Thursday, 31 January 2008

Maxima on Eee PC

I''ve been playing some more tonight with the eee pc. I installed maxima on it, which is a superb open source CAS. Here's a screenshot:maxima in action

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Eee PC

I'm writing this on an Asus Eee PC, which I've been given to trial by East Lothian Council.

My first impressions are very positive. As an experienced Linux user, I found the interface a bit annoying, but a quick google brought me to this howto which explains how to switch out of the easy mode and back to a more regular Linux desktop. Before the switch, it looks like this:

easy mode

and now it looks like this:

full desktop

I can see the appeal of the easy mode for younger pupils.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Yahoo Supports OpenID

A while back, I predicted that everyone reading my blog would have an OpenID within 12 months, and be using it regularly.  Today the first half of that came pretty close to being true in one fell swoop, as Yahoo announced that all Yahoo accounts (which includes all BT Broadband users) are being OpenID enabled.

This is a huge boost for OpenID.

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Ski Trip

I'm leaving on Saturday morning on a 26 hour coach journey to Italy, where I and the rest of our party of 116 (including my wife and son) will be enjoying a week of skiing and snowboarding.

This year I'm not in charge, which is a huge relief!  I'm planning to relax and enjoy the week in a way that I wasn't able to last year - pressures of high office and all that.

I'll be tweeting our progress here on a temporary account I've set up.  May also upload some photos to flickr with tag skitrip08 if I get the chance.

Friday, 11 January 2008

Weighed down by Web 2.0

As a blogging, feed reading facebooking twitterer, I do, of course, recognise the benefits of all this stuff, but today, as I reached for my laptop and fired up Firefox, I felt a pang of nostalgia for the days when I would be presented with the blank canvas of Google's homepage.  No feeds to check, no twits to watch, no facebook games to play - just a blank search box and the question "I wonder what's out there?" floating in my mind.

It feels harder to get into that frame of mind these days - there's so much new stuff being thrown at me from familiar places that it's hard to find the time to go exploring for new places.   I can tap into other peoples' explorations via del.icio.us but that isn't quite the same.

Other people must have spoken about this before - star prize for a link to the oldest blog post to do so :)

Anyhoo, what do I care, I'm away now until Saturday night.  I'm not going snowboarding, no sir no, because the conditions up North are definitely rubbish.  Don't even think about going up, especially not to Glenshee which is even worse than the other resorts.  And if  you're not going up then I won't see you up there 'cos neither am I!

Sunday, 6 January 2008

Soundzabound

Did someone already point this one out?  I can't remember seeing it before.

Anyway, Soundzabound is "Royalty Free Music for Education."  Handy for podcasts, videos and the like.

Freestyle East Lothian!

On Friday my son and I took our snowboards out onto a wee sledging hill just beyond Gifford, and built a truly tiny kicker. We had a great time - here a video of a maths teacher in his 40's being silly:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGiG_Z4xaIM[/youtube]

Friday, 4 January 2008

Lifestrea.ms Beta

This morning I received by invitation to the beta phase of Lifestrea.ms.

Lifestrea.ms is supposed to pull together all your different online activities into one place - I'm writing this blog post from within Lifestrea.ms, and I just posted to twitter from here too.

There's lots more to Lifestrea.ms - openID integration, cool attention stuff, rss reading and so on.  I'll post some more once I've played around