My name is Giles Booth. I teach Computer Science in KS2 & KS3 and ICT in KS4 in central London, having changed career late in life. Before training as a teacher on the School Direct scheme I worked for BBC Radio for many years – World Service, Radio 4, 5Live – recording, mixing and editing programmes, making podcasts, updating programme web pages, helping design and build the last radio news studio in Bush House, setting up outside broadcasts all over the world, from the Central Lobby of the Houses of Parliament, all over the US, Beijing, and the first ever live broadcast from a monastery on the male-only archipelago of Mt Athos in Greece.
You can hear me talking about the BBC’s iconic building Bush House in this lovely film (my words taken from a World Service documentary). And here’s something fun I did with film and literacy when I re-trained to be a teacher in 2013:
On the anniversary of D-Day, I taught a combined history / maths / computing / PSHE lesson that I’m really proud of. In Year 5 I also got the children making their own musical instruments to trigger GarageBand with a MakeyMakey.
Bristol-born, I now live in London. I have a degree in English, I love reading, writing stories (I have more ideas than time or application), cooking, blogging about cooking and making gadgets with the Raspberry Pi, MakeyMakey and Arduino, like these:
- A really dead simple, but functional, internet radio, just made from a Raspberry Pi, two resistors, a button and some wires.
- A more complex internet radio, with an LCD display to show the station playing and the date and time, controlled by buttons on the display. This uses an Arduino Uno connected to a Raspberry Pi.
- I worked out an easy way of scheduling the Rasperry Pi internet radio to make sure it always plays my favourite programmes.
- I turned a useless old laser printer (which I couldn’t get OS X drivers for) into a wireless printer using a Raspberry Pi and a wifi dongle.
- The Little Box of Poems prints out a random poem when you press a button. It comes in two flavours: Raspberry Pi and Arduino.
- I made a GoFreeRange internet printer using a RaspberryPi instead of an Arduino.
- I made an internet printer that gave me a weather forecast every morning at 6am using a Raspberry Pi, some code and IFTTT.
- The Fridge Gizmo was an experiment to get my Raspberry Pi talking to my Arduino’s LCD display, showing weather and tweets. There are now better ways of doing this with nanpy, but I had fun making the seemingly impossible work.
Oh, and you can prise the Maldon sea salt out of my cold, briny hands (scroll down).
Why ‘Blog My Wiki’?
This started out as a blog called ‘The Weblog and OtherMachines’ and I had the intention of just writing about good and bad technology. Of course the temptation to write any old rubbish that came into my head was too strong to resist.
The name ‘Blog my Wiki!’ came about because I found myself sarcastically saying ‘well, blog my wiki!’ several times a day at work every time someone did something a bit dull and unoriginal but either put in on a blog / podcast / wiki and then had money, promotion and praise heaped on them from certain parts of the large corporation for which I worked. I was really already blogging back in the 1990s, only it wasn’t called blogging then and we didn’t have lovely tools like WordPress to help us.
Oh, and hello to Jason Isaacs.