Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

Welcome to my technology blog.
Follow me on Twitter, @noelerskine
Noel's Home Page

💥 Tech tools - New gmail right-click, add-ons, Googel slide tools, YouTube tricks and more!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Can You Spot When You’re Being Phished? (Hey - A hacker just tried phishing a lot of school employees via our retirement plan, so be careful!) 

-Take Google's test to test out your phishing chops. To make this quiz, the team drew from materials they've used to train thousands of journalists, political figures, and activists. Can you tell what's fake?  

Another great resource to avoid Phishing:  social engineering red

Khan Academy Kids - a free award-winning app for ages 2-6! 
If you have brothers, sisters, friends, or neighbors who are ages two to six, be sure to share Khan Academy Kids with them. Khan Academy Kids makes learning engaging and fun. Thousands of activities, aligned to the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework and Common Core, delve deep into topics ranging from math to language arts and socio-emotional learning.
It’s now available on Google PlayAmazonFire, and the iTunes App Store  

10 YouTube URL Tricks You Should Know About
Some pretty neat tricks in this article... link to a specific spot, create a Gif, download, etc... 

How will technology affect jobs in the future? 
( opened a completely automated warehouse near Shanghai, that employes four people.)  See what their automated warehouse looks like today  -  (Amazing Video.) 

Teach Coding with CS First
Google's free, video-based computer science curriculum is designed for teachers with no prior CS knowledge and for students in grades 4-8 (ages 9-14). Explore the getting started videos and check out how teachers like you are using CS First in their classrooms.

Free ebooks, audiobooks, movies, K-12 resources and more...

A Soft Murmur - If you like background sounds!
A Soft Murmur allows you to simply play around with the sliders to create your very own background noise.

Google Docs add-ons:
The 10 Best Google Docs Add-Ons for More Professional Documents 

5 New Google-Made Apps That Are Cool, Useful, and Fun.
One of these (Password Checker) we have deployed to all staff and students already.) - Check them out! 

Google Slides - Pretty Cool! 

Misc. Resources:
The Library of Congress has lesson plans for elementary, middle, and high school students easily searchable and organized by collection. From African American History to World War II the choices are fantastic. Check out their Primary source sets too! 

Shadow Puppet EDU (IOS App)  has partnered with the Library of Congress to give students access to a collection of images. Students can create narrated slideshows using images to record their understanding of different topics in history.  With Shadow Puppet EDU videos creations can now be up to 30 minutes long and include 100 slides of pictures.  Users have the ability to add images from NASA, Flickr Creative Commons, and the Library of Congress’ archive without leaving the app. It's a great free storytelling app worth checking out for the iPads. 

Photo Resource - “Remove Background” -   Great resource for teachers and students to remove background images from photos. Thanks to Lisa Harrington who found out about this resource at a conference, and shared it with our high school staff.

Password Managers: A great tip from our amazing network admin - Thanks @bryancwilliams 

The last I checked, I personally have over 100 online accounts.  Each account has a unique password that I don't even have to remember.  Wait...  What???  You don't know the passwords to over 100 accounts.  That is correct.  Am I crazy?  Yes and No, depending on who you ask.  Regardless, I am able to pull this off using a password manager and I highly recommend you start using one.

A password manager is pretty self-explanatory.  It manages all of your passwords in one central location utilizing one master password to secure all of your credentials and information.  Putting all of your eggs in one basket can be a little unsettling for some people but the advantages of doing so far outweigh the disadvantages of not having one.  There are two password managers I would recommend. 1Password (which I use) and LastPass (which Noel uses).  These are the two of the most popular PM's that we can provide basic guidance on.  There are others out there but a person needs to do their research to make sure they are repeatable.  Here are just some of the benefits that might entice you to move into a password management product.
  • One Password.  One strong password or passphrase gets you access to all of your accounts.
  • Greater Security - If one of your passwords is ever breached, all other accounts remain secure due to each having a different password.
  • Faster Logins - Using autofill or keystroke combinations,  passwords are automatically filled in in less than a second.  No thinking about what username or password to use.
  • Shared Logins - Share logins with family members.  Give access to family members on a regular basis or in case of an emergency.
  • Encryption -  All passwords and information is encrypted and stored securely on 1Password and LastPass servers.
When implementing a PM, remember you now have one password that holds all the keys to the kingdom.  Make it strong!  Don't forget it!  Make a backup copy of any recovery process or keys provided!  Side Note: The current industry trend is to use a passphrase rather than a password.  Both 1Password and LastPass both support passphrases.  I would suggest your master password be a passphrase.