Thursday, October 16, 2008

Who I read update

Some time ago, I posted about whose blogs I was reading on a daily basis, which folks appeared to find useful. Yesterday I twice found myself recommending blogs that I read, so I thought the time had come to do a bit of an update. I will restrict myself to those which did not appear in my last list, unless a previously listed blog deserves a special mention for some or other reason:

For general inspiration, and usually unrelated to my field, I have a daily dose of:

Gaping Void. Hugh MacLeod cuts straight to the heart of issues and illustrates them with a unique and instantly recognisable style. Harold Jarche once sent me this one of Hugh's cartoons. I printed it out and stuck it on my desk. I still have it and, let me tell you, in my new role as self-employed L&D Consultant, it is proving truer than ever!

Head Rambles (severe language warning). A pseudonymous, award-winning blog penned by the hilariously cantankerous Grandad. He's not really as cantankerous as he would have us believe, though, and occasionally reveals his warm, fuzzy side, which he attempts to cover with bluster.

More closely related to learning:
blog of proximal development. Konrad Glogowski is a passionate learning professional seeking ways to understand the challenges facing the developing world and to address them. He has recently returned from a trip to Africa, and is currently writing about issues very dear to my heart.

e4innovation. Grainne Conole (GRON-yeah coNOlee) is Professor of e-learning at the Open University. She is a somebody on the learning scene. The first time she commented on my blog I nearly got the vapours. One of my colleagues emailed me to say: Wow! Grainne Conole reads your blog! You've arrived! Unfortunately that proved to be no more true than the first time Stephen Downes gave me a shoutout. I guess you just gotta make it on your own worth ;o)

e-Luminations. Kobus van Wyk (KWUHbiss fun VAYK) is involved in an initiative that seeks to address the technological inequity faced by teachers in the poorer parts of South Africa. A worthy cause indeed, encountering obstacles most of us wouldn't even think of!

Experiencing E-learning. Christy Tucker has become one of an increasingly tight-knit group of ladies I meet in all sorts of spaces. This group also includes Wendy Wickham, Cammy Bean and Janet Clarey. We play online Scrabble derivatives against each other in Facebook. We comment on one another's photos, take an interest in one another's families and encourage one another on a personal level. That is not what makes Christy's blog worth reading - what does, is that she thinks out loud on her blog about her own experiences, which many of us share with her.

Growing changing learning creating. Just the title of Tom Haskins's blog should pique the curiosity of any innovative learning professional. He and I had an early run in, when I challenged him on one of his posts about blogging some time ago, but that doesn't prevent his reflections from being worth reading. In fact, unless we want to live in echo chambers, we should take care to engage in conversations where disagreement is expressed.

Jane's E-learning Pick of the Day. I can't believe I left Jane Hart off my last list! What was I thinking? She genuinely provides a service to the L&D community by reviewing a useful tool every single day, many of which are free. She also compiles lists: tools favoured by the community; L&D Twitterers; Social networks for L&D professionals, you name it!

Learning. Not the most frequent of bloggers, Lynn Wernham often points to and reflects on posts she has read, allowing readers to leapfrog to conversations they might otherwise have missed - particularly if they share her passion for coaching and mentoring in the workplace.

Learning Design and Performance Improvement. The newly capped Master's degree holder, Benjamin Hamilton shares his reflections on emerging technologies. .. although he has been AWOL since June. You still out there, Benjamin?

Making Change. Cathy Moore is possibly my favourite 'talk sense, provide practical advice' blogger in the whole world. I think I have shown so many people her action mapping post that anyone who hasn't see it must have been in a coma! Cathy grasps the reality that workplace learning is about change and tackles that fact head on... with cracking illustrations!

Neurophilosophy "is a weblog about molecules, minds and everything in between". There's a lot that happens on this blog that I don't understand - Mo Costandi is on a different plane from me - but those posts I do understand blow my socks off every time. I have learned a lot more about the brain than I would have thought my own brain could handle, largely because Mo writes so well and so accessibly.

Technogenii's blog. I met Kristina Schneider through a Facebook group and wound up becoming one of her interview subjects for her dissertation. We share a passion for the use of social media in corporate learning. Like me, she experienced her ups and downs on the journey to her Master's degree. Unlike me, she has now submitted her dissertation!

The Rapid eLearning Blog. Tom Kuhlman is an Articulate whizz. He should be. He works for the company! many organisations have reached the koolaid point on Articulate and are wielding it something like the hammer that makes everything look like a nail. While I don't think it is as universally applicable as some would have us believe, Tom provides such usable, practical ideas, that I find myself tagging just about every post he writes!

Group blogs:
Work Literacy. This "is a network of individuals, companies and organizations who are interested in learning, defining, mentoring, teaching and consulting on the frameworks, skills, methods and tools of modern knowledge work."

Workplace Learning Today is a Brandon Hall initiative exploring issues that the title suggests "coordinated by Gary Woodill... with contributions from Janet Clarey... Richard Nantel... and Tom Werner"


Anonymous said...

Thank you very much! I'm flattered.

But what's all this rubbish about a warm fuzzy side?

And 'severe language warning'? You make me sound like a gale......

The upsycho said...

@grandad Only a pleasure.

Yeah. Yeah. I've 'heard' all your objections to the notion of your warm fuzzy side, but that's my view and I'm sticking to it.

Reading some of your blog posts can be like stepping out into a gale, and well you know it! It's only fair to warn folks of that fact - especially if they're arriving there by way of an interest in corporate learning or formal education!

Anonymous said...

But my site is very educational?

The upsycho said...

Absolutely true, Grandad! But that's not why I read it. I read it because it's funny

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the kind words. It's been a rough couple of weeks at work--our field tests in the new LMS just started, and we're trying to get our nontechie facilitators to not freak out too much at the changes. It feels really good to read these compliments and be included with these esteemed bloggers.

I find myself really wanting to meet all 4 of you in person (you plus Janet, Cammy, & Wendy). Now that I've moved, Wendy is closest; she's only about an hour away from my mother-in-law. It's a doable drive for a long weekend. The UK is hard though; I'm not sure how I'd manage that.

I guess you and I both just need to become successful enough to be asked to present at international conferences. Then we could meet in person. :)

Barbara said...


What a great list of bloggers, some of whom I had not before come across. I added several of them to my Bloglines. Wonderful!

Thanks you!


The upsycho said...

@Christy I like that idea!

@Barbara Most gratified to have been of service!

Tom Haskins said...

Karyn: Thanks for capturing how my blogging is valuable to you. You made my day!

Cammy Bean said...

Thanks for including me in your lovely ladies circle! I feel the same...

The upsycho said...

@tom and @cammy you're most welcome!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much! You're too kind.

The upsycho said...

@Mo Not at all! I calls them as I sees them. I am deeply fascinated by the brain, and ever curious as the relationship between brain and mind (and what 'mind' actually is). Most of the time, when I read articles that address this interest, I find them incomprehensible. You write about fascinating stuff in a way that laypeople like me can understand.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for linking to my blog - good to hear that you find some of my ramblings useful.

I must also thank you for your comment on my posting on the Goldilocks Rule ... your link back to one of your postings on the use of PowerPoint was an absolute hit (judged by some of the comments).