Sunday, November 8, 2009

Inside a Cyber Studio: Richard Byrne

Due to the popular response I've decided to issue two columns a week instead of one. I will post one at the beginning (monday/tuesday) of the week and then one at the end (friday). Otherwise, it would just take to long to get through all of them.
Keep in mind the questions might change from time to time (especially as technology changes), and I'm looking to provide other formats as well (audio/video).

I hope you all find this to be a fun/exciting journey as we get to learn a bit more about each other and why we love technology & education.

Richard Byrne

  1. Where do you live? Gray, ME
  2. How long have you been working w/ technology/education? six years
  3. What OS/platform do you use for your work? all
  4. What is your favorite Web 2.0/21st Century tool and why? It's tough to pick just one, but I have to say can be used by teachers of any content area at any grade level. allows people to share text, video, and audio media. You can also use as a bookmarking service.'s free voicemail service allows you to make mp3 recordings without the need for any software. can also be used to conduct online, real-time, presentations. Best of all, is free.
  5. What is the biggest misconception about technology? The biggest misconception is that every teenager is a digital native. There are many teenagers who have grown up on the "other" side of the digital divide who only use a computer at school.
  6. What are the biggest hurdles you face as a technology educator? The biggest obstacle is a lack of funding for hardware improvements. For example, we just deployed 1200+ netbooks, but our bandwidth cannot support all of the users being on the network at once.
  7. What has been your biggest success in technology integration? The biggest success, by far, is the increase in student engagement because I'm offering kids more than just content lessons. I offer them lessons on web applications that they can apply to other settings.
  8. What has been your biggest setback in technology integration? The biggest set-back has been not convincing my direct superiors to try some of the tools that I have my students using.
  9. Who/what has been your biggest inspiration in technology/education? Scott McLeod and Wes Fryer. Scott for his thoughts on leading in the 21st century. Wes for his thoughts about using technology to improve education. If you've never seen Wesley's presentation on Blended Learning, you owe it to yourself to find it on SlideShare.
  10. Where do you see technology integration heading in the future? I believe that mobile devices are the future of technology integration. The mobile phones that kids carry everywhere provide them with a world of knowledge and opportunity that 25 years ago was only available in big city libraries.
  1. What is your favorite book? A Good Life Wasted
  2. What is your favorite movie? A River Runs Through It
Next on Cyber Studio: Tim Holt

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