ReMaking a School, Part II

Following up on my previous post, my quest for architectural drawings of Guelph Central Public School has come up zero. Plan B involves finding a creative individual to work from the photographs, written descriptions and site plan to create something that can be rendered on a 3D printer.

After a bit of searching, I found someone who could work with the source material. Within 5 days, this arrived in my inbox:

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Excited, I hurried down to the library and queued up a print job that matched the 2 hour time limit (read: standard quality, small size):

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Not too bad? Now, to find a way to produce something larger and prettier.

 

New Pet Project: ReMaking a School

One of my resolutions for 2017 is to figure out why 3D printing excites me. I figure this new interest/obsession is linked to my days building set models for my undergrad and my grad research into placefullness and community identity. Admittedly, this may also have something to do with one of my all-time favourite movie scenes. But I go on.

I’ve been spending a good amount of time at the Guelph Public Library, taking workshops on Meshmixer, TinkerCAD and Autodesk 123D. I’ve also reading up on additive fabrication technology, and what how 3D printing will rock the world. Totally geeky, I know. There’s also a good documentary on Netflix – Print the Legend.

So, I needed a project to print so that I could figure some stuff out. Enter Guelph Central Public School:

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The building has an interesting history, summarized nicely by Cameron Shelley (Guelph in Postcards). It opened in 1875, and was torn down in 1968. Oh the 60s…not very nice to architecture in Guelph. Central has recently been in the news as local citizens have expressed concerns over a proposed development of the adjacent lot. The issue is currently with the Ontario Municipal Board.

I thought it would be neat to 3D print a model of the old building. They could have a miniature model to display in their library/maker-space. The kids could look at it, and maybe be inspired to learn more about 3D printing, local history, architecture, and such. Maybe the school could print copies of the model, and sell them to raise money to buy their own 3D printer? Maybe.

It shouldn’t be difficult to find architectural drawings of a public building. I thought the school might have a record (nope), or the school board (nope), perhaps the public library (zero), or the museum (negative). I also contacted Archives Ontario, Land Registry Office and the local University. No luck. There was a significant fire in the school offices in the 1940s. I’m guessing that the drawings may have gone up in smoke.

Along the way, I collected a number of quality photographs, written descriptions, and a site plan. Maybe this is enough to run with.

Stay tuned.

My take on the Digital Credentials Landscape

For a client I’m working with, I’m putting together a presentation focused on credentials. I’m folding in some of the great work @dajbelshaw put together on dml central. Thanks Doug! My slides are coming together ok, but my diagram is shaping up to look something like this:

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Does this make sense to you?

The (Personal) (Business) Impact of Open

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Over the next couple days, I’ll be participating in the 12th Annual Open Education Conference #OpenEd15: The Impact of Open. It’s a conference I’ve always wanted to attend, but for various reasons haven’t been able to make it happen. This year, we’ll make it work.

For folks at home, tune in to the live stream keynotes, and a rich twitter stream. Expect to hear some of the most forward-thinking learning professionals discussing how open open educational resources (OER) can dramatically improve the quality of education. At the risk of telling you what you should do, don’t miss it.

Since starting my consulting business 2 years ago, I’ve had the good fortune to work on a number of open educational projects. I’ve just “run the numbers”, as some of them say. Here’s where my income comes from:

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 9.58.20 AMThere’s good work be done. Links to some of these projects below. Let me know if you’d like access to any of the source files, or if you have any questions.

Zen & the art of unsubscribing

I’ve made a concerted effort over the past 2 months to actively unsubscribe from email notifications. It’s taken a surprising amount of effort, but I think I’m getting there.

Guess what? I don’t feel like I’m missing out on any last minute deals that I don’t care about, or breaking news about product updates for tools I don’t actually use, or instant notifications when someone I don’t know likes a post I commented on over a year ago.

The unsubscribed way of life may not be for everyone, but if you find you’re complaining about how busy you are and posting updates about how many unread emails you have in your inbox after a vacation, give unsubscribing a try. You might be surprised with the results.