Tuesday, December 14, 2010

NOTES FROM EPORTFOLIOS AUSTRALIA CONFERENCE Melbourne, 3rd-4th November, 2010

(Image CC licensed by theother66)

Just a month late but here they are. (Spoken summary over at Podding Downunder)

Tom Cochrane

• there are political and socio-political drivers; several revolving around quality
• issues around retention
• recording competencies
• massification??- opposite to individualism, give students a chance to record/document their experience, that they had value, generated a sense of intimacy, relevance, durability – (this makes sense vis a vis the VET sector – not such a sense of massification)

Bret Eynon (LaGuardia Comm College) – High Impact Practices and the Integrative ePortfolio

• cc's in US use epfs less than higher ed, but increasing in all sectors
• the 'field' is growing; there is now a journal

Types

career/credential, learning, assessment- integrative includes all 3 of these aspects

epf can join personal and prof life plus community life
epf also a connecting tool – to other students, and to teaching staff

can be divided into 'working portfolio' where you add reflections and other data, and the public bit that is a final, edited version

(VET: the export from course to epf function is critical so the student does not have to reprocess/rewrite); eg each student involved in Cinderella this morning (E's class) would record something of their experience and use it/retain it for assessment, and beyond

clash with epf best practice with (again and as usual) organisational constraints

'epfs' have always been part of the deal for art and media students

LaGuardia data shows that epf activity has increased engagement and critical thinking, AND IMPROVE PASS RATES

(are the gains sufficient to disregard issues of proprietary tethering, universal tool for all, etc. Should it be mandated and a partic product endorsed???); are there students in Aust VET who don't have sufficient interest in learning? Or is the epf the tool to change that?

“Design backwards” to promote critical reflection
eportfolios are a disruptive technology – it does result in change #eac2010

BEVERLEY OLIVER (Curtin Uni)
Engaging Students for graduate employability

focus is moving towards evidence and outcomes of learning (yuk!)

how did I (we get our jobs??????)
employers don't need to look at epfs to give them value, because this is where you store info that you use in job apps and interviews

what gives you early professional success? (graduate employability)

(CLA = collegiate learning assessment; a new initiative)

Margaret G – Mahara Case Studies

her epf is several sections of her filing cabinet!


1) example 1 – CEMONS SKILLS CENTRE
Hairdressing – used POV; Mahara used with Google apps – Gahoodle!
Finding that spyglasses are too 'mobile' – prefer hand held cameras – thus losing POV perspective
students using epf for reflection
students love using media for evidence **

Streamfolio for storage of vids? http://www.streamfolio.com/

2) ICS Professionals (ICT) – online course run in Moodle

South Western Sydney Institute

using Mahara

learning the skills was a significant issue
also giving feedback in online environment; (presume t's had not done online courses, and were supporting f2f students in an OL environment ) *
again, hairdressing were participants
Gen Y are not necessarily tech savvy (except for Facebook)
all NSW TAFE students have access to Mahara sandpit

Created templates for students to use
epfs involves a PARADIGM SHIFT :)
Com Serv interested but have no time (!)

[If you have a learner who has stuff scattered all over the place do they need to 'join the program' and use the endorsed product?]

Chris Cowper – privacy and epfs

privacy – incompatible with the Net? Outdated? “Scott McNeally (Sun) ” - you have zero privacy anyway – get over it (10 yrs ago)
privacy is about control; you choose your friends (not ur relatives!); when to be alone, when to be intimate, etc

“The Great Risk Shift” - Jacob Hacker http://www.greatriskshift.com/

shift towards the individual
Aust has a plethora of orgs dedicated to privacy and safety of the individual

Privacy Possible?

15 – 18 yr olds just as worried about privacy as older people, but are more likely to disclose personal info than older folks (Zogby Poll) http://www.zogby.com/

intentional leaks by 3rd parties???? a la Wikileaks (Mahara, ELGG – really???)
new concept – Privacy by Design (PBD)
see http://www.trustguide.org/


Victor Callan Keynote

Lumps elearning, e-assessment and epfs in the same title – and asks about challenges??!!
Higher ed a step behind in responding to skills and approaches that industry wants

INNOVATION:

Generation and execution of good ideas - to make a diff, OR produce economic return

• Experimental, disruptive
• Connectedness, collaboration
• We need to be failure tolerant
• Because there WILL be failures!

80% of all innovation that has anything to do with org change fails

How do you make innovation stick?

• Quizzes are most dominant form of e-assessment, YET epfs are what VET practitioners want most!
• Need a plan (strategy), snr leadership support
• Business case
• Etc etc etc – V mentioned several other factors...put them all together abd you have something of an impossible, or at least, Herculean task!

Gordon Joyes (Uni of Nottingham)

JISC epf consultant 2007

JISC epf study director 2007 – 11

If epfs are such a good idea why don’t we see more evidence of them?

· “weak central influence on local pedagody”

· They are disruptive (again)

· Some orgs are using an epf process but not epfs

Barriers to implementation:

A range of processes to be understood

THRESHOLD CONCEPTS like

· Purpose

· Design of learning activities needs to change

· Process

Neither teachers nor students know how to do this!!

Represent troublesome knowledge

· Ownership

· disruptive

Refers to an epf ‘movement’!

Many employers and colleges don’t value epfs

Liz Smith (Engineering – Uni SA)

Assumed that entering students could cope easily with IT requirements:

· 98% have home Net access

· 90% comfortable with PCs

· 93% have Facebook account…BUT…

This did not translate to facility with epfs.

Began with wikis/blogs; graduated to Pebblepad (which had too many features, stds did not adapt well, GUI needs fast connection speed.

Feedback: “too much of a pain . I’d rather use MS Word!”:

Stds did not see the link betw epf, assessment, and life after uni…until

They switched to using a template and they found this much easier

Note: marking epfs takes longer than marking papers!

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Why I Post to Flickr


“Sharing a photo by making it available online constitutes sharing even if no one ever looks at it.

This “frozen sharing” creates great potential value. Enormous databases of images, text, videos, and so on include many items that have never been looked at or read, but it costs little to keep those things available, and they may be useful to one person, years in the future. That tiny bit of value may seem too small to care about, but with two billion potential providers, and two billion potential users, tiny value times that scale is huge in aggregate. Much creative energy that was previously personal has acquired a shared component, even if only in frozen sharing. “

Clay Shirky, Cognitive Surplus

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thinking Deeply about the Shallows

Presentation and discusssion based on ideas from Nicholas Carr's The Shallows, and Larry Sanger's Individual Knowledge in the Internet Age. Mobilizethis10 Conference, October 2010.


Audio from this session available under Friday's program list at http://mobilizethis.wikispaces.com/2010_Program

Monday, October 25, 2010

Batchelor Life :)



Me suffering in the Northern Territory last week.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Notes from VET Teaching Conference

NOTES FROM VET TEACHING CONFERENCE (Brisbane, May, 2010)

Kay Giles – No Two Days are the Same

Diversity leads to a degree ofgeneralisation – harder to be specific about what you do; goals of organizationbecome diffuse

“The illiterate of the 21st century will be those who can't learn,unlearn, and relearn” (Toffler)

quality is a cultural concept. In the UK =reputation; for French, Italian = luxury; Japanese = setting a standard andachieving it; US = size (joke)

Australia: fit for purpose;relationships/trust

(at this point a reference came through on Twitter on the neutral nature of quality by Christopher Alexander, architect, but I can't find it :)

Notion of agility a better word/concept toreplace ‘flexibility’?

VET has a lot of offerings that are nolonger suiting customer/client need (eg 3 wk blocks)

[usevis as intermission! - should have related point though]

Keynote 2 Day 2: Assessment forLearning - Revitalising the Link Beween Assessment and Learning (Rob Stowell)

build a picture of competency

ask open questions – link to self-assessment

scaffold feedback piecemeal over time

Stages of Presentation

Quality Assessment

Relationship between T and L and assessment

Practical ideas for improving assessment inVET

– he has been looking at qualityassessment

Quality Assessment:

1) benchmarks (standards)

2) validity, reliability,fairness, flexibility

3) assessment decision based onevidence

4) quality assured

5) assessment an integral part ofthe t and l process; not separate

6) quality judgements (not sure what this means)

7) should be informed by practicebased research (ie not uni research!)

LEARNING: Deep v Surface

we need people with grasp of principles thatcan link them together

What kind of assessment leads to deeplearning?

1) builds on what learners know?

2) Approach that helps people'make meaning'

3) active and social

future assessment: will assist learnersdevelop capacity to make judgements/problem solve

Assessmentfor Learning requires that students:

understand the competency to be achieved

where they are in relation to the competency

how they can achieve the desired level

KEYNOTE DAY 2 : BeckySaunders (Murdoch Uni)

Contemporary VET Learning – Strategies for now and thefuture

[check Joyce and Showers Skill Training Model]

“people are where they are for good reasons” (the questions ofvalues!)

Concerns Based Adoption Model (CBAM)

Talked about what seems to be a wonderful PD model that runsfor over a year (can be up to 4 yrs!); focused on Instructional Intelligence (IT) [check Barrie Bennett

Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto]

IT is about ‘how people learn’’ it has 2 aspects:

1) emotional

2) behavioural

it’s a career long journey!

It takes 3-5 yrs to embed systemic change, and this kind ofchange is messy and organic

Links with Appreciative Inquiry and Open Space Methodology

“who among you is willing to bell the cat?” ie challengeexisting structures and authority

TERRY O’HANLON (CEO of Australian Trade College – an independentnon-profit): International VET – Meeting Global Needs

TNE = Transnational engagement

- large increase in offshore VET students since2006

Philippines

Only 20% of HE students get jobs; 3000 people leave thePhilippines every day to work abroad

International VET programs mean people in developingcountries can do ‘Australian quality’ training for a fraction of the price; ieit’s affordable

All content for all their courses is online

AFTERNOON KEYNOTE DAY2 – TIGA BAYLES

“we’re hands –on people” (ie indigenous)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Study of a Study


Study of a Study
Originally uploaded by mikecogh
Will this arrive in Twitter?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Notes from IDEA10 Conference


IDEA10 Conference (Melbourne, 11/12 March, 2010)

Katrina Reynen (DEECD Innovation, Vic)


No longer acceptable to have 2 lessons plan – 1 for technology; 1 without

teachers still focusing on blockers that prevent them adopting technology

digital education is about bringing people into classroom – not about Blackboard, LMSs, etc



teachers have not yet made the pedagogical shift



consultants report that teachers learn from each other (more than other occupations?)



employability skills = skills you need to succeed in work, AND be happy in life!!! eg collaboration, teamwork, etc



“be the connectors” (the conduits!)


Dr Larry Fruth (SIF Association) [SIF = systems interoperability framework]

Emerging Technologies to Address the Information Generation



“the global need to address 'global citizenship'



the teachers are the digital divide (or at least the purveyors of it!); kids use the Internet when they get home, not at school



LEARNING DESIGN = PERSONAL + ENVIRONMENT + SOCIAL



technologies promote converesations about teaching that didn't occur before!



Gordon White – Shared Service (ACT) in response to Larry:



interested in getting each student a unique personal identifier (eg an ID number)





SESSION: What Technology do Teachers Want?

CHAIR: Dennis McNamara


Panellist 1: Andrew Douch (Wanganui Park Secondary College)



5 questions to ask when evaluating new tech?



1) does it save time? Or is it quick/

2) does it enable me to do anything I couldn't do before?

3) Can I just pick it up and use now?

4) Desire path (students go where they want to go) eg phones and Facebook are things students want to do anyway

5) ?



Which tools answer these 5 questions?


referred to kids being part of a learning community, but should that be 'network



Pannellist #2: Dr Shirley Reushle (USQ)


sees herself as both 'technologist' and teacher

does what teachers want reflect what students want?

teachers come with “diverse values and beliefs”



Teachers want tech that

• supports and enhance learing

• make job easier

• easy to use (intuitive?)

• stretch imagination



teachers want:



• time

• safe places to practice (sandpits)

• JIT learning



Panellist #3: Harriet Wakelam (eWorks)

“there is a casual disrespect for content” (quoting Frank Furedi)

despite new technolgies fundamental needs of students don't change



the job of technologies and systems people is done when everything is done and it works seamlessly in the background



Question: if you use web 2.0 how can you keep copies of stuff outside the web?

Are eportfolios the answer? As long as they all talk to each other (ie interoperability)



how do we convince the media and wider society of the value of an open approach?



“a good teacher leaves their ego at the door” (Shirley); “teachers need to loosen up a bit”



education is being democratised (Douch) cf From Blogs to Bombs; the nub of the problem: the locked down/centralised/controlled systems v individualised/personal/decentralised/democratised nature of much of today's web



There is no privay anymore (source of quote?) - we need now to deal with the new public nature of private lives.



RESPONSE TO ABOVE PANEL

Can what teachers want be built?

Michael Kirby-Lewis (UNSW)



UNSW has moved from single LMS focus with a 3-4 yr cycle; now multiple technologies and continuous adoption/evaluation; focus now on the pedagogical needs rather than the tool



You are never going to keep people happy with one solution (therefore should TAFESA keep Janison and Moodle???)



David Appleby (Westone)



Moodle in WA has been adopted by school teachers (Janison was resisted) because they don't need the whole course up at once, they want full control over their content- ability to edit and contextualise. (This is Moodle's greatest strength.)



How come Moodle has been successful?


* OS, uncontrolled, non-system approach
* OU (UK) spent several millions of dollars on it!!! ????





SESSION: WHAT INFRASTRUCTURE IS BEING BUILT?
CHAIR: Dr Nigel Ward


Rodney Spark (eWorks)



estandards: “realising the full potential of elearning”



estandards has aided the development of LORN stuff, Toolboxes, accessibility (still content based), mobile content



estandards in training doc: http://e-standards.flexiblelearning.net.au/docs/2008-commonly-used-elearning-apps-v1-0.pdf This is a diff kind of standard – having some agreement about a commonly used tools – not interoperability type standards.



Bruce Rigby (DEEC Vic)



Ultranet - http://www.education.vic.gov.au/management/ultranet/default.htm a student centred electronic learning environment that supports high quality learning and teaching, connects students, teachers and parents and enables efficient knowledge transfer. It will establish a schools environment for the future that improves the educational outcomes of all Victorians.



James Dalziel (Macquarie)

ALTC Exchange http://www.altcexchange.edu.au/



looking at how research data can be stored/categorised/tagged/described so it can be found quickly



Moodle has community around it – thousands of tech people are part of it; passionate community of teeachers contributing to an iterative process.



James' Concerns:



1) Connection with Web 2.0 and LMS/SSO will probably not happen

2) broad uptake of LORs still not there

3) lots of duplication of big bucks infrastructure projects



Desires:

1) have nationally hosted cloud of apps that teachers can try on demand

2) open content and CC – increased use of



Greg Black (formerly ed.au now Education Services Australia)


data shows that a very small percentage of teachers are actually using technolgies in a way that makes a difference



SESSION: IF IT IS BUILT WILL WE PLAY? (Chaired by Jerry Leeson)

Olivia O'Neill (Brighton Secondary School, SA)



* Brighton has wireless across the school!!
* moved from low risk behavour to high risk
* have eliminated IT Coordinator position
* have adopted 24/7 laptops for kids ($350/yr)
* have used Alan Noble (Mr Google Australia) create an LMS called Gee Whizz; incoporates curriculum, content, student management





Colin Warner (Glenn Waverley Secondary School)

use ICT to transform teaching and learning practice

video shown full of shots of students in front of computers – this will not help those who oppose this approach

“connectivity into the home” - ????


'3 strike rule' – if a teacher experiences 3 tech failures they're gone forever



SESSION: HARVESTING EDUCATIONAL FLORA



Panel Chair: Stuart Tait (Learning Fed)

Paula Bray (Powerhouse Museum)



* Use of Flickr; everything CC licensed; users create mash-ups; re-use (and notify the museum)- great example of the benefits of sharing/giving/OER approaches/CC licensing
* have learnt that one size does not fit all!! as applied to licensing and copyright!!




Liam Wyatt (Wikipedia) wittylama.com
Handing out Paints


* “if you handed out paints on the street there'd be a lot more painters'! And then if you ban painting then you'll have lift off!
* Use wikipedia as a starting point for your research, not an endpoint
* everything on wikipedia is royalty free




QUESTION: we have heard about the huge success of Moodle (OS), Wikipedia OS)l iTunes Ed Store (free), Flickr (free). Why bother with systems, interoperability, standards, when free or OS stuff is already out there and in use.





DAY 2

SESSION: International Perspectives on Interoperability

Chair: Greg Black



includes things like import/export portability of UGC



Dr Rob Abel (IMS Global Consortium)



Lowering the barriers for the Next Gen of Teaching and learning – Now



* in terms of LMSs we are at the bottom of the evolutionary tree
* new IMS base assumption – the cloud is basic infrastructure
* new approaches (Common Cartrideg, LTI, etc) enables importing oof content into LMS, and other applications like Facebook – as long as the platform supports LTI
* we need the 'app store of education; or the iTunes of ed?



Peter Croger (Croger Associates)

Why is interoperability important?

* Interoperability is about the ability to work together; it's about connecting and sharing
* tensions that need to be balanced (good slide – need to chase it)
* Amazon, Apple, Google etc are not interested in working with ed directly – they go direct to customer. So 'standards work' is operating in a world divorced from the really big players



REMOTE PRESENTATION EVOLVING LEARNING – Gilly Salmon

(facilitated by Prof Philip Candy, USQ)



- the 'tree of learning'; an accout of the history of learning; Erasmus was in a sense the father of pedagogy (“On the Method of the Study”)

– the oldest Tweeter is 104


* pic of japanese school bus (pcs on board) [check this slide!]
* this is an Age of Transition
* predicts a renaissance for voice – iTunes, voiceboards, podcasts




Evan Arthur: “the Internet is a standard”



SESSION: Reflections on Technology Impact

Preety Agarwal (Learning Fed)



Scootle – repository for school resources



James Dalziel – LAMS

* world's leading learning design system; 80+ countries
* offers list of pedagogical approaches and advice on how you might use them in practice (a 'Pedagogical Planner')



Peter Higgs (Tasmanian Polytechnic)

Sagrada Familia (Barcelona); began in 1883 and is still being built; open source (ie publicly funded) < > parallel with the standards movement



SESSION: SHARING OUTCOMES, EVIDENCE AND ASSESSMENT

Chair: Nick Nicholas

Dr John Ainley (ACER)

thinks students and teachers will adopt the CoP model for mutual learning and support (would be nice if this is true)



Allison Miller

VET: 3000 RTOs, 200 of which are TAFEs that deliver 80% of the training

myapp (UK): students have access to data shared betw training org and govt


Heather Watson (Learning Fed)



* driver: whole new cohort of students with diff expectations
* all of the new national curriculum will have potential to be delivered digitally



Is the infrastructure in place now to share this kind of information?

Heather: infrastructure exists to share resources (ie inputs), but not outputs? She says if teachers want good resources in a hurry that they do go to LORs......

Standards people do the work so we don't have to.

Things have to be designed so things can be changed at a moment's notice; so flexible standards! ( a contradiction in terms?)



NATIONAL DIRECTIONS FOR DIGITAL ED AND RESEARCH

Evan Arthur (DEEWR)

Reflections:

we are an enormously long way from 'being there'; ie daily and ongoing effective use of ICT in classrooms

the complexity of what we are trying to do

Work has to happen on standards because

1) ed is a collective activity (philosophical)

2) the only way we can achieve 'scale' (practical)



Rodney Sparks

2 themes:


1) evolution – things in state of constant change; towards what? How do we accommodate tech that doesn't exist yet?

2) Sharing – web 2.0 exploits human desire to share

Friday, March 05, 2010

Storytelling with Jon Bennett



Jon Bennett – Storytelling with Jon Bennett
Sugar, Fri Feb 19th

More a sit down than a stand up comic, Jon Bennett declares that he has no jokes and that he will indeed just tell stories. True stories. Like that wonderful SBS program, Front Up, this show is testament to the fact that all our lives are full of stories that are worth telling, and that can make us laugh and cry. The knack is in the choosing of the detail to share and the timing and weight of events, and Jon Bennett has this knack in spades. A refreshing change to see someone not needing to perform or create an act, but rather just rely on their authentic experience of life to entertain others. Delightful stuff.
Final word: charming and laid back.

Single Admissions



Lazy, Young and Talented - Single Admissions
Holden Street Theatres – The Studio, Sun Feb 28


I well remember the angst of the singles dating scene. Lazy, Young and Talented meet it head on. Not that they dwell on the angst. In fact these three young women have a lot of fun with it in a fast-moving dynamic piece of performance art. Playing themselves, mothers, aunties, competitors and casual acquaintances on the ‘slut bus’, they document the struggle of binge drinking, one night stands, looking for meaningful relationships, and the Facebook culture of false friends. Wonderful music and dance routines, and clever use of mobile clothes racks as windows and frames into a perplexing world. Loved the balance between the sad and the funny, the romantic and the raunchy. Great show.

FINAL WORD: Dynamic

Around the World on 80 Quid



Aindrias, Around the World on 80 Quid
The Stables, Mon Mar 1


Irish Aindiras tells the tale of how he exploits his swarthy complexion while travelling the world from Ireland to Italy to cruise ship to Romania to Bangkok, imbibing vast quantities of alcohol and drugs as he goes. This frequently lands him in strife, and while his fiddle does sometimes get him out of trouble it’s amusing to hear how being pigeon-holed as an Irish fiddle player continually lands him in Irish pubs. His stories are neatly linked by music from the places he’s visited, and despite the fast paced delivery he has time to involve his audience in his adventures. Arriving in Australia finally affords him the opportunity of detoxing so he we all leave with the politically correct message!

FINAL WORD: Entertaining

Click Tease: Log on, Get Off



Rebecca Meston, Click Tease: Log on, Get Off
Electric Light Hotel - Bartini, Wed Mar 3


This had to come – theatre that explores the boundaries between the online and offline self. The audience looks in voyeuristically, as if from the other side of a webcam, on the bedroom of Abbie, a cautious Gen Y woman played by Nikki Britton. Abbie creates Debbie89, her more vivacious online identity/avatar (played by Kate Skinner), to mediate racy interactions on Facebook et al. Amusing, beautifully crafted dialogues between her online and offline selves ultimately lead Abbie to an awkward face to face meeting with SlutboyJimmy (Ray Chong Nee), and the discovery that her real self is actually doing OK. Shut down the laptop, turn off your phone, and go and enjoy this entertaining and important new play.

FINAL WORD: Important

Tripping Switches



Transition Theatre, Tripping Switches
Metropolitan Hotel, Tue Mar 2


A series of briefly profiled characters are superbly played by an outstanding cast. A surprise and appropriate beginning for a play about privacy in public spaces finds us on a tram where a chance encounter of commuters establishes a narrative that is interrupted by digs at authority and interviews with the police under the intrusive light of mobile phones – symbolic of a world where we are all at once so connected and so distant from each other. When do you say hello to strangers? When do you give your name? Ask someone’s name? Should one give money to beggars? Bystanders drawn into the offbeat behavior of strangers reveal frailties lurking just beneath the veneer of their public personas. Poignant. Entertaining. Amusing. Wonderful theatre.

FINAL WORD: Outstanding

iexist.com



I Must Not Theatre, iexist.com
Holden Street Theatres – The Studio, Mon Feb 22


This short powerful work combines dialogue, mime, dance and music to delve into the lives of teenagers who spend much of their time online because they find the offline world too hard. It presents a series of scenes and images that alarm, amuse, and instruct, while creating a dream-like and often cacophonous world of online chatter where everyone talks at once. There are moments full of depth and tension – facing the prospect of real-life eye contact for the first time, and a superbly choreographed avatar sequence. A more light-hearted dance routine gives new meaning to the ipod shuffle. It might take a second or third viewing to unravel all the threads of this complex show, but it’s a strong, compelling piece of theatre.

En Route



En Route, Adelaide CBD, Sun Feb 21

We don’t all have to be in the same time and place to share a similar experience. En Route participants are guided by SMS messages and clues in the physical environment in a treasure hunt like experience through city streets. As you listen to a wonderful selection of carefully chosen music you’ll find places you have never been (even if you’re local), and become immersed in a soundtrack that connects you to the places and people around you. Anyone who has ever questioned why people wander through life connected to an ipod should try En Route. This is a totally enthralling experience. You slowly become aware that you are part of the show – as both observer and participant. Cannot recommend this show highly enough.

Final Word: Brilliant

For more about En Route.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Is Feminism Dead for Gen Y?





Note on the audio: I meant to say, "On the other hand, the theatre shows I have been to have been outstanding."

Best of the Fest Late Show
The Gov, Fri Feb 26


There was a misogynistic theme running through this show. Peter Berner rose above it. Daniel Townes told how he’d been accused of it. Carey Marx tried to obscure it with a sort of clever defence of using offensive language that was still in the end just offensive. Lindsay Webb’s opening line was “I can see your vagina” to a woman seated at the front - though he is skilled at building a funny set around audience interaction. It was the late show and much of the crowd were boozed, so any reference to sex or vaginas brought guaranteed laughs. There were funny moments, but Berner aside, this show would be a huge hit at local footy clubs - a sad indictment. Still, the crowd laughed uproariously all the way through.....

Saturday, January 02, 2010

The Sun Goes Down on 2009


The Sun Goes Down on 2009
Originally uploaded by mikecogh
I initially refused to accept the invitation to join the Flickr 2009/365 photos pool. I thought there would be no way I could keep up with posting a photo a day. After a few days mulling it over I decided what the hell and launched into it. I can now say categorically that it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made!

I had no idea what good would come from it. Over the course of this year, and because of my involvement in this project I have:

• Become a better photographer
• Opened my eyes to the world around me in a way I imagine children do naturally all the time, and in a way I can’t remember doing for a long long time
• Have enjoyed hundreds of photos from fellow group members
• Made many ‘Flickr friends’, as a result of sharing the minutiae of our daily lives
• Experienced the cycle of the seasons as I watched the photos change from summer to winter and back again over the course of the year
• really appreciated the support and tips from other group members
• used Flickr has a visual Twitter and more readily turned to Flickr rather than Twitter to know what was going on in my network
• eagerly looked forward to my daily walk with my camera to not only get needed exercise, but to take that daily photo
• learned so much about other places I have never seen
• Learned to look forward to every day as an opportunity to catch that special or unusual sight or moment
• Learned that images can connect people with very few words
• Learned that if I took the time to comment on others’ photos then people would reciprocate
• Eagerly Looked at Flickr every day for responses to my photos
• Become more assiduous with tagging and naming all photos

In short, I now appreciate the world around me more than I used to!

I would like to especially thank those who regularly dropped by my
stream, and offered me so much support and encouragement, and information about their lives. To name a few - @konarheim, @dibytes, @siavogel, @azmichelle, @carlaarena, @beedieu, @suehickton, @susanvg, @JanBran, @bgblogging, @windsordi, @lynnjake58, @loonyhiker, and @gibsongolfer. And of course Alan at @cogdogblog for getting this ball rolling in the first place!

I will stay on as a more passive member of 2010/365, and free myself from the commitment to post a photo a day. As much as I have loved it, it has been a significant time commitment that I would now like to allocate to other tasks. But I will be there peeking around at your pix :)

Thank you everyone so much. It has been an absolute privilege to be part of this project and part of your lives.

All the very best for 2010, and keep on Flickring. I will.