Monthly Archives: April 2006

Online Research Tools

I found out about Question Pro through a fellow PeLs member. It can be used for both corporate and academic research surveys. There's a nice link for students and academics on questionnaire design, survey questions and answer types. You can try  Survey Pro for comparison.

Check out the 30 day free trial if you need to do quick surveys. Or pay USD 99-249 for the whole survey suite. If you're doing research on a shoestring budget (like I am), create your questionnaire offline first, have a trusted friend or mentor critique it, then put in on line.


Interpretation : Informal Education Method in Museums and Parks

Interpretation is an informal educational method used to communicate the meaning and value of resources, and is used widely in museums, zoos, and parks. Shanta Rose shows us how the Mer Bleue Boadwalk Trail in Ottawa, Canada, created an interpretative walkway for its National Park. It relies on providing high-quality, reinforcing communications at moments when visitors are awed by their surroundings. The 'aha' moment, so to speak, is a teachable moment as well as a moment when learning just takes place.

No wonder that my kids love visiting the Asian Civilizations Museum at Empress Place,Singapore. It is full of these intepretative trails.  Aside from loving the light-and-sound play at the 'grown-up' exhibits, there is a room for kids that has learning activities, video storyteller kiosks, and games.  These combine intepretation, games and play to reinforce knowledge about Asian culture.  The kiosks are found in all museum exhibit halls, and it combines with interactive exhibits to give a multi-modal, multisensory learning experience.   I especially love beautiful displays of exquisite Islamic-Arabic calligraphy in the Koran.   As you marvel at these you refer to the short descriptions, videos and cameos of how artisans painstakingly craft the script as their tribute to Allah.

Ellen Dornan of the University of New Mexico shows us how to use interpretation in a content-driven design model for designing games and simulation.  This model offers a middle path—combining interpretive principles and game design principles with an instructional design process—in order to maximize motivation, engagement, and retention of the computer-based instruction.


Jay Cross has written a nice entry on the impact of informal learning in the
    "From now on, it might be more productive to think of learning as
adaptation to change than as acquisition of knowledge. Learning enables you
to participate successfully in life, at work and in the groups that matter
to you. The faster the world changes, the more adaptation is required.
Formal training programs are not the only learning game in town. CLOs who
spend the bulk of their time improving the development and delivery of
training might be optimizing the insignificant."

Love iBlog 2

Great learning, great networking at iBlog 2.

I was fascinated by ways where I can use all these freebie tools such as blog metrics, RSS, Word Press.  And the people–kindred spirits, they are! The blog community is a community of practitioners, so passionate about blogging. Real wisdom from the sages and the A-listers.

Here are my striking words from this Summit :

Mike Abundo of Information Narcosis–Shameless self-promotion, purple cows, shishkebabs, Flicker, tags; Word Press? "I'm tempted".

Dean Alfar on Creative Writing Blogging time frame–Remember the past, write today, and do NOTE fear tomorrow (Dean, kudos.  You just showed us that a Palanca Award Winner can write a book of 50k words in 30 days, using the blog and this method)

And again from Dean: "How can you grow as a writer if you play in the sandbox of another writer's imagination?"

Zarah Gagatiga of Love a Librarian–51.5% of bloggers are 13-19 years old; information literacy; using blog activities for classroom teaching and learning


  • Abe O. of Yugatech –Google Ad Sense; highest revenue by a Pinoy problogger–P  85,000/month PER BLOG for independent bloggers ; Blog work–1 to 2 hours/ day, 2 posts per blog
  • J. Angelo Racoma  of Forever Geek: Blogging can help you find a job, expand your horizons; your blog is your online portfolio. Problogging is just like any career, you can move companies and you can even get pirated.
  • Charo Nuguid of the Geekette SpeakethMetrics, metrics, metrics. Blog viewers are more active on Tuesdays, least active on Saturdays. They read in the morning and clickety-click at night.  Internet marketing on Orange and Bronze.
  • Marc Macalua of SEO Philippines— marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), keywords, keywurds, keywrds
  • Manuel Viloria–self-regulation in blog posts

Met fellow blog enthusiasts: Manuel Viloria, Adrian Sison, Gladys, Jerry Polence, Melvz, Janette Toral, Leo

Missed: All about podcasting. But thanks to Charo N. for the e-mail advice on what this is, and how to do it.

Let's keep the conversation going.  Looking forward to iBlog3!

The Hands that Serve

It's Good Friday. We are listening to the Seven Last Words on TV. My kids are experiencing Philippine-style Holy Week for the first time in four years. They wanted to watch their usual Cartoon Network channel, but I insisted that for today, no arguments. They must listen to these words.

Television has been God's messenger of remembrance and convenience. We watched the telecast of Christ the King Seminary in Quezon City in the comfort of our home. The sacrifice was to listen to what we expected to be sonorous messages. Yet we were shielded from the pulsating heat which braver Pinoys endured while sitting in church for 3 hours.

However, kudos to the producers. My kids' listened to the beatiful choir, saw the beautiful altars, and listened to speakers give both fluent and heart-felt testimonies on God's faithfulness inspite of their own failings. I closed the books for a moment and let go of my dissertation worries for my blog experiment.

I felt re-assured that reconciliation with the Father is not only in the confessional. It happens everyday, and it happens through a restoration of broken relationships, bodies and spirits. I watched with awe as a pretty doctor relayed how, inspite of the death of 2 sons due to a rare, congenital heart disease, she has maintained faith in the power of an Ultimate Healer. How a drunkard and wife beater sobered up with the power of the Holy Spirit. I watched, with both slight amusement and humility, how a priest theatrically punctuated his sermon on God's inspiration. Somehow, his zeal made up for his lack of fluency. The hands that serve have discerned well what God's instructions were, and I was a bit ashamed that I mocked this priest's sincerity to be a willing messenger of God.

Still, I was glad when I finally heard one of my favorite tv priests, Father Gerry Orbos in his sermon on 7th Word, "Father, into Thy Hands I commend my Spirit". After re-gaining our spiritual life from the death of God's only Son, Jesus, we are now being gently prodded by a Loving Father. The hands that praise must now be the hands that serve. It is not enough to mouth what we know is right. It is not enough to teach what we know. It is not enough that we learn facts as we do in lessons. What may be factual is not necessarily true. We are all educators, priveleged to have so many tools to enable our teaching. But haven't we always said, teach by example?

In that short homily of Fr. Orbos, I remembered God's perfect lesson of sacrifice, to serve those you love by dying to one's self. To exemplify obedience to His Father, Jesus surrendered His life. He portrayed total humility and dependence on a just and loving God by commending His Spirit into the Father's hands.

As I've heard from the Father Abbot's sermon last Palm Sunday at St. Benedict's Chapel in Alabang, there are many ways to die to one's self. God will meet us where we are. So giving up saying a word to defend one's self in the face of an irritating colleague is dying to one's self. Fasting from harsh words is dying to one's self. Giving up coffee everyday for 3 months may be the equivalent of donating a kidney in your estimation.

It's not enough to know what we can sacrifice for love of God, for love of others. God is asking us to be available, to raise our hands to Him. To raise them not only in praise, but also with a willingness to say, "Father, I serve You for I love You. Take my hands and do with them as You will, not as I will it. Take them and use them for whatever purpose You deem fit with Your perfect plan".

And I knew then, that I had to bring this insight to my blog before the moment to serve passes me by.

When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished!” and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost” (John 19:30).”

Link-up to iBlog 2, the Philippines’ 2nd Blogging Summit

Attend iBlog 2, the Philippines' 2nd Blogging Summit! Go to iBlog 2 , the Philippines’ 2nd Blogging Summit. Attendance is FREE. Register now to save your seat!

Trivia for 2nd iBlog Conference in April 2006: Who’s the Official (or Unofficial) Face of Pinoy Blogging?

I'd like to invite feedback and comment from our most active, engaging Pinoy bloggers to post here:

Who do you think is the undisputed, official 'face' of Pinoy blogging?

Why do you think he/she is THE globally respected Pinoy blog author?

My acid standards:

  1. Should be a Pinoy national who has blogged regularly (at least weekly) for minimum of one year
  2. May be living anywhere around the globe
  3. Has amassed a community of interest around his/her blogs, in general (we welcome your opinion on definitions of what 'community' is in the blogosphere)
  4. Has been most cited/referenced/quoted in blogs globally for his specific subject/domain knowledge (so that's on top of getting a good community of readers around his virtual soapbox).
  5. Has very innovative ways of reaching his readers–name your favourite ways of how his news reaches your inbox, your news reader, your top-of-mind consciousness?
  6. Has been a true blue afficionado of blogging–he/she practically makes it his source of living, or his way of virtual life.:)

Hope to share the results during the 2nd iBlog conference. It's a nice way to start the face-to-face conversation when I'm there.

iBlog: 2nd Philippine Conference April 18

Finally, iBlogph’s 2nd conference is happening this April 18. I just signed up–I’m really dying to see how bloggers have been using, networking and benefitting from taking their virtual soapboxes. As an online community researcher, I’m dying to know how I can overcome this virtual cloak of silence when I see ‘0 comments’ appear in most blogs’ comment box.