Tuesday, February 5, 2013

My messages

         It obviously takes me three week to spring into action with blogs, being a newbie or not. As three weeks have passed quickly,  I will flash back on the things we did. Oh, the first week is always so peculiar because of 'uploading your photo'. A lot of messages were exchanged on the topic, probably as they are each year. Luckily, even if you upload a photo once a year in a wiki, it's a piece of cake after the first time. This time I wanted to be more sophisticated about copy-pasting the intro message but I ended up where I  feared to end. I faced a choice between two options completely unaware of the consequences of either. The cancel button refused to work until I made my choice. This time I was lucky, the other participants' introductions were safe from my careless choice!

           The second week was exciting, with so many interesting audio and video messages echoing from the participants' production page. it is really encouraging to see so much positive energy sparkling all around. I decided to address our new friends, real beginners like I was last year so I made two messages for them. As I have recently lost my   dear Showbeyond video (I wish I had kept the captions at least) I will upload here both the messages and the transcript. The first one has got a nice name `Pre-blog recording on Saturday afternoon`! Actually I wanted to put these thoughts into my blog first but didn`t manage to in due time and I didn`t want to forget them. Feel free to skip if you have already listened. 

            Hello, this is Sneza speaking.  I`ve decided to try Soundcloud and I will talk a bit about my experience in Baw 13. As you can imagine it is totally different from Baw 12. I am much more confident and generally I understand now what we are talking about. I`ve learned  a very important lesson for me, I suppose other newbies can benefit from it . If something goes wrong with technology its not necessarily because you are doing something wrong. There may be a million other reasons. Now when something goes wrong I also blame the computer, the  connection, the programme, the invisible force  behind it  that is trying to make my life miserable but can`t any more. My guilt trip is over, I don`t blame myself for everything.I will give you an example. I wanted to record  a message on Voxopop Unfortunately I couldn`t attend Ayat, JA and Teresa`s meeting, and I am really very sorry about it. So I just started doing it. But something kept going wrong. I couldn`t record the message I did everything they instructed me to do. Java was in perfect order. So experienced as I am now, I switched off my computer, went to my daughter`s and  I did it the first time. I still don`t know why, no explanation, but I did it. So you see, there was something in my user unfriendly laptop that prevented me from recording. I don`t suggest this is the only solution for every problem. Far from that. I just think we should keep our eyes open,  be prepared for different approaches to a problem, try different ideas. The more the better. One of them is certain to work. All the best to newbies, and other friends, Bye for now!

Audio recording and upload >>

         Hello again! This is Sneza speaking. I couldn`t resist Vocaroo because of its simplicity to record and also because of its beautiful green colour which looks so good on a white page. And that was also the first tool I used for my classroom wiki. Anyway, I wanted to point out here how useful tutorial are. I made my first wiki by listening carefully to Russel Stannard`s tutorial about creating a wiki http://www.teachertrainingvideos.com/pbworks/index.html  I thought I would never make one. What is equally important, if not even more, is your wish to do something,  determination to cope with a problem and finish it. Nothing will help you if you don`t feel free to click a button, and make a mistake, and click another button, and again make a mistake, until you click the right button. And there is always that right button. My problem a year ago, and all the years before that was the fear of clicking a wrong button. I was afraid some internet police would knock on my door and ask me how I dared to press that key. The fear disappeared with BaW and I clicked so many wrong, button and nobody came and nobody cared. And I felt free to try out any tools, no matter how  complicated they may seem. I did some things out of pure ignorance of their complexity like Showbeyond or Prezi that I have just created for another EVO session. So good luck with your learning and keep clicking.

Monday, February 4, 2013


          Hello dear friends, old and new!

         I have finally returned to my main blog to continue writing about this Digital Sea journey. The first thing I must say is that  everything is so different from last year, when everything was launched. At the beginning, and good way through the course, I was totally bewildered in an unfamiliar environment, struggling to understand the simplest instructions! As I said, I felt like Alice in Wonderland. This time I don't wonder around strange forests following ambiguous messages (NB all the messages last year  were extremely clear and informative, but when they were decoded by my ignorance a lot was lost in translation). The time has come  to change the film, and the title and picture  make it easy to guess  which film I've switched to.

        Yes, it is  the wonderful Wizard of Oz! Indeed there are a few similarities and a lot of magic here. Like Dorothy, I have my yellow brick road to follow, accompanied by so many dear people along the way. We  are travelling  together, supporting  and encouraging each other. This paved way is leading us, not to the Wizard, but to a different kind of magic, the magic of spaces and links. Like Dorothy, we have our good fairies, dear mods, who appear in the times of troubles to lead us back to the right way.

        And that`s exactly why BaW is different from any other place. Here we are in this beautiful big family, where everybody is doing their best to help you, guide you, not to let you give up. You are given enormous amounts of positive energy, Here sharing and caring are so genuine that it is impossible to be indifferent..Here you feel protected from dangerous sites and serious mistakes. Before, when I got a message about a potentially dangerous site, I immediately retreated to the safety of not doing anything. Now when I see a message about a risk to my computer asking me if I want to go on, I just think to myself: `Of course, I`ll go on where my Baw freinds go`. I feel safe to go into some side lanes, do what I need to do and return to the yellow brick road.    

        To be completely honest, I must say one more thing.. It's not that I don't like being confident, knowing  what one should now. But somehow I miss the mystery of  my first days here.I feel nostalgic about BaW12. I miss the late night talks with Catherine, our struggle to hit the right key. I miss direct tweets to Natasa at 3 am. asking her what URL  or embed code is or something of that type and I miss her immediate retweets. Naturally,  Baw12 will always be a very special for me, because that`s when a whole new world opened  before me. And that, in itself, is a miracle.
       Do you remember the song Dorothy sings in the film? I have just realized something: that place over the rainbow can so very easily be our BaW!