Showing posts from November, 2010

Job Posting - Deputy Communications Director

Job Opening Deputy Communications Director The Texas Freedom Network, a statewide, nonprofit organization located in Austin, seeks a full-time deputy communications director. The Texas Freedom Network promotes religious freedom, civil liberties and strong public schools and serves as a watchdog on the religious right in Texas. The deputy communications director helps develop and manage the organization’s messaging and communications strategies in the mainstream media, member communications and online.
RESPONSIBILITIES: Work collaboratively with the communications director and other staff to develop, write and edit membership and public communications across various media, including the TFN Insider blog, TFN News Clips, member newsletter (three a year), research and fact sheets, public policy reports, brochures, and other materials.Work with the communications director to direct TFN’s media relations, including advancing press events, writing press materials, developing relationships with …

@TCEA Announces New Job Board - Find Jobs!

The Texas Computer Education Association (TCEA) finally adds a "Job Board," a long-desired feature by Texas educators! Although you can now locate available Texas-wide positions at TASAnet's Career Center, here at Around the Corner, or Linked In (if you're connected that way), you can now find them at...
Let's hope someone will be updating this information regularly! You can send job announcements in for posting by emailing "" without quotes!

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Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

Moodle's ACID Trip - Converting #Moodle Databases from MyISAM to INNODB

Note: This started out as an email to Moodle Mayhem asking for help, but then turned into an exploratory journey. Since the process doesn't seem to be articulated anywhere in detail, such as a Moodle wiki page, I thought it might be fun to go through it and see what happens. This is the result.

Anyone seen this message after upgrading a Moodle 1.9 instance to Moodle 2.0 in their admin panel? This is what I saw after upgrading to Moodle 2.0 from Moodle 1.9:

"Database tables are using MyISAM database engine, it is recommended to use ACID compliant engine with full transaction support such as InnoDB."
If you're like me, the question must have come up...This has a fascinating overview of what all that means:
And, here's a quick explanation as to why you would want to convert from MyISAM to InnoDB:
Why would you want to convert an existing MySQL database from MyISAM to InnoDB? While the MyISAM format has low overhead and generally th…

Dirpy is GONE

Another Web 2.0 service bites the dust....

You could use Dirpy to convert your favorite YouTube videos to mp3s. You can find some alternatives here.

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Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

Dealing with Yahoo Email

Get spammed lately? I was. Here's the email apology from the person whose Yahoo email account was "possessed":
I guess I am getting spamed - I contacted Yahoo! and have run scans on my computer and can find nothing - so please just delete anything from me with a crazy subject. Sorry again. What you gotta love is when I try to send this message to everyone in my address book, it is stopped by the Yahoo! spam filter :0(My response:

A colleague's Yahoo account was hacked by a spammer two months ago. We went through the process of shutting down his email account and switching him over to Gmail. May I encourage you to do the same?Step 1 - Export your Yahoo Mail contacts to a text file and save that on your computer.Step 2 - Get Free Gmail Account and import contacts from your Yahoo accountStep 3 - Set up the vacation message on your account announcing your new Gmail account address and the account will be terminated at a particular date.Step 4 - Cancel Yahoo Account on ann…

MyNotes - School Policy Allows kids have cell phones

This policy isn't very allows student use of mobile devices between classes, but how is it capitalizing on them to facilitate learning IN the classroom? The article's title is misleading since students are not allowed to have cell phone IN class, but rather, between classes. If this school is like many others, school officials couldn't stop mobile device usage and simply capitulated on its use to reduce (by 80%) the violations they were having to track.
School changes policy, lets kids have cell phones in class - KLTV 7 News Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |
School changes policy, lets kids have cell phones in class Posted: Nov 16, 2010 11:18 AM By Brandi Hodges Most schools have banned students from using their cell phones during the day.  This fall one school changed its policy.  Kids at Walnut Ridge Middle and High School can carry their phones into class, the hallway and to the cafeteria.  The only restriction is when they can use their phones! …

MyNotes - Student Devices Save Districts Money

Student Devices Save Districts Money
Student Devices Save Districts Money By Tanya Roscorla on November 15, 2010 As more school districts try to individualize instruction, they're looking for ways to give every child a mobile device. But most of them can't afford to buy a laptop or tablet for every child. By allowing students to bring their mobile devices to class, school districts provide the benefits of personalized instruction — without blowing their budgets. pass on their purchasing power to families, who can buy devices from vendors at the district's discounted rate. if we let kids and teachers bring in the device they already have, it rechanges the whole economics of what's possible," said Keith Krueger, CEO of the Consortium for School Networking. Osseo Area Schools in Hennepin County, Minn., doesn't have the budget to support a huge mobile device initiativ…

MyNotes - 3,500 students navigate Tx virtual classrooms

3,500 students navigate virtual classrooms at 3 Texas public online schools | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Grand Prairie News
3,500 students navigate virtual classrooms at 3 Texas public online schools By JEFFREY WEISS / The Dallas Morning News Riley is one of about 3,500 Texas kids taking advantage of online public schools, a free alternative to brick-and-mortar education. These schools must meet the same state-mandated curriculum requirements and TAKS testing of students at any other public school in Texas. students enrolled in the state's three virtual public schools do much of their work – including readings, exams and live class participation – using the laptop computers supplied by the schools. And virtual education in Texas is not an unqualified success, based on the most recent TAKS scores. On several tests, all of the online schools lag behind state averages for passing rates. For instance, 77 percent of Texas fo…

MyNotes - Status of PD and Unique Needs of K-12 Online Teachers

Check out this new report....
2010: The Status of Professional Development and Unique Needs of K-12 Online Teachers

Some main points that jumped out at me from the Report:
25% of brand new online teachers reported receiving notrainingThe most highly preferred form of professional development is fully online facilitated (53%), and in a workshop format (49%).Social networking is the least desired skill (26%) where respondents want or need trainingRespondents indicate design tools (40%) as the area in which they are most interested in receiving training.According to a 2008 Sloan Consortium report, more than 75% of schools and districts say they need online learning to offer courses not otherwise available. Systemic challenges in K-12 education support the need for online teaching and learning as a central strategy for reform to address teaching shortages and to increase access to college-prep curriculum. Only 40% of high schools offe…

Texas Texting Turmoil

In a response to my blog entry sharing the announcement about Texas Texting Ethics Code modifications suggested for teachers, Adrianne Stone writes the following:

I do worry that it will be interpreted that way. My district recently instituted a "do not respond to students after 9pm" rule - twitter, facebook, text, or email. Honestly I have kids who don't get to their hw until 9pm so what are they supposed to do if they have questions? I'm not having conversations with them for the love of pete I'm responding to questions about their homework. But in favor of preserving my job I have communicated to my students that I am unable to respond after 9pm due to district policy. Even with these new ethics rules and district guidelines I think I'm lucky to be in a district that recognizes the value of online/social media communication between teachers and students and don't feel that in my district I have been lumped in with the child molesters who happen to be t…

Moodle2 - Garbage Collection Process

Earlier today, I ran across the following response to the Moodle 2.0 related question (Reuben Rowntree) of how do you delete a file you have uploaded as part of an HTML description or on a page?

Here's the response from David Mudrak:
This is the key point of the new File API. To remove the embedded file from the page, just remove the image from the HTML editor. After re-save, it will be unlinked from the page. After some time, the garbage collector process shall find all stored files that are not referenced from any place for a long time and will trash them physically. But you can be never sure that the file is not referenced from an other place so you do not have the option to remove it on your own. Consider this mechanism as so called hard links known in common file systems.The way I understand this is that there is a process--"garbage collector process"--that filters through and removes orphan files not linked anywhere. I'm not sure I like this kind of…

Thanksgiving Bowl

Thanksgiving is often a time for giving thanks. So, let's take care of that. Thank you for reading, whether you make it through to the end or not. Thank you for being here, a day or for years. What am I thankful for? Well, it's a little more complicated...and I'm going to have to play around with the ideas, which is what this blog is about...playing with ideas and stuff.

It's amazing to consider I've been blogging for almost 9 years, and what a thrill ride it's been. You might ask, "Thrill ride? Blogging?" The answer is YES. When you're writing about what you're learning, you realize that you have to keep learning to have something to share. I'm grateful that so many of you have made those learning expeditions exciting and worthwhile, imparting your wisdom through your own blog entries. Now, I find myself learning and tinkering with ideas, tools every time I turn on my computer or mobile device.

For me, learning that way can be hard. If y…