There has been discussion of the difficulty of discovering UI features on modern Apple Devices vs Classic mac on apple-centric sites, to which I was nodding my head. Today I notice a pupil’s screen, split view and split undocked keyboard. Features I don’t use and didn’t teach.
Here are some tips for speeding up the process of making simple posts to a Glow Blog
Preparation 1. The Post Editor
One of the nice things about the WordPress Post Editor is you can customise the elements that you see on the screen.
To make my posting simpler in mobile I’ve removed some elements and dragged the Featured Image section to the top of the right hand column. This makes it appear right under the post content in the mobile view.
You can also collapse section of the editor you don’t need all the time, I’ve notice my pupils do this when using their e-Portfolios.
Preparation 2. Bookmark New Post
On my phone I’ve bookmarked the New Post Page on blogs I want to post to.
Im my case I’ve saved it to my home screen so I don’t even need to open my browser and go through my bookmarks.
This means that I can go straight to the new post page. If I am not logged onto Glow I am taken through the RM Unify password screen first. I use the save password facility on my phone to speed this up.
Editing a post with images and text can get a little messy, and therefore slow, on mobile. If I want to make a quick post, I don’t put the images in the editor, but use the featured image feature. This adds an image, typically, to the top of your post, and keeps it clear of the text.
Putting it All Together
Using my home screen icon, saved password, simplified new post page and a featured image means I can post a twitter sized post and picture in around 90 seconds.
In case you are missing the interaction and publicity of twitter you can of course auto post your blog to twitter using several free services, dlvr.it, IFTTT and Microsoft Flow (using your glow account.)
I don’t want to move educators. I’d like to spread the understanding that platforms that you pay for with your attention, and then that attention is manipulated, may not be the best place to direct our pupils data and attention.
A start along that path might be to think of a blog that you either own and control or is owned by a benevolent entity (Scot Gov in this case) is the best place to store your data, memories etc. From there, they can be sent out to social networks.
Ideally, IMO, there would be a benevolent network or system that would eventually work well enough to replace commercial but free, services.
A follow up to yesterday’s post, where I figured out how to extract the source from a list of tweets.
I asked a few folk on twitter if they had lists of schools twitter accounts by LA in twitter list. Andrew Bailey gave me an Angus one and Malcolm Wilson pointed me to William Jenkins who has a pile of lists. I quickly grabbed 18 LAs alone with Andrews to make 20 to run through my script.
The results are above.
I am interest in the result only tangentially. Partially is my idea of fun to figure out how to write the script. Mainly I am interested in thinking about encouraging folk to use Glow Blogs as a primary place they post school and class news as opposed to twitter. I’ve been told a few times that teachers use twitter because it is easier. I want to explain how blogging can be a lot easier. This indicates that mobile devices are the way to go.
I’ve talked to a fair number of teachers who find it easier to use twitter than to blog to share their classroom learning. I’ve been thinking a little of how to make that easier but got side tracked wondering how schools, teachers and classes use twitter.
If you use twitter on the web it tells you the application used to post the tweet. At the bottom of a tweet there is the date and the app that posted the tweet.
I’ve got a list that is made up of North Lanarkshire schools I started when I was supporting ICT in the authority.
I could go down the list and count the methods but I though there might be a better way. I recalled having a played with the twitter api a wee bit so searched for and found: GET lists/statuses — Twitter Developers. I was hoping ther was some sort of console to use, but could not find one, a wee bit more searching found how to authenticate to the api using a token and how to generate that token. Using bearer tokens
It then didn’t take too long to work out how to pull in a pile of status updates from the list using the terminal:
curl --location --request GET 'https://api.twitter.com/1.1/lists/statuses.json?list_id=229235515&count=200&max_id=1225829860699930600' --header 'Authorization: Bearer BearerTokenGoesHere'
This gave me a pile of tweets in json format. I had a vague recollection that google sheets could parse json so gave that a go. I had to upload the json somewhere I could import it into a sheet. This felt somewhat clunky. I did see some indications that I could use a script to grab the json in sheets, but though it might be simpler to do it all on my mac. More searching, but I fairly quickly came up with this:
curl --location --request GET 'https://api.twitter.com/1.1/lists/statuses.json?list_id=229235515&count=200&' --header 'Authorization: Bearer BearerTokenGoesHere' | jq '..source' | sed -e 's/<[^>]*>//g' | sort -bnr | uniq -c | sort -bnr
This does the following:
- download the status in json format
- passes it to the jq application (which I had installed in the past) which pulls out a list of the sources.
- It is then passed to sed which strips the html tags leaving the text. (I just search for this, I have no idea how works)
- next the list is sorted
- then uniq pulls out the uniq entries and counts then
- Finally sorts the counts and gave:
119 "Twitter for iPhone" 28 "Twitter for Android" 22 "Twitter Web App" 8 "Twitter for iPad" 1 "Twitter Web Client"
This surprised me. I use my school iPad to post to twitter and sort of expected iPads to be highest or at least higher.
It maybe that the results are skewed by the Monday, Tuesday holiday and 2 inservice days, so I’ll run this a few times next week and see. You can also use a max_id parameter so I could gather more than 200 (less retweeted content) tweets.
This does give me the idea that it might be worth explaining how to make posting to Glow Blogs simpler using a phone.
Earlier this week Laura Czerniewicz posed an interesting and entertaining question on twitter…
"What would be the title of your autobiography?" I am serious. Think about it you in the Twitterverse!
I am interested to know.
This was the most difficult question I was asked as one of the ten OEB speaker questions https://t.co/v1kEk3CJiH
— Laura Czerniewicz (@Czernie) May 13, 2019
I’ve written on this blog before about the difficulty of explaining what my job as a learning technologist involves, (What do you do? Starting out on CMALT), so I was completely stumped by Laura’s question. When in doubt, the best course of action is always to ask twitter, and the results, which were clever, enlightening and funny, did not disappoint. Come to think of it, clever, enlightening and funny is also a pretty good description of the learning technology community on twitter
Secret Agent LMC
— Laura Czerniewicz (@Czernie) May 14, 2019
So, if you’re taking suggestions from the gallery…. “Lorna is flying” or “Figure 3.14 Flying Home” might be niche and lacks all the things. It’s a bit long but “An open view: in flight reflections on landscapes of life, education, and dance” . [there’s probably other words]
— JohnRobertson (@KavuBob) May 15, 2019
John’s suggestion refers to the fact that I have the rare honour of being immortalised in the IMS Question And Test Interoperability (QTI) specification. Somewhere, buried in the voluminous spec documents, is an example of a multiple choice question along the lines of “Lorna is flying home, which airport is closest to her home town?”
“A sea shanty on openness”? Or “A bit salty”?
— Martin Weller (@mweller) May 15, 2019
Sweet and salty?
— Laura Czerniewicz (@Czernie) May 15, 2019
Ah, autocorrected. I meant to say ‘Flights of FanCCy’
— Terry McAndrew (@terrymc) May 15, 2019
And then there’s Anne-Marie…
— Anne-Marie Scott (@ammienoot) May 15, 2019
Audio from my conversation with Dr. Ian Guest, (@IaninSheffield), yesterday evening is now on Radio Edutalk:
Ian’s approach to research is really interesting and he makes you think more than once about things you take for granted. #EDUtalk.
“BEST. PD. EVER!” Some teachers make bold claims for the way that Twitter supports their professional development, yet research into this area is rather limited. This study sought to gain a better understanding of the practices involved and the part that Twitter plays. It uses a sociomaterial sensibility informed by actor-network theory (ANT) to unravel the complex webs of relations which form, break apart and reform when knowledge practices are enacted in the mediated arena of Twitter.
To explore this rich but messy environment, I evoke the spirit of the Parisian flâneur to develop an ethnographic approach I refer to as ‘flânography.’
Ian Guest’s phd should make for fascinating reading. I’ve followed along on his blog as best I could. The idea of twitter as CPD is a popular one that needs the sort of examination that Ian carried out.
We have interviewed Ian on Radio Edutalk about his phd back in 2016 and I am looking forward to talking to him again soon. He also published audio of some of his research interviews on Edutalk: CPDin140.
Since I have an on this day page on my blog I’ve been finding old me interesting.
Yesterday I notice quite a few end of year reviews published on the last day of the year1.
Blogging highlights 3, followed 1 & 2 in 2006 but focused on the blogging my pupils (primary 6 ~10yr olds) carried out that year.
The links go to the internet archive now. Images and some links were broken but I enjoyed reading them.
I was surprised at the comments on the posts, from adults, pupils at other schools and classmates. At the time the idea of an audience and conversation was one of the main reasons I had pupils in my class blogging. We were posting photos, video, microcasting and writing poems.
It seems harder to get comments on pupils blog now. I admit I’ve not commented outside my own class lately.
This was the year before I was on twitter. A lot of the online conversation about what happens in classrooms has moved to there. While a lot of this is interesting and valuable it has mostly removed pupils from the publishing process 2. This is I believe a loss.
- I was thinking of writing one for 2018 but got lost in following these old posts. ↩
- see also ‘School social media has been terrible at engaging parents’ | Tes News by Susan Ward ↩