Hey, I’m Eli and this is a light-hearted look at my life. I live in the sunny metropolis that is Musselburgh, with my wife and two cats and I’m involved in all kinds of visual communications media. For fun that mostly involves blogging and vlogging about inane things which interest and amuse me.
For work, I am lucky that my passion is learning and technology for learning, so essentially I am living the dream! I’ve spent years developing online learning courses and teaching people how to get the best out of all the fantastic digital tools available and I’m now transferring those skill to using technology to enhance the learning experience in the classroom in higher education. Be warned if you get me started, I can talk about this for hours.
As if working in this field isn’t enough I am also finishing up my masters study in Digital Education, told you I was a sucker for this stuff.
For fun and relaxation, I garden, cook, cycle and generally enjoy being creative.
A little bit of background
I don’t have a childhood full of computers and programming to tell you about, in fact, other than an Atari 2600 games console and a copy of PAC-man, I had very little technology in my early life, what I did have was a father who instilled in me a passion for learning and even though I was a very average student with little academic interest, if it was a subject I was interested in (like history), I had no problem spending hours pouring over books in the library. I guess I’m just a lifelong learner (ironically though, history higher was the one I kept failing). But… when I left school I was told that this joy for learning was childish and I had to get a job and grow up.
Fast forward on a few years and that little girl with a voracious need for “input” (Johnny 5 reference dates me huh?) became a woman in her 20s who found the internet for the first time. I have described this moment as being like someone handed me the key to the library of Alexandria. Suddenly the knowledge of the world was not only available but was literally at my fingertips. I still get goosebumps remembering that moment.
From then on I was plugged in. I learned to build websites so I could share info with the world. I started working as a trainer, teaching people to use the internet and various other computer tools to enhance their lives. I specialised in what we called then, the “silver surfer”, or retired folk wanting to get to grips with this scary new technology. I ran the world’s largest internet cafe (as certified by the Guinness Book of Records), I ran an eLearning centre specialising in learning all things computerish through eLearning or computer-based learning and that is where the seed was planted that would eventually lead me to being a learning technologist here at one of the world’s most famous universities. A hop and a skip took me through a couple of jobs building websites and I turned those skills into developing eLearning as a Learning Consultant. I was now combining my passion for learning with my love of technology. Could life get any better? And that as they say, is that – well almost but this little “about me” is already too long.
If you prefer things in a much shorter format, you can follow me on twitter @LearningTechEli