Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Educational Mac Podcast #35-December 31, 2006

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End of the year 2006. It has been a year that has flown past for me, personally and professionally. The Future of The Educational Mac New work related podcasts coming Okay, enough about the future. It is time to look at the past, as in the past year. As I mentioned at the top of the show, this year has flown by for me. So it is good for me to stop and reflect a little bit. I am going to go into year-end list mode. Now everyone does 5 item or 10 item lists, but in honor of the year 2006 I am going to present my top six lists in 5 categories. I was too lazy to do six.
Category One–My top podcast listens (non-educational) One that is gone that I really miss it The Wizards of Technology. The passing of Digital Bill was a shock and leaves a big hole in the tech podcasting community.
6. Your Mac Life–Shawn King irritates the he** out of me, but he does a pretty good job with guests and I am jealous as all get out that he and Lisa are working with and for David Pogue.
5. iLife Zone–I really like this Mac-centric podcast, especially when they actually focus on the iLife tools. I have learned quite a few new tricks and tips from this one.
4. Mac OS Ken –I used to really like Inside Mac Radio, but when Ken and Laura Burstein left/were kicked out, a lot of the life went out of the show. I was glad that Ken started his own show. It is nice to have a daily dose of Mac news in a podcast format.
3. Daily Giz Whiz–If you don't listen to this daily show from Leo Leporte and Dick DeBartolo, you are missing 15 minutes of fun a day. I really like it when Dick talks about Mad Magazine or his work on The Match Game.
2. ESPN's Pardon the Interruption–I use to be a complete sports nut. I got a little tired of sports talk radio though. I do love this show from ESPN though and since I don't have cable or a dish it is great to be able to get this show as a podcast.
1. TWIT–Okay, I know it is not Mac specific. I also know that I should probably despise John C. Dvorak, but he and the TWIT show are a guilty pleasure each week. When Leo threatened to quit the show a few months ago, I really panicked.

Category Two–Top Educational Podcast listens. This list has changed. It seems that many of the early shows that I listened to have gone away. I miss One Big Head, Teach42 (I'll give Steve a pass because of the baby), Paradigm Shift, and Room 208.
6. Teaching for the Future with Dave LaMorte–This is a fairly new one that I am still getting a handle on, but as an up and coming teacher, he has a lot of good things to say.
5. The Savvy Technologist–This one may have to go into the gone away pile soon. Tim Wilson is a great podcaster. His new job has apparently bitten into his podcasting time. I hope he can get it back going again.
4. Moving at the Speed of Creativity–Wes Fryer is one who has kept up and I really like his deep thinking on topics. I do sometimes have trouble with the length of some of the shows though.
3. Geek!Ed!–The band of merry educational technologists from Michigan put out an entertaining show each week. I usually learn something too. Can you say WII.
2. Connect Learning–David Warlick continues to produce, particularly when presenting at a conference. I really enjoy those shows and he lets the audience participate and we get to hear what others are thinking and questioning. His keynote for the K12 Online Conference was outstanding.
1. Infinite Thinking Machine–This again is a fairly new show. It is a vidcast, but professionally done by Chris Walsh and others. They have also enlisted Vint Cerf to do segments which are great. With the few shows they have done, they have quickly become my favorite.

Category 3–Blogs My blog subscription list is overly long and I spend too much time daily perusing new posts. However, here are 6 educational blogs I would never prune.
6. 21st Century Collaborative–Sheryl's blog is a must stop for me. She is really on top of what is going on in EdTech. Her leadership on the K12 online conference was spectacular as well.
5. The Fischbowl–Karl Fisch gives a great accounting of what goes on in his school with Web 2.0 and other tools. His trilogy of videos are also great tools.
4. Dangerously Irrelevant–Scott McLeod does a great job of presenting the case that our administrators are ill-prepared for the task of integrating technology in our schools. If I were to enter an administrative program I would want it to be Scott's.
3. Moving at the Speed of Creativity–Wes Fryer is one of the most prolific edubloggers out there. I can't say I fully read all of his posts but there is always at least one a day that makes my head hurt.
2. 2 Cents Worth–David's blog is another one that makes my head hurt on a consistent basis. But what I really like is the conversations he sparks in the edublogosphere.
1. Weblogg-ed–I am not sure I got Will Richardson until I heard him speak at NECC this year. Now I do and I am glad that many others listen. Will is one that I believe will help change education in this country.

Category 4–Educational Events 6. Work–Lots of changes, not many for the better. Overload on things that I don't feel are that important but that others do. On the plus side we are beginning to see the roll out of social software tools in the district as well as a couple of other projects that could prove interesting.
5. UCET Conference–This one because I was responsible for it. It is amazing what a small group of dedicated individuals can do.
4. K12 Online Conference–I was not involved except as a participant, but see #5 above.
3. EduBlogger Meetup at NECC–Putting faces with voices and written words was terrific. It makes the online life much more compelling for me.
2. NECC–This is usually the highlight of the year for me. It was a great conference. But what made it great was all of the conversations going on around and throughout the conference, but not at the conference.
1. David Warlick's visit to JSD. David spelled out things for our district that maybe we weren't quite ready to hear. But his message did get through and is making an impact now almost a year later. We will get to hear David again this year as he keynotes the UCET 2007 conference.

Category 5–Favorite Toys/Gadgets/Software of the Year (Ones that I have personally experienced) 6. Bluetooth Headset for Cell Phone–This one was really a necessity because the speaker on my phone is useless. I look like a reject from Star Trek TNG, but I can answer phone calls and didn't have to give up the phone I really like.
5. Logitech USB Headset–This has made the podcast easier to produce and I hope easier on your ears.
4. HP LaserJet 3050 All-in-One. This one I got for Christmas and I love it. My Stylus C86 has been crapping out for the past few months and I was getting tired of replacing ink every month. The 3050 is an older model, but it is perfect for my needs. I love having a laser printer again. The other capabilities are cake.
3. Magnavox 15" HDTV Monitor–We bought this as a replacement TV for our custom van. However, I have used it more as a 2nd monitor for my laptop at home. It makes a big difference to have the extra screen real estate available to work in.
2. Comic Life–Although this has been out almost 2 years, I finally wised up to it this year. It is so versatile, yet easy to use. I have had teachers who wouldn't do anything with their students in a lab before spend weeks on different projects. I love this software.
1. Video iPod–I really believe this device can revolutionize what teachers do in the classroom. To be able to download video and show it on a TV or projector easily could really be a boon. This device in conjunction with our statewide media download service should really be a useful tool in our teachers arsenal.

Well those are my lists and year end wrap up so to speak. I hope all of you and yours have had a marvelous winter season. It's now time to get back to work. I hope that 2007 brings you enjoyment and enrichment.
See you in a few!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Happy Holidays from the Educational Mac

Whatever you may be celebrating this time of year. Best Wishes to all.
Kelly @ The Educational Mac