Monday, March 2, 2009

Moving at the Speed of Technology

An Extension of an Earlier Post

A few weeks ago I wrote a post called A School Using Web 2.0. This posting had two sections "A Dream" and "There's Always a Downside." In the "A Dream" section, I listed a make-shift timeline regarding the evolution of technology.

I was born in 1980, which may or may not be after you were (and that is neither here or there), and since then we have gone from toys that don’t make noise, to toys that make noise, to electronic toys, to cassette tapes, to walkmans, to dicsmans, to i-Pods and MP3s."

My reader offered an extension of this idea from another blog, that is discussing a portion of the CBS Sunday Morning Show. The Blog posting "Dealing with Data Rot - From CBS," (found on the Free Technology for Teachers Blog) uses a great video exerpt of the show to example the evolution of technology and the downsides of technology evolving. The blog posting states:

There is a lesson in this video for all of us and it's, back up your data in a modern format."

I think there is more than just one lesson to be learned from this. Yes, we need to back up our older data in a more modern format. Also, we need to be cognizant of the speed at which our technology is changing. The video actually shows a time line of technological change and if you notice as time progresses the time span between each invention decreases. This emphasizes how important and urgent it is that we, as teachers, just on the technology bandwagon and start introducing as much technology to our students. The longer we wait, the more our students miss out.

Another point that must not be missed is how much we have accomplished over the past decades. Technology across the world has advanced so much, and this is something of which we should all be very proud. Not only does that mean that we as a society are learning, but that we as a society are not afraid of expanding our learning. The process of inventing these technologies is a learning process. I've always heard that, "If you don't succeed, try, try again," (I don't know who first said it, so please forgive me for not giving them credit....I'm not the one who said it.) You try to make something new. It does not work. You learn from your mistakes, and then improve your design. Learning at it's best.

Finally, a personal note:

My father, a very unique and "old-school" person, always took a lot of pictures. The problem is that he didn't get them developed like "normal" people do; he had them made into slides. I'm talking about the old type of slides. They are about 1 square inch in sizes with cardboard around them. Essentially a negative of the picture that could only been seen using a slide viewer. This has always driven my mother nuts, but had never bothered me so much. Probably, because I just know that it is another example of my father's personality. Recently it has provided me with a dilemma...I want to see those pictures. When my father was recently diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma of the tonsil, I began really appreciating all of the pictures I had of us. What I didn't have is a good way to see them. Now, I'm constantly looking for something to use to convert the slides to something more update. I haven't found anything to help with this yet, so if anyone knows of something...please let me know.


  1. As for your personal note. Here are a couple of links that you might want to look at for converting those slides. I had one of these once a upon a time but it only did negatives, not slides. I could use a slide converter myself b/c I have soooo many slides of France from when I taught - ones I bought while I was there and others that I had made into slides myself.

    Here's a whole slew of them :

    Hope that helps. I really enjoyed this blog post, too. I'm very guilty of not backing up my computer regularly, which is why I ended up buying a 320 gig portable USB hard drive. Every time I plug it in, it backs up My Documents for me automatically! Sweet! Plus, I can keep all of my media (pictures and movies) on there that would normally eat up my hard drive space on my laptop, which doesn't have a huge hard drive to begin with - not when compared to a PC.

  2. Your post reminded me that when I bought a scanner recently (I'm not near it at the moment, but I know it's an Epson)and it came with an attachment that holds slides in place for scanning. Now I'm wondering what quality of picture can be made.

    I also have to say how awesome Time Machine (Mac)is. It is basically 1 button back up of the whole computer and once it's set up, it reminds you to use it.