Yesterday I climbed high up a snowy mountain to seek out Ol Hatchet Jack (sadly lacking a Wikpedia entry), the frozen mountain man. Jack has not been heard from on over a year, but he’s still there.

His rifle is gone, some other mountain man must have nabbed it, but he did have a new Chromebook, and was slowly drafting a post on his cold, frozen blog.

Todd Conaway suggested where I might find Jack, and Todd was spot on. And Ol Hatchet Jack is planning to be part of the ds106 course I am teaching starting January 2016, online for Kansas State University, and open to anyone who has been wanting to do a DS106 experience.

This time around, ds106 is going to the wide open wild west– drawing upon movies, music, imagery, books of the Western genre. You can find some previews and trailer videos for whats happening at


You ready to saddle up? It’s still early, but you can be thinking about setting up or deploying and existing blog- it can hang anywhere;, Blogger, Tumblr, or you can get yourself a fine self-hosted steed at Reclaimhosting or you can just use some old nag blog. As long as your blog can generate an RSS feed, you are as good as Spanish gold.

And if not already riding one, fetch yourself a twitter account.

Stay tuned here, on the hashtag, or at for some warm up stuff you can be doing in December. More eager? Try on doing some DS106 Daily Creates.

As an open participant in DS106 / Western106 you can come and go as you please, no one will brand you a dropout. You won’t be payin’ any fees or gettin’ no paper certificate. You get what you put into it.

What other open course, what xMOOC, has an active participant who is a dead frozen mountain man?

If you have been watching ds106 from the sidelines, this might be your solid gold opportunity to hop over the rails, and get in on .

Top / Featured Image credit: My own photoshop mashup of one frame from the movie Jeremiah Johnson, a PNG of Chromebook, and a screen shot of the WordPress editing screen. Okay, I do not have explicit of licensed conditions; this is a mashup of small bits into something the never existed before.

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An early 90s builder of web stuff and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person. And he is 100% into the Fediverse (or tells himself so) Tooting as

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