Jing and Ning

February 29, 2008

It seems funny that out of all of the tools available on Web 2.0, I have been working for the past few days on the rhyming pair – Jing and Ning. I just wanted to share my experiences using them since I am a new user for both tools.

I decided to try out Jing to create a screencast for our collaborative class wiki project in EC&I 831. I had downloaded Jing a while ago, but hadn’t really found a suitable time to use it. I decided that I should try it out to show how to sign up to use Ning, which is a website where you can create your own social network based on a specific interest or focus. Since I had created my own Ning for my Major Digital Project, I thought it would be useful for my own development also.

I found that Jing was fairly easy to use. I read a few FAQ on the website and went through the “Getting Started Stuff“. I played around a few times just to get my microphone set properly and stop stuttering through it with the “uhs” and “ums” which were quite frequent! After the initial few hiccups, I got through the points I wanted and had used up the 5 minute limit for the screencast.

Some lessons learned though and the hard way. DO NOT embed this on a wiki. The screen size is huge and I ended up wiping out the menu on the page that lets you navigate and therefore edit the page – oops! I ended up doing a work around and renaming the page from social networks to social networking and adding the screencast as a link. The other issue I had was trying to figure out where my screencast was. Jing uses Screencast.com to host the items that people create. Once I figured that out, it is as easy as logging into Screencast.com and clicking on your project. Then at the bottom of that screen if you click on details, it displays the information for the URL, the embed code or to email it. In the end, it worked and I was inspired to add more information to the page and hope to add more when I can.

I hope to play more with screencasts and wanted to try out Camtasia Studios, however, that is not offered up free anymore, so it is back to the drawing board. Going to check out some of the ones listed on this site. If you have tried any out, I would be interested to hear your opinions on them.

Creative Commons

February 29, 2008

Thanks, Chris for sharing this – Sharing Creative Works: An illustrated Primer

This would be a great way to introduce students to Creative Commons and a discussion about plagiarism and copyright.

Dean Shareski presented in our EC&I 831 grad class on Feb 26 about building a research team through our network. I immensely enjoyed his presentation, as it really clarified what it is that I have been trying to do over the past couple of weeks in particular. I have been struggling a little bit in this class because I am no longer in the education field (though still love the profession and would be back in it if I could just teach without all of the politics and discipline issues). Finding an audience for what I am now passionate about, human resources, and understanding what my classmates are discussing during our class meetings and in their blogs is more challenging than I would have imagined. So I set the task for myself of trying to expand my network. I am now following a lot of blogs and started using Twitter more. I also branched out to try to find people in human resources in addition to the wonderful educators that I have networked with. After our class with Dean and then our class on the 27th where we discussed where everyone in the class was at, I really felt similar to Todd – that I am not alone and really looking at “who is in my network” (similar to what I felt after Sharon Peters’ presentation -see post).

Many of the subjects that Dean spoke to really meant something for me. Above all, I really think that his Big 5 Ideas are important enough for me to tack up beside my computer and remember every time I log-on.
1. Get personal and selfish (do something for yourself first and then worry about how you can use it professionally)
2. Professional Learning Community on steroids (network takes it to a new level)
3. Consider your commpost rating (ratio between commenting and posting to blogs – this one made me think – I read everyone elses and post to mine, but probably do not have a healthy ratio – something to work on that will help me build my community and my RSS feed’s value – see Ryan’s post)
4. Have fun (no problem there -technology and meeting/chatting with people is ALWAYS fun!! Love it)
5. share everything – (our blogs don’t have to be perfect, just share! I like this one because I am always thinking it should be earth shattering information I am typing out – not necessarily)

I think all of this boils down to the quote in Walter’s blog: “work smarter, not harder” and Alec’s quote during the presentation: “Faced with information overload, we have no alternative but pattern-recognition”. Why not use the network around us?

Friday Humour – life in the networked world – how my life has changed since becoming part of the network:

Duty Calls