I just got my Google Apps for Education Qualified Individual certification, which cost US$90, and which includes the most useless set of tests over nine hours. I have been married to Google Apps for fours years now and admin two basic domains, and yet very few of the questions had any relevance to administrating or using the products. They were multiple choice, T/F, or cloze.
Google really needs to give us a demo domain and ask us to complete various tasks, similar to how the RHCE works. People respect that cert. Instead, I got a cert modeled after the useless and disrespected MCSE.
Solution: in opera preferences, choose to prefer mobile interface.
I'm still confused as to why Microsoft, Yahoo! and Google don't agree amongst themselves to use their own services + XMPP + some plugins to openly replicate Facebook and immediately become big players in the social business. When your competition is eclipsing you like FB is, you need to start making some hard choices. There's no collusion if it's an open platform, right? Old and slow. Old and slow.
I started working in the worst school in one of the worst districts in the U.S. a few months ago, and the level of brokenness of the entire system is shocking. I won't go into too much detail, or talk about the insane assumption that teachers will purchase supplies for their classes, something I have never witnessed in other professions. Instead, I'll talk about something that makes we want to cry.
I got a new student last week: she's a refugee from a Central American country. Her father was killed by the gangs there, and when her family fled through Mexico, they were kidnapped and raped for weeks. She speaks no English at all, yet she makes more effort than 98% of my other students, and I can teach her algebra and geometry in half the time it takes the other kids. Wonderful, right? The only problem is that she's going to be deported in a few weeks because her family has applied for refugee status, but they won't get it because the people who want to kill her don't work for the government.
Meanwhile, about 15% of my students are known undocumented aliens (read that as illegal), but schools aren't allowed to talk to immigration.
Summary? The kid who really needs and would profit from staying in country won't be able to (and will likely be killed when deported) because her family tried to follow the law, while people who didn't make any attempt to and merely sneaked into the country are staying.
I'm planning to start a computer tech club at my school, oriented around receiving donations of parts and putting computers together for poor families (possibly of other students). Of course we'll need to put a free OS on them.
Any suggestions on what organizations would be likely to donate or how to approach them? What pitfalls should I avoid? Do you think this is a reasonable way to get kids involved in the hardware side of computing? I've never done anything like this before.
Anyone have any invites? (Flashback to trying to get a GMail invite.)
I've got to buy a graphing calculator for a teaching competency exam I'll be taking in about two months. Despite doing 2 years of engineering, I've never used one of these things (they weren't useful for my courses in the 80s), and I'll have to become proficient in that time, as well. Does Slashdot have any recommendations for an inexpensive, easy-to-learn graphing calc?
Awesome graphics: shit story.
The National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (NECTEC) in Thailand announces the Thailand ICT Contest Festival 2010, and the announcement page uses tons of blink tags. OK. Not Really. It uses animated GIFs to do basically the same thing. I thought that shit was dead.
We just got around to watching Firefly for the first time, and Goy can't stop talking about it or whining that it got cancelled. She's not really a sci-fi kind of gal, normally. Quite strange.
"...a most excellent barbarian ... Genghis Kahn!" -- _Bill And Ted's Excellent Adventure_