The Infinite Thinking Machine Official Launch

I am proud to join CUE, WestEd, KZO Webcasting, and Google Education in the launch of the Infinite Thinking Machine blog and Internet TV show today.

The ITM is a positive vehicle for K-12 educators to share stories and ideas that tap into the infinite resources available on the Internet. Our goal is simple: to show how today’s digital tools can impact student learning in meaningful ways. The ITM is about learning, thinking, communicating, and creativity – not technology. We sincerely hope that this blog and our media productions can jumpstart a wider conversation about innovation and creativity in K-12 education, and we look forward to hearing your ideas and feedback.

I will be contributing to the ITM blog along with Lucie deLaBruere, Julie Duffield, Wesley Fryer, Lucy Gray, Steve Hargadon, Tom March, and Chris Walsh. In addition, many other CUE leaders are involved in the show, including Hall Davidson, Ray Hernandez, and Mike Lawrence.

The Infinite Thinking Machine

It’s been really hard to hold off talking about this the last few weeks, but I can finally post about it…

Though it hasn’t officially launched yet, I’ve got my first post up at the Infinite Thinking Machine, a partnership between WestEd and Google for Educators. The blog and podcast (or Internet TV show as they’re calling it) are meant to share a “bazillion practical ideas” for turning the infinite universe of information into knowledge. (Read more about it.)

I sent an email to my fellow ITM bloggers seeking feedback on this “draft” and if any of you are interested in sending me any comments or feedback I’d love to hear from you, too.

Incidentally, I’m thrilled to be a part of this project, and to be writing “along side” the other bloggers who are involved… they are all inspiring writers and practitioners. (Bios should be up on the blog soon, but check out the list of bloggers in Chris Walsh’s first post.) And the podcast is gonna be great… lots of information and lots of fun… great correspondents and really interesting interviews – everyone from Google engineers to k12 students. (I’ve seen the previews! You’ll want to see this.)

Also, if you like what you see, please spread the word. :)

PS. I originally included the paragraph below, but removed it due to concerns about pushing the boundaries of “naked conversations” too much in the first post… but I’ll happily post it here as a supplement to my ITM post:

I also asked Andy how he’d like to see Google Calendar improved in the future. The ability for editors to see multiple calendars was something he wished readers could take advantage of as well. He was also disappointed by frustrations such as limitations on sizing of events, on different sized windows, word wrap, and drag & drop functionality. In addition, he felt constrained by the half-hour increments. (Our colleague David Conlay also suggested the wiki calendars, complete with histories of revisions, over at as a model for new features.)

20 Ideas: Using Google Earth to develop spatial/locational awareness

20 Ideas: Using Google Earth to develop spatial/locational awareness (Via Here is another entry for my new “Google in Education” category. Mr. Belshaw put together a great post on using Google Earth in the classroom. He starts with this introduction:

Developing a sense of place isn’t just something which should be left to the Geography department; it’s important to make things ‘come alive’ for students by coming at it from different angles, so to speak. Here’s a brief guide to get you going using GE…

He also links to a site that was new to me,

A Free Public Resource – Providing Teachers with the tools needed to enhance their instruction using Google Earth®, the free program that brings the world to the classroom! A Website By and For Teachers.

Google Apps for Education

Google Apps for Education (Via Teach42.) Here is Steve Dembo noting the new Google Apps in Education service. From the Google page:

Sharing information and ideas is vital to learning. So imagine how valuable it would be if your entire campus community shared a set of powerful, easy-to-use and integrated communication and collaboration services. With Google Apps for Education, you can offer all of your students innovative email, instant messaging, and calendaring, all for free.* You can select any combination of our available services (see below), and customize them with your school’s logo, color scheme and content. You can manage your users through an easy web-based console or use our available APIs to integrate the services into your existing systems — and it’s all hosted by Google, so there’s no hardware or software for you to install or maintain.

Google News Archive Search

Google News Archive Search (Via Doug and many others reported on this, and it goes into my new Google category. Read more about Google News Search:

News archive search provides an easy way to search and explore historical archives. Users can search for events, people, ideas and see how they have been described over time. In addition to searching for the most relevant articles for their query, users can get an historical overview of the results by browsing an automatically created timeline. Search results include both content that is accessible to all users and content that requires a fee. Articles related to a single story within a given time period are grouped together to allow users to see a broad perspective on the events.