Monday, July 30, 2007


Click the Title to Listen to the Blog


There is a muscular energy in sunlight corresponding to the spiritual energy of wind.
Annie Dillard

A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

Annie Dillard penned those words in her Pulitzer Prize book, A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, in 1974. At the time she was writer in residence at Hollins College and spent hours upon hours sitting beside that ordinary stream. I read her book shortly thereafter, and it had a profound impact on me.

First I felt a keen sense of community pride in knowing that Annie Dillard wrote that internationally acclaimed book right here in the Roanoke Valley. One of my best friends was living in faculty housing at Hollins back then and would frequently go with Annie to just hang out by the creek with her. She even was mentioned in the book several times. I thought that was so cool.

Even more importantly, that book impacted the way I perceived my environment. Growing up beside the Kinsey Dairy which later became Arrowood (Countryside), I was used to traipsing around the course as my father played rounds of golf. While he played, I wandered the wilder sections just off the fairways.

Before Annie’s book, I already found great enjoyment in finding living treasures under the flight path of the Piedmont DC-3’s and later Boeing 707’s. I’d see all types of snakes and invariably all of them were misidentified as copperheads or water moccasins (There are no poisonous water snakes in these parts). I’d surprise red foxes and even the more shy grey foxes as they slinked around the seventeenth hole. All manner of birds flitted around, singing atop their lungs. My favorite birds were the Meadowlarks. They’re hard to come by these days, but back then, they’d nest in the grassy rough areas beside twelfth hole fairway. Their brown-speckled white eggs were tough to spot nestled in the tall grasses. Nice bass and catfish swam in the sixteenth hole lake and good-sized perch there made for some excellent fishing afternoons. The lake at the seventh tee and sixth green had some of the largest bullfrogs hiding in their mud holes on the shore. I’d walk past and those big ‘ole frogs would let out resonating burps and dive into their mud homes. I never was quick enough to catch them. Over at the second hole pond, snapping turtles ruled the water like alligators. Frankly, I was always scared of them. Dillard’s book made me realize how rich and fragile this living world really is.

As a judgment day looms, I find myself sitting back and wondering why I care so deeply about saving Countryside. In the end my best response to myself is that if I don’t stand up and be counted, then I’d always live to regret it. Countryside is more than a golf course and recreation space to me. It’s a living wild society co-existing with Man’s mechanical world. That society has endured the scars of Man; planes, roads, homes, and golfers. It’s learned to adapt to all of that. But the changes being contemplated by our city leaders this time, if enacted, would permanently erase that society.

There’s an avenue that is being ignored by the city, however. Countryside is a gem; a rough one, but one that only needs polishing. Wise city planners could use the existing space as a recreational hub that would utilize the existing beauty of the land coupled with the accessibility of the tract for its citizens’ benefit. Such a recreational plan, which includes golf, tennis, swimming and recreation center, need not permanently pave over the existing environment.

So as decision time nears, I say very loudly to anyone reading this: SAVE COUNTRYSIDE!

It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment.
Ansel Adams

Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Tree

The Tree...or is that ex-tree?
Oh great another video. What's with you these days?
I don't know. I just don't feel much like writing. however, I am really having a blast learning how to put together video shorts. On this one, I documented the felling of the huge poplar in my backyard. When I put the clips together, I really was anxious to use Creative Commons music. That is music in which to creator and owner of the music has granted permission for it to be used free with certain defined stipulations. I found a site called Podsafeaudio, and I gave them a try this time. I liked some of their music, but they are limited in selection. I also tried Jamendo, but I wasn't able to get my Fox Torrent program to mesh with the audio download yet.

Anyway, I sort of liked how the chainsaw almost seems to be another instrument in the background track.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Swinging at Countryside

Last week, my brothers and I took to Countryside Golf Course for a round of golf at "The Home Course."

We had a marvelous time and enjoyed touring the course, experiencing her little twists and tricks. We waded through a minor flood, lost and found a few golf balls, and survived the "Dead Buzzard Hole" (No. 11).

Here's a light-hearted look at three moments in time.

After the initial blast of intro music, you will need to turn your volume up to properly hear the in depth commentary.

Sunday, July 22, 2007


This post was simultaneously posted on the SaveCountryside blog


A Commentary

“Groundbreaking for the nation's newest golf retreat will be conducted Thursday.

Guess where it's happening, folks? How about right here.”

So opens Randy King, sports reporter at The Roanoke Times, in his weekend feature piece on the new Ballyhack Golf Retreat in Roanoke County. For me, the new course sounds like heaven. Any course with the word ball and hack in the name suggest lots of lost golf balls, and I’m one who enjoys hunting for them.

The Ballyhack course, however, will not be built for hacks. It will be a true championship course, one of the best links courses in the country. While links courses were originally developed in Scotland near the seashore, they’ve evolved into a style of course which utilizes open spaces, mounds, uneven fairways, and deep pot bunkers. In other words, the course utilizes the natural lay of the land. Ballyhack will do that, too.

The new course in Roanoke County is being marketed nationally. Only about 60 local memberships are being sought while 200 national members are being hunted. The founders of the course plan to market the course as a business retreat for the high-powered rollers across the country.

Why would someone want to come out to Roanoke to play golf? Randy King suggests the reasons in his article. Corporate business people are searching for places to play that are out of the mainstream, away from the hustle of the big city. Roanoke is attractive because it’s a nestled community far from the reach of unchecked urban sprawl and it’s close to Scottish Highland-like peace. In addition, “A terrific golf course is what makes the draw,” said Roanoke native Jonathan Ireland, [Ballyhack’s] director of golf operations.

Destination: Roanoke.

Reason: Golf.

Travel: Corporate and Commercial Air.

Accommodations: Local Hotel and onsite.

Local Business Impact: Definitely

With a steady stream of high profile golfers migrating to the region to play Ballyhack, these golfers will certainly be looking around for more to do. Perhaps they will visit Mill Mountain. Certainly they’ll eat out at some local fine restaurants. They’ll shop at our city market. Maybe they’ll ride a trolley. Perhaps they’ll visit the new art museum. Very likely, however, these visitors will be looking for places to play more golf. As they arrive in our Magic City, they’ll pass over a wide swatch of green space as they are landing, a golf course. They’ll become curious. They’ll investigate and then invest. If the city favors the wise course of developing Countryside into a fine Municipal golf course (Torrey Pines) and recreation area, our visitors will spend an afternoon on a round of fine golf before they return to their world. Soon, word will spread of a golf-friendly community rich in peace, charm, and golf nestled in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. That’s my vision. That’s what I can see as being possible. None of that can happen if Roanoke City decides to squander its opportunity. Developing the Countryside property as a municipal golf course and recreation facility makes sense from a community, environmental, and business standpoint.

Let’s Talk Recreation

"I would love for us to be able to address a nice recreation center in the Northwest area,” Dowe said. “I'm not sure where in Northwest, but I'd certainly like to see us address that first.”

So begins Mason Adams in his July 22 edition of the Roanoke Times news piece.

I can suggest a place for Mr. Dowe’s recreation center. How about right next to William Fleming High School allowing for easy access to ½ the teenaged population in Roanoke City? How about including golf, swimming, tennis, biking, running, and walking in to the recreation center concept? How about fully utilizing the current space occupied by the Countryside pool, tennis courts and empty space between those and the high school for the recreation center hub? Why not? It just takes a vision and a will.

Having a recreation center next to William Fleming makes perfect sense for the Countryside property, much more sense than a large scale residential, high-density housing, commercial development now being contemplated.

A recreation center operated by city parks and recreation next to the high school will afford the youth of the city access to a wide variety of wholesome pursuits. Combined with open access to all city residents from all age groups, this multigenerational center could become a true anchor for the Northwest and a golden feather in the city’s cap. Why not? It just takes a vision and a will.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Stop the YIELD Bashing

Stop the YIELD Bashing

A friend was chatting with me the other day, and she nonchalantly mentioned that she wished that people would learn how to yield. Then she went off on how people will come to the Yield sign on the entrance ramp to I-581/Hersheberger Road in Roanoke and stop. People following behind them are then forced in to a radical abortion of their own merging move to avoid the stopped vehicle. These people, she suggested, are a danger to all on the road, and she’s frustrated by them.

The problem with her complaint is that she is wrong.

For many years now, I’ve been equally frustrated by drivers who don’t understand the true meaning of the word YIELD.

Here is what the Virginia Drivers Manual says about yielding.

· Yield also means to stop if you cannot merge safely into the flow of traffic.

· Drivers entering an interstate from an entrance ramp must yield the right-of-way to traffic already on the highway.

Most of the issues surrounding Yield infractions on Interstates involve tangles with drivers trying to safely exit the highway while Mergers fail to properly yield. In relation to the discussion I had with my friend, this means that the driver entering the Interstate at the Hershberger Road interchange must Yield to traffic flowing along the Interstate. When approaching the Interstate on the entrance ramp, the driver should scan to their left to see what kind of traffic is oncoming. If there is sufficient space, the driver may merge smoothly into the right lane of the Interstate. If however, there is traffic inside the safe zone, the driver needs to yield to the Interstate driver.

Two methods of yielding are most popular. The rolling yield is used most often by people who sort of understand the law. In these cases, the driver entering the highway continues rolling slowly along the access ramp and allows the Interstate driver to exit on the other side of the cloverleaf. In most cases, this form of yielding is safe and acceptable; however, if the driver entering the merge zone miscalculates by rolling into the middle of the merge zone, it becomes a dangerous merge. Exiting cars must either radically accelerate to enter the highway or decelerate abruptly on a busy, speedy highway to exit. Remember, drivers entering the highway must always YIELD to the highway traffic.

Rolling yielders cause many accidents and tense moments when driving. A highway driver who is exiting has to read the mind of the roller and make a split second decision as to how far they are going to roll and at what speed in order to adjust the exit strategy. Many accidents happen thanks to these rollers. These accidents are the fault of the rollers.

The stopped yield is correctly used when traffic in the oncoming right lane of the highway is inside the safe merge zone. Stopped Yielders are correct to stop if they are about to roll into the shared merge zone. Stopping ensures that the highway driver does not have to brake radically on the high speed Interstate and can exit safely without being forced into radical maneuvers.

Inattention and lack of understanding lead to many accidents in the stopped yield situation. Drivers following too closely behind a driver on the entrance ramp may slam the rear of a correctly stopped yielder. Such accidents are the fault of the driver who slams the tail of the yielder.

Over the years, I’ve written letters to the editor and started very animated discussions with my friends on this issue. It seems many people feel very strongly as my friend at the beginning of this piece does. People should not STOP when merging. I would agree with them if the signage on these ramps were different. Sometimes at the end of ramps, you do see MERGE signs, but around where I live almost all of the signs are YIELD signs.

So to everyone out there who gets angry when people stop in front of you on an entrance ramp, chill out and pay attention. Stop going so fast and talking on your cell phone and pay attention to what’s going on. Drive defensively and safely.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Hunting For Balls

Hunting For Balls

I grew up around a golf course, and instead of investing my time in learning the game, I waded in to the murky world of black market commerce. Several days a week, I’d ride my banana seat bike over to different parts of my neighborhood course and dive in to the woods looking for lost golf balls. Then on Saturday mornings, when all of the men came out to play their weekly rounds, I’d set up shop by the largest water hole and display my booty. The price was always 3 excellent balls for a $1.00 or 5 lake balls (sold to bad golfers who knew they’d just plunk them right in to the lake below us) for a $1.00. It was a cash only business. No receipts. Always keeping an eye out for the course superintendent. Ready to run and hide to set up shop another time.

I hunt less and less now, but I still find it to be an excellent way to unwind and get away from everything. Just this past weekend, I donated my entire 4,000 ball collection to the YMCA yard sale nearby. Yesterday, I took my little digital camera with me on a hunt and managed this footage.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Singing Rocks


There are places I go sometimes just to think and be quiet. One place, perhaps the easiest to get to, is a set of rocks overlooking Bradshaw Valley just off the Appalachian Trail near Roanoke. I secretly call them “Singing Rocks.” It’s a simple little stroll to get to these rocks. All I do is park in the AT parking lot atop Catawba Mountain and head south on the AT for less than a mile. The rocks are on the left just before you descend to the valley.

Not many people visit these rocks. They’re lonely, standing against the mountaintop wind in all seasons and watching the quiet valley below. Off in the distance, you can just make out the smog-faded outline of Roanoke City.

On those rocks, I can just sit and watch with an empty mind and heart. Almost without fail, the wind whistles over the ridge behind me as I sit atop a rock. It changes in pitch and varies in speed so that I feel I’m listening to a symphony of the valley below. Thus primed, I’m usually inspired to play for the rocks and the valley below in return.

Embedded within this entry, you will find a video clip. Using modest means and shaky videography, I’ve tried to capture the spirit of those private moments. I know that my music is at best amateur, but it is at least sincere.

Please accept this series of pictures and video in the spirit in which they are offered.


The trail is quite steep in places

A Little overlook on the way to the singing rocks

Views along Bradshaw Valley

Singing Rocks

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


I must be getting lazy. Lately, I've been exploring the video world out there in the vacuum of empty space, and I keep finding stuff. I've actually seen this one before, but it makes me laugh every time.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Garden Talk With Grandfather

Every year my father, known around the neighborhood as Grandpa Joe, boldly claims that he will have a ripe tomato by July 4th. This year, I visited his garden to see if he could justify his claim. What follows is his attempt to sell the world on his first "ripe" tomato.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Independence Day

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

America is growing more angry every day. Our country is mired in a relentless and tragic war that seemingly will have no end. Our leaders seem hellbent on accumulating and abusing considerable powers. MSNBC host, Keith Olberman (Click his name to read and see him), bottles our anger and demands the President and Vice President resign their offices immediately.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Let the Conversation Begin

Web 2.0

VWCC July 2007

"I'd like to talk to you about diarrhea."
So began a popular news time commercial from my youth. I've always been a mighty fine little consumer. I can spout back in amazing detail commercials from thirty and forty years ago. It's one of my special talents.

Coming up next week, I'm placing myself out there in an alien world. I'll be stepping in front of a class of adults at a local community college to teach material in which I am by no means completely competent.

Web 2.0

Do you know what it is? I didn't think so. Welcome to my world. Some time between now and this coming Monday, I'd better figure it all out.

So I thought I'd use this space tonight to bounce around a few thoughts and begin coalescing my teaching strategy.

In general my happy class of seven will most likely not know as much as I know. This should put me at an advantage. However, I've never worked in the college's computer lab. This places me at a disadvantage. Since the whole idea of Web 2.0 is radically evolving into Web 3.0 and beyond, I figure that the class can operate as an open laboratory in which my students can try new things and work on developing applications for the classroom or for their personal lives.

I believe that I'll start with a very popular YouTube video...

I might end my three day class with this funny little spoof on Web 2.0...

Of course, then I keep finding really cool nerdy, geeky videos. This one is from the Google guy, Eric Schmidt. He's having a conversation with us.

More and more video shorts keep popping up. Thanks to Diane below, I've been pointed to the following video clips.

Speaking of conversations. I've come hear the words of of techno-prophets, David Warlick and Will Richardson. Will is the one who likes to refer to the web today as a conversation.

Will Richardson

Will is always discussing trends and attempting to push the future with his growing audience. He's especially adept at blogging and molding podcasts and wiki's.

David Warlick
David is a curious experimenter who isn't afraid of new horizons.

I plan to delve in to many of my favorite places and just have my students explore. Here's a list with a brief description of each. By no means is this list comprehensive or static.

VWCC July 2007



The most fascinating radio site on the web. Set up channels based on a music artist. Pandora will find music that matches that style. Then you can either give it a thumbs up or down. Eventually, Pandora learns what music you like.


My personal favorite radio site. You plug in an artist and seeqpod finds music by that artist on the web. You can piece together playlists much in the same manner as iTunes. The cool thing is that seeqpod finds obscure recordings of your artist as well as popular tracks.

One of the oldest radio sites on the web.

Social Networking


What is there to say. On MySpace, you set up a page and personalize it with your content and populate it with your friends.


This is the big boy MySpace. You need a school web address to secure an account. It operates much in the same manner as MySpace

Second Life

Some say this site is the future. It’s a virtual world that you can have your avatar join. You can wander around looking for adventure. Some say that education “islands” will radically change the nature of education in the near future.



The hands down dominant force on the Internet regarding video. “End Users” provide an almost endless array of video content to be digested. Some is junk; some is masterful.


YouTube with a twist. End Users earn cash based on traffic on their provided videos.

Stumble Video

Randomness comes alive. Similar to Pandora. You choose a topic. It begins parading videos onto your screen. You vote them up or down. It learns what you like.

Bombay TV

Absolute goofiness. You add dialogue to short snippets from very bad Inia (Bombay) films. The results are sharable and riotess.



The photo standard site. Upload, store, and share photos. View photos from other people. Comment on them.

Flickr Storm

A refined search engine designed to bring forth more relevant photos on Flickr.


Photo site much like Flickr; however, it is heavily tagged.


A well-designed photo store and share site. Easy to use and navigate.

The GooglePlex


The Beast

Google Earth

All the rage two years ago. Incredible satellite images and melded with detailed maps. The resulting interactive media captures kids’ imaginations.

Google Maps

Solid application similar to Mapquest.


The new Google world where the end user stores specific content on one home page.

Google News

Instantly scans world and national news and brings you the stories you desire quickly.

Google Documents

An application in the Google suite that allows you to create and share Word and Excel documents and share them with people of your choice. The people you invite can edit and modify the documents allowing you to conference and collaborate.


Google’s liberating email service. As with many things it’s by invitation only since it’s in double secret beta testing.

Find It and Mark it


A “metacrawler” search site that is child friendly. While this site could be classified as Web 1.0, it is extremely well organized and easy to use.


Another Web 1.0 application, but it offers a way to easily manage and harness the Internet for kids.


The world of Tags comes alive. Find almost any kind of media by using a standard search or by utilizing Tags.

Portaportal on steroids. Find and share interesting Internet sites. Organize your bookmarks and Tag them.


Users submit content and share it with others. Others view it. Digg ranks the views. People talk about the content. Very hip and Web 2.0.

KeyWord Map
Allows the user to expand keywords for more effective searching.

Allows a teacher to develop lesson tracks for interactive teaching.

Communicate and Share


One of the major blog services out there. Easy to use and full of functionality.


Blogs for educators.


More Blogs for educators.


Even more blogs for educators.


Learn about just about anything. Develop content. Share content. Beware of content.


One of the more cool sites on the Internet.


The world’s greatest “How To” manual. Loads of fun. Hours of laughs. Incredible tips.


Wiki site recently acquired by Google. New registrations are closed, but the service allows for a greater content flexibility.


Express yourself. Share your feelings and beliefs. Read others feelings and beliefs. Connect with people.


Easily take photographs and narrate them or comment on them. Search for other’s photo stories.

Center for Digital Storytelling

Want to know what it’s all about? This site explains digital storytelling in great detail.

David Warlick has developed a site that provides interactive links to technology conferences.



Clever, simple, easy podcast creation host. Free or fee. You can even create a podcast using your telephone.


The industry leader (but limited) podcast site. Create. Find. Share.

Podsafe Audio

Free music for your podcasts. Works are under creative commons license.


Automatically have your blog content turned into an automated podcast


Google Reader

Google's news aggregator. It allows you to subscribe to blogs, podcasts, etc and then allows you to view all new content in one location.


It allows you to subscribe to blogs, podcasts, etc and then allows you to view all new content in one location.


It allows you to subscribe to blogs, podcasts, etc and then allows you to view all new content in one location.

Cool and Fun

You can find about anything you want. It’s all free and copyright-free. Their music selections are awesome. The site is so huge it sometimes bogs down.

Creative Commons

The site where you can apply for a special license for your created works. Their licenses clearly spell out for users how they are allowed to use your stuff.

World RPS

Just a little hilarity.


A fine example of today’s interactive Web 2.0 webpage.

Spaced Penguin

More hilarity with a purpose.

Son of Citation Machine

Indispensable for academics writing papers. From David Warlick

Visual Thesaurus

A great tool for children to allow them to see related words. Such visualization fosters more powerful written constructions.


My personal favorite weather site that no one knows about. This real-time site collects rainfall data from all over the region and displays it.


Photo mosaic comes alive. You’ll need to download the free program.

Library Thing

A grand Web book discussion. Share your favorites. Learn about more books than you ever dreamed.


Another grand book discussion

Book Mooch

Swap your used books. Talk about books.


The most incredible movie database in the world. Becoming more interactive all the time.

A student note-taking service. Allows easy integration of notes into a Facebook account.

Try not to go insane as you play real time flight controller for real flights. Track them all.


Mashable: Social Networking News

This site sponsors the Social Networking Awards. It has an excellent reference list of popular Web 2.0 sites.

What You need to Know

A little diversion that taps into the undercurrent of American society. What is Technology's impact on society? How has technology affected what people know?

Virginia's Community of Learning
Technology resource site for teachers.

The Read/Write Web
Excellent resource on everything Web 2.0