⌨️ Typing practice, schools & ChatGPT, 2023 Ig Nobel Awards, and more – Of bits and bytes for September 25, 2023

Internet Travels

Of bits and bytes is my weekly round up of interesting links and ideas I discovered on the internet. It is published on Mondays for the previous week


Want a neat little game to practice typing? Try ZType. At it’s core, it’s a space shooter, but to shoot the other spaceships you have to type the words on them. The game plays well as is, or you can paste in a list of words to practice, which would allow younger students to practice their spelling words along with their typing.


AI Tools to Fuel Student Imagination by Shelly Sanchez Terrell is a great resource for teachers who want to use generative AI tools to spark writing and creativity among their students. The article explains what generative AI is, why it is beneficial for students, and provides a list of AI tools for teachers and students to try.

Parental involvement can have positive effects on student achievement and social skills, but it can have negative consequences when it is excessive or absent (archive link). Teachers are more burned out than ever before, and many are thinking about quitting, and some of this is caused by the increased expectations and pressures from parents, students, and administrators.

The AI detection arms race is on and college students are developing tools to identify and generate AI-written text, and how this affects the fields of journalism and education. The article covers the story of Edward Tian, a Princeton student who created a ChatGPT detector called GPTZero, and the challenges and opportunities that ChatGPT poses for teachers and students.


Using web traffic data and online search interest it appears that one of the main uses of ChatGPT is for cheating.

Should schools have specific rules about ChatGPT? Students have thoughts.

Chromebooks starting with those released in 2021 are now getting ten years of updates!


I love writing in Markdown, I use it daily and now I can use it while writing in Google Docs. It’s a great way to apply formatting without having to use the menus or take your hands off of the keyboard.

You can now turn on live points in Google Slides so you can see what others are up to in your Slides presentation.

Pop Culture

Simple, everyday changes can rewire our brains and change how they work. The author, a science journalist, tried a six-week mindfulness course and had her brain scanned before and after. She found that her brain structure had changed in ways that align with previous research on the benefits of mindfulness. After exploring other brain hacks, such as exercise, learning new skills, and neurorehabilitation she concluded that we can all influence our brain plasticity and improve our mental health.

Windows has a keyboard shortcut that opens LinkedIn.

Check out the new emojis that are coming!

The Ig Nobel Prizes rewards research that might be overlooked, and the 2023 winners have been announced. To the surpise of no one, the education prize went into researching showing that if a teacher is bored, then the students will be bored. They went further though, and found out that if students assumed a class was going to be boring a head of time, then it turned out they were going to be bored too.

Pot Pourri

The death of cursive can’t all be blamed on technology, the ballpoint pen had a hand in it.

Extra Credit

Here are extra links that I found interesting that may or may not be education related or interesting to you and I didn’t want to lose them.

Ryan Signature

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