M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications
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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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Arne Duncan: How Technology Will Revolutionize Testing and Learning: Scientific American

Arne Duncan: How Technology Will Revolutionize Testing and Learning: Scientific American | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Greater broadband access will bring the latest digital tools to more teachers and students
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This article came to me by way of Dr. Bruce Johnson (@drbrucej) on Twitter. It's a great piece by Arne Duncan, the US Education Secretary, in Scientific American that talks about how technology needs to become more integrated into our educational system and its benefits. A wonderful read--and it's a plan of action that we should try to embrace and promote!

--techcommgeekmom

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Death of the Desktop and Gaming as We Know It

Death of the Desktop and Gaming as We Know It | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
In the past week, I've made two observations about how technology is going through an advancement surge. What I mean by that is that there are big changes happening, and it seems like it's happenin...
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4 Traditional PC Features Mobile is NOT About

4 Traditional PC Features Mobile is NOT About | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I have been on vacation for three weeks taking a break visiting my parents and celebrating my son's 7th birthday. I am back and looking forward to more great mobile conversations. I hope you are do...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

After dealing with trying to convert my father from Windows XP and Vista to Windows 8 over the last few days, and thinking about how software and video games are purchased now (that's for another post sometimes soon), I was thinking a lot about the advantages of mobile that RJ points out in this article. The only point he makes that I slightly disagree with is the use of a stylus. I agree that you shouldn't need a stylus to use mobile, but I like being able to use one if I want to take handwritten notes (sometimes, it's just faster to jot down ideas). Otherwise, I agree--peripherals, power hungry apps, and an overblown file manager are too much. Definitely steps backwards. 
Read this article!

--techcommgeekmom 

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Microsoft’s Surface Tablets ‘Officially a Flop’

Microsoft’s Surface Tablets ‘Officially a Flop’ | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Lots more bad news for Microsoft and their Surface tablets this week. Microsoft’s most recent financial results filing (for their fiscal year that ended June 30 of this year) show a total of $853 m...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Yikes! Well, I had my doubts about this machine when it first came out, right up until today. I really couldn't see it as a laptop replacement, and I couldn't exactly see it as a competitor to any Android or iOS devices either. But I'll tell you this--if they start becoming dirt cheap, I'd buy one just to have it! LOL I think Microsoft has to rethink this whole thing. Perhaps being in the tablet business isn't their thing. Perhaps making software that powers the power devices like desktops, all-in-ones, and laptops should be their concentration, and they should kick butt at it. Time will tell. 

-techcommgeekmom

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The problem of tech comm WINOs | Scriptorium Publishing

The problem of tech comm WINOs | Scriptorium Publishing | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
If you have worked in or around technical communication, you have probably met at least one WINO (Writer In Name Only). Successful technical
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I'm glad Sarah posted and helped to define these "WINOs". I have worked with a LOT of these kinds of people myself, so it's interesting to see that I'm not the only one who has experienced this!

 

Try not to be a tech comm WINO. We might have to send you to tech comm AA.

--techcommgeekmom

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Content Strategists Must Become Engineers of Content-Driven Customer Experiences | The Content Wrangler

Content Strategists Must Become Engineers of Content-Driven Customer Experiences | The Content Wrangler | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

The fantastic Content Wrangler, Scott Abel, has written an excellent article regarding the need to start looking at content strategy as an actual career, in and of itself. I'd like to think that I'm a budding content strategist myself. I'm sure many of us who have become content strategists never thought, "When I grow up, I want to be a content strategist!" But perhaps future generations will.... From Scott's description, we have to be many things to many people, and I can say from my own personal experiences, I've often said that I was a jack of all trades, and the master of none. But perhaps in being a multi-specialist of sorts, this is what makes a stronger candidate as a content strategist. Read this article--now!

--techcommgeekmom

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Guest Blogger: Creating a Fun Digital Learning Day in the Classroom

Guest Blogger: Creating a Fun Digital Learning Day in the Classroom | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
From time to time, I like having a guest blogger come to TechCommGeekMom to provide a different perspective than mine on tech comm, m-learning and e-learning. This week, newcomer Allie Cooper provi...
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The Role of Social Media in eLearning

The Role of Social Media in eLearning | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
This article reflects the use of social media in eLearning plus some tips on how social media can be used as learning platforms.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Everything Christopher Pappas writes here is exactly right. This is my exact point of view about the topic as well. It doesn't apply to just e-learning or m-learning as well. I have found that social media has expanded my approach to technical communications as well, so the methods he describes here really has a broader reach than just the e-learning community. This is a must-read article! 

--techcommgeekmom

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How Dad’s teach their kids with Minecraft

How Dad’s teach their kids with Minecraft | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Its school holidays we were all at home and looking for something fun to do. Things were going downhill the kids were bored; they wanted to play computer games!
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Having a son who is a Minecraft aficianado, this is a great exercise. At this point, my son has built whole towns and complexes, but this is why I don't object to him playing. It helps him learn about 3D design and creativity.

--techcommgeekmom

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What Do You Want Kids to Do with Technology?

What Do You Want Kids to Do with Technology? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it

Wrong Answers: make Prezis, start blogs, create Wordles, publish Animotos, design flipcharts, produce videos, post to Edmodo, use whiteboard, develop apps

 

Right Answers: raise awareness, start conversations, find answers (to THEIR questions), join partners, change minds, make a difference, take action, drive change

 

Technology is a TOOL, NOT an outcome


Via Felix Jacomino
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I love this! I think it's something that's easily overlooked, not only for students, but adults too. Adults get too obsessed about the tools as well, if you ask me! And as is the case with both the student and adult populations, we can always learn and adapt to new tools.

--techcommgeekmom 

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Hannah Roukas's curator insight, October 22, 2013 7:55 AM

This post was short but to the point.  Technology should be one of the subjects kids learn in school, it should be used to help kids develop ideas.  Teachers should use technology to keep lessons interesting so kids don't fall asleep or become uninteresting.

Geoff Findley's curator insight, November 29, 2013 1:08 AM

Good to think about...

Cynthia Phoa's curator insight, March 3, 2015 7:31 PM

Thank you!

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What's wrong with being a lurker?

What's wrong with being a lurker? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
It occurred to me that while I haven't been writing or curating as much as I usually do, I still make sure that I'm reading my various social media feeds, so I can see what the latest trends and co...
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Is it time to Abandon Adobe Flash in eLearning Design? [Chime in]

Is it time to Abandon Adobe Flash in eLearning Design? [Chime in] | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
This morning while reading the latest news, I came across a CNET news article, entitled "Flash quietly re-emerges on Amazon's Kindle Fire." Speaking to All Things Digital in an interview published ...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

As always, RJ Jacquez is promoting the next level of interactive design, namely HTML5 instead of Flash. His blog post here is a little long (only because it's images from Twitter of his Twitter conversation), but it really brings to life the pros and cons of full-conversion to HTML5. 

 

For the moment, I can't take a side because I'm undecided. I really understand both sides of the issue. Having spoken to my developer husband about the topic in the past, I know he says that getting the desired effect is easier with Flash. I've been in companies that are very slow to changing over to mobile, let alone change over to utilizing HTML5. Flash is still predominant and people like it, so it's hard to push those kinds of changes. 

 

What do you think? Post here, or feel free to post on RJ's site as well. 

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Transforming Education Through Technology HR 521 Bill

Bill HR 521 is focused on education technology and is slowly working its way through the US Legislature. Technology is ever advancing and in order to stay
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This information came my way courtesy of @ronkowitz (Ken Ronkowitz) on Twitter. As you know, I'm a big proponent of technology for the classroom, and yet so many schools in the US are not up to speed just with the technology used in the classroom. Additionally, access is limited to this technology for many schools, as there could be one computer for a large group of students. Not very productive! This bill will help remedy that problem. Let's hope it goes through!
--techcommgeekmom 

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The Skills and Process You Need to Write a Viral Blog Post [infographic]

The Skills and Process You Need to Write a Viral Blog Post [infographic] | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Many people fear entering the blogosphere because they don't know where to start. It's overwhelming, but the basics of writing are what will be most important to you. The skills and process for...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Another great article about blog writing by Darin Hammond. I think these steps and approaches are something that I discovered organically, so I know they work. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Forbes Names NJIT as One of America's Top Colleges

Forbes Names NJIT as One of America's Top Colleges | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Forbes has named NJIT as one of America’s Top Colleges in 2013. The online guide notes that NJIT, established in 1881, offers 125 undergraduate and…
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Happy that this is one of my alma maters--the most recent one, in fact!

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UPS Offers 3D Printing in Stores

UPS Offers 3D Printing in Stores | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
The UPS Store is about to roll out a new service that could radically change the way you use the package-delivery company: 3D printing on site.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is HUGE! First, I have to explain--3D printers are one of my latest obsessions. I would love to have one (even though I don't have any practical need at have one), because they are so cool! I'm in a proposal writing class right now, and my project proposal for the class is writing up a proposal asking for funding to buy 3D printers for my son's school, to teach kids creative design that could help with industrial needs later. This proves that I'm thinking in the right direction! Check out this Mashable article, and watch the videos in the article. You'll think it's pretty cool too! (And yes, the technology is out there that you can create 3D designs on tablets, then wirelessly send the information to a 3D printer to print--just in case you were curious.)

 

Check it out!

--techcommgeekmom

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Teri Warner's curator insight, August 2, 2013 12:12 PM

This is great news! If your organization can't afford the printer itself, you may be able to still get those much needed munipulatives.

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User Guide Template | TechWhirl

User Guide Template | TechWhirl | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Download this user guide template (also known as a user manual). This template can be used to create user guides organized by function or business workflow.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Nice! This looks like a great guide to writing user guides. Thanks for sharing, TechWhirl!

--techcommgeekmom

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Why Social Media Internships Should Never Be Unpaid

Why Social Media Internships Should Never Be Unpaid | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Managing a company's social media is a massive responsibility and undertaking. Here's why you should pay your social media interns.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I think this raises an important question for all internships similar to this, not just social media internships. 
When I was a senior in undergraduate school, I did an internship with one of the local network TV stations. While I did do some research, and I learned how to write a PSA (public service announcement), most of the time I was unpaid clerical work. It was especially tough for me because here I was, paying tuition so I could get the credits to do this internship, I had to interview and compete with dozens and dozens of other applicants to get into that spot, and since I didn't have a car, I had to take public transportation fifty miles away three times a week to get from Fredericksburg, VA to Washington DC--and back--three times a week, which cost me even more money out of my pocket. I had to pay for my own meals too, of which I would lose about six meals a week from my school cafeteria plan. I wasn't paid a dime, and there was a point where I literally spent a month doing nothing but stuffing envelopes. It wasn't until the producer of the show I was working on saw that I had been doing this for so long, and I finally said, "I'm getting sick of just always stuffing envelopes all the time," that she finally let me go on shoots and stuff. I wanted to work in television, and obviously, I couldn't break in, even as an intern researcher or anything like that afterwards.  If I had at least been compensated a little bit so that at least my travel was compensated, that would've been helpful. I worked as hard there as I did doing the same thing--clerical work--for actual money during my summers.
I understand it's a trade-off--getting college credit for doing a regular job, and it's like having an apprenticeship. I totally get that. But especially in this day and age, when interns DO have to take up the slack of full-time workers who have been laid off and such, a little bit of compensation of some sort should be in order. That's just my opinion based on my own experiences.
What do you think?
--techcommgeekmom 

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Summit '13 Review: I Am Not a Tool

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I love this article! I agree that I am not a tool either, nor do I want to be judged by the tools I do or don't know. I want to be judged on the abilities I have to adapt to a variety of tools instead to employ common sense and good judgment for my content. Thank you, Liz Herman, for writing this!

--techcommgeekmom

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The Art of Creating a Community

The Art of Creating a Community | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Creating a community is the new hot trend that’s been around for decades, Google+ reinvented it with the launch of communities in January of this year. For me the concept of “community
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

While I'm not the biggest fan of Google+, I do agree that social media used in the right context can certainly be an agent for creating communities. That was part of the incentive (or as it was, my assignment) when starting TechCommGeekMom. I think if more people start understanding what Guy describes here in his LinkedIn article, there will be more of a sense of connectivity between people. I found that once I approached social media this way--creating different communities for myself (this being my m-learning/e-learning/tech comm community), I felt a greater sense of belonging. 

 

Go--take a look!

 

--techcommgeekmom

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Letter from the UK: Are There More Than Six Reasons Why Technical Communicators Don't Comment on Blog Posts?

Letter from the UK: Are There More Than Six Reasons Why Technical Communicators Don't Comment on Blog Posts? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Ellis Pratt from Cherryleaf wrote this really interesting article about the process of commenting on blogs. I think he's on to something here. I always welcome comments, even if it's just the pat-on-the-back comments, just so that I know my concept is sane. ;-) I try to invite comments with some posts, and I still don't get bites. Hmm. Perhaps I need to include more Star Trek and Doctor Who after all (which shouldn't be too hard for me!). 

--techcommgeekmom

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The Pros and Cons of Gamification in the Classroom

The Pros and Cons of Gamification in the Classroom | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
As the gamification trend continues unabated, experts weigh in on students’ and instructors’ motivations.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Thanks to @kevin_corbett for finding this article. I do think gamification helps in the learning process, but as the article points out, we're still in our infancy stages of truly deploying this effectively. Good article. 

--techcommgeekmom

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English as a Talent Magnet

English as a Talent Magnet | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I get a lot of questions about my program of Englishnization – the goal I have set to make English the unified language of our business. Many ask me why I bother. If they could see my in-box,
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Found this thanks to Adriane Hunt on LinkedIn. 

 

Is English becoming the "business language," much like French used to be (perhaps still is) the diplomat's language? Is this a good thing or bad thing, or "it is what it is"? 

 

Discuss. 

--techcommgeekmom

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PC sales in 'longest' historical drop

PC sales in 'longest' historical drop | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Global personal computer (PC) sales fall for the fifth quarter in a row, making it the "longest duration of decline" in history.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This has been long predicted, and if you think about it, it's not really all that surprising. Tablets have made everyday computing affordable and accessible. PCs, in my mind, are for the "heavy lifting" tasks beyond simple media, e-messaging and web browsing. Most people don't do the heavy lifting on a daily basis, especially in their personal lives, so naturally tablets are an affordable way to stay connected. 

Those in technically-related jobs, like tech comm, e-learning, web development, etc. need those heavy-lifting machines, but we're also buying machines in a way that we don't upgrade as quickly anymore. For example, I bought my laptop in 2010. I've upgraded the RAM, replaced the battery, but I also bought a machine that wasn't the cheapest or slowest processor at the time. It's a 1st generation Intel iCore 5. That's a minimum now, but wasn't then. I usually upgraded my machine every 2.5-3 years, but I think I can hold out on my laptop for another year--maybe two. PC manufacturers have to rethink their sales to be like cars. You could perhaps lease a laptop or desktop for 2-3 years (some actually do that), or think long-term where a person could have the machine for more time than the average leasing term, like 5-7 years--or more. If PCs were built and upgradable much like a person can maintain a car, I think laptops wouldn't decline so much.

 

Even so, like I said, the average person on the street uses a tablet or smartphone to connect in ways that a PC isn't needed. Perhaps sales expectations and dynamics need to shift.

--techcommgeekmom 

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Blogging Best Practices | Social Media Today

Blogging Best Practices | Social Media Today | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Learn how to be a great blogger -- even if you're not a great writer -- with these tips.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is certainly an interesting way to approach blogging. Not exactly how I approach it, but it could work. 

--techcommgeekmom

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