Archive for February 2011

Bill Gates will not revolutionize our schools, even if given permission

February 28, 2011

my response to “How teacher development could revolutionize our schools“: A brilliant title, but a dangerous message.

First let me say that I have great respect and admiration for Bill Gates. What he has accomplished in the last 30 years is amazing and inspiring. However his success in technology does not translate to him being an oracle on education.

Second I am well aware that I do not offer answers here. My point is simple: Do not listen to Bill Gates when he writes or speaks about education. At the least he will distract a very important dialogue or at worst he will highjack it.

Bill Gates is crazy rich because he knows how to sell a message. DO NOT confuse brilliant sales with mastery of education. The last message he sold school systems was that students should learn PowerPoint, Word & Excel. Genius for Microsoft, not for students.

The last time this man told us how to save money he was wrong. He told schools, government(s) & corporations that converting from diverse technology to an all Microsoft Solution would save money. It did NOT save money and it did produce a near mono-culture national infrastructure that today is riddled with security weaknesses and insanely expensive. Diverse and secure is less expensive and far more robust.

High school students graduating over the last 10 years know that ‘standardized testing’ is a farce. That silver bullet was easy to sell, but the results are a failure. Now Bill Gates wants to do the same thing to colleges. He wrote, “It will develop metrics to show which colleges graduate more students for less money”. Do I need to explain how broken that is?

Some of his points are valid. This man is a genius at delivering a concoction that is easy to swallow, but dangerous to digest.

Please Please Please do not let Bill Gates tell you how to improve education in the USA.

Sincerely,

dws.

Disclosure: I am a father of three, two in college and one in high school and this is my blog. I work for Apple, Inc; but the opinions expressed here are mine.

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Seacrch Dictionary, AppStore & iTunes, not just Web & Wiki

February 8, 2011

Dear Apple,

iOS feature request: Seacrch Dictionary, AppStore & iTunes, not just Web & Wiki

When I use search on the iOS and it offers Web & Wiki after displaying results local to the device (iPad or iPhone) please include Dictionary, AppStore & iTunes, not just Web & Wiki.

That way every search has potential to help me find content or ‘an App for that’. Could be more people would eventually enter the App Store via search than via the front door (page).

Thanks

Are you new to twitter?

February 5, 2011

Finding a twitter app for your phone:

Don’t spend much energy on this yet. Your requirements will shift as you use Twitter.

Pick something free to start.

Finding people to follow:

Look at who your friends follow.

Ask people if they are on Twitter when gathering contact info.

Follow interesting lists like http://Ez.com/shrt

Finding poeple to follow you:

Don’t sweat it yet. They will find you.

Invite interesting friends & family to try it with you.

Miscellaneous:

Set twitter prefs to notify you via email or SMS when someone follows or @mentions you.

When a tweet includes @username that is a mention. Most Twitter apps will help the user see all tweets that mention them.

When a tweet starts with a @mention that is a reply; which will only be seen by the sender and the person mentioned AND tweeps who follow them both. Read more here: RT @adamsconsulting: Twitter 101 | A Refresher In @ Replies – http://Ez.com/replies

When you see RT what follows is a Quoted ReTweet. I included a ReTweet in the tip above.

Tweeps or tweeple or twpl or ppl are Twitter users.

Hashtags are words that start with # to tag a tweet so it will be found via searches for that tag. #ThisIsATag #thistoo #twitterTips