Showing posts from February, 2020

The Latest Debate

When I was eighteen or so, I read a bit of Thomas Merton's works. I suspect it was an anthology of some of his best writing and ideas. Either that, or I grazed a bit much at the monkish library I found myself in with its cool stone walls and sheltering oaks.

Not surprisingly, it was the pursuit of beauty that placed me in such holy surroundings. I had been mildly interested in a young lady who hoped to (but never did) become a nun, so I found myself attending events with her. While I soon lost interest in the young lady's spiritual aspirations, noble as they were, I did love the libraries and grottoes I found myself at.

At one of them, I found a few books by Thomas Merton. I had no idea who Merton was, and his writing didn't appeal that much to me. I suspect there was too little life experience to take hold in, and ambition kept me from the contemplative. His life was a bit cloistered (is that the right term?) for my tastes. Ha ha. Seriously, he had some interesting takes …

Grease, Grime and Guts: Insights into Culture

"How do you measure school climate?" asked a principal at a district meeting of principals. The conversation focused on the annual school climate survey sent out. The question was more about whether the climate survey was paper-based or in a Google Form.
Note: This is an unfinished blog entry I started while researching Hattie's take on leadership. I got to a certain point and realized it wasn't getting me close to a usable blog entry for my work, so I archived it. After some reflection, I decided to archive it here and expand on some of the ideas a bit.  Are Climate Surveys Trivial? You know, I didn't pay that much attention since climate surveys seemed so trivial (I'd helped campuses put a Google Form with all the questions). Why trivial? They seemed trivial for these reasons:
Climate surveys happen at the end of the year, too late to really have an impact on issuesClimate surveys were data collected by the people in charge about how they were doing. Did any…

Formula Speaker and Writer: Two That Changed My Life

When I was 17 years old, right before leaving for college (I turned 18 in October), I could barely get a word out when standing in front of a group. In fact, my shyness often kept me from speaking up in class, although I seldom had problems writing my thoughts down and sharing them that way. Rather than plan a talk out--like I do now--with main points fleshed out by personal story, I focused on writing/typing my entire speech out. In this blog entry, I'd like to share TWO formulas that have transformed my career. That's saying a lot, you know.
Ready to get the secret formulas?
Formula #1: The Magic FormulaAs a teenager, most talks I gave were failures. My talks were boring, I had no sense of the audience, I couldn't feel the connection between the audience, and what I was saying.

Exasperated with me, my Dad shipped me off to Dale Carnegie's Human Relations Course one summer for 8 weeks, about 3.5 hours once a week. Another shy young man from India who coincidentally happe…

We Get It: 3 Email Tips

We all get it. We get it so much, we're tired of it. We get it so much, we wade through it on the way to work. We get get it when we're standing in line at the grocery store, and when we're waiting for our food at the restaurant. When my wife is picking out the strawberries, organic vs whatever, my phone tells me the emails are coming. In this blog entry, I'd like to respond to some of the suggestions that appear at the NCCE Tech-Savvy Teacher blog.

Amanda Kuznia writes on the subject of how email can be better. Why, yes, yes it can be better. I have to share my two cents, though.

Tip #1 - Don't Reply All The tip isn't, "reply all." Rather the tip is be careful about it. The truth is, no one cares. No one needs your reply to all. Worse, if you want to reply to all, you might as well compose a blog entry and post it. Record your thoughts in audio (Voxer) or video (Flipgrid short). Even better, get up, grab a bullhorn and yell it from the center of the …

Trying out #!, er, Bunsen Labs Linux

One of my favorite distros, mainly because it was so light on my system at the time, was Debian-based Crunchbang (#!) GNU/Linux. It had a fairly light footprint, and everything moved along quite speedily. Unfortunately, about the time I started using it, it stopped being developed. So, I switched back to Ubuntu and that was that.

Running a GNU/Linux distro on my Microsoft Surfacebook (original model) has been a pain. Although I've tried a variety of distros, none of them quite seemed to be as zippy as, well, Windows 10. As a result, I end up spending more time on Windows 10 side than I do on the GNU/Linux side. Ubuntu's GUI these days runs slow on my machine, and other distros are only a little better. In the end, I keep coming back to Ubuntu.

That is, until I found out by accident that Bunsen Labs carries on the work of #! I was a bit shocked to load it on my Surfacebook and find that it looks and runs very much like #!.

The distribution consists of configuration and resource…

Wakelet: My #TCEA Session Materials and More

While I still remain tired, I find myself wanting to share some of the exciting insights I gained from TCEA 2020 Convention and Exposition last week. It was freakin' amazing!

WAIT, THERE'S MORE! In this Wakelet, TCEA 2020 Riveting Resources, you'll find all the resources I was able to corral and capture, including my own. You can also find my TCEA 2020 Photo Album.

Check it all out! More to follow.

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

A New Story: Reflections from a Veteran #TCEA Participant

Can you believe it? It's been 24 years since I attended my first TCEA Convention and Exposition in 1996 to present, "Accessing the World through TENET" to a packed room of educators (I also presented, "Publishing via the Net"). By then, I had already published EIGHT pieces, of which one appeared in TCEA's TechEdge (Vol 15 (1)) in August, 1995.
Disclaimer: This is an OPINION piece. While I now work for TCEA as a  Director of Professional Development, this blog entry reflects my own thinking and insights about an organization that has done so much for educators and students in Texas. Looking back, I wouldn't change a thing and would join the organization today if I were starting my career.  Now, we are ready to transform the world with a new message, to tell a new story. . .I am proud to be a part of that new story with you. TCEA CONVENTIONS COME AND AGO BUT... ...the family experience remains. If I have one thing to say, it is that we are all on a journe…

#FAIL - Crappy #CustomerService at Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers @FreddysUSA (UPDATED)

What a disappointment in customer service. This was a customer service fiasco. If my wife hadn't kept driving, I would have expressed this in person to the manager on duty. I was so disgusted, I was about to pitch my concrete sundae.
A Few Moments Earlier.... "Hey, want to catch a quick ice cream sundae at Freddy's?" I asked my wife. We both started smiling at how good it was going to be.  "Sure," she said, "let's go!" We loved Freddy's, but after this Sunday afternoon event at approximately 12:45PM in San Antonio (Park Oaks) location drive through, I'm NEVER going back to Freddy's.
Let's Review What Happened My wife and I pulled into the drive through lane, and asked about the difference between a sundae and a "concrete." It was a simple question. I ordered the concrete since we were in my wife's car, and I didn't want anything dripping all over the seats. She asked for their oreo type ice cream cookie, but w…