Thursday, December 5, 2013

Robots for Humanity

One of my favorite uses of technology is when it is adapted for something it was never originally designed.  The first time I saw a quadracopter that you could fly around using your iOS device I wanted one, but only because it looked like fun.  This guy uses it to make himself feel like everyone else.  Very awesome.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Welcome to my head. . .

Ms. Albracht found this and posted it on Facebook.  Watching it was a crazy experience for me, as this is exactly how I think.  I think I have done almost exactly this in many a math class.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Big Art

Ran across this the other night. Was super impressed by the quality of the picture as well as the enormity of the project.  Makes me want to visit.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Very Cool

My little brother posted this video the other day.  I was super impressed.  I would love to know more about how they made the video.  It would be fascinating to see how the images were projected onto the screens and also how the screens were programmed to move.  Most definitely worth the 5 minutes.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Pursuit of Ignorance

I love this. I think we should do more of this is schools. "Education is not about filling buckets, it is about lighting fires."

Monday, August 26, 2013

30 Day challenge

I love the idea behind this.  I have heard before that any habit takes 28 days to solidify, so this fits in perfectly.  I am going to give it a go - take a picture every day for the next 30 days.  What do you want to do?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Beat Boxing to the max

This is so cool.  I love to see what a single person can do with their voice.  Very, very cool.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Totally blown away by this.  It is scary, cool, and everything in between.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Lower Energy Bills

This summer I have been trying to be even better at taking care of the planet.  I have stepped up my recycling efforts and am trying to use far less disposable items (use a container instead of a bag, don't put a lid on your fountain drink, etc.).  I love the idea of finding out how you rank in your home energy consumption - I do think that it would be a huge motivator.  Watch the talk and think about how you can leave a smaller carbon footprint.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Welcome to Holland

A high school classmate of mine has a child with very severe disabilities.  She shares her experiences on her blog and this has opened my eyes to many of the trials and joys of raising a child with disabilities.  One of the first things I read on her blog was this:

Emily Perl Kingsley.
c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved
I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......
When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.
After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."
"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."
But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.
So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.
It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.
But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."
And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.
But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

I think that this not only applies to parents, but to anyone who has had to change their plans because of any type of hardship (think of Kevin Ware).  We either spend our time mourning the fact that our life isn't what we had hoped, or we make the most of it.  Even more however, if we can educate those in our lives as to why we are happy and let them know that we have adjusted, then maybe perhaps more people will be happy in Holland.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Just for fun.

I saw this at NETA this year and it is just too good not to share.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Just watched this talk -very interesting.  It made me think of many a Facebook thread I have read in the last 6 months about how texting is killing language skills.  I love the speakers optimism and how he disproves the naysayers.  I really agree with him that texting is not destroying language skills nor is it the scourge of communication.  I am still not too good at texting like I talk.  It is hard for me to not write in complete sentences with punctuation - thanks to Mrs. Pearson my 7th grade English teacher.  However, just because I prefer to text in a more formal way does not make me smarter (although it might make me appear so, but that is another post entirely).

Friday, April 19, 2013


I have always loved to yo-yo.  This guy takes it to a new level.  What I love most is not that he is awesome, but that he followed his passion, even though it wasn't something his family/society thought was valuable.  It just goes to show that if you follow your passion and work hard at making yourself the best you can, success will follow.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Hyper lapse

Just ran across this and my mouth literally fell open. I love Google maps and this is amazing. I need to make a video of my own...  Reminds me of  the wilderness downtown. 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Robots! I want one.

Just watched a great TED Talk about personal robots. This guy (why are robots almost always guys?) looks like a ton of fun and would be great to have around the house.  My kids would go nuts playing with it.  I wonder if it is iPhone 5 compatible though.  I am still frustrated with Apple for changing the format of the plug.  It will take a while before everyone is able to switch over to the new connection. Anyway, watch the clip, it is super cool.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


Just watched this TED talk.  What inspires me most is not the simple idea he had to keep the lions away, but that this simple idea changed the lives of so many.  This video is more proof that to be great you don't need to be old, rich, well connected, or any other sort of privileged status.  Instead, you just need to believe in yourself and do your best.  If you do that, greatness will be inevitable.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The R Word

As many of you know, I am adamantly opposed to the use of the word retard. In the past few weeks I have been amazed at how many really intelligent adults I know who use it.  It even showed up in a book I was reading.  I was so disappointed I am planning on writing the author. If you haven't read this before, take some time now-even if you have, reread it.  It changed my life.  I hope it does the same for you.

Friday, March 15, 2013

To This Day

I stumbled upon this poem (scroll down a bit and watch the video) the other day listening to a TED Talk.  The honesty and emotion expressed by the author are truly moving.  For me, the best part was the ending. Sharing a message of hope is so crucial to the fight against bullying.  It is so important for those who are feeling bullied or overwhelmed to know that it gets better.  This is one more example of that.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

One Second Every Day - Part 2

Yesterday a student showed me an app for capturing one second every day (if you don't know, read the post from Feb. 6 below).  The app is so worth the $.99.   Check it out, and start capturing that video.  You won't regret it!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

We still can't beat nature

Just watched this interesting TED Talk.  It starts slow, but hang with it.  He really sets up his case, but what an amazing conclusion.  It just goes to show that often times we need to mimic nature, not improve on it.  I can't believe that we haven't heard more about this from livestock producers. It might catch on yet. . .

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Futureless language

Just watch this interesting TED talk about the link between your propensity to save and the language you speak.  I have never learned a language that didn't have very distinct past, present, and future tenses.  I have always been interested in linguistics, and this is no exception.  If this guy is correct, it will be interesting to see how he would go about helping people think about the future differently, or if it is even possible without completely changing our language.  Really makes you think. . .

Friday, February 15, 2013


I have known for quite some time that every time you fill out a captcha you were helping digitize old texts.  I was never sure how this worked, but this TED talk lays it all out.  Also it presents an awesome new way to learn a language.  Can't wait to see this happen.  I love the idea of crowdsourcing and how it can make the world a much better place.  Check it out.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

One Second Every Day

Just watched this and I have to share it:

I am so inspired right now.  Lately I have been thinking to myself that I need to use Twitter more to document what I do.  I think this is really taking it to the next level.  One second of video sounds like not much at all, but watching it put together it is amazing how powerful it becomes.  I am reminded of the saying: A picture is worth a thousand words.  Standard video is 30 fps (frames per second) so this one second of video is equivalent to 30,000 words.  That is roughly 2,000 tweets per day (30,000 words divided by 15 which is the average number of words per tweet).

I think I need to start recording more video. . .one second at a time.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

February Challenge

I hate February.  No, not because of past horrific Valentine's Days (and honestly, who doesn't have at least one war wound from that holiday?).  I hate it because it is supposed to be the shortest month of the year, but it drags on and on.  I have had enough winter and and am ready for spring, and yet here is February standing right in the way.  This year I am determined to have a better February.  My goal is to have an inspired February, instead of a cold, bleak, interminable February.  To that end, I am going to comment every day on this post with a positive of the day.  For those that know me well, you know this is a bit of a shake up for me.  But February calls for drastic measures.  I challenge anyone who reads this to join in.  Together we might all just end up with a pretty good looking month.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Piano Guys

This weekend while listening to Pandora this song played. As a cello player my ears instantly perked up.  Bach's Prelude to the First Cello Suite is one of the songs every cello player knows and has played or at least attempted.  What struck me, or rather, inspired  me was what he did with it.  The original is an amazing piece, but it really has become over played.  By recording himself 7 more times and layering that together he created this awesome piece.  I love it not only because of his musical talent, but also the use of technology.  Without the ability to pull eight different tracks together and finesse them into the final piece, this could not have happened.

And then I looked up the video.  Even cooler use of technology.  Not only did he layer the audio, he layered 8 different video tracks together (note that at one time he throws his bow and catches it at another seat - very cool special effect).  From there I explored the site ( and was amazed my several of their videos.  Some of it can get a bit schmaltzy if you think to much about it, but what I love is that here is a group of musicians really enjoying themselves and producing some great music.  What's not to love?  How can I not be inspired by that?

Is there a YouTube video that does that for you?  If not, you haven't spent much time at YouTube.  Share with us a link to something that gets you going.