subTechst, the column

subTechst, a free column for education, community, business organzations.

The subTechst column is a new service as of Fall, 2007.

subTechst provides a regular column for web-based and print publications and newsletters. Columns are:

  • produced 3-4 times/year
  • generally 600-1000 words
  • a blend of forward thinking with the practicalities of living and learning in the digital age
  • free

Links to the columns appear below.

Looking for something more humorous? You are also free to use Techwit columns.

subTechst, the web journal. FYI: Jason also maintains a subTechst web journal, which is different than the column service. It provides short monthly information bursts - vitamins for the mind - about issues related to living and learning with technology. Subscribe at subTechst site.

Links to subTechst columns...

Google knows who you are; if you care, use Dashboard

October, 2009

Google knows more about you than even you would want to know about you. And yet we don't seem to mind. That's because credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, et. al.) are easy acts to follow. Unlike these companies that we love to hate, Google gives us stuff to pacify and distract us: e-mail accounts, access to tons of information, free blogging resources. As we type, Google takes notes about us.

Read the entire column.


Send in the clones: Firefox and the Overwhelmerati

October, 2009

There is a secret society called the Overwhelmerati, whose goal is to overwhelm us with cool, free software. You might think they do this in order to distract us, so they can do things like melt the polar ice caps and sell mortgage default swap guarantees when we aren't looking. But no. Their mission is to promote cloning.

Read the entire column.


From reading books to 'veading vooks'

October, 2009

I feel vindicated. Years ago I predicted that books would contain video content and at some point students would watch Hamlet on an e-book and actually believe they had read it - because they were staring at a book. I don't think we are far from that point now. Enter the Vook. You can go to and vead (view + read = vead) all about it.

Read the entire column.


Iran becomes iRan: Censorship meets connectivity

July, 2009

Revolutions are so much about connectivity. We can see an army advancing from miles away and prepare to meet them at the gate. But electronic messages quietly ooze through leaky political borders no matter how hard the status quo tries to stop them.

Read the entire column.


The Greening of the Digital Landscape

Winter, 2008

Suddenly everyone's favorite color is green. Not the color of money and envy but of their antithesis – environmental embarrassment. We are slowly awakening from our high technology revolution the way we do from an engaging movie, shedding our suspended disbelief to rediscover the world around us. What we see is that our relentless push for change has come with a price tag, namely the generation of a mortifying amount of computer generated landfill.

Download the column in Word.


The Semantic Web Cometh

Fall, 2008

From Info Tease to Info Overload When the web first appeared at my university I used a very early browser to search for the word “education” and received only a few pages of hits. It seemed like such a tease. As with many of my colleagues at the time, the question on my mind was, “When will the World Wide Web actually get here? Enter Web 3.0, also known as the Semantic Web.”

Download the column in Word.


What's Next in Ed Tech? Becoming Your Own Favorite Philosopher

Spring, 2007

Do you have a personal philosophy about using technology in your classroom? Most teachers do but may not always realize it. It shows up in the ways they use technology with their students, and in the questions they ask about when, why and how to use technology personally and professionally.

If you’re like most teachers, your philosophy addresses issues beyond technical proficiency, like respect, safety and developing a balanced perspective about technology’s advantages and disadvantages. After all, you want your students to see “the big picture” of technology so that they can be informed citizens as well as educated students. You want them to use technology not only effectively and creatively, but responsibly and wisely as well. Download the column in Word.


From Text to Art in Everyday Communication

Winter, 2007

Literacy requires being able to consume and produce the media forms of the day, whatever they may be. For centuries this has involved primarily words, particularly words recorded and read on paper. But during the past ten years, the default media form has been slowly shifting from the text-centric report to the new media collage. From PowerPoint presentations to digital stories to the ubiquitous web pages that follow us around all day, the multimedia collage is the media form that now bridges the worlds of work, school and personal pursuits. Download the column in Word.


New Media Assessment is Upon Us

Fall, 2007

Question: Beyond issues of cost and convenience, what is the most significant reason teachers are hesitant about requiring students to produce new media projects like digital stories for school projects? Answer: They don’t know how to meaningfully assess them. After all, most teachers were raised to produce and assess traditional media, like essays and reports, not new media projects. Yet new media literacy and assessment have become issues of urgency, as well as opportunity.

Download the column in Word in two length versions:

- shorter version (500 words)
- longer version (1000 words)


The Future of Learning Systems? Redefining "system"

Spring, 2007

The future of learning systems lies today in repurposing the concept of “system.” Learning systems, once closed and self-contained packages, can no longer exist independent of the maelstrom of innovation that permeates all aspects of life. Students are already coming to school wondering how their cell phones, iPods, laptops and other PDAs “dock” with the technology already exists in their classrooms. Download the column in Word.