Category Archives: Uncategorized

Work From Anywhere: 25 Cool Apps For Digital Nomads, Corporate Escapists, And Loony Adventurers — Life Learning — Medium

Source: Work From Anywhere: 25 Cool Apps For Digital Nomads, Corporate Escapists, And Loony Adventurers — Life Learning — Medium

Wow! I only use three of these tools with any kind of regularity. As I am considering some digital nomadism in the near future, then knowing these and knowing a writer who thinks so clearly about this is a nice find. But you don’t have to be a digital nomad in order to use any of these congenial tools.

My favorite one that I hadn’t heard of? Silvrback ( My favorite one that I use all the time? Canva ( #clmooc

MIT Master’s Program to Use MOOCs as ‘Admissions Test’

Students who do well in a series of free online courses will enhance their chances of being accepted into a supply-chain-management program on the campus.

Source: MIT Master’s Program to Use MOOCs as ‘Admissions Test’

When I first saw this headline I thought of this in the old way as an admissions process and performance assessment: come to our MOOC, how well you perform determines your admission. Yeah, a Hunger Games for grad school (shudder). And that is partly what MIT has in mind:

“Students who do well in a series of free online courses and a related online examination offered through MIT’s MOOC project, MITx, will “enhance their chances” of being accepted to the on-site master’s program, according to a university statement. Students who come to the program after first taking the MOOCs will then essentially place out of the first half of the coursework, so they can finish the degree in a semester rather than an academic year. That effectively makes the master’s program half the usual price.”

But what if MOOCs were run by the graduate students themselves as part of a capstone project or gateway course for entering Master’s candidates or just for the world in general?

I love that MIT has some skin in the game and there ante is actually worth something. I don’t like the idea of using MOOCs as a screening house. I suspect this is a use for MOOCs that is mother’s milk for many schools. The idea in the article of having mini-master’s certificate programs is also appealing at first glance. I fear that all of this is just a bridge too far for all but the most innovative learning institutions. Too far for most governance schemes. Too far.

Simple Tool: Low Bar to Entry for Frequency Analysis and Slow Reading–WordCloudGenerator


Jason Davies’ word cloud generator will work at interesting angles and is customizeable.  The one above is at a 45 degree slant.  The one below is a 90 degree.



The text for this is from a Ted Hughes’

The struggle truly to possess his own experience, in other words, to regain his genuine self, has been man’s principal occupation, wherever he could find leisure for it, ever since he first grew this enormous surplus of brain. Men have invented religion to do this for others. But to do it for themselves, they have invented art—music, painting, dancing, sculpture, and the activity that includes all these, which is poetry.

Because it is occasionally possible, just for brief moments, to find the words that will unlock the doors of all those many mansions inside the head and express something—perhaps not much, just something—of the crush of information that presses in on us from the way a crow flies over and the way a man walks and the look of a street and from what we did one day a dozen years ago. Words that will express something of the deep complexity that makes us precisely the way we are, from the momentary effect of the barometer to the force that created men distinct from trees. Something of the inaudible music that moves us along in our bodies from moment to moment like water in a river. Something of the spirit of the snowflake in the water of the river.

Something of the duplicity and the relativity and the merely fleeting quality of all this. Something of the almighty importance of it and something of the utter meaninglessness. And when words can manage something of this, and manage it in a moment of time, and in that same moment make out of it all the vital signature of a human being—not of an atom, or of a geometrical diagram, or of a heap of lenses—but a human being, we call it poetry.


[From POETRY IS by Ted Hughes, Doubleday, 1970]

From the Archives: Creating Syllabi – ProfHacker – Blogs – The Chronicle of Higher Education

If you are looking to revamp your syllabus or just get some ideas about syllabi, I recommend this post on ProfHacker.  Online syllabi, extreme makeovers of syllabi, or accessibility redesign–you can find it here.  Everybody must ‘dance’.


Why lectures are dead (or soon will be)

2. For all other important learning activities, such as developing critical thinking, deep understanding, and application of knowledge – the kind of skills needed in a digital age – lectures are ineffective. Other forms of teaching and learning – such as opportunities for discussion and student activities – are necessary.

The post is very balanced and does not throw out the good with the bad.  It is a timely article for this time of year.