One of the advantages of sharing ideas and links on your own website, like this WordPress website I’ve maintained since 2005, is that social media and technology companies are less able to restrict the links you can share. In June of 2023, both Facebook and Instagram started blocking access to some news websites and stopping users from sharing many news links in Canada. Analysts are wondering if this is a trend. Moderating user-generated content on a social network is messy and challenging, and platforms like Facebook and Twitter are struggling mightily to figure out a path forward. Since this past summer and those decisions by Facebook, I’ve noticed a few instances of strange link blocking on both Instagram and Facebook, for which there is no readily apparent recourse for users to appeal. Australia just fined Elon Musk’s X platform (“the social media platform formerly known as ‘Twitter'”) $380,000 (US) for failing to adequately address / block content related to “child sexual exploitation.” Taking the dramatic step of blocking ALL user links to news sites is a sign of our changing technological times, and offers us a reminder of why self-hosted blogs remain an extremely useful tool in our digital communication toolkits. In this post, I’d like to share some AI / Artificial Intelligence and media creation related links which Urbie Delgado shared with me this morning via Facebook Messenger. Since I’m sharing the links here on my WordPress blog, they should not be blocked!
Urbie and I both use a “Linktree” profile (this is his, here’s mine) on Instagram to share links with other people. One reason for this is that links are not clickable in Instagram , either in posts or comments. So it’s more common now, when someone shares a link in Instagram, to see “(link in my profile)” at the end of the post, or after the link.
As my own social media use has become more diversified and even “fractured,” thanks to the ongoing dumpster fire at Twitter HQ, I’ve started using my Linktree profile on more social media websites than just Instagram. The power to share LINKS is fundamental to web culture and the Internet itself as we’ve come to know and use it for over two decades now. I still maintain “the power of interactive writing / hyperlinked writing” is one of the most undervalued and under-taught skills in our U.S. K12 schools today, and that needs to change.
Here are the AI and media creation links which Urbie shared with me this morning!
Gamma AI: Create Presentations, Documents and Websites
The first is Gamma App, a generative AI platform exhorting potential users:
Never start from scratch – Generate docs, decks & webpages in secondsGamma app: Generate ai presentations, webpages & docs. (n.d.). Retrieved October 22, 2023, from https://gamma.app/
Create a working presentation, document or webpage you can refine and customize in under a minute, using our powerful AI generator.
Gamma App does offer a free trial with “400 credits,” and other features (as well as limitations) detailed on their pricing / plans page. I’ve played with it a little this afternoon and my MIND IS BLOWN.
I recently started a project I’m calling “Heal Our Culture,” and so far I’ve just registered a domain and started building a resource webpage on Google Sites. By simply copying and pasting a TOPIC less than 100 words, I was able to generate fairly incredible websites which not only look slick and professional, but also have excellent content relating to my inquiry project goals and objectives. I ended up creating three different versions, here is the link to the third one which includes more about education reform. Version one doesn’t include a reference to education reform, and version two merges education and healthcare reform because I combined them in my provided topic paragraph.
When it comes to generative AI tools and examples like this, I think it’s tempting to remain in a “OMG This is Incredible” or “OMB This is the WORST thing for Schools, Teachers, and Homework EVER” mode. Just as the Kübler-Ross model asserts there are “five stages of grief,” I think we likely have a natural “OMG Stage” when it comes to AI understanding and acceptance in education. While this stage is natural and expected, we should remain there.
Consider that generative AI tools like Gamma AI are the WORST versions of AI we are likely to use in our lifetimes. These tools are incredibly powerful and are getting even better fast.
In addition, consider that these AI tools, as other kinds of technology tools do, can literally provide us with SUPERPOWERS when it comes to design, content creation, and communication skills. These tools “raise the floor” and allow us to set new expectations, for ourselves and our students. Their output can definitely be mind-blowing, but I’m even more excited to think about what we can build and do together with these tools in the weeks and years ahead.
The New Adobe Express
The other resource Urbie shared is “The Adobe Express page shared by Martin Ricardo Cisneros at #TechTober23.” Martin’s website is TheTechProfe.com, and the resource page he created at #TechTober23 is pretty amazing. I’ve taught my middle school web design students how to create “narrated slideshows” using Adobe Spark Video for the past 4 years, as it’s now been migrated into “The New Adobe Express.” (The Adobe Spark Video and Adobe Spark Page apps for iPadOS are still available / online, btw.) All of my web design students (and I) have created “sandbox media pages with Adobe Express” this semester. This is a sample “flow page” I created with the New Adobe Express on the topic of “Barbecue Brisket Perfection,” using my own photos and text. All of these tools effectively add “jet fuel” to our personal media creation toolboxes and learning vehicles!
I encourage you to check out Martin’s Adobe Express page from #TechTober23 for lots of additional links to creative design challenges from Adobe and lesson / project ideas you can readily do with your students using the free tools in Adobe Express.
It’s amazing how much discovery and learning can be facilitated by “mere hyperlink sharing!” Many thanks to Urbie Delgado for sharing these with me! If you’re looking for more AI tools which can be used to create and share media, and for educational / teaching purposes, definitely check out Jason Neiffer’s ever-updating Google Doc of AI tools. You can hear Jason and I discuss and share AI tools ALMOST every week on our “EdTech Situation Room” podcast and webshow. We broadcast most Wednesday nights at 9 pm ET / 8 pm CT / 7 pm MT / 6 pm PT. This YouTube playlist includes all of our 305 (as of this writing) past episodes, which are usually just over 60 minutes long.
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On this day..
- Great STEM Conversations About Perimeter in MinecraftEDU - 2014
- Learning More About Visual Notetaking (Authorized Drawing in Class!) - 2013
- Kansas Honor Flight: October 2012 (Narrated Slideshow) - 2012
- 2012 K12Online Conference Starts Today! - 2012
- Post a Photo to a Photo 365 or 180 Blog - 2011
- Great Ideas from the Fall 2011 DEN Virtual Conference (part 2) - 2011
- Great Ideas from the Fall 2011 DEN Virtual Conference (part 1) - 2011
- Action Research: What Do We Know About Learning in the Cloud? - 2010
- Powerful and Free Tools from the Cloud by Rushton Hurley - 2010
- Do the Mash: Mixing Tools to Create a Custom Cloud-Based Learning Tool - 2010