Oh no… wait, phew! (“Undo Send” in Gmail)

Quick post, but one it quickly seems I should share because of the immediate replies and favorites on Twitter…

I was about to send an email. A business email, in fact. A business email to someone at one of the largest companies around my area, someone who I know, but have never talked to about business.

So when I clicked “Send” in Gmail before filling in a line that said “a conference of ____ educators”, a blank I intended to fill in once I confirmed the right number of attendees, I immediately freaked out. Until I saw this:

Screen Shot 2013-07-26 at 7.52.45 PM

The best thing I possibly could’ve seen. Remember when you wished you hadn’t sent that text, that letter, that email? Well, with Gmail you can fix that last problem, if you catch it in the first few seconds.


  1. Click on the gear (Settings) near the upper right hand corner of your Gmail screen.
  2. Click on the “Labs” tab.
  3. Enable the “Undo Send” lab by Yuzo F.

Screen Shot 2013-07-26 at 7.43.45 PM

Do I know who Yuzo is? Nope. Probably an awesome Googler who chose to use his 20% time to create this incredibly helpful lab.

Not sure what what 20% time is? Check out the #20time or #geniushour hashtags on Twitter!

Screen Shot 2013-07-26 at 7.40.39 PMPhew!

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The EduGlass Saga Continues… (Thank You to EduGlass Supporters!)

As some of you know, I went to bed on Friday with $69 left to raise in my quest to get to two-thirds of the total cost (with tax) of Glass sponsored rather than shipping Glass back to Google. I woke up the next morning with this tweet in my stream:

Not only did I reach my goal, but I did so with help from an educator, Mark Hall (@mhall209), who has chosen to work at a school that many would avoid, much like our district has been in the past. But now that we have a set of Google Glass…

I really hope you didn’t expect me to take that somewhere. While Google Glass is an exciting experiment, I don’t expect it to be more than that right now. I’m sure a few of our teachers and students will have novel ways of using Glass to support their educational experience, but please don’t blow this out of proportion, as student learning is far more important than the latest technology tool or toy.

That said, I want to send out thanks to the amazing people and companies who have chosen to support Glass. I also want to let out a sigh of relief that no company chose to sponsor me that I don’t believe in, as I definitely was worried I was going to have to write up reviews on products I don’t believe in with a disclaimer that they were a Glass sponsor.

Jessy Irwin (@jessysaurusrex), was the lead voice on moving the Glass project forward. In fact, before she jumped in and supported Glass, I figured the project was dead on arrival. Then she jumped in, sent news of my project to everyone she could, and the money started piling in. Ok, so maybe it wasn’t that easy, but she did kickstart (see what I did there?) me into believing this was more than just a way to make sending back Glass seem not as difficult.

Nolan Amy (@nolanamy), founder of Plickers (@Plickers), was the next to kick in. Which actually fit very well, as his product was my inspiration for trying Google Glass in the classroom. We also spent some good time together at ISTE, bonding over educational practices and 90s/00s rap.

Lisa Butler (@srtalisa) was the next contributor and perhaps the one I’m most excited about. Why? Because she asked me (ok, told me) to be the Google Glass Genie for her middle school tech club. That means I get to meet them, hear their “wishes”, try them out and then report back. How much fun is that?

Karl Lindgren-Streicher (@LS_Karl …and yes, this is going to look a lot like if I made a list of #eduawesome people, because there is major overlap) gave and asked for me to come to his classroom to share about Glass. Major win for me, because I’ve been dying to visit his classroom all year.

Amber Teamann (@8amber8) gave and asked for me to do a Skype session with her teachers about Glass possibilities. Again, a win for me, as I would’ve done this without any sort of contribution.

Erin Klein (@KleinErin) and Jen Wagner (@JenWagner) both gave, with Jen leaving these requests:

  • Document the journey.
  • Be honest with pros/cons.
  • Stick to a “no-Glass” time!

Again, a win for me… I now have to document my Glass experience honestly (note to all future sponsors who want me to put a rosy spin on Glass) and commit to non-Glass time, which I feel strongly about already.

Ali deGuia (@AlideGuia) asked for a 10 minute Google Hangout to answer staff questions, which sounds like a lot of fun, but not as much fun as Robanne Stading’s (@tchlrn_ak) request for me to make a video postcard with Glass for her class, which I could become the educational version of this Google Glass video:

Amy Lin (@heyamylin) and the Edcanvas (@Edcanvas) team contributed, asking me to work with them to develop awesome apps for Glass. Again… being on the forefront of Glassware and working with a company whose product I use for our district’s Teacher Resources website because it makes everything more visually accessible? Woohoo!

Finally, other awesome people including Jennifer Kloczko (@jkloczko), Ruth Hook, Karen Alden, and Gary Arcudi (of SP Controls and @TeamDoceri) signed up to support as well, with nothing asked for in return. And no, that doesn’t mean new favorable reviews of Doceri, although those who know me know I’ve loved using it for at least a couple years now.

Yes, technically I haven’t collected the money from these sponsors, as I wanted to share my thanks first, which means they could back out from their support… but given the #eduawesome people on this list I don’t expect that to happen.

P.S. I think I’ve made it in the EdTech world… DirtySexyEdTech wrote a whole post about me and the EduGlass saga!  😛

P.P.S. No, I haven’t raised the full amount, but am hoping to. If you would still like to contribute, please click here.

Posted in EduGlass | 4 Comments

Into the box or… (The final Glass post?)

You can tell it doesn't want to go into that box, can't you?

You can tell it doesn’t want to go into that box, can’t you?

I’m off to bed (after catching up on The Daily Show), with $69 left until I reach the goal I’ve set of 66% funding by the end of the week. Since there is technically 54 mins left until the end of the day, I’m waiting until tomorrow morning to drop Glass into the box. If I wake up and haven’t made it there, then I guess it’ll be going back to Google.

But I’ve secured over $1000 from a total of 12 supporters, so I really don’t want to have to stop so short. So, know anyone who has some ideas for what we could do with Glass in education and wants to support? Or someone who wants me to wear their company’s shirt in Glass pictures?

Please share if you’d like.

Google Form (also embedded above)

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24 hours… Glass or No Glass?

Five days ago, I thought up the idea of getting sponsors to allow me to keep Glass for use in classrooms across East Palo Alto and Menlo Park. Unfortunately, I had already made the request to get the box to return Glass, as it was approaching the 30 day mark. I’d also promised Jenna I wouldn’t be paying for Glass, as I needed a new computer and committed to only making one large purchase.

Since then, I posted my request on my site through the post “Glass in the Classroom?” and have received commitments from ten people/companies totaling $795.

The amazing thing? The requests include going to a nearby high school to show and share Glass, being completely honest about the pros/cons of Glass in the Classroom in regular posts, and granting wishes for a tech club as the Google Glass Genie. And I would’ve done those things anyway… except for the fact that Glass didn’t work for me as a day-to-day purchase so I couldn’t justify spending that kind of money for a classroom experiment. If teachers made a bit more, maybe I’d have that kind of excess income.

Wouldn't you like to see kids as excited as these two?

Wouldn’t you like to see kids as excited as these two?

So now I’m nearing the 24 hour mark, as I have promised to box up Glass tomorrow night and drop it in the mail Saturday morning if the funds haven’t been raised, which with ~$700 left to raise in one day seems likely, unless this somehow makes its way to some people/companies who are passionate about expanding the limits of edtech in the classroom.

Google Form (also embedded above)

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Expanding the Use of Tech in the Classroom

As I began to think about my attempt to gain sponsors for Glass, it made me think about an infographic (at the bottom of this post) that came my way a few months ago. I especially started to think about this when reflecting on something Jessy Irwin (@jessysaurusrex) said in response to my last post, Glass in the Classroom?. She said it’s important to get a tool like Glass into the hands of students who might never have access to it.

While I do not want to pretend that I was the first person to embrace technology in my district (far from it), I was one of the most highlighted, in terms of news stories and such. It was 2009 when I began to use the eBeam interactive whiteboard in my classroom and at the time there were just a few other teachers using any sort of interactive whiteboard. In fact, it was difficult to even secure an overhead projector (yes, with transparencies and the pens that dyed your hand for the rest of the day) in our school.

While I might debate some of the numbers in this infographic when comparing it to our district (though perhaps not when also comparing it to the district across the creek), I can completely agree with the last line, stating that 2 out of 3 teachers want more technology in their classroom. Although what they don’t say is that most teachers want it to be effective technology, not just any technology.

If we put enough Glass in a classroom for every student and the teacher, that might currently be a little overwhelming. In fact, even a class set of laptops can be overwhelming without the right training. Yes, I know the lines about “No student has ever said I can’t use this technology because I don’t have the training”, but how about the reaction you have once you learn how to use a program effectively and realize “I could have been using my time and this technology in a much more efficient way”?

All this to say… Yes, we need to put more technology into the hands of the students and teachers in the most struggling schools. But we also need to provide the coaching and technical support that will allow them to use the tools in more effective ways.

(By the way, small side note… after 2 out of 5 days of my Glass sponsorship campaign I’m at $510 with 5 donors. I have about $1000 to go before Friday afternoon if I’m going to be able to hold onto it.)

What do we Know Infographic

via OnlineUniversities.com and Allison Morris

Posted in Classroom Excitement, EduGlass | 2 Comments

Glass in the Classroom?

Before I receive my box from Google to return Glass, I wanted to put out this request to the Interwebs: Is there anyone willing to sponsor my continued ownership of Glass for educational purposes?

Google NYC as captured by Glass.

Google NYC as captured by Glass.

First, the reason for returning. I wore Google Glass for three weeks, in my normal day-to-day life, at ISTE in San Antonio, and walking around the streets of New York City. I found it useful at times, but more often was very interesting for the perspectives other people saw when they tried on Glass. It was far too bothersome for me to enjoy using in my day-to-day, I often placed them atop of my head in San Antonio, and kept watching my back in NYC as I was very obviously wearing an expensive device on my head (mostly using them to protect my eyes from the sun). My laptop is on its way out of being useful and there is no way I can justify purchasing a new computer and Google Glass within the same two or three year period. Finally, as the educational use of Glass hasn’t even been begun to be determined, there is no way I could ask within our district community to support with Glass, as we have far more pressing issues, like having enough quality books for students in our classroom libraries.

Awesome line I captured while walking the streets of NYC.

Awesome line I captured while walking the streets of NYC.

Now, where you come in. And by “you”, I mean anyone who is interested and is reading this post, be it a lone member of my PLN or a head of a Fortune 500 company (okay… awesome person who works for a Fortune 1,000,000 company?)

I would like to try Glass in the classroom to determine how this new technology can support student achievement. Ideas that have been floated my way include having your lowest student and highest student each wear Glass during a lesson and seeing where their focus was and what interactions they had (via @SrtaLisa), using it as an easy way as a coach to video and give feedback without dealing with setting up a video camera, one of the hundreds of ideas students might come up with when the device is put in their hands, or even just my original idea from the #ifihadglass contest.

The tweet that afforded me the opportunity to give Google $1650.

The tweet that afforded me the opportunity to give Google $1650.

Glass costs a hefty sum (~$1650) and I am expected to return Glass once I receive the return box this week, so here is my plan. I’ve created a Google Form that you can fill out with your name, email, amount of Glass you’d sponsor, and any special requests. Special requests will be fulfilled as much as possible, but need to keep a few things in mind: 1) I will happily wear clothing with your company’s name/Twitter handle/etc when wearing Glass, but no other teacher or student will; 2) I will not do or post anything that might embarrass or harm anyone, especially in the context of school; 3) I’m happy to do a Google Hangout or create a video for you, but unless I’m already planning to attend the event, likely will be not able to fly myself outside of the Bay Area on my own dime.

(This video was captured by an awesome Massive Multiplayer Thumb War teammate at ISTE 2013.)

Finally, rather than just collecting money through PayPal, I want to collect information from interested parties because I’m running this like a Kickstarter campaign.  If I don’t receive at least 2/3 of the funding, I will be returning Glass and will not be collecting any sponsorships. But if somehow I’m able to raise enough sponsors in the next week, I will be holding onto Glass for use in the classroom, allowing so many new perspectives to be seen and heard.

Google Form (also embedded above)

Posted in EduGlass | 4 Comments

ISTE 13 Reflections – EduFamily

Before I start, let me preface this by saying there is no edtech in this post, no cool tips, no new tools. That will all come at another time.

I’m not sure how much this is like my past ISTE and CUE reflections, but this conference was all about relationships for me. As I sit on this plane departing from San Antonio, I can’t help but feel closer who I want to be. I feel even more in love with my wife, Jenna, even though she wasn’t even there with us. I appreciated our phone conversations and talking all about her amazing work with other educators deepened the feeling that I am extremely lucky to be with her. I definitely would not be who I am without her.

As relationships at the conference go, I keep thinking of one word. Family.

I feel like I’m developing an even larger edufamily than the one I’ve developed with my friends in CUE. There are people I spent the last few days with who now feel like my long lost brother or sister. Others who have been like the wise cousins who watch out for you as you step out and try new things. People who I am sad to be leaving. An honest feeling of sadness and longing. I hesitate to name anyone here, as I would surely leave someone really important out and I’d feel terrible. I also hear at least one of them likes to keep a low profile.

Again, there’s no edtech content in this post, but this is what my ISTE experience was truly about… my edufamily and their overall amazingness. I can’t wait to learn and create with you again and share some more amazing experiences together. Let me know the next time you are in the Bay Area.

Posted in Conferences, Forging My Path | 2 Comments