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22 January 2014

2014 is NASA’s “The Year of Earth”

From the NASA Earth Right Now website: With the launch of five Earth-observing missions in 2014 — more Earth-focused launches in a single year in more than a decade — NASA will be able to deliver even more crucial data to scientists trying to understand our changing planet. Since the agency’s inception in 1958, NASA has established itself as a world leader in Earth science and climate studies. It is …

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19 January 2014

Hashtagr – aggregating hashtags over multiple platforms

As usual, this technology tidbit that came to me via Twitter caught my eye: This website allows you to monitor a hashtag over multiple platforms. Have a play! http://t.co/JosvVTbWfA — Tweet your Science (@tweetyoursci) January 19, 2014 I certainly don’t use all of the available social media channels available, but I knew I wanted to explore this more.  Because I am not on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest, I’ve often wondered …

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6 January 2014

Can/Should Tweets Become Advertisements?

So here’s a tweet that made me do a double-take… “Journalists active on Twitter have to be hyper-aware that what they write may be used in ways they never imagined” http://t.co/vX7krGBhOQ — Mathew Ingram (@mathewi) January 6, 2014 Can you imagine, even for those of us that are not journalists, having your tweet appear in a full-page ad in The New York Times without your permission, and even after you …

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1 January 2014

Flowchart: Can I use this photo/video/music in my project?

I saw this image in a tweet from @jasonrobertshaw, and thought it would be a great one to share with students as they complete their multimedia projects in my courses.  I like how the flowchart includes a checkpoint for faces and voices – something that especially needs to be paid attention to if minor children are captured and identifiable.  Also, the image is a great reminder to all of us …

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A wise edtech observation to kick off 2014…

I recently learned about the LOL my thesis website (see my blog post describing the site), and have been eagerly awaiting my one-sentence submission to appear.  As I scrolled through the other entries – some entertaining, some intriguing, I came across this submission from 12/31/13: I had to pause when I read this posting.  This has been one of my largest concerns with educational technology and classroom teaching.  Whether it …

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30 December 2013

“Science” is the word of the year (2013)

Merriam Webster says “science” looked up 176% more in 2013 than 2012. Turns out it’s relevant. http://t.co/on5x2e9jl6 — NRDC Science (@NRDCscience) December 3, 2013 NOTE: Link in the above tweet is no longer valid. This link will take you to the article in SF Gate. The dictionary publisher Merriam-Webster determined that “science” is the word of the year for 2013, beating out other contenders such as “communication,” “ethic,” and “integrity” …

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29 December 2013

iPads for addressing astronomy misconceptions in scale

Many individuals and even entire schools and school districts are quick to jump on technology bandwagons when a new piece of technology is released.  The excitement and the hype of bringing new technology in to the classroom at time will override the more important questions – will this technology improve student learning?  Or could the technology actually hurt student learning? Apple products are commonly found in schools, especially the K-12 …

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28 December 2013

Lol My Thesis

After seeing “lolmythesis.com” come through my Twitter feed twice in one day, I knew this was a site I had to check out.  The website is very simple, “summing up years of work in one sentence.”  The About page states that the site was started by an undergraduate student looking for a way to distract herself from her own thesis.  The site contains a collection of one-sentence summaries from undergraduate …

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17 December 2013

Scientists are…

Google search “scientists are…” and get upset. Scientists need a better rep. http://t.co/A0wawJbeVT via @Slate — NRDC Science (@NRDCscience) December 6, 2013 On December 4, Phil Plait, the author of Slate Magazine’s Bad Astronomy blog, published a post that really sent some seismic waves through the science world.  Someone alerted him that if you type “scientists are” in a Google search box, Google with automatically suggest the following words to …

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16 December 2013

Before you Instagram your next museum visit…

Do you snap pictures at museums? You might not be remembering as much about your visit as you could http://t.co/3uiVf2mB39 — Smithsonian Magazine (@SmithsonianMag) December 15, 2013 When I had a film camera (“back in the day”), I was selective about what I took photos of during my travels, and how many photos I took.  The costs of purchasing film and photo processing held me back from snapping photos of …

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Using ScholarSphere to archive conference presentations

[email protected] has deposited her #AGU13 poster @ScholarSphere: http://t.co/CYbpaG9aIS. Great example of sharing knowledge! — Patricia Hswe (@pmhswe) December 16, 2013 I recently gave a poster presentation at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco on  December 12.  One of the challenges of giving a poster presentation is making sure that those that came by my poster have the opportunity to go back and review the information I presented when …

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More than your (past) employer may see what you post on Twitter

This is great: this pub just fired the head chef but forgot he was running their twitter: https://t.co/p5xbA0X4Yx — James Bloodworth (@J_Bloodworth) December 16, 2013 As a personal rule, I do not follow any of my students on Twitter (even if current students follow me), unless they are doing undergraduate research projects with me (I find Twitter a great way to connect with them, especially when we are at conferences, …

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15 December 2013

NASA Social at AGU 2013

At the American Geophysical Union meeting this past week in San Francisco, I was thrilled to be one of 20 people selected to attend a NASA Social.  Formerly called NASA TweetUps, their Socials gather together fans of NASA (no prior science experience necessary) that follow NASA on their social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, and/or Google+) to engage with NASA to witness the liftoff of a current mission, or in this …

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Google Street View of Antarctica

I have been at the American Geophysical Union conference this past week in San Francisco, attending amazing technical sessions and being overwhelmed with all the latest and greatest discoveries in Earth and space science.  I tried to keep up with the announcements coming through on my Twitter feed, and one tweet that was not conference-related caught my eye that I just had to “Favorite” and go back and check out: …

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6 December 2013

Prezi session at the PSTA Conference

Today, I am at the Pennsylvania Science Teachers Association (PSTA) annual conference, being held in State College, PA.  This conference pulls in a great many science teachers and future teachers from across Pennsylvania (somewhere between 500-1,000 people in attendance) to share teaching strategies and resources in K-12 education.  Presentations focus on chemistry, biology, physics, astronomy, Earth science, pedagogical practices, and of course – educational technology! The first session I attended …

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27 November 2013

Does social media make your experiences less special?

The title of this post came from a tweet I saw by @SmithsonianMag, which linked to a great post on their blog that answered their own question with “Your Life Experiences Aren’t So Special—Here’s Proof” Thomas Jullian made a 1 min 46 sec video from 852 Instagram images from 852 different people.  If you think you have captured “the” most unique photo of an iconic tourist location – think again.  …

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25 November 2013

Is a parody copyright infringement or fair use?

Trending these days is the GoldieBlox video, a clever video with three young girls that set up their own Rube Goldberg machine, showing that girls are just as smart and clever with innovative design and curiosity.  And the background music is just a clever, a re-do of the Beastie Boys song “Girls,” recorded with younger voices and new girl-friendly lyrics. GoldieBox video (unfortunately, the original video has been taken down …

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22 October 2013

Skype in the Classroom – Exploring Oceans

Inspired by Fabien Cousteau’s record-breaking Mission 31 expedition, starting November 1st, Skype in the Classroom will set sail on a month-long exploration of the oceans with Skype lessons from marine scientists and oceanographers from all over the world. Learn more at:  https://education.skype.com/exploringoceans Teachers (it looks like it is designed for K-12 audiences) can take students on the “ultimate field trip” and learn about everything from deep sea creatures that glow in the …

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29 June 2013

Google Street View Trekker in Hawaii

I am extremely excited about this news. Hawaii is a significant geologic location, and one that I know I’ll never get my students to. Fortunately, Google is taking my students for me! Who knew that by strapping a camera-equipped backpack…

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26 May 2013

The Big Pineapple in Bathurst, South Africa

Back in early April I traveled from my home in Cape Town, South Africa to the Eastern Cape, South Africa. I went for a long weekend to visit my husband in Grahamstown. My husband periodically spends several weeks in Grahamstown as he is working (part-time) on his masters degree in Exploration Geology at Rhodes University. I also visited the Eastern Cape back in December. I’m really enjoying exploring the Eastern Cape. …

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