It's time.

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Sometimes, you just have to take a deep breath, throw caution to the wind, and jump.

jump.JPGI appreciate each and every one of you taking the time to tune in and share your thoughts, your insights, your support and your friendship over the life of this blog. Follow renegade element over to for more shoot-from-the-hip living on the edge of insanity--because even if you leave Penn State, you can't stop the signal, Mal.

Sometimes, in order to reach your dreams, you must jump.

Every public tweet, ever, since Twitter's inception in March 2006, will be archived digitally at the Library of Congress. That's a LOT of tweets, by the way: Twitter processes more than 50 million tweets every day, with the total numbering in the billions.  ...   Expect to see an emphasis on the scholarly and research implications of the acquisition.  I'm no Ph.D., but it boggles my mind to think what we might be able to learn about ourselves and the world around us from this wealth of data.  And I'm certain we'll learn things that none of us now can even possibly conceive.

So we've finally managed to obtain an archival record of not only VITs--Very Important Tweets--but also every celebritweet, facepalm, and slip of the finger observation. On one hand, I'm a bit unnerved that many of my 16,000 tweets over the last three plus years will be available for casual perusing...forever. On the higher ed front, however, I'm actually excited about the possibility of now being able to retrieve archives for previously-tweeted events that were hashtagged, but fell off the recoverable Twitter timeline. This would support an argument for better hashtagging and recordkeeping via Twitter.

Interesting times.

(via Stuff)

Facebook Introduces Community Pages

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Think the distinction between Facebook profiles, Pages and Groups is confusing? Add a new wrinkle to the mix: the Facebook Community Page.

The new feature looks a whole lot like the Facebook Pages businesses and brands create, but there's one key difference: It's for the hordes of "unofficial" Pages that have been created by users in support of topics or causes (like "Can this pickle get more fans than Nickelback?").

There's a big difference in functionality too -- FacebookFacebooksays that if a page becomes popular enough, administration will be handed over to the Facebook community. In other words, Community Pages become a whole lot like a wiki once they reach a certain threshold.

Another goal for Facebook is to keep official Pages in the hands of their respective brand owners. A company spokesperson tells us that Community Pages "give our users opportunities to express their enthusiasm and creativity, while allowing for Official Pages to continue representing official entities such as businesses, bands and public figures."

(via Stuff)

RiP - A Remix Manifesto

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It pretty much speaks for itself, making points Lessig has made before. But every time I see something like this, it begs the greater question: Why do we create, why do we share, if we don't really want anyone to see it, think about it, be moved by it? Like social media, it becomes a matter of letting go of our supposed need to control and, instead embracing the engagement. You cannot have the good without the bad, the conversation without a voice.

It always makes me think.

(via Stuff)

Rock star badges.

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This year's Symposium is only five weeks away, and I'm starting to feel the excitement. Being on the inside of the event is, in some ways, a real eye opener, if only to see just how finely tuned this production is. The attention to details is amazing, and I'm really starting to get a sense of just why it takes so many people to make this event the milestone it is each year.

nameBadge.jpgOne of the pieces I've been a part of is the creation of the new name badges. Not your typical conference badges, these are sleek black badges with the Penn State shield in silver, and my name as I want it to appear. Nice, huh? These are permanent badges that can then be used at any Penn State events we attend. But what I really love about them is this: one side shows my Penn State professional side with the shield and my name, while the other side reflects my social side--the event hashtag (#psutlt) and my Twitter ID, @robin2go. No worries if an attendee doesn't have a Twitter ID, but I like the fact that I can add it if I have one, because then people can see my online ID and connect with me that way. What's more, the social side has space for our event moo stickers, which have become a tradition at the symposium for several years. Once we check into the registration desk, we'll have the opportunity to choose the stickers that reflect our participation in our community. Podcasting? There's a sticker for that. Openness, collaboration? There's stickers for those, too. Or perhaps you're a fan of a particular Teaching and Learning with Technology event. There will be stickers for those as well. 

Clearly, I'm excited about these badges. You can be too--just head on over to the Customize Your Badge page and fill out three questions. That's all there is to it. And when we get to the Symposium, we'll all be looking like rock stars.

(via TLT Symposium News)

The Geospatial Revolution Project


This is the first time I've seen this promotional video on an upcoming public media series from Penn State Public Broadcasting. When I was completing my IST degree I had a focus on GIS, and as a result, had both Dave DiBiase and Richard Alley as instructors. I believe this is eye opening research for many in the public sector, and perhaps one of the most appealing things to me is that this project is a web-based serial release of video episodes, which will then be woven together into a 60 minute documentary. Educational public media distributed online, combined with an outreach initiative in collaboration with educational partners.

How much more collaborative and open can educational teaching and learning with technology get?

(via Stuff)

I'm about two weeks behind on reporting this, but I'm intrigued about the discussion in this article. Perhaps I wonder where I fall on the age continuum here. Language may be an index of our social identity, but when do you acknowledge that the vernacular is what we grapple with on a daily basis? Are we simply devolving and becoming more "low class" and "common" when we start adopting verbs like unfriend, facebook, kanye, and google? Or is this a real world example of how our language adapts to us? It also hasn't escaped my attention that both of these words are tech related. Is this a sign of our country being tech savvy, or just lazy?

As Spock would say, fascinating.

(via Stuff)

Not a little disconcerting, even though we knew students today are consuming online content faster than ever before. This makes me realize--perhaps now more than ever--kids have little patience for CMSs that serve only to slow them down in getting from point A to point B, or if online articles requireanything more from them than a quick account registration. Things that are relevant to kids today must be accessible, mobile, and easily consumable--short and to the point. How do we measure up when we are trying to engage these students? Are we making online content easily consumable? If not, we're the ones who will suffer, as they will likely go somewhere else.

(via Stuff)

Not another song and dance.

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Yale Admissions Office Sets Its Pitch to Music (and Dance) - The Choice Blog -

Interesting approach. It's definitely fresher than your usual staid admissions piece. I feel like I'm in an episode of Glee. Or Pippin. Since its debut Friday, they've received 47,600 hits. This video is almost 17 minutes in length, and was written and produced by undergrads and recent alumni in the admissions office. Will we start seeing more efforts like this? And how effective is it in enticing students to take a closer look at Yale? 

One final note: I'm slightly disappointed that ratings and comments have been disabled. I think that part of the process--the impromptu support of other students, parents, or alumni--would make this an authentic conversation.

(via Stuff)

Why Twitter Will Endure.

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NY Times article with some great insight into the growth and fundamentals of Twitter.

On Twitter, anyone may follow anyone, but there is very little expectation of reciprocity. By carefully curating the people you follow, Twitter becomes an always-on data stream from really bright people in their respective fields, whose tweets are often full of links to incredibly vital, timely information.

(via Stuff)