JUST LOOKING AT some swish Sway work by Jim O'Neill. Jim used Sway Preview to generate several frames that imagine a realm in a virtual world.
I stopped working my email as a centrepiece of my day sometime during 2009 when I realised I didn't have to delete anything. So I merely scan subject headings for intriguing topics, permit certain people to automatically percolate up to a priority level and just let the rest (more than 100,000 others at this point) simply fester in a digital archive. I don't want to make deleting email into a separate duty process so I just ignore more than 90% of the stuff that blows into my tray.
THE 56 SPORTY students in our degree for Sport and Conditioning have a social media module in which we document pathways to both personal fitness and enhanced personal profiles. We're using Microsoft Sway to complement both of these goals because it reimagines work typically done with Powerpoint. 
Our first public Sway started with collections of smartphone images saved in a communal OneDrive space, then emerged after 15 minutes as a simple series of screens at bit.ly/berniesway01. Then it was modified several times by different hands on the keyboard.
On first touch--and after fewer than 30 minutes of an introductory session to Sway's online editing platform--our cohort of coaches, weightlifters and gym bodies think Sway offers a very quick and easy way of sharing moments that precede personal bests. That's the conclusion Brad Sams reaches as well  after using this clutter-free, easy to use, and simple WinJS toolset.
The iFrame that renders each Sway is produced may not display in the most predictable ways on some smarphone screens. For that reason, I recommend people tap the little letter S at the top left corner of the Sway and view the content outside of the iFrame. We tested the Sway clip you see above on several handsets and desktops. It rendered best on Mac OS X in our Mac Lab, 30 miles south of the squash courts shown in the above clip.
1. Microsoft Sway Team -- "Announcing Microsoft Sway", October 1, 2014.
2. Brad Sams -- "Hands-on with Sway" on Neowin, October 24, 2014.
MY JOB PRODUCES graduates who enter Ireland's knowledge economy. To do my job better, I need some sort of break on childcare costs.
I don't expect to get a break on this request because I'm part of the squeezed middle class and don't have the time it takes to make big noises that mainstream media put in front of the Irish government. Nonetheless, my wife and I pay more than EUR 740 a month for childcare. That money puts three-year-old Dylan into a creche four days a month and it also offsets the cost of six-year-old Mia after school.
Because I've got the skills needed to cover for lecturers who are on maternity break, my work week extends farther from home base than ever before. For the entire 2013-14 academic term, I traveled 52 miles between classrooms two days a week. This year, I make the 34 mile run between two other campuses one day a week. Those miles are needed because there's no money in the kitty to employ part-time staff to cover gaps in the schedule. Nor is there any sanction for contract staff to offset part of the 25 teaching hours now on my weekly timetable.
WE HAVE A four year old boy who enjoys being in the driver's seat. He knows he can switch on all sorts of things that start to blink, beep and wipe when the motor turns over so if he is relegated to the passenger's seat in 13 years time, he won't like the experience.
Yet I believe Dylan will face a Driverless World by the time he reaches his sixteenth birthday. I think it will cost more to insure a driver than to insure a driverless car in 2030. I also think the number of cars on the road will start to level off when the Driverless Era arrives.
I share these thoughts with creative multimedia students who discount my opinion as too far-fetched for Ireland. Yet I know several rail services in Ireland could operate driverless from today. But it would require a continual investment in signaling and some flexibility from unions.
Snap of Socrative beta in classroom use.
I STARTED USING Socrative one year ago, got positive feedback from students about its functionality, and decided to use it again throughout the 2014-15 academic term. I believe it enhances student engagement.
My initial thoughts about the updated version are below the break.
FOR THE NEXT two weeks, I will use a Microsoft Surface computer while learning videoscribing fundamentals. My first impressions suggest it is easier to pinch and zoom flyouts with my fingers and a stylus than with a keyboard and a touchpad.
I tried diving into Sparkol's Videoscribe immediately after downloading the Windows program but should have watched at least the first 20 minute tutorial. If I had done that, I would have heard the recommendation to save work locally. I didn't do that before trying to render my work into a second output with an online audio asset--my wifi dropped and Sparkol's videoscribe stopped working.
Fortunately, elements of the last project file reappear when starting Sparkol Videoscribe after a crash so I did not lose my work.
After 90 minutes on task, I remembered enough to show our six year old daughter how to create an anniversary greeting with her own voice as the backing track. And then we were able to open the same working file at home through the Sparkol iPad app.
I GET FULL USE of a Microsoft Surface tablet to see how two of my older styli work when I upskill as a video scribe during the next two weeks. The first two hours spent scribing on Surface have been uneventful.
I made a short video clip of my foray into video scribing (below the break) before our six year old daughter demanded equal time with the tablet. She already has favourite Windows Phone games and hoped she would find them as Windows 8 apps. She didn't find her favourites but did enjoy Audible books, Fresh Paint, Monster Island and the Surface's ability to serve her Flash-based games at Friv.com. It's going to be fun to train Mia with Sparkol's Videoscribe because she already thinks in terms of timelines and assets.
Pinboard is certainly a niche service but one I depend upon for deep insight and resilient back-up of several Twitterstreams. It's fast, consistently informative and worth the small pocket money I contribute to its ecosystem.
I jumped over to Pinboard at a time when Delicious looked wobbly. Several colleagues migrated to Diigo at the time--I'm happy where I landed because of the network knowledge effect gained as I sift through shared bookmarks. That kind of sifting became impossible after Delicious shifted its look and feel away from a text-first system.