Officially a Geek Now

Computer Engineer BarbieSo I was bumbling along last week, doing a pretty good job of keeping up with everything. I was even working on blogs ahead of time and had a series of entries on using Twitter in the classroom underway. And then something happened.

Last Thursday, I was invited to join the staff on the Geekshed IRC Network. If you’ve been around since the MBU days of Computers and Writing, you probably remember IRC as the place where the Netoric Project (which you may remember as the Tuesday Cafe) started off, before moving on to using MOOs.

If you weren’t around back then—or if your memory is sketchy, you’ll need a little more detail. IRC stands for Internet Relay Chat. You can think of an IRC network as a collection of chatrooms, where people can use fairly simple commands to communicate. For the most part, the benefits of IRC conversations are quite similar to the benefits of chatting at the Tuesday Cafe.

I’ve been known the folks who run the Geekshed network since May of 2005. That’s when John Walter showed me BlogShares, a fantasy stock market for weblogs. Blogshares had a chatroom, which was hosted on IRC. Accustomed to hanging out on MOOs, I naturally logged right in, and I’ve been on the network ever since.

So I hope you’ll understand that thing got a little derailed during this last week. To go from plain old network regular to network staff is a bit of a change. I suddenly found myself reading documentation, searching for a Mac client that doesn’t suck, and trying not to break anything.

I still don’t have all the answers, but it’s time to get back to the blog writing I’m supposed to be doing every day. And who knows, maybe before too long I’ll finally be able to connect teachers back to IRC. I’ve been thinking for quite some time that we need to set up a regular online chat meeting. I miss Tuesday Cafe, TechRhet Barn, and chatting with the Talkies in the MOO on Friday nights. If you’re an educator and you’d be interested too, let me know by email or in the comments below!

[Barbie Photo © Mattel]