Friday Finds: The Best of Learning, Design & Technology | April 17, 2020


“Slow down and remember this: Most things make no difference”

— Tim Ferris

This is where I usually write some small little blurb on what is happening and today I don’t have much to say. I’m still grateful for the things we have, concerned about what is around the corner and hopeful for the time when all of this is behind us. I hope this finds you well and, as always, thanks for reading!

What I’m Listening to:  This morning it is the House Focus playlist for me – instrumental house for when you need to focus!

Last week’s most clicked item:
Zoomer Backgrounds


I discovered #100DaysOfNoCode, thanks to Mathias Vermuelen..and I’m glad I did. I’m less than one week in and this program has already given me a wealth of knowledge. If you want to learn how to do more and do it efficiently, I highly recommend plugging into this. Even if you can’t do something with it every day, sign up just to get the daily emails and learn about a bunch of really useful tools.

(The Right) Learning Modalities To Deliver Digital Learning

In part 2 of this article, Patti Shank analyzes how asynchronous and synchronous tools support different types of learning interactions. She also describes the best ways to use asynchronous and synchronous learning.

Sprinkler Chat: John Hagel

Learning is the ultimate competitive advantage – both for yourself and your organization. Listen in to John Hagel as he talks about the importance of accelerating learning. No matter how smart you are you’ll learn a lot faster smarter as part of a good network. 

How to Begin. Can you intrigue me in 50 words?

Josh Bernoff’s Without Bullshit blog is one of my favorites. He regularly shares great insights on writing well without any of the usual bullshit. In this post, he echos my view of the importance of hooking your audience right off the bat. In today’s world, if you can’t hook them right away they are most likely gone and never to return. Among other things, he says that the title and first few sentences of a blog post should:

  • Intrigue the reader.
  • Promise what’s coming, accurately.
  • Incorporate a clever or counterintuitive turn of phrase.
  • Be natural and inviting.

This also echos the advice of another great writer, Steven Pressfield. He says to pare down your message as much as possible and make the expression of it fun, mysterious, etc to evoke emotion that will draw them and their lizard brains in. 

Continue reading »

Videoconferencing Alternatives: How Low-Bandwidth Teaching Will Save Us All

Great post here from Daniel Stanford (@dstanford) that compliments Patti’s synchronous / asynchronous article above. Daniel talks about this in terms of immediacy and bandwidth by dividing instructional technologies into four categories or “zones.” By reflecting on the unique pros and cons of each zone and the drawbacks that come with high-bandwidth/high-immediacy tools, we can identify ways to make our courses more flexible and accessible.

A few other things just because I can. 

Tools & Resources 

  • [Online bookmarks] Prism is a nice, visual option for your online bookmarks
  • [Note Taking] Roam is a note-taking tool for networked thought. 
  • [Learning Content] Pluralsight is offering free access for the month of April
  • [Design] All in one bookmark links for designers
  • [Design]  PICRYL is the largest search engine for public domain images, music & videos.
  • [PowerPoint add-in] Embed live webpages into PowerPoint or Keynote with LiveSlides
  • [Website builder] Create a one-page site without code with Disha Pages 
  • [Online Meetings] Add Zoom-like features to Google Meet with this Chrome plugin

Conferences & Learning Events 

NEW: The Learning & Development Conference June 22-July 31

Interested in the things that didn’t make the cut here? Follow me on Twitter or connect with me on LinkedIn

I love talking about learning, design, and technology. If you’re looking for a speaker, let’s talk! Speaking and Workshop Information Sheet. 

Looking for a previous edition? Check out the archives

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Published by Mike Taylor

Born with a life-long passion for learning, I have the great fortune to work at the intersection of learning, design, technology & collaboration.

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