January 25, 2013
As I prepared for my research, I sought out a tool to help me electronically organize the journal articles I was reading. I wrote about that experience in Faculty Focus which published the article today.
January 8, 2013
January 2, 2013
If you are a fan of Prezi like I am, you’ve probably noticed a LOT of changes in the application recently. So here is a quick guide for what has changed:
Say goodbye to the Bubble Menu
The bubble menu is gone. Most functions are now available at the top. The path can be edited by either clicking on the path numbers or with a button above the thumbnails on the left.
Frames behave differently
Hidden frames now group content inside. To move them without their content, press and hold ALT while moving the mouse.
Deleting frames removes content too. Use ALT to select or right click to remove without content.
Frames are now automatically added to the path once they are created. Close the side bar on the left to turn off the animated feedback.
By default some shortcuts are turned off. You can enable them from the settings menu.
Tool selection shortcuts got smarter: press ‘s’ repeatedly to cycle through different shape styles.
For more information on the recent changes (and what more are to come) check out the official Prezi website: http://prezi.com/learn/user-interface-whats-changed/
September 11, 2012
ESRI released ArcGIS for Android & iOS this summer. The software allows users to manipulate data and use some of the basic functions of GIS. Data can be uploaded, and is searchable. There is already a sizable database of user uploaded content. The app is free and access to the data is free, but there is a cost associated with uploading and hosting content. The ArcGIS app is a great data visualization tool and has enough features to accommodate the needs of the average user. Search “Richmond SAL” to see maps uploaded from the University of Richmond!
December 19, 2011
Earlier this month, I shared with you that Google’s Internet browser, Chrome, recently became the world’s number two most popular browser.
The folks over at www.makeuseof.com released a “101 Best Chrome Extensions” list. Extensions are extra features and functionality that you can easily add to Google Chrome. By using extensions, you can customize Google Chrome with features you like, while keeping your browser free of things that you don’t use. With extensions you can:
- Get bonus information about a page.
- Get timely notifications.
- Do things with fewer clicks.
Some of my favorite Chrome extensions are:
- Google Dictionary by Google
- Rain Alarm
- Google Alerter
September 11, 2009
Actually, YOU have to make your PowerPoints more powerful - technology can’t necessarily do that. Take a look at Presentation Zen for great tips, tricks and advice. However! if you’re an avid PowerPoint presenter that email’s .PPT files to students and colleagues, and you’ve never used VoiceThread, prepare for a delightful paradigm shift! VoiceThread.com is a free (and quite useful) web application that will allow you to stream your PowerPoint slides online AND integrate an interactive discussion around your presentation content. One key benefit that faculty will love is the ability to add an audio narration to each slide. This narrative could include more information such as a story, additional context, or relevant examples, etc. There’s even a ‘doodle’ tool that will allow you draw on the slide as you’re emphasizing your points!
Once these initial elements have been mastered, you’ll notice that VoiceThread also opens up a plurality of opportunities for interactive discourse and community participation from students (or the Internet at large!).
Take a look at the following VoiceThread concerning the issue of “Saving Darfur”. You’ll notice how a multi-modal conversations (or threaded voices) have taken place around these political illustrations. Commenters can posit their feedback via text and audio and video recordings. I personally prefer video comments, but you have to have a web-cam on your computer to do this. If you dont have a web-cam or microphone, you can also call a phone number to leave feedback on a VoiceThread. It will record your audio over the phone, and append it to the presentation over the web! Amazing!
For more great information about Using Voicethread for interactive discourse and dialogue, feel free to take a look at Bill Ferriter wiki on what VoiceThread is and how you can use it in your courses.
June 24, 2009
Ever wanted to share a file that was too big for e-mail with many people? Perhaps a 5 GB file? Fear no more; it’s File Dropper to the rescue. Upload the file; FD gives you your own URL, which takes those interested directly to the file. As long as people are downloading, the files are kept forever. One caveat: You can’t make the files private, so don’t share your latest yet-to-be-published research paper. But if you’ve got a large video you’ve shot that you don’t mind anyone seeing, File Dropper is perhaps the easiest way to get it out on the web.