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No Teachers, No Class, No Homework; Would You Send Your Kids Here?

No Teachers, No Class, No Homework; Would You Send Your Kids Here? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Democratic schooling may be the most radical experiment in education of the past 100 years.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I found this thanks to @innovativeedu on Twitter. This sounds a lot like a school my son might thrive in! It's definitely an interesting concept. Also reminds me of the prep school that Auntie Mame sent young Patrick to in "Auntie Mame" and "Mame" respectively. (I think I've seen those movies a few too many times.) It might also sound like a Lord of the Flies scenario if there weren't adults to moderate things at the school.  Anyway, it'll be interesting to see if and how this might affect current educational thinking, and how it's related to the mobile revolution and the flipped classroom discussions. 

--techcommgeekmom

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M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications
A collection of all the tech comm topics I find most timely or helpful, with a special emphasis on e-learning and m-learning
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Sorry - je ne suis pas circumflex

Sorry - je ne suis pas circumflex | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
What's going on in France? I'm talking about the way some people are reacting to the modest spelling reforms put forth by the Académie Française. According to a New York Times report, no sooner had the Académie proposed removing the circumflex from some words (only in cases where there would be no ambiguity), than Je…
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I like Larry Kunz's article here. Language does evolve, and sometimes rules make sense to keep (like Oxford commas), but in this case, I can understand how the circumflex would be useful in some words, and not in others. But that's what's amazing about language, as Larry points out. It's not just English that evolves, but all languages evolve.

 

The French and the Spanish, I know, have academies that closely monitor the French and Spanish languages very carefully. Interestingly enough, I am not aware that the English language has such an academy, other than style guides like the Chicago Manual of Style and similar folks. (Let me know if I'm wrong!) Could this be that the French are starting to have a better understanding of global implications of their language? Perhaps. 

 

The first thing I thought of, even though this is a very small adjustment, is how is this going to effect translational work, especially if it's machine translation? Ah...there's a big adjustment right there. Time will tell if this is, indeed, a bold move on the part of the French academy or not. 

 

What do you think? Include your comments below. 

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How Global Is Your English: 8 Ways To Keep It Simple And Save Big | The Content Wrangler

How Global Is Your English: 8 Ways To Keep It Simple And Save Big | The Content Wrangler | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
As many know, studying the "global English" or "international English" is one of my stronger tech comm interests. Marcia Riefer Johnston has written an excellent article here for The Content Wrangler that talks about the use of international English, and she provides some solid examples of how better understanding of it helps with writing for an international audience. Read up! This is a worthwhile read (as all things from Marcia are). --TechCommGeekMom
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» The Changing Landscape of Freelance Workers

» The Changing Landscape of Freelance Workers | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
This is a FREE event in Philadelphia, and I'm one of the speakers! Did I mention it's FREE? This is a joint meeting sponsored by PANMA (Philadelphia Area New Media Association) and the STC-PMC (Society for Technical Communication -Philadelphia Metro Chapter) taking place at Wharton (yes, THAT Wharton.) Both groups are great resources for networking and information. This event looks fabulous--whether I participated or not! If you are in the Philadelphia area on February 25, 2016, be sure register today, as seats will fill up fast! I hope to see you there! --TechCommGeekMom
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Five simple ideas to cut your blogging time in half

Five simple ideas to cut your blogging time in half | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I stumbled around and fumbled around for a long time when I started this blog. For the first nine months I was inconsistent and confused. Then I realized how many great business benefits I was
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Another great article from my former Rutgers instructor, Mark Schaefer. He's been doing this a long time--much longer than I have--and had some great tips about blogging in here, some of which I'm going to see about employing this year for myself. Take a look... --TechCommGeekMom
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The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2016

The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2016 | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Kick your writing career into high gear with this year’s list of the best writing websites.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Here's another great find from Craig Cardimon that's worth saving. With 100 websites listed, there's quite a variety that addresses different kinds of writing. Check this article out, then bookmark for future reference! --TechCommGeekMom
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Will Lenssen, Prin's curator insight, January 29, 5:08 PM

This is great information for the Journalist/photographer of Toronto www.jordanlenssen.com and for teachers of www.canadianonlinehighschool.com located in Guelph, Ontario.

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5 social media trends to watch in 2016 - TechRepublic

5 social media trends to watch in 2016 - TechRepublic | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
We spoke with industry thought leaders about the shifts and changes 2016 might have in store for social media and those trying to leverage it for business.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Thanks to Augustine Fou for sharing this on LinkedIn. It's an interesting article, and one that reiterates something I learned from Augustine in class last year, as well as assessed on my own--social media is still figuring out what it's supposed to be, at least in terms of marketing. Facebook and YouTube are adding enhanced video features, and now live video apps like Meerkat and Periscope are adding some new twists or complexities to the mix. What do you think? Do you this the assessment in this article is on point? Include your comments below.
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Here's 6 reasons why remote workers are valuable.

Here's 6 reasons why remote workers are valuable. | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I was re-reading an article I had posted on Facebook years ago, namely "More Companies Turning To Virtual Employees" found on the Huffington Post in early 2012, and saw that technical writers were among the top positions listed to be good remote positions and positions for independent contractors. Back then, I thought, "Great! Sign me…
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Why women over 50 can't find jobs | PBS NewsHour

Why women over 50 can't find jobs | PBS NewsHour | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
If you’re a woman above the age of 50, you might have had some difficulty finding work since 2008. Here's why.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a worthwhile article to read about the state of employment in general. This applies to technical communications and just about every field out there. I've had enough issues as a 40-something year old as it is, and as I step a little closer to my 50s, to read this is disheartening. It does seem that many companies, while trying to bring in new talent by way of university graduates and such, also don't allow for second-career types like myself. In a manner of speaking, I'm still a relatively new graduate, having graduated from grad school just under 4 years ago, and employed for 3 of those last 4 years. I think the problem lies that employers want younger employees because they can get the internships to learn (I can't get that now), and they are CHEAP. Much cheaper than someone who is a little more experienced in several aspects of a given field.  When did the value of experience go down? It's confusing to be out there looking for something now. If you don't have experience, an employer doesn't want you, but if you have the experience, the employers aren't willing to pay what your experience is worth. 

 

What do my fellow 40-something and 50-something year old (and anyone a couple years older than that ;-) ) think about this article? Do you agree with the assessment? Include your comments below. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Survey: Staggering Majority of Women in Tech Told That They’re Being “Too Aggressive”

Survey: Staggering Majority of Women in Tech Told That They’re Being “Too Aggressive” | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
If tech is supposed to be an example of how great our futures could be, then its industry should also reflect that. But it doesn't. And this is why it fails.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
This is discouraging to read. I'd like to think that as technical communicators, we can--and do--better that that. Am I naive to think so? What are your thoughts of this article? Include your comments below. --TechCommGeekMom
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Why isn’t ‘American’ a language?

Why isn’t ‘American’ a language? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Britain and the US share a common language – but English is spoken and spelled very differently on either side of the Atlantic. James Harbeck finds out why.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

The question could also be asked, why aren't Canadian English, Indian English, South African English and Australian English considered "languages"? This article makes a fair argument as to why none of these are separate languages. 

--techcommgeekmom

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What was TechCommGeekMom's 2015 Top of the Pops?

What was TechCommGeekMom's 2015 Top of the Pops? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I always find it interesting to see what stories people end up gravitating to each year on TechCommGeekMom, and along with other year-end summaries, I like to figure out what were the most popular blog posts for a given year. Sometimes, it's something that's archived from an earlier year. That's good, because I try to…
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It's easy being a consultant? Think again!

It's easy being a consultant? Think again! | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I was recently reminded of how challenging it can actually be to be a consultant in this world. As a result, it was suggested to me (thanks, Marc Gravez!) that perhaps it would be a good idea to write and share what it really means to be a consultant. We need to start with the general perception…
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2016 Social Media Image Sizes Cheat Sheet | SEJ

2016 Social Media Image Sizes Cheat Sheet | SEJ | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Here's a handy cheat sheet that shows all the social media image sizes in one infographic.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Thanks to Adam Helweh for sharing this find! This will be very helpful, I'm sure, in the upcoming year! Enjoy!

--techcommgeekmom

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The State of Mobile Content

The State of Mobile Content | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Apple is widely credited with introducing the smartphone, and there is no doubt that its iPhone took the world by storm in 2007. But IBM actually had the first smartphone--the Simon Personal Communicator--which was introduced in 1992. Unfortunately, it was just a tad expensive: $899 with a service contract. Because few are even aware of this precursor to Apple's successful launch of the iPhone, it's hardly relevant--except for the fact that Apple and IBM continue to duke it out for dominance in the smartphone (and tablet) space.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I read the print version of this EContent article first, and Lin Pophal has done an excellent job in this assessment of where mobile is right now. While the mantras of "Content First" and "Mobile First" have been at each other for the last few years, this article makes a great argument for "Mobile Content First", which is an argument I've made for a while.  

 

The article also points out that mobile isn't going away, and it continues to grow, but many marketers and other authors are still finding their way with how to tap into mobile. It's definitely got some great stats and points made, and everyone should read this article to get up to speed with what's going on with mobile. 

 

Nice job, Lin! 

 

What do you think? Do you agree with Lin's assessment? Include your comments below. 

--TechCommGeekMom

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Lean WordPress: A guide to optimizing your CMS

Lean WordPress: A guide to optimizing your CMS | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
A guide to optimizing your WordPress CMS. For you and the environment.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
WordPress is a great tool to learn, and fairly easy! The TechCommGeekMom.com blog is built on this platform, in fact. While I feel fairly proficient at using it, there are lots of features that I could still learn. Perhaps that's a goal for me this year... But in the meantime, read this article to understand more about how WordPress can work as an active CMS, and the benefits of using this readily available, open-source tool that is used globally. --TechCommGeekMom
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Valentine Mdt's curator insight, February 1, 11:00 AM

article intéressant à propos de wordpress. Très intéressant parce que nous utilisons cette plateforme pour créer notre site.

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How language can affect the way we think

How language can affect the way we think | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
A look at the ways that the construction of language can have implications for the way we think, act and parse the world around us.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
This is a fascinating article about differences in language, and shows how things can truly be "lost in translation." My husband, a native Spanish speaker and I will have heated debates about English because he's translating in his head, and some expressions he'll claim he's never heard (despite living in this country for almost 35 years), or he'll say they don't make sense. This article explains some of this phenomenon and more. Linguistics are so cool to me! But this article is another reminder that translation alone isn't making something global. The language translation itself can take on deeper or lesser meaning simply because there are no true direct translations. This is important when considering localization with a project. What do you think? Have you encountered this? Include your comments below. --TechCommGeekMom
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The Primary Differences Among Major International English Dialects

The Primary Differences Among Major International English Dialects | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
The British Empire hasn’t been in existence for almost three-quarters of a century. At the peak of its might, it covered close to a quarter …
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Excellent article from Grammarly.com. The inclusion of two former British colonies--outside the US, Canada, Australia, and South Africa--in this piece is a great example of how English is an international language, but not universal in its use. Take a look... --TechCommGeekMom
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Will Lenssen, Prin's curator insight, January 29, 5:09 PM

With COHS, we have a number of students from different countries. This is so appropriate for www.canadianonlinehighschool.com 

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12 Tips to Being Productive as a Stay at Home Freelancer

12 Tips to Being Productive as a Stay at Home Freelancer | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Despite enjoying the freedom and flexibility of being a freelancer, it takes a lot of self-motivation to stay productive…
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
This is a great follow-up article to my recent post about remote work. Upon reading this, I realized that I figured these points out organically, and practiced them regularly. Even if you aren't a freelancer, as a remote worker, these tips still apply. Remote workers and freelancers--do you agree with these tips? Any to add? Comment below! --TechCommGeekMom
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5 social media trends to watch in 2016 - TechRepublic

5 social media trends to watch in 2016 - TechRepublic | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
We spoke with industry thought leaders about the shifts and changes 2016 might have in store for social media and those trying to leverage it for business.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Thanks to Augustine Fou for sharing this on LinkedIn. It's an interesting article, and one that reiterates something I learned from Augustine in class last year, as well as assessed on my own--social media is still figuring out what it's supposed to be, at least in terms of marketing. Facebook and YouTube are adding enhanced video features, and now live video apps like Meerkat and Periscope are adding some new twists or complexities to the mix. What do you think? Do you this the assessment in this article is on point? Include your comments below.
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How to Keep Writing When No One Gives a Sh**

How to Keep Writing When No One Gives a Sh** | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
No one cares if I write.

No one’s waiting for me to publish my next essay.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
Thanks to Scott Pierce for sharing this on Facebook. I understand how this author feels. While I'm not sure that I felt that my vocation was to be a writer, I knew that I always felt I had something to say, and just want to be heard. Technical writers especially feel this pain. We often half-jokingly talk about our profession being one in which nobody--or very few--read what we write. I think the digital age and the way digital marketing works had changed that a bit, but it's still not completely off course. We write because there is a need to do it, whether it's from an external or internal means. We do it to celebrate the ability to communicate. What do you think? Include your comments below. --TechCommGeekMom
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Dorothy Retha Cook's curator insight, January 20, 7:18 AM

Thank you for the share. 

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What will 2016 offer? Good question. I don't know--yet.

What will 2016 offer? Good question. I don't know--yet. | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
While I've reviewed what's happened in 2015 in my recent posts, it's time for me to look ahead, and see what I need to plan for this year. I admit that last year, I had big plans. I knew that I wanted to sample some new conferences so that I could have some new experiences and…
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David Bowie--Content Strategist? (Yes!)

David Bowie--Content Strategist? (Yes!) | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
"The actual context and the state of content is going to be so different to anything we can envisage at the moment--where the interplay between user and the provider will be so in simpatico...it's going to crash our ideas of what mediums are all about."...
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Why Google Translate was turning Russia into Mordor

Why Google Translate was turning Russia into Mordor | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Google had to explain why its translation tool had some not-so-nice things to say.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is ironically funny, if you think about it.  You will hear from many translation and localization experts in the tech comm field that while Google Translate is good for a quick translation for your own understanding, it's not a reliable tool for larger documentation, and this article provides an example of that very instance.  There are better machine translation tools, and there are tools to help writers put language in the best neutral language state possible for machine translation, but it doesn't take the place of a human translator just yet. Getting close, but I guess that Google Translate isn't close enough. 

 

So--be careful! 

--techcommgeekmom

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TechCommGeekMom's 2015 - A Year in Review

TechCommGeekMom's 2015 - A Year in Review | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
It's that time when another year closes, and another year is about to begin. With that, one tends to review what's happened in the past year--for better or worse--and have either resolutions or goals of what they want to achieve for the next year. When I originally started thinking about how this year went, I…
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A Harvard linguist reveals the most misused words in English

A Harvard linguist reveals the most misused words in English | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
"Disinterested" does not mean "uninterested."
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
The first point is that it's interesting that the English doesn't have a governing body--formally or informally--to maintain the language like the French. I believe the Spanish language has a governing body for its language, too. Second, I know I use most of these correctly, but some I've used mistakenly. Which ones have you used incorrectly recently? This is a good article to help you review your English language skills. Check it out. --TechCommGeekMom
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