Tuesday, October 16, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Cleaning out your digital clutter Gmail part 2.

Continuing our series on clearing out all the digital clutter in our lives I thought it would be important to spend a second post sharing how to setup your Gmail inbox to help do some of the work for you.

If you have not yet setup your inbox to categorize email for you then I highly recommend you do so today.

It's made filtering through my email so much easier for me, and then when it is time for the big purge, again...super easy to get rid of loads of emails in one fell swoop. 

So to setup your inbox to auto categorize for you start by:

1. Click on the sprocket or gear on the right hand side of your inbox within Gmail (settings)
2. Click on 'Configure Inbox'
3. Check mark the categories you want to use ( I recommend all of them.)
4. Click Save

Now your emails will be sorted out into these different categories. I have found that very, and I mean very, rarely does some important email find itself in one of the categories it doesn't belong in. Then when you find it there, you can drag it into the category you want it to appear in and then future emails from that address will show up in the category you placed it in.

Why is this so helpful to clearing out the digital clutter, you may be asking yourself...Well, when it comes time to purge email, for me, I find it super easy to click into the promotion category and select them all and send them to the trash folder, same with the forums category (which for the most part are notifications about files shared with me in Google Drive).

I hope this tip helps you get out in front of an overwhelming inbox.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Sunday Post - Season 2 Episode 5

#TechTipTuesday - Allowing people to bypass Do not Disturb iOS 12

For those of you who have upgraded your iPhones to the latest you may have noticed one of my favorite new features which is the ability to turn off the do no disturb function on your phone from the lock screen.

Apple's iOS 12.1 to bring over 70 new emoji, iPhone XS charging fix

Every product here is independently selected by Mashable journalists. If you buy something featured, we may earn an affiliate commission which helps support our work. The next iteration of Apple's mobile operating system, iOS 12.1, is shaping up to be quite an interesting update.

[UPDATED] Avoid Windows 10 October Update Until You Do One Thing

Note: Several updates are listed at the bottom of this article, and there is a new development on this story here. Microsoft's big Windows 10 Update version 1809 is here and it brings a wealth of welcome features like less interruptions and update nags during gaming (something Alienware nailed years ago by the way).

Wear OS 2.1 is now rolling out to Google-powered smartwatches

We reported back in August that Wear OS was getting a hefty update from Google, and the new code is apparently now rolling out to compatible smartwatches. You might want to check the update screen on your wearable and see if the software is ready to go.

Halloween Chocolate Sauce

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Cleaning out Digital Clutter Gmail edition

Look, digital hoarding is just too easy these days, however, eventually we all run out of space in the digital void so with out further ado let's dive head first into the mess that can be (and is my) Gmail Inbox.

While most emails do not take up that many GB of space, you can easily amass many emails with plenty of them having attachments, photos, pdf's etc. With all those attachments your email storage limits begin to run out. So the easiest first step to clearing out those old emails that are taking up space is to open Gmail on your web browser,

Once your inbox loads enter the following in the search box at the top of the screen (without the parenthesis) 

"has:attachment larger:10M"

Then hit enter. 

This will then show you all of the emails that have attachments larger than 10 megabytes. You can of course change the number 10 to be whatever you want it to be, however when you are looking to clear house, 10 is a good place to start.

Once you have done that you can do one of two things. 

Rip that bandaid off! OR You can slowly peel it away.

If you are just ready to clean house, then click the box at the top which will then select all of the emails at once then press DELETE (or the little trash bin)

This will relocate all of the selected emails on that page to your trash bin. Which means you are still housing them and they are still taking up space. 

Repeat this process until you have gone through all of the emails you are wanting to delete.

IF you would rather slowly peel that bandaid off, then you can scour over the emails that have attachments and make sure you have saved the images or attachments before you delete them.

Now once you have dropped those emails into the trash...it's time to empty that bin.

Click on the trash folder and click Empty Trash Bin

Now while this is a great first step, if you are like me, you still have loads of emails to sort through, so take a deep breath and stay tuned to next week's Tech Tip to continue to learn how to get this digital clutter under control...we can do this...

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Sunday Post

Setting up Scheduled Do not Disturb function iOS 12

Quickly learn how to setup a schedule for the do not disturb function on your iPhone or iPad within iOS 12 Not sure why there is no sound. Looking into issue presently.

23 Google Search Tips You'll Want to Learn

Most of us use Google every day, but many have likely only scratched the surface of the search engine's power. Here's how to become a Google search super sleuth. PCMag reviews products independently, but we may earn affiliate commissions from buying links on this page. Terms of use.

Crafty kids are finding ingenious ways to thwart Apple's 'Screen Time' feature

Apple first introduced Screen Time this summer as one of the key feature additions on iOS 12. By adding limits to specific apps, or your phone as a whole, Apple attempted to add a digital dose of self-control for those who need it most. People raved about the feature upon first hearing the news.

Flat Miner joke

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Clearing up Digital Clutter Google Drive Edition

Ok I will be the first to admit it, I am a digital hoarder. I hold onto digital files for far too long. As a matter of fact, in this digital world it seems so easy to leave old files sitting their idly in the cloud. While I am happy that Google gives us so much free space in the cloud when using their products, files can begin to clog up the space up there and when that time comes, it is in fact time to PURGE!

Today, let's take a quick look at some of the places you may have old and probably obsolete files sitting in your google cloud that you can finally get rid of to free up some space.

For those of you with educational Google accounts, you do not have to worry about this...for now, as google gives you unlimited space. HOWEVER, after you leave your school as a student and want to take those files with you to your personal account, you will need to move into the itty bitty living space of 15 free GB of storage on Google Drive.

For this post, let's examine Google Drive Decluttering 

Where can the digital clutter come from that you did not realize:

1. Items in your trash bin

That's right, even in the cloud you have to empty that trash bin every once in awhile. There is no digital maid to do that dirty work for you.

2. Attachments from Gmail take up space in the drive.

Gmail and Google, the same digital space, so when you have tons and tons of emails (like myself) that include attachments, those MB have to be stored somewhere while residing in your inbox. Same thing with Google chat services.

Time to declutter:

Within Google Drive go over to the Trash bin on the left. Once you've entered the trash bin tap the arrow next to the word Trash at the top of the page. Then press empty Trash Bin.

ProTip: Scroll through the contents of your bin before you go deleting everything.

Ok, now that you've got your Google Drive cleaned up, lets take a deep breath...and wait until the next blog post to learn how to declutter the other areas of your Google Cloud Storage. 

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Sunday Post

Back by popular demand it's the Sunday Post.
Each week I will share the podcast which comes out on Monday and all the associated links mentioned in that episode.

Tech on the Side: Season 2 ep. 3

#TechTipTuesday - Before you update your iPhone to iOS 12

It's that perfect time of the year to get ready for the latest and greatest from apple, because they just released a new update to their iPhone: iOS 12. But before you update to the new OS make sure you've backed up to iCloud or to your computer.

iOS 12 release date, news and features: Everything you need to know

iOS 12 is rolling out to compatible iPhones and iPads from today, 17 September 2018. This next major update to the iPhone and iPad mobile operating system was initially rumoured to be all about improvements to quality and performance, but Apple had a few surprises in store, too.

How playing an instrument benefits your brain - Anita Collins

Check out our Patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/teded View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-playing-an-instrument-benefits-your-brain-anita-collins When you listen to music, multiple areas of your brain become engaged and active. But when you actually play an instrument, that activity becomes more like a full-body brain workout. What's going on?

The benefits of a bilingual brain - Mia Nacamulli

Check out our Patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/teded View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-speaking-multiple-languages-benefits-the-brain-mia-nacamulli It's obvious that knowing more than one language can make certain things easier - like traveling or watching movies without subtitles. But are there other advantages to having a bilingual (or multilingual) brain?

Time for a refresh: Meet the new Google Classroom

Education Published Aug 7, 2018 In 2014, a team of Googlers, including several former teachers, began spending time with educators. We learned that teachers loved using G Suite's collaborative tools with their students, but found that some of the features were complicated to use.
Tractor Joke

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Allowing people to bypass Do not Disturb iOS 12

For those of you who have upgraded your iPhones to the latest you may have noticed one of my favorite new features which is the ability to turn off the do no disturb function on your phone from the lock screen.

I like being able to do that, mostly in the morning so I can have it go a little longer even though I may be awake, there are times where I just do not want to be disturbed.  However there are a few people in my life of whom I want to be able to get ahold of(or if you always want to make sure your child get's your phone calls or texts like in my instance) here is how you setup a Bypass on your Do Not Disturb setting.

Luckily this is a per contact option and you can decide if you want to be able to break through with a phone call or a text or in this instance, BOTH!

Here is how to setup the bypass for individual contacts within iOS 12 in order to get their notifications or phone calls while in "Do not Disturb" mode

Navigate your phone to your contacts, search for the contact you would like to grant access to, tap on the contact and then:

  1. Tap on edit
  2. Tap ring tone 
  3. Toggle the Emergency Bypass switch to on (so it shows green)
  4. Tap done
If you would like this function on for texting:

  1. Tap on edit
  2. Tap text tone 
  3. Toggle the Emergency Bypass switch to on (so it shows green)
  4. Tap done

For those of you who have no idea what the do not Disturb function is check out this short video on what it is and how to turn it on and adjust the do not disturb hours.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Before you update your iPhone to iOS 12

It's that perfect time of the year to get ready for the latest
and greatest from apple, because they just released a new update to their iPhone: iOS 12.

But before you update to the new OS make sure you've backed up to iCloud or to your computer.

Quick tutorial-on backing up to to iCloud

Step 1. Go to settings
Step 2. Tap on your name (located at the top of settings)
Step 3.Tap iCloud
Step 4. Scroll down to iCloud Backup
Step 5. Tap on on iCloud Backup
Step 6. Tap Backup now

Now that you have that out of the way you are ready to go and and download iOS 12

Step 1. Go to settings
Step 2. Scroll down to General and tap General
Step 3. Tap on Software update
Step 4. Scroll down to Download and install and tap Download and install

Your iOS device will need to have at  least 50% charge our be plugged in in order to get the update.
in about 5- 10 minutes your iOS 12 download should be downloaded and ready to install.

Some of my favorite new features from the latest update:

  • Notification management - Notifications from single sources will cluster together on your lock screen instead of filling up your entire screen with notifications. With a single tap you can see all of them and then cluster them back together by tapping "show less"
  • Turn off your "Do not disturb" setting right from the lock screen
  • Messages feels a bit more snappier as do the built in Apple keyboards
  • Voice memos app for iPad and eventually Mac

For those of you with iPhone X you will have more access to:

  • Memoji - Create a digital likeness and use it as everywhere
  • Animoji updated with tongue detection...that's right

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Amazon Prime benefits

Let me start by sharing that this is not a sponsored post, just something that I thought twould be a worth while tip to share for all of you who have Amazon Prime already.

Ok, now that we have that out of the way...

For those of you who have Amazon Prime accounts did you know that this also grants you access to Prime video and Prime music!

If you want to check out all the music you can stream just point your web browser to 

Keep in mind that they have a second tier offerings that you will be prompted to consider purchasing Amazon Music Unlimited which is not necessary to listen to the music you already have access. 

You can also download the app Amazon Music for iOS or Android and login with your amazon account.

To check out what videos you can watch follow the link below and login with your amazon account or download the Prime Video App

Happy Streaming

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Your Camera can do more than just take pictures

Did you know...

That the camera app built right into your iPhone can also be used to scan QR codes?

Give it a try today.

Find a QR code, open up your camera app and point the lens at it. After a second on the QR code a message will pop up on the top of the screen "QR CODE DETECTED" to follow the QR code to wherever it may be taking you simply tap on the message and be directed right to the page in your web browser.

I have a podcast you can check out too if you'd like.
Give it a listen here: https://anchor.fm/techontheside/episodes/Tech-On-the-Side-Tech-Tip-e257v6

If you like it, consider subscribing and/or telling a friend about it.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Hard Reboot, you should try it

It's an oldy but a goody,

For many of us in the education world we are starting a new year and with that in mind it's time to remember to take care of that piece of tech you use more often than your front door.

Your phone.

Once upon a time we called it a smart phone, nowadays we just call them our phones. Honestly though it's a teeny tiny powerful computer in your pocket or more likely in your palm, and just like a regular sized computer it needs to be shut down. Like all the way. Hold the power button, swipe to power it off and let it rest a minute.
Then when you can't take it anymore turn it back on.

Repeat this process at least once a week to let it rest, refresh and be it's best self.

Happy New (school) Year

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - iPhone Camera

This week, is the week to check your iPhone camera setting to make sure your photos can be used outside of the Apple ecosystem. Watch the video below to learn how, listen to the podcast to learn more, or follwo the steps below to just make the change today.

Steps to changing your setting:

Open Settings on your iPhone
Scroll down to Camera and tap on it
Locate the word formats
Tap on it
Tap on the option labeled "Most compatible"

Go back to your main settings page and continue using your phone per usual

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Sunday Post Tech on the Side - Ep. 15 To code or not to code, that is the question

The Tech Toys That Secretly Teach My Kids Coding Skills

My 4-year-old son has plenty of toys, and now that we have a daughter, too, it's probably only a matter of time before the house is teeming with kids' stuff. Most of the toys we have - building sets, board games, and art supplies - will be familiar to anyone, but over the last few years, we've also become quite acquainted with STEM (that's science, technology, engineering, and math) toys.

Teach kids creativity. Ultimately, machines will be better at coding

If you want to bring up a kid to be a successful investor or entrepreneur, the current education system says they should be studying STEM subjects, cramming facts and figures, and immersing themselves in coding class.

Instagram rolls out Focus portrait mode for videos and photos

Instagram is one-upping Apple with a portrait mode feature that runs on a wider variety of phones and works with video, not just photos. Last month, TechCrunch reported about a Focus feature buried in Instagram's code, which began publicly testing a week later.

Adobe Launches Spark With Premium Features for Every Student, Free of Charge

SAN JOSE, Calif.--( BUSINESS WIRE)--Adobe (Nasdaq:ADBE) announced today that Spark for Education with premium features and additional functionality is now available to K-12 and higher education students free of charge. This follows an announcement during Bett 2018 and successful trials with K-12 institutes in various school districts across North America.

Introducing Anchor Cohosts: the easiest way to find someone to record your podcast with

Everybody is passionate about something. Whether it's foreign films, sushi, politics, or baseball, there's probably something you can talk about forever. At Anchor, we've always wanted to make it really easy for people to talk about the things they love and be heard by people all over the world.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Sunday Post - Ep. 13 Tech on the Side, now with YouTube

Tech on the Side

Talking all about learning and learners with a side of tech.

Here is how to delete Facebook

Some of us have been on Facebook for more than a decade, but all good things come to an end. Over the past 18 months, Facebook has been in a downward spiral. The social network is in the eye of a c...

Can this robotic fish fool real fish into revealing their secrets?

Pale and plump with a tail that swishes side-to-side, the one-eyed robotic fish was built by scientists at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). It is designed to swim naturally alongside other fish in open water and spy on them without raising suspicions or disturbing their natural habitat.

Peer Feedback with Forms

Class presentations are a lot of fun, and it's essential to give students the experience of speaking in front of others. Very early on in my teaching career, I realized it was difficult to keep presentations flowing, because in the transition time between presenters, students saw this as an opportunity to chat--and they had a...

Apple announces creative education event on March 27

Apple is sending out invitations to an education event on March 27. Using the tagline 'Let's take a field trip,' Apple says that the event will focus on 'creative new ideas for teachers and students' ... We've seen two invitations so far, in the USA and UK, both inviting people to an event taking place at a high school in Chicago.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Sunday Post - Episode 12 Tab-aholic

Tony Vincent on Twitter

🔖 Add more of the webpages you frequently access to Chrome's bookmarks bar by deleting the bookmarks' names (leaving just the icons). #GoogleEdu

Fortnite Battle Royale is coming to iPhone and iPad

Epic Games is bringing its insanely popular Fornight Battle Royale to iPhone and iPad. It will be exactly the same 100-player game you've been enjoying on consoles, with the same map and the same weapons - and it will support cross-platform play between PlayStation 4 and PC.

Slice of Life 2018

Please click on the blogger's orange slice to be taken to their most recent slice of life!

Mario can now guide your route in Google Maps

It's Mario Time! Beloved gaming character Mario is coming to Google Maps, thanks to a partnership between Google and Nintendo ahead of Mario Day, March 10. (MAR10...get it, Mario?) In addition to the various deals and sales on Nintendo games, the mustachioed plumber will also make an appearance in Google Maps' navigation, if you opt in to have Mario accompany you on your journey.

Amazon now lets you talk to Alexa without saying 'Hey Alexa' EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

Amazon is today giving Alexa perhaps its most useful update since its inception: You can now speak to the assistant without saying "Hey Alexa" for every single command. The feature, called Follow-Up Mode, simply allows Alexa to listen for another command for five seconds after your last request.

TheTechSpec Blog

from the Flipboard magazine, Tech on the Side, an editorial exploration of curated content. It's Sunday, and as I continue this fun journey of (attempting) to blog each and everyday I thought I would try doing this week's Sunday Post a little bit different than I have done in the past.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Sunday Post Ep. 11 Anchor 3.0 and BEYOND

Anchor's new app offers everything you need to podcast

Broadcasting app Anchor, which helps anyone record and share audio, is relaunching its app today with a new focus on serving the larger podcaster community.

Introducing the all-new Anchor: Podcasting for everyone.

With nearly 70 million Americans now listening monthly, podcasts have officially crossed over into the mainstream. Yet like radio, podcasts are incredibly difficult to make, distribute, promote, and monetize. Despite the increasing demand, expensive tools, confusing software, and fragmented, friction-filled workflows have held creators back.

Google Drive: Press V - Teacher Tech

V: Switch Between Grid View and List View In Google Drive press the V key. This will toggle you between grid view and list view easily. List view shows the title of the documents in a concise list. (Tip: click Q Q quickly to adjust the comfort level of the spacing).

Thanks, Boston Dynamics! We are doomed.

I'm sorry to inform you, but it appears the end is nigh. Boston Dynamics, the robotics company now owned by SoftBank (and once deemed too creepy for Google to keep its hands on), released a new video today (Feb. 12) of its latest four-legged creation. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fUyU3lKzoio The video shows the latest iteration of its Spot...

Download Backup and Sync - Free Cloud Storage

Get 15GB of free cloud storage today and keep your life connected by downloading Backup and Sync from Google for your Mac or PC computer.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Sunday Post - Ep. 10 Alexa, say what.

Anchor - Tech on the Side

Listen to Anchor audio from Tech on the Side

The 20 best Amazon Alexa skills and tips

Many of us have welcomed our first smart assistant into the home, with Amazon's Echo smart home hub bringing the Alexa voice assistant into households across the country. Alexa is the Amazon voice assistant. Launched in 2014, it provides a way to ask questions, play music, get news bulletins or check the weather all through your voice without having to touch your device.

What's New in Google - January 2018

Catch up on everything new in G Suite for Education from January 2018, and see great ideas and resources! Below is the recorded video from our January 2018 Google User Meeting, along with the meeting agenda and all the awesome resources and G Suite updates from the last month.

Now You Can Comment on Microsoft Office Files Directly from Google Drive

Google Drive is getting a new feature that lets users comment directly on Microsoft Office files, PDFs and images uploaded on it. Users will now be able to comment on files right from Google Drive, rather than having to open them in Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides first.

Best Apps for Book enthusiasts

The way that we read is changing most people no longer rely on their local library or book club to stay up-to-date with the latest bestsellers. Instead, we are turning to the small devices most of us have glued to our hands for the latest titles and bookish discussions.


A Professional Learning 501(c)(3) company in St Louis - For Education, By Educators

2018 Edcamp Online Schedule

Schedule # EdCampStL 2018 Schedule room 213, room 215, room 217, room 233, room 235, room 237, room 238, room 239, room 240, Bus, room 244, room 250, room 252, room 315, room 317, room 332, room 334, room 335, room 336, room 338, room 339, room 340, room 341 8: 00-8: 30, Registration, Join the...

Tech on the Side (@TechontheSide) | Twitter

The latest Tweets from Tech on the Side (@TechontheSide). Stay tuned and stay connected

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Sunday Post - Tech on the Side ep. 9

Anchor - Tech on the Side

Listen to Anchor audio from Tech on the Side

This week, I thought I would include the latest episode of the podcast and below are the associated links to the articles mentioned in the Podcast. 

Steve Jobs's Advice on the Only 4 Times You Should Say 'No' Is Brilliant

In the frantic pace of life to do more and be more, we hardly think about the importance of focus. That's why, for those free-spirited, creative thinkers and entrepreneurs chasing after their dreams, this prophetic quote by Steve Jobs 21 years ago hits the nail on the head even more so today.



How to check your internet speed right from Google's homepage

There are a lot of great ways to test your internet speeds. Maybe you're trying to figure out your internet connection's download and upload speeds to ensure your network is working correctly, or perhaps you just want to show your friends how fast your internet is for some reason.

Publish sites to a specific audience in the new Google Sites

Some sites aren't for everyone. That's why we're making it possible to specify exactly who can view your content in the new Google Sites. To publish your site to a specific audience, select the "Share with others" icon and change the Published settings to "Specific people can view when published."

List of Movies and TV Shows on Netflix | Flixable

Are you wondering what's new - or what's best - on Netflix? Flixable is a Netflix search engine that offers a complete, searchable and browsable list of all the movies and TV shows that are currently streaming on Netflix in the U.S.
As always, 

Stay tuned and stay connected 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

#TechTipTuesday - Flixable

Anchor - Tech on the Side

Listen to Anchor audio from Tech on the Side

List of Movies and TV Shows on Netflix | Flixable

Are you wondering what's new - or what's best - on Netflix? Flixable is a Netflix search engine that offers a complete, searchable and browsable list of all the movies and TV shows that are currently streaming on Netflix in the U.S.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Tech on the Side - Ep. 8

Anchor - Tech on the Side

Listen to Anchor audio from Tech on the Side

GIF Stickers Just Arrived on Instagram Stories, and They're Absolutely Glorious

Here's a fun fact about me: if you ever catch me staring intently at my phone and tapping at it with reckless abandon, chances are I'm not looking at my email or checking social media; instead, I'm messing around with a photo or video.

Tech for 2018: 10 things worth trying this year

The joy of teaching in the 21st century is that there's so much available for teachers and students to use. Sadly, that's also the frightening, crippling thing about it. There's so much out there. And tomorrow, there will be more.

Are twitter chats 21st century PD?

When we get our teacher or administrative certification, it doesn't mean it's time to stop learning. In fact, for most educators it indicates that the learning has just begun. In a school - a teaching and learning organization - having educators who pursue learning is vital.

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