Welcome! I am building this web site as a place to collect and share things I’m working on, as well as my random obsessions. This “about” page originally served as my single-page first draft/iteration. The site you are viewing is my second iteration, which has some additional features to be found by clicking on the ‘+’ sign in the top right corner of the page.
I am a digital content manager for the library media program and educational technology department of a large public school district. I catalog, curate, document, promote, and support library and technology resources for students and staff.
I am passionate about connecting students and teachers with the best resources and making resources ever more accessible and discoverable, whether that means a physical copy of a not-as-well-known-as-it-should-be middle grade fantasy novel or the latest digital learning tool on a classroom Chromebook.
You can see some of my work at granitemedia.org, www.graniteschools.org/edtech, on social media channels such as @edtechgsd and @librarymediagsd, and in other library and content management systems accessible only to students and staff in the district.
I am husband of Virginia and father of two children who do not yet have web presences. (I may help them with that soon.)
I am an occasional writer. The new iteration of this site will come to incorporate writings from my once and future blogs. The old sites are forlorn, neglected things, and I actually don’t feel comfortable linking to them at this point. Reintegrating them and having a nice place to share writing going forward is at the heart of why I am building this site.
The past few years I’ve been most likely to share thoughts or links to my writing on twitter, at @jdwhiting. I also share and retweet a lot of library, children’s literature, and educational technology kinds of things related to my work, although I’ve been kind of quiet lately.
I keep track of my own reading and follow the reading of my friends and colleagues on Goodreads. Feel free to friend me there.
When I read children’s or young adult literature I try to make it a habit to write a review, and when I do I always publish the review first on Granite Media, which is my district’s library media site and home for book reviews from school librarians, teachers, and students.
I’m a member and chair of the Children’s Fiction committee of the Children’s Literature Association of Utah. We determine the shortlist nominees for the Beehive Book Awards, which kids and teens throughout Utah vote upon to determine winners.
Other Places You Can Find Me
I’m trying to learn more about film and watch more movies, and I document this at Letterboxd.
I sometimes take random pictures with my phone. Long before Instagram, I once fancied myself an interesting photographer. I may get there again. I also intend to incorporate photos directly into this site; that’s a 3rd draft/iteration feature.
I always have it in mind to eventually do something more with Pinterest than I am currently doing, such as using it to explore and curate more art and photography. My wife is a Pinterest power user, and I linked to her profile above.
I love the idea of location-based social media, but I don’t like the reality of Swarm all that much. Nonetheless, I do use it occasionally. I still miss Gowalla. If you know of a good location-based platform for documenting travel or visits to interesting places, please share it with me.
About this Project
I’m using this site to learn more about web development and design. I’m tired of silos and bloated content management systems, so I’m trying to be more DIY and Indieweb.
My next step will be building out a template and multi-page publishing capabilities, likely with Jekyll. My next steps will be fully indiewebifying this site, building out RSS capabilities and more navigational features, and possibly incorporating a photo blog section. I’m also thinking about building a hyper-narcissitic, cross-platform lifestream/microblog with Known and/or Micro.blog.
Yes, I am trying for a vaguely Wordperfect 5.1 aesthetic. I think I’m doing this because it puts me back to when I was a tween writing things and creating stuff on an old 286 in the basement. It was already an ancient computer even then. Fonts are currently IBM Plex Mono and Merriweather Serif, both via Google Fonts.
Some of the things I’m working on and thinking about these days…
I’m chairing the Children’s Fiction Committee for the Beehive Book Awards. We’ll be announcing the nominees for the 2020 awards in sessions at said UELMA conference next week. I probably really should be crafting 45 second booktalks right now.
I’m building out this website, with the aim of it becoming a central home for all my personal content and activity on the world wide web. I’m building it mostly from scratch to force myself into learning more about web design and coding.
I’m trying out this Coaching Digital Learning MOOC from the Friday Institute.
I’m gearing up to transfer content, create tutorials, and curate new digital resources as our district phases out an old digital video platform at the end of this year.
I’m just finishing up an exhaustive listen through the discography of Sonic Youth. Up next (actually already started) are Outkast and Parliament-Funkadelic.
Though we are now deep into 2019, I continue to plug away at the 2018 Film School Drop Outs Challenge on Letterboxd.
This page was last updated on February 26, 2019.
Props for the ‘now’ page concept go to Derek Sivers. I had envisioned a page of this sort for my new website, but my concept was vague and I didn’t have a clear way forward until I happened upon someone with a ‘now’ page and followed the trail back to the source. I think you should make one too.