Friday, December 16, 2011

TED by the Tags

TED is a great source for videos. The default view is graphical with thumbnails of the videos. Instead consider browsing it by the tags associated with the presentations.

http://www.ted.com/talks/tags



Sunday, November 27, 2011

Job Search: A Challenging Job

I've been in my new position for six months now so I have enough distance to write this posting. This past year I experienced unemployment for the first time. The why is not so important for this post (there are many good reasons in today's economy), but I wanted to record some tips that helped me through the experience.

1. Take care of yourself. Exercise regularly. Routine and ritual help you keep your balance. I have a meditation practice that was helpful. Get medical help if you need it.

2. Don't go it alone. Stay in touch with your family, friends, and religious community.

3. Focus. Decide what you want although it may very well change as you experience the ups and mostly downs of job search. Have target companies. They'll change too, but the world is so large that without a focus you'll feel lost.

4. Take a break. You can search for jobs all the time if you don't force yourself to take a break. It takes 48 hours to unwind (see Cortisol) though truthfully I never put job search away for more than a day. Typically, most of us either have the time or the money. Since you probably won't have the money when you're unemployed, do something that you've always wanted to do since you'll have some flexibility with your time.

5. Live in the moment. Dale Carnegie's concept of day-tight compartments is helpful.

6. Unemployment insurance. Pretty obvious, but it definitely helps to have something coming in versus living entirely on your savings.

7. Take advantage of state programs. For my PMP training I was able to obtain a state grant for retraining.

8. Email. Personal contact is great, but I found the bulk of my networking was done with email. When you do in-person networking try to pack as much in as you can reasonably. And much of my personal networking was related to #2 "don't go it alone" above.

9. Planning and tracking. You will quickly lose track of which jobs you've applied for if you don't have a system for tracking your efforts. It's also important that you have a clue what a person (recruiter or otherwise) is calling about and having a system to quickly look up contacts is important. I used JibberJobber after outgrowing a spreadsheet on Google Docs.

10. LinkedIn. Essential tool. I use Facebook, but not for professional contacts though it might be right for some. I use Twitter for keeping up on news from sources like Google and not so much for personal networking. I found it too intrusive, but your mileage may vary.

11. You'll process a lot of email. I found it helpful to note potential target companies and review them later if I didn't have time when reading the email initially.

12. Return every email and phone call. Besides being courteous, you never know where the next lead on a job will come from.

13. Google Tech Talks and YouTube in general. For mini-breaks related to #4 above, I found YouTube to be an invaluable source for education and inspiration. While exercising on my stationary bike regularly I could watch a YouTube video on a topic of interest.

14. Start a blog. There are lots of resources on where / how / how often, etc., but the "why" is pretty simple. The blog has become an extension of your resume. When a potential employer does a Google search you want to have something that helps them know you better show up. I've also found it to be a useful outlet since I enjoy writing. I have started several different blogs to focus on different topics, but my primary blog is used for career related interests and writings.

There is more and I'll update this post, but I wanted to publish this relatively closer to my unemployment experience.

Useful article on how to apply Product Management discipline to job search:

Job Hunting is Product Management (Pierre-Marc Diennet)
http://pragmaticmarketing.com/resources/job-hunting-is-product-management

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Improving Website Performance

Some great resources from Steve Souders (Google, Yahoo performance background).

Bad audio at the start, but has great info on making websites faster.

High Performance Web Sites and YSlow (14 Rules)
http://youtu.be/BTHvs3V8DBA

A follow on video after the first 14 rules.Covers YSlow, but much more. Javascript loading. Interesting busy indicator analysis around 29:00.

Even Faster Websites
http://youtu.be/QRUqVyP27Hw

And a follow on video:

Life's Too Short - Write Fast Code (part 2)
http://youtu.be/52gL93S3usU

Steve Souder's website:
http://stevesouders.com

YSlow (for Firefox)
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/yslow/

HTTPWatch (IE, Firefox)
http://www.httpwatch.com

Cuzillion
http://stevesouders.com/cuzillion

Much of Steve Souder’s argument is that optimizing on the server is great for saving hardware and power consumption, but look first at the front end for perceived performance gains. He’s with Google now after a long stint with Yahoo.

Another video discussing similar issues, but for the mobile environment:

Mobile Web Performance (Guy Podiarny)
http://youtu.be/L2YqfVNHQO4


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Communicate the Status of Your Cloud Service!

For my primary email account I use FastMail instead of GMail. Why? FastMail is very fast, reliable, and feature rich. GMail is fast, reliable, and feature rich. I like the features of FastMail, but the primary reason I use it over GMail is the communication that they have with their user base when there is an (inevitable) problem. Here's a post about a recent problem:

http://blog.fastmail.fm/2011/05/15/outage-report-a-cascade-of-errors/

This is the kind of thing I have never seen out of Google or Yahoo and probably never will. It's an advantage of being a relatively smaller service. They have maintained a policy of rapidly communicating with their user as well with a status blog in addition to their regular blog.

SalesForce implemented a similar "communicate with the users" policy after they had a major outage. You can see what they tell you about their service at http://trust.salesforce.com/trust/status/. Google Apps has a similar page at http://www.google.com/appsstatus#hl=en. Amazon has one as well: http://status.aws.amazon.com/.

Even small companies that are providing services in the cloud should have a status page and method for rapidly communicating with users when the service is down.

Historical note: back when I worked for CERL (Computer-Based Education Research Lab) at the University of Illinois I implemented a system variable on PLATO called zdegraded. It was used to allow programs (such as games) to modify their behavior (or become unavailable) if the system was running in a degraded state. The variable was removed within a year of being implemented, I suspect this was because the presence of such a system variable was viewed as poor public relations. This idea has changed now with the transparency competition on the web. Downtime is bad, but not having a way for your users to know what is going on is even worse.

P.S. I constantly evaluate whether I should stay with FastMail because GMail (and Yahoo as well) provide some nice to have additional services including calendaring. I use my BlackBerry as my primary calendar and synch with Outlook for that and address book management. I tried Google's sync, but was not happy with it at the time and was also tied in with Outlook for my day job. FastMail has some nice file management features and now that it has been purchased by Opera I'm less concerned about its survival longer term. I tend to review my email / calendar / address book situation every year though.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Videos: FogBugz and Kiln

In recent interviews I ran across FogBugz and wanted to note some useful videos about it on YouTube. It looks like a well integrated solution for software development groups and I especially like the use of Wikis for documentation having experimented with them in the past myself.

Kiln is the version control system built on Mercurial.

1 - Intro
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KiLGCO5yDzY

2 - Wiki
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZbBvQMd6oU

3 - Projects
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHD4TSfXaDA

4 - Cases and Evidence Based Schedules
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F6Kdflu4mXI

Interesting concept of using Monte Carlo simulations for predicting accuracy of schedule.

5 - Bug Tracking and Search
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qv_QBofgBBA

6 - Plugins
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uL620YDCHxs

7 - Customer Support
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLQ9wE000nk

8 - Release Notes
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ZTrDPuU-MY

9 - Source Control
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgPzFSQOFEo

FogBugz and Kiln World Tour Talk by Joel Spolsky
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5HNI9aMzOE

In addition to showing off FogBugz, there is lots of discussion about Mercurial and distributed version control throughout.

A quick/fun video discussing distributed version control and Kiln in particular:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BbK9o5fQD4

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Using Google Apps in Education

A great slidedeck of ideas for using Google Apps in K-12 education:

Google Apps in Classrooms and Schools
32 Ways to Use Google Apps in 50 Minutes

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Video: One Hell of a Long Day (Work at the South Pole)

This was just a fun diversion of hearing what it's like to work at the South Pole. If you're footloose and fancy-free, have a craving for adventure, or are very driven to be cold you may want to try landing a position in Antarctica.

One Hell of a Long Day - A Summer Working at the South Pole
(David Pablo Cohn)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBaQtsft2bM

Friday, May 06, 2011

Pre-Agile Ideas: Jim McCarthy Videos

I've been a fan of Jim McCarthy since I heard a recorded session of his talk at one of the Microsoft developer conferences back in the 90s. The thoughts represented are echoed in Agile practices today.

There is a nice set of short videos at:

http://www.mccarthyshow.com/the-23-rules-of-thumb/

which are also available on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/user/McCarthyShow#g/u

He also has a recent (Dec 2013) keynote at InfoQ:

Culture Hacking
http://www.infoq.com/presentations/culture-hacking-singapore

Some my selected favorites:

Rule 1 - Don't know what you don't know
Rule 8 - Beware of a guy in a room

Dynamics of Software Development



Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Video: Games Everywhere: ... Serious Games ...

Games Everywhere : The Larger Role for Web Platforms and Services for Games & Serious Games (by Ben Sawyer, Serious Games Initiative)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPaCwjhZ2aY

Very dense video with lots of good information. Some time codes of interest:

3:30 What I'm playing lately -- keep everyone honest

7:00 Games everywhere -- where TV audience is going

23:00 Design Pattern Evolution

28:00 Google Maps for games

28:15 Start of many useful graphics/grids

30:00 Short Play / Long Lifespan

34:00 Health records and games

35:00 through 40:00 Many useful charts/graphs - dense

42:00 Good enough games

43:20 Brower games

45:20 Behavior change chart (change management)

46:00 Leveraging infrastructure outside the game

47:00 Neptune's Pride

51:45 Badges and Awards Question

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Video: Learn About Chrome OS & Chrome Web Store

The presenter on this video, courtesy of Marakana,  is Arne Roomann-Kurrik, a member of the Google Chrome team and sort of evangelist. The presentation starts with an overview of HTML5 features and then covers Chrome OS and Chrome Web Store. Timecodes of note:

14:00 rumpetroll.com - is an interesting experiment with Web Sockets.

16:00 lionsnearyou.com - using geolocation features

19:00 What do we do with all this? Discussion of Web Apps:

tight focus
take advantage of big screen
rich experience - engage the user
visually stunning
fast

caniuse.com - useful site for tracking availability of HTML5 features in browsers (including mobile)

Entanglement - HTML5 game at the Chrome Web Store demoed. Nice!

31:00 discussion about legacy browsers and also Chrome OS

36:00 Chrome OS does not support NPAPI, but does support Native Client SDK.

39:00 tweetdeck HTML5 App discussed

50:00 Best Practices for Web Apps

use analytics
interact with users / ask for and react to feedback
accessibility for all
offer free trial
single sign-on (OpenID)
simple on-boarding for new users
take advantage of big screen (reflow)
use in-app navigation (don't use brower navigation)
get your app noticed (multiple channels)

59:30 don't forget tools like Chrome Developer Tools Audit Panel

The Google Chrome CR-48 notebook was mentioned a few times. Evidently it's been more popular with IT departments than they expected because of the no-configuration benefits.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmF4AAjv_VI

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Video: Learning from StackOverflow.com

Joel Spolsky has one of the higher rated programming blogs and goes into the thought behind StackOverflow.com. It's a site designed to share programming information efficiently. Some interesting timecodes:

01:00 he worked on FogBugz

05:00 some interesting discussion about competing information exchange approaches

16:00 he worked on Excel VBA (a source of consulting work for me for years)

25:00 discussion about .NET stack and performance of C# being great

37:40 Things You Should Never Do (don't rewrite a software product from scratch)

44:00 stackoverflow.com is #1 resource for new programming technologies

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWHfY_lvKIQ

Monday, April 25, 2011

Video: Introduction to JavaScript and Browser DOM

This is a good JavaScript foundation video that goes into considerable explanation of the JavaScript object model, prototypes, and gotchas. Timecodes I noted:

26:20 window global object gotcha

35:00 example of creating classes

53:00 omitted var gotcha

55:00 single threaded, waitForEvent

1:01 memory leaks in crack between JavaScript and DOM

1:04 Node.js and Coffee Script mentioned

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljNi8nS5TtQ (Misko Hevery)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Video: Speed Up Your JavaScript

Lessons on optimization are always prone to becoming dated, but there are many in this video that will probably stand the test of time. Especially useful were the ones related to documentFragment (34:00) to reduce browser reflow. The scope chaining (5:30 to ~13:00) discussion makes it clear that local variables are always the best to use, especially when compared to globals or DOM element property references. Maybe JIT optimizing compilation is helping with some of these issues in the latest versions of the browsers. Brief Q & A related to benchmarking (51:00) and profiling (55:00).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHtdZgou0qU (Nicholas Zakas)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Video: Node.js: JavaScript on the Server

A good video at Google Tech Talks by Ryan Dahl on Node.js. Give him a couple of minutes to relax: Node.js: JavaScript on the Server

Some timecodes that I noted:

2:00 the importance of avoiding too much abstraction in efficiency

7:00 interesting discussion around Erlang

28:00 the process object on the server parallels the window object in the browser

As with many of these videos there are always new URLs to explore:

Plurk: Twitter-like service

Curl: Used in showing some examples towards the end of the video.

It sounds like the commonjs mailing list is for hardcore JavaScript developers.

I'm interested in Node.js on the server-side for some interactive mobile application (games and other) ideas. Ideally will try to find it hosted so I don't have to roll my own (virtual) server.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Video: Agile Technologies with Lives at Stake

This was a change of pace, but a very interesting video on InSTEDD (Innovative Support to Emergencies Diseases Disasters) and their use of technologies (geolocation, text messages) in support of disaster response (e.g. Haiti). Some enlightening stories about usability and the issues they encounter in the field. Agile is talked about, but the focus of the presentation is on the real world issues working with technology in disaster relief and disease reporting.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QNQc_xgurc

PMBOK: Lots of Great Ideas -- Don't Reinvent the Wheel

Regardless of your thoughts about Agile and Waterfall and the amount of process overhead that is appropriate for a project, the PMBOK Guide is an invaluable resource for project management practices that can be adapted to your project. Note that many practices and artifacts fall outside of the areas covered by Agile development processes. For example, project initiation tasks include creation of a project charter and methods for gathering requirements are all covered in the PMBOK Guide.

Besides the Project Management Institute, which is the keeper of all things PMBOK, there are many great examples on the web including one from the state of Oregon at:

http://www.oregon.gov/DHS/admin/pmo/publications/pmo_templates.shtml


With a concise Word document summary of the various templates with links at:


http://www.oregon.gov/DHS/admin/bpm/pmo/docs/PCoE_PMBOK_4TH_EDITION_TEMPLATES.doc



PMBOK: Risk Register

Another useful tool -- see the PMBOK Guide for more information.

The Risk Register is used to help identify and plan for risks on a project. Here's an example:


Some tips:
  • If you have a PMO there is probably has a template or system you should use.
  • Columns may need to be customized with each project.
  • It needs to be kept updated over the life of the project.
  • Much of the value comes from thinking through the risks to the project and  incorporating that understanding into the day-to-day management of the project.
  • It's a useful onboarding tool for other project members. Keep that in mind when creating/updating.

PMBOK: Stakeholder Register

The Project Management Body of Knowledge Guide (PMBOK Guide) defines stakeholders as "persons or organizations who are actively involved in the project or whose interests may be positively or negatively affected by the performance or completion of the project." Stakeholders may include customers/users, the project sponsor, portfolio/program managers, PMO, project manager, project team members, functional managers, operations manager, vendors or other business partners.

An important tool for stakeholder analysis is the Stakeholder's Register. Here's an example:


Some tips:
  • If you have a PMO there is probably has a template or system you should use.
  • Columns may need to be customized with each project.
  • It needs to be kept updated over the life of the project.
  • Much of the value comes from thinking of the project from each stakeholder's perspective and incorporating that understanding into the management of the project.
  • It's a useful onboarding tool for other project members. Keep that in mind when creating/updating.

Friday, April 01, 2011

Miscellaneous JavaScript Links and Info from Videos

Here are some links from the time before I started being more systematic about my notes around videos that I watch while riding a stationary bike in the morning. I wanted to capture them somewhere for future reference:

HTML5 Boilerplate (Video courtesy of Marakana at YouTube) Paul Irish

Modernizr

JSLint

OpenStack Object Storage (cloud-based object storage)

CyberDuck (a multi-protocol something -- haven't tried it yet)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Managing Programming Projects: Don't Lose Sight of Reality

If you're a project manager who came from a programming background it's amazingly helpful to dig back down into code for a day just to remind yourself of how the process really works. Regardless of the approach to project management (Agile, Waterfall, etc.), at the most basic level the development process remains an exercise in code / test / repeat. It's a very satisfying exercise, but it makes you appreciate that there is a lot of detail behind each feature or requirement.


It's my belief that the greatest productivity gain for programmers individually is to have as rapid a code / test loop as possible. This is one of the biggest advantages of interpreted script languages (e.g. JavaScript) over compiled languages. There are obvious productivity benefits to being able to see your work quickly and there are psychological/motivation benefits as well.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Obtaining the PMP Credential

While between jobs Nov/Dec/Jan 2010/2011, I prepared for and passed the Project Management Professional exam to obtain the PMP credential (#1385079). One of the Project Management Body of Knowledge Guide's (PMBOK Guide) best practices is writing up a "lessons learned" as part of closing a project or phase. What follows are some notes and lessons learned from my experience.

I felt it would be valuable to obtain the PMP to broaden the number of positions that I could apply for and that has definitely panned out to be a benefit. The credential did not significantly enhance my earning potential, but for many project managers it may do so. I enjoyed the process as a review/capstone of the project management I've done over the years.

NJ One-Stop Center

Part of unemployment support in New Jersey at the present time includes possible retraining grants. There are evidently a bunch of different programs and the "One-Stop" counselors understand the details. I found them to be very helpful.

There are a series of orientations I had to attend and visits I had to make to put the grant in place. I've been to the One-Stop probably a half-dozen times now. On the plus side, I've always found the staff helpful and even most of the people you encounter there are OK. Lots of tension/frustration/fear is present of course. I approached the situation with compassion for others as well as myself.

Training Hours Requirement

I took an online Project Management Certificate course at Rutgers. There are other options, but I liked being able to put a recognized name on my resume and Rutgers knows the process with the One-Stop grants. I also wanted a certificate for my resume, though the PMP is the thing obviously. Rutgers was helpful. I had to make one in-person visit there, but otherwise have done everything via email and phone.

The online course was somewhat time consuming, but you really need to spend the time to absorb the material. The PMP exam is a lot of terminology and even having managed projects for years I learned a good deal and would not have passed without immersing myself in the content.

I usually set aside 2 to 3 hours in the morning for course work. I knew the November/December months would be slow for the job search anyway. I used the afternoon and evening for job search. Closer to Christmas I put in a few two-session online learning days. That was enough for my brain. Online lessons are audio with basic question types. Nothing fancy, but the quality was pretty good. There are some optional lessons (3 are required) that were not as good, but they are phasing those out. SkillSoft is the courseware provider that Rutgers used.

In addition to the online course work there was a book report (I did mine on Scrum) and a Project Charter document required. Rutgers assigns an individual instructor for the course that is available to help and assigns and reviews the book report and project charter.

PMP Process

The Project Management Institute (PMI) has the PMP process laid out in a PDF you download from their website.

The PMP application requires documenting 4,500 hours of project management experience. You can go back up to 8 years, and you need to have at least 3 years of history. I pulled mine together from three different companies. PMI has you categorize the hours on the application in an online form. I put together a Word document with the project description, hours claimed, and sent the document to my reference for each project before applying to make sure each reference was OK with it. I was not audited, but I was prepared for it if it happened. The decision on whether you will be audited happens after you pay the application fee.

Once approved, I scheduled the PMP for about 10 days out and took a practice test (200 questions) with minimal prep a week in advance and got a 79%. The Rutgers course and the Head First PMP book did prepare me well. The PMBOK Guide is a reference and not a study guide. I took another practice test a couple of days before the exam (82%).

I took the exam at the Curtis Center (Prometric) in Philly. The exam has 200 questions, of which 25 are seeding for future tests and don't count. Web search turned up 106 out of 175 as passing (61%). I found the exam to be harder than the practice tests, so I'm glad that I had some cushion. My exam results showed three categories better than average and three categories average. Pass is all that matters though. My name showed up at the website registry after a few days, but PMI says you can use PMP by your name right away.

Expenses for the PMP included Rutgers course ($2,600), PMI membership ($129), exam fee ($405), and miscellaneous books and study materials ($150) for a total cost of roughly $3,300.

It took me about two focused (1/4 time or so) months from start to finish.

Useful Links

The Project Management Institute: http://www.pmi.org

PMP Headfirst Practice Exam: http://www.headfirstlabs.com/PMP/free_exam/



Sunday, March 20, 2011

InfoQ

A great community with a good newsletter. Lots of Agile resources:

http://www.infoq.com/

They also have many articles and videos on tech architecture issues (NoSQL, etc.)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

JibberJobber: Career Tool

If you're on a job search or looking for a tool to help manage all the bits and pieces of information you have related to your network of contacts check out JibberJobber.com. Spreadsheets can be used for tracking, but quickly become unwieldy after a month of intense networking around a job search.


JibberJobber keeps information in Network (contacts), Companies, and Jobs and lets you interlink between them easily. It's SaaS, has good import/export capabilities, and a way to add log entries by copying to an email address. I also like that it has a free option so you can keep your information around between transitions.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Rackspace Cloud Servers

Want a Linux or Windows box to test something like Node.js for experimenting with interactive mobile apps? Consider renting a Cloud Server from Rackspace. You can start and stop them at will and you're only charged a modest fee for the time the server actually exists in the cloud. Various flavors of Linux or Windows Server can be setup using a web interface.


http://www.rackspace.com/cloud/cloud_hosting_products/servers/

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Have you done Agile?

Have you done Agile is a common interview question these days if you're applying for a position related to software development. A few quick thoughts:

When C++ came along many of its features formalized practices that skilled C programmers were using already. For example: encapsulation. Of course C++ introduced many new concepts.

Similarly, Agile (however you define it) formalizes some practices that development groups had been using before the term Agile was coined and added more. For example, timeboxing of releases was a common practice at Dolphin (1984-2005). The concept of a daily build was in use at Microsoft as described in the book ShowStopper (Windows NT development). Zero defect milestones were described by Jim McCarthy in The Dynamics of Software Development. Pair programming was around before XP was coined.

The point is that Agile builds on the past and many of us have done Pre-Agile in various forms and should use this experience to adapt to Agile in whatever form it takes in your development shop.

For more thoughts on Agile check out my posting on the book Agile Project Management with Scrum.

JavaScript Watching

Douglas Crockford is a noted expert on JavaScript and reviews what's great about the language (as well as what's not so great). His video has an explanation why:
if (x) {
}

is not the same as:
if (x)
{
}

and why the first way is correct (spoiler: semi-colon injection). Yes! K&R curly braces win out!


JavaScript: The Good Parts
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQVTIJBZook


And the book at Amazon:


JavaScript: The Good Parts

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

NSBasic App Studio for HTML5 Prototyping

A great product for prototyping HTML5 apps. It's oriented around the Visual Basic metaphor and has an active development community. A fun way to experiment with HTML5 mobile development: www.nsbasic.com

The "ns" stands for "nice and simple". I've kept in touch with the product since I used it for an NCLEX exam prep Palm prototype project back at Dolphin.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

HTML5 Presentation Video and Presentation Deck

Ran across a presentation video that is a good summary with demos and thought of several educational technology companies that would be interested. Especially if you're considering forking a version for tablet/mobile platform with the Chrome/Safari/Webkit/HTML5 platform you should consider HTML5 before thinking of writing native apps....

Learn About HTML5 and the Future of the Web
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdDc7sWjCL4

If you don't have time for the video (50 mins) you can find the presentation deck with active HTML5 demos at:

http://slides.html5rocks.com/#landing-slide

Besides a ton of new capabilities, HTML5 introduces <section>, <article>, <aside>, etc. tags that seem relevant for educational publisher content.

http://slides.html5rocks.com/#semantic-tags-1

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Marakana: Great Technology Training Site

Has some excellent videos and articles on open source technologies: Marakana. They present at several San Francisco user groups.

Meaningful Play

"Fun is just another word for learning." - Raph Koster


Sebastian Deterding designs and researches user experience, persuasion and governance in games and the web.