Twitter is becoming a more influential part of everyday 21st Century life. However, we all need to understand that not all tweets are sent by people.
Recently Pew Internet researchers designed a Twitter study aiming to figure out what portion of tweet traffic comes from bots. Bots are automated programs that tweet or retweet information around the web, but they do so without the help of people.
Bots are not necessarily bad or nefarious. Tweets that announce weather, traffic, remind you of a concert starting time, or warn communities of nearby problems serve a constructive purpose, but they are often sent by bots. Continue reading “Twitter’s Got Bots: Lots of Them”→
How about taking a quiz to see how much you really know (or don’t know) about how cybersecurity affects your digital life?
Statisticians over at the Pew Research Centerare well known for seeking answers to Internet questions using telephone surveys. Sometimes a part of one research project or another includes an interactive piece that people not involved in the survey can use.
In 2016 Pew researchers conducted such a survey project seeking to learn how much people know about cybersecurity. They sought answers by surveying online a nationally representative group of 1,055 randomly selected adult Internet users and using this cybersecurity quiz.
Going to sleep has sometimes been challenging because have a difficult time relaxing and settling down. My iPhone was complicating bedtime and probably my sleep. So about a month ago, a few weeks before New Year 2017, I separated my iPhone from my bedside, charging it about 20 feet away in a smaller room. I keep a book where my iPhone used to charge and read at least a few pages before bed.
The results after just four weeks have been remarkable. I go to sleep more easily and stay asleep because I am not awakened by dings or the phone suddenly lighting up. I don’t even get up as often in the middle of the night, and at least a few times I’ve slept straight through for five or more hours. According to my Fitbit, my restless periods have decreased by half on most nights, though that took a couple of weeks to occur. Also, I’ve finally stopped glancing in the direction of the iPhone, because it’s not there! Continue reading “Sleeping Without a Mobile Device Nearby — My Discoveries”→
In our connected world unfamiliar activities make adults worry about kids, and violent and exploitative events, some connected to the digital world, make us fear for our children’s safety. This past week two events, a 13-year-old’s ruthless murder that was associated with online app interactions and a Wall Street Journal article, Cyberthieves Have a New Target: Children, made many of us wonder, once again, whether the digital world is degrading the quality of our lives.
For many people, even those of us who are digital immigrants, it feels like YouTube video sharing has always been around, but actually, YouTube is just celebrating its 10th birthday. The site, which makes it so easy to upload, view, and yes, use video resources, has changed 21st Century online culture.
The questions cover digital-age habits such as reading newspapers, using mobile phones, and watching television, as well as a fair number of lifestyle issues. It’s interesting to do, and the score places each quiz-taker on a continuum with a range of generations from people in their 70s and above (called the silent generation) to boomers and down through millennials.
Once you answer the questions and get a score, it’s possible to change answers and see how the score changes. A quiz-taker can also look at graphs that depict how various generations of test takers fared in a more scientific survey.
This short exercise can help the parents of 21st Century kids develop a keener sense of how the behavior of various generations changes as digital life intensifies. Teachers may want to give the quiz a try because it can help them gain more insight into the lives of their 21st Century learners.
I scored 70, so I have a lot of digital-age millennial characteristics. On the other hand, despite the fact that my husband is digitally literate, he scored 30 (losing a lot of points for reading at least one newspaper each day and texting rarely). It was especially interesting to look at the graphs and see how we compare to other people in our age ranges.
Pew researchers asked educators about the effect of digital tools on their students’ writing skills. They also wanted to gather more information about the digital tools that teachers use in their classrooms and find out whether these tools help students become better writers. Survey participants were also asked to share their views about the skills their 21st Century students’ will need to be successful in their future lives.
A Few of the Pew Findings
Many teachers believe that the increasing digital world audience for writers encourages students of all ages to taking writing more seriously.
Seventy-nine percent of the educators surveyed agree or strongly agree that digital tools encourage students to collaborate with one another.