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Next Gen Classroom or Classroom Materials

This is a repost of a post i wrote in 2011. I've been giving a lot of thought to it as the debate of AR and VR come to the forefront again as the big new things that are twenty years in the making. 

Two years ago, I built a home made Interactive Whiteboard in my living room using the projector that i used as a tv, a $35 Wii-mote (the controller for the Nintendo Wii Game console), and open source software built by Johnny Lee who came up with the concept. You can see his TED talk on where he's gone with the technology using inexpensive goods he's found at Radio-Shack and his open source software here. You can view my video here. I feel that I should get some credit just due to the sheer size of what used to be my TV screen, and i apologize for the crappy music. I figured it was better than hearing me mumbling to myself at trying to figure out what to display to get the concept across. I used this to show the potential of interactivity to teachers and pricipals and that there…
Recent posts

Product Love | @Noisli

Noisli isn't new. I haven't seen it receive a ton of love and press. I honestly didn't think much about the new features when i first heard about them, but let me tell you... since really beginning to put them into practice, i have seen an increase in my work flow and productivity. I was listening to an author on Tim Ferriss' podcast discuss methods of writing. There were essentially two that he pointed out: some one who meticulously knows what they are trying to achieve and perfects it every time and word smiths it to death before they can leave it be and someone who brain dumps and writes to get the concept on the page and then steps away knowing that it is out of their head and written down and they can clean it up later. I wish i were the former, but i think that is just my self consciousness and criticism allowing me to give reason for not outputting. Accusing my work and therefore myself of having not achieved the quality we demand of it and thus thinking it …

Futurist - most desirable job title

fu·tur·ist [fyoo-cher-ist]nounA person who studies the future and makes predictions about it based on current trends.
When i was young, i remember reading articles in the weekly magazines that we would read at school that predicted our future. Colonies on the moon and underwater cars. I remember waiting in line for the JetCars in Tomorrow Land at Disney and seeing videos of Walt Disney's predictions of automated cars and the home of the future. 



 Even though I have never been, i've always wanted to visit Walt Disney World's EPCOT. EPCOT, standing for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, is itself a giant Bucky Ball: a geodesic dome based on the design of Buckminster Fuller.
 Since my youth, i have become aware of others bearing the title "futurist" through various documentaries on their work: Raymond Kurzweil ('Transcendent Man') and Jaque Fresco ('Future By Design'), Michio KakuSyd Mead and even Frank Lloyd Wright ('Frank Lloyd Wrigh…

A Helpdesk for Home

A Helpdesk for HomeWhy I Decided to Practice During Non Work Hours  What I Preach During the Nine to Five
In my professional life, I've had a computer based helpdesk established for quite some time.
 In Time Management for System Administrators Thomas Limoncelli discusses the folly in attempting to remember all the things coming at us throughout a day and Wikipedia states our short term memory is on average seven items, plus or minus 2.
 That is very true for myself, so when I accepted my position several years ago, I worked hard to establish the proper procedure for requesting assistance. I could promise I wouldn't manage requests in a timely manner consistently should the average four people pull me aside for "a quick question, "one small favor", "a simple request", etc before I had even reached my desk from the coffee machine.
 I have found trusting the process and utilizing a system that can automate responses, generate context based check-lists for me…

In Flight Productivity - a coach passenger's inconvenience

Update: originally posted in Spring of 2011, a recent trip to a conference in Austin reminded me of just how physically incongruent with how airlines think passengers are built i am, so i decided to republish this post. enjoy.

I remember reading science fiction books as a child and being absolutely amazed at the theoretical level of connectivity we would experience in the future. Being able to be anywhere and still be connected to our stream of media seemed like such an awesome concept. Then, on the plane ride back to Seattle from Washinton, DC they tell us that our plane has in-flight wifi.
"Spectacular!" I say to myself, thinking I'll be able to let my wife know that I'm okay, that I miss her, and pre-edit some posts about the conference I just attended as I let the overwhelming amount of information and inspiration I encountered ruminate in my brain. The reality of the situation was quite the opposite of the utopia I had imagined as a child. It wasn't so much …

"Why do I lead?" #SAVMP part1

 As part of the School Admin Virtual Mentor Program, this question was posed as an opportunity for introspection. I had a knee jerk answer, but giving myself time to contemplate the question has provided me with insight that i am happy to share.

 My first initial thought was "because no one else will". It is easy to think one's self noble and taking up the standard and leading the charge because you see weakness or lack of presence of someone providing the leadership you are demanding like a petulant child.
 Life is not so black and white. The shades of grey and granularity that influence situations and perspectives that need to be understood that create the current climate in a single school could be beyond count, so carry that out into the greater world and even our own personal lives and it would be impressive if anyone could even attempt to understand the factors that affect a single decision in an organization's leadership.
 "Ogres are like onions..." …

(re)Introductions

Hello, I'm Nick. I'm the Director of Technology at a small private school in Seattle, Wa, USA. I'm a husband and father of two.  I am a tech enthusiast and have a passion for technology in the education sector in particular.  If you have any questions for me, I'm always happy to field them. I hope to share my thoughts on various topics pertaining to the subject of technology and its impact and implications.  Thanks for stopping by; come back soon.