May 2006

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In Two Cents Worth (David Warlick’s thoughts about education, teaching,  learning, and the 21st century), Warlick recently wrote a post entitled “Curriculum is Dead”. With a provacative title like that, I had to investigate.

In the post, Warlick discusses the difference between classrooms of yesterday and those of today and tomorrow, while explaining the need for technology in our classrooms. His article is summarized nicely with a statement regarding the need for technology in our classrooms – “…it is the lens through which we experience much of our world.”

See Link

While watching Good Night and Good Luck last night (an excellent film surrounding the Joseph McCarthy era of communist accusations), I was inspired by a line from Edward R. Murrow’s keynote address at the RTNDA Convention in Chicago, October, 1958:

This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes, and it can even inspire. But it can do so only to the extent that humans are determined to use it to those ends. Otherwise it is merely wires and lights in a box. There is a great and perhaps decisive battle to be fought against ignorance, intolerance and indifference. This weapon of television could be useful. (the full address can be found here).

Of course, Murrow is talking about television. Besides the obvious political undertones, I was reminded of how that television and media have great power to teach in our modern classrooms, but unless this technology is properly used – it is simply wires and lights in a box. This is true of all new technology in the classroom; it has to be effectively used in order to be a powerful tool for learning.


One of my favorite utilities for Windows XP is a little program called SyncToy. This is found as one of Microsoft’s XP PowerToys, found as free downloads for licensed XP users. SyncToy is but one of these programs designed to add functionality to XP.
This how Microsoft describes PowerToys:

PowerToys add fun and functionality to the Windows experience. What are they? PowerToys are additional programs that developers work on after a product has been released.

SyncToy allows you to sync files from a variety of sources – laptops, external hard drives, USB flash drives, digital cameras, portable media players, PDAs, etc.

I like to use SyncToy to sync various flash drives with my home computer. For instance, I keep a USB flash drive for all of my DEN documents. Whether I am working on them at home, at school or anywhere else, I can always sync the files with SyncToy so that nothing is lost. This is what the process looks like:


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