The cost to go backward…

In this article (The Four Horsemen of the Cyber Apocalypse) , it talks about the possible scenarios that will paralyse digital system. They are certainly valid but I can’t stop thinking of a this question, what is the tipping point for people start to move back to paper-based system?

Given the current database and networking technology, there’s almost no real “safe” system that can be created and left alone without being upgraded. Let alone the attach to cloud based service, for institutes that efficiency is not the top priority, paper based system could be a better solution in terms of security.

In the Silo series written by Hugh Howey, it described a post-apocalypse scenario that the whole human kind lives underground. The “history” of the earth is being modified and changed in the database so no one really know what happened, except for the managements of the silos. This top administrator of the silo has access to physical books, which document the “real history” of the past.

Let alone whether there’s a “real history/reality“, just by thinking about this digital history rewriting scenario is scary enough. There are legal requirements for some institute to keep paper-based record, but is there any company/institute that want to move back to paper-based record/database from a digital system? What is the cost of it? Is there any formula for that?

To boil it down to one question, how much does it cost to convert a database (e.g. MySQL/Postgresql) to a paper-based system?


Using Google Drive to share documents

One of the problems of using GDrive in a school/company is the file ownership. If someone who owned/created the file left and the account was deleted, it will be gone forever. I order to further migrate the data to the cloud service, transfer the ownership to a “school owned” account is essential.

However, explaining all these by an email would be extremely boring… Finally I’ve created my first PowToon..

PD Session- Integrate EduTech in Classroom

“Open your laptop and login to ManageBac” is almost the equivalent to “turn to page xx of the textbook”  the school. However is the potential of laptops being fully exploited in our classroom? Is it being used as a “typewriter and encyclopedia”?

ICT and Technology
As a technology teacher and teacher librarian, this is a typical conversation in the tech lesson.

“Mr. Lin, my computer doesn’t work”
“Well, it’s not really about the subject, can we talk about it later?”
“But it is about my COMPUTER, it is TECHNOLOGY”

What does IB says about technology and IT?
MYP Technology and ICT- OCC_m_g_mypxx_fcl_1103_1_e

From the document:
In most cases, technology teachers are given responsibility for providing students with the teaching and learning experiences to help them develop ICT literacy. The teaching of ICT skills should not be confused with or take the place of a computer technology course. ICT is simply a tool used to develop computer technology solutions using the Design Cycle.

Also from the document:
Depending upon the school resources, ICT should be used whenever appropriate:

  • As a means of expanding students’ knowledge of the world in which they live
  • As a channel for developing concepts and skills
  • As a powerful communication tool.

ICT as a powerful communication tool for collaboration for developing concepts and skills with international mindedness.

Yes, this is a long title but it actually illustrate how we can use the laptop effectively in the classroom. I will be demonstrating how we can use Google Site and Google+ in the classroom for collaboration.

Google Site/Wordpress for teachers
Google site can be used as a repository for sharing essential documents, references for lessons and an electronic notice board for your class.
Here’s an example of how a subject site can look like
(Using wikispaces)
(Using Google site)

Other references
40 ways to use google app in classroom
How to insert google docs/drive on google site
Using Google+
Using Google Form

Google+ Community
Instead of using facebook, Google community is a better way to create a “learning community”.

11 steps to create Google+ community for your class

One more thing- AirServer
The above tools are very handy when it comes to sharing. AirServer allows users to share their screen that supports airplay to be shown on your laptop.
*Disclaimer, I’m getting a 3 days extension if you download from here.

Information/Digital literacy resources

Have been organizing information literacy and research skills lesson. Found a lot of resources on the internet. Here’s the list.
NYC Department of Education Information/Digital Literacy resources page include a lot of useful information.
ntario School Library Association (OSLA) Information Studies Curriculumn
A very useful resource for lessons plans in different subjects, the one above is for research skills.
An interactive map for young students to learn how to do research, good for lower grade students (e.g. G6)