That Blue Square Thing

Privacy, cookies and other odd things

Mmmm, biscuits.

As previous sixth form classes will tell you, I love a nice biscuit or three. Personally my favourite are Fruit Shortcakes - you know, the ones with the squashed currants in. I particularly liked these because Megan didn't like the currants so she'd always eat the bits of biscuit and leave the currants - which was, frankly, hilarious to watch.

So, if you want to send me biscuits at all then, yes please.

Oh, you wanted to know about computer cookies? OK then...

Cookies and your privacy

That Blue Square Thing uses Google Analytics to find out how people use the site. Google Analytics uses "cookies" - small text files which are stored on your computer - to collect completely anonymous data which helps me find out things like which web browser you use, how you got here and what pages you looked at. Can I stress again that this is completely anonymous - I don't have a clue who you are (and I don't want to know either).

Cookies of this type are harmless and can't be traced to you. Because I don't use advertising on this site, no one other than me gets any data about how people use the site - although I might occasionally display that data on a board in my room to show a class how it works.

Your IP address is collected as part of this process. This allows me to identify very roughly where you operate from. But it's very, very rough (usually a 40km radius). I have no wish to try to find out where you're from beyond this (it's quite interesting, for example, to know that at least one school in Pontefract clearly uses this site).

You can turn cookies off in most modern browsers if you want to and can delete them using cleanup bits of software. If you want to find out more about them, Google will tell you stuff at http://www.google.com/analytics/learn/privacy.html

Summary: it's all anonymous and I don't care who you are; I won't try to use any of the data to find you or send you garbage. Promise.

Contacting me

If you send me e-mail then I'll know your e-mail address. I can't promise I'll delete that information from any of the computers or web services I use. So I'll probably have the e-mail and your address stored for quite a long time.

It's best you know that. I won't use your e-mail to send you spam or marketing or to hassle you about anything. Promise.

Who am I?

You might know who I am already; you might not. All you need to know is that I work in a UK school and have had all the legal checks necessary to do that.

Downloading stuff

You can download files and so on that I have produced from here for your own non-commercial use. That's what they're there for. In particular, if you're a non-profit making school then you can download stuff, put it on your school network and so on. Please don't put it on the web without asking first though. Thanks.

It's always nice if you send me an e-mail to say thanks or mention how you're using it. If there's a problem that needs fixing that's handy as well. I've had e-mails from Scotland, New Zealand, Australia and India. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling, which is nice.

If you want to use something from here to make money somehow - including putting it on the web and either charging people to use it or making money from adverts - then you can't. You can ask specific permission to use specific resources and there may be a charge (likely a charitable donation) to do so or I may tell you that you can't. Sorry, not my fault and it's nothing personal - blame the government (I have been since 1991 when I started teaching).

Summary: use what you like but don't try and pass it off as your own work or sell it. And play nice.

JavaScript

Odd pages on That Blue Square Thing do use little bits of JavaScript. There's not much - the odd bit of time and date information, some mouseover definitions and there's quite a lot on anything involving drag and drop such as the weather maps. I don't do anything nasty with it.

You can disable JavaScript if you want. I used to, back in the day, but I don't think many people do anymore. The stuff I use isn't going to create massive problems for you. Promise.

Flash and other stuff

I don't use Flash really. There's the odd page with a product on that I'm using to demonstrate what kids I teach can do with it. That's it.