Searching for Voices


With the demise of Google Reader it seems I’ve been in a bit of a funk when it comes to my regular reading. You see I’ve been using RSS for almost 10 years and it was truly a transformative technology for me, opening up my eyes to passionate learners around the world that formed the basis of my thoughts around educational over this past decade. They’ve become my teacher and in some cases my friends. While twitter has replaced for many the regular routine of reading blogs and writing them, I’ve been pretty firm in knowing that for me, getting to know someone over time by reading their blog is much different and I believe more powerful than a random sampling via twitter.

So in my search for a new reader, I decided to ditch my feeds and start fresh. That said, there are a few folks that get added back quickly because they continue to punch out awesomeoness. There were sadly a few subscriptions that haven’t seen a new post for years and some of these people had wonderful stuff to share. Back in 2004 I would pretty much subscribe to anyone educator who blogged. I want to be a bit more selective this time around. Many of my favorite bloggers are ones I’ve found via twitter and got to know better there. You see there’s something to be said about the context and social aspects. When George Couros writes I hear his actual voice and because of our relationship I feel free to challenge him occasionally and he feels the same about me. That’s the difference in some ways between books and blogs. I don’t naturally expect to have a conversation with an author and quite frankly don’t always need to but because of the nature of blogs, they are by nature, conversations. I find it more difficult to have a conversation with a stranger and thus am reluctant to comment on a blog I don’t subscribe to. That’s not to say I never but I definitely feel like most of us provide a context over time and a single post doesn’t offer that.

I wish more people would blog since I get a sense of how smart they are on twitter but 140 characters is a snack, not a actual meal. I know there are lots of very valid reasons why people don’t blog and I’m not trying to guilt anyone into it because you have to want to take the time to share more deeply but I’m just saying I wish more people would.

Photo by Lyn Hilt

That said, I’m looking for  people that are really helping you learn or sharing wonderful stuff. This is your chance to help me fill up my reader with more smart people. I actually led a session on this at Connected ED and here are some blogs to look at. So leave a link and a comment about someone else you think is worth reading and how long you’ve been reading their work. Don’t leave your own blog, you can add that when you fill out the comment, toot someone’s horn this time. I’m looking for someone you’ve committed to reading over time. Also an RT of this post would be helpful too.

Photo Credit: Irish Typepad via Compfight cc

PS. On the Reader front, I’ve tried a bunch and am going to stick with Feedly.

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2 Pingbacks/Trackbacks

  • Sarah Dalzell

    I am new to the blogging world still, but completely agree with ‘hearing the voice’ having any level of connection with the writer changes how you read their work.
    Thanks for sharing! (ps, love the google doc!)


  • Victoria Olson

    I would like to send a shout-out to Brad Waid and Drew Minock @ I have been following these guys since they burst onto the Twitter scene two and a half months ago. Their site is informative, fun, and always bringing “game-changing apps” to the edtech table. Not only have they guided my knowledge about apps to use, but they also reach out to their followers to teach them about Augmented Reality using the Aurasma app. If you don’t follow this blog, you’re missing out!

  • Katherine Mulski

    Absolutely love Andrew Churches’ work on digitalization of taxonomy but the wiki offers a lot more than that. It was a tie between this and Kathy Schrock’s guide to everything website. Amazing curation of 21st century learning and digital applications as I am a huge techie myself. Blogging about experiences with iMovie and authentic learning at my own here:

  • Tia

    Hi Dean,

    I’m sure you have a ton of blogs already, but I will try to add a few others I have in my feedly:

    There are many, many others, but you can add these to your list. :-)

  • Rhoni McFarlane

    Hey Dean,
    I too have had a chance to start fresh with a new feed with the departure of Google Reader. Whilst I have maintained a few favourites, I have also in the last weeks added Justin Stortz and Aussie Katei Fogues – each providing some interesting reading. Happy perusing!

  • Craig Mason

    Oh man do I feel your pain. I went with Feedly too, but only switched when Google pulled the plug.

    A blog I recommend is Ask the Pilot

    I know it’s completely unrelated to edtech but we do a lot of travelling to conferences and the like (I know you do your fair share, too!) and it really demystifies the whole ordeal of air travel.

  • Joy Kirr (@JoyKirr)

    I don’t have tons of time to read blogs, but one that I never miss is Denise Krebs’ “Dare to Care.” She puts thought and heart into each post, and she doesn’t write them that often. It’s usually a mix of personal and professional, so I really feel like I know her well. She teaches what I teach (and so much more in her tiny school), and I can relate to what she says, yet she challenges her readers every so often, and I can question myself.

    I don’t use anything to check out blogs, but Twitter. Last summer I used an app called “Favomatic,” which didn’t alert me to new blog posts, but only let me check on my favorites when I set – for instance, I would check on Denise’s every three days, but on another person’s every two or three weeks, just so I could limit myself a bit. Thanks for curating these blogs for everyone on the spreadsheet!

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