About me

I'm a geek working as a distance learning specialist for a large corporation.

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[caption id="attachment_1036" align="alignright" width="285" caption="Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince"][/caption] I haven't read the books. In general I've tried to avoid reviews and other spoilers for the film (though I didReview: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

I just saved myself 12% in interest fees in a 10 minute conversation. I've been working in earnest to get myself out of credit card debt for a few years now.Saving 12% in interest in 10 minutes

This is one of a series of articles I wrote for The Coalition of Awesomeness blog some time ago. The blog has since gone to an unfortunate (but very awesome)The gift of music

Applications are open until October 11th. Sadly, my henchmen - Butterball and The Human Chihuahua - are on vacation, and training temps at this late hour is just not a headacheAre you E.L.E. material?

The Simple Dollar » Live Free: Seven Pieces Of Open Source Software That Transformed My Life Okay, "life transforming" might be a little extreme ... but then again I haven't triedLife Transforming Open Source Software

Computer Tips For Everybody » Blog Archive » Create a custom Control Panel in Windows XP This is a timely tip for me, as I just received aCustomize your WinXP Control Panel

I wish I had found this before Halloween was over.... Zombies in Plain English Remember... Zombies Don't Dance! [tags]zombies, instructional video[/tags]Are you prepared?!

Vampires and Lycans (werewolves) have been at war with each other for centuries. That war came to a head in Underworld. Both sides ended the movie under a world ofReview: Underworld: Evolution

Were you paying attention in those psychology classes? Do you remember the experiments where a rat was trained to press a lever to get food? It's amazing how relevant experiments on ratsGrilled cheese and the science of successive approximation

A long time ago, before I knew how to embed videos, I linked out to a David Letterman clip showing Steve Martin and Earl Scruggs (and a bunch of otherTuesday TubeWatch: Banjos and Steve Martin (and Star Wars!)

To review: I’m talking about an article on ZDNet that tries to make the case for streaming first-run movies to a home theater. In the first part, I laid out the argument theyMovie Theater vs. Home Theater (part 3)

I find a lot of stuff that I want to share, but that doesn't make it into a blog post of its own, for whatever reason (usually a lack ofLinkList: Sci-fi edition

I subscribe to news alerts from both CNN and the New York Times. I find the differences in their content interesting at times. The New York Times alerts pretty consistentlyBias in News Alerts?

Those who know me may assume my own daughter can also do this. She can't. Yet. [kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/EBM854BTGL0" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /] Smart kid.  :)Star Wars: A Cute Hope

So I've been using the same laptop at work for years. It's actually not a bad laptop for basic business needs - a Latitude D620 - but given that IThe Good, The Bad, and The Desks

Learning 2.0: useless buzzword

What is the fascination people have with completely non-descriptive buzzwords? And buzzwords with version numbers?! What the heck is the point of that? That is completely faddish and just plain lazy.

Learning 2.0; Web 2.0 . . . I don’t have clue 1.0 what those are about without going and doing research. Something new about learning? Something new about the web? That’s the most I can get out of those.

At least older buzzwords . . . → Read More: Learning 2.0: useless buzzword

24: the movie?

Movies.com: Industry buzz and movie information on the most talked-about upcoming movies

Here’s a movie rumor.

24 Bewitching Prediction Here’s a TV spinoff that should actually make a decent movie. Of course, I liked Starsky and Hutch and Dukes of Hazzard, so my credibility is pretty much shot in this department.

While I like the idea, if they’re going to keep with the Real Time aspect of the show, wouldn’t they have to rename it . . . → Read More: 24: the movie?

Nowhere Man on DVD

SciFi.com: Science Fiction Movie and TV Reviews Oh, man … I loved this show when it aired in UPN’s fledgling season (kind of ironic that it would be released at the same time UPN is closing its doors and joining with the WB to become the CW network).

I still can’t believe they cancelled this one. If this had been on an established network, this show would have been a hit, instead of killed off . . . → Read More: Nowhere Man on DVD

“Bible bill” sponsored by Democrats

Democrats in 2 Southern States Push Bills on Bible Study – New York Times

A couple of Democrats are endorsing a Bible class in public schools—but only if it’s based on a specific textbook about the Bible (“The Bible and Its Influence”) and not the Bible itself (or, for that matter, any other textbook, apparently).

This has stirred up some ill-will among Republicans who have been pushing for Bible classes for years (which the same . . . → Read More: “Bible bill” sponsored by Democrats

Corporate ethics

Survey: Unethical Corporate Behavior Stems From Unrealistic Objectives and Deadlines

First of all, the fact that this even warranted study is a heck of a condemnation of the corporate world. That, in itself, bothers me.

On a grander scale, this is also a condemnation (or perhaps a revelation) of our human natures: many of us will cheat to get things done, given the opportunity and a bit of motive (which could be as simple as . . . → Read More: Corporate ethics

America’s schools ineffective? Challenges for corporate learning

Parkin’s Lot: Stupid in America

Godfrey Parkin takes the notion (supported by a study) that America’s public schools, on average, produce substandard education, and applies it to corporate environments.

As he says, the condemnation of America’s school system is nothing new. I’ve heard it all my life. In fact, my friends even joke about understanding things “despite our public school education.” The study lists the usual reasons: lack of funding, teacher-student ratios, lack of teacher . . . → Read More: America’s schools ineffective? Challenges for corporate learning

Training Mistakes

Learning2005 learningwiki.com – Mistakes Elliot Masie’s Learning Wiki has a page for common mistakes trainers/instructional designers make, as reported by subscribers to his newsletter. He received over 700 responses — the wiki page is just an ‘executive summary’.

Some of the quotes, I can relate to completely. The ones that ring my gong the loudest are quoted below:

Skill Level/Needs Analysis Mistakes: – Responding to ‘crisis’ situations with quick-fix training – invariably, it doesn’t work . . . → Read More: Training Mistakes

Wiki’s in a corporate environment

Informal Learning » Blog Archive » The Weirdness of Wiki Wiki’s are full of potential for learning and communication, and yet for the most part they aren’t being used within corporations (that I can tell, anyway). Jay reports a big reason for that (emphasis added):

The moderator asked people to introduce themselves and say three words about wiki. The positives were terms like exciting, linked, and important. On the downside, people said confusing, disorienting, and . . . → Read More: Wiki’s in a corporate environment

What’s the Difference Between Learning and Training?

What’s the Difference Between Learning and Training?

Don’t worry. I’m not going off on another long post about this. I’m really just linking in here because it validates that I’m not the only person thinking about this.

The article from CLO magazine is much better than what I wrote, of course. I’ll just do a quick quote here from Maureen McCormick, director of learning and development, University of Iowa:

Training for a lot of people . . . → Read More: What’s the Difference Between Learning and Training?

Internet Time Blog » Blog Archive » Jaron Lanier

Internet Time Blog » Blog Archive » Jaron Lanier

When Jaron was speaking at the dedication of the Gates Computer Center at Stanford, he said “Naming a computer science building after Bill Gates is like naming a medical school after Typhoid Mary.” That line didn’t make it through to the live audio feed in Redmond.

heh heh.

Also interesting in that post is the claim that no one knows how a khaen (Laotian instrument) works. . . . → Read More: Internet Time Blog » Blog Archive » Jaron Lanier