump threat - Economist

Who knows how this political saga will conclude. If it’s anything like ‘The Dead Zone’, then the actions of Trump will usurp his grand plans.

Let’s wait and see how things unfold…and cross our fingers for the sake of humanity.