Tuesday, 27 July 2010

ipad Vs iphone4

iphone 4 image

I found these stats in the image  capabilities of the new iphone. I knew they had improved since Vs 1, but was surprised to see by how much. BTW, the new iphone 4 also has a front camera as well as the back one.
iPhone 45.0 MegaPixel2592x19361280x720Back-Facing
iPhone 4VGA640x480640x480Front-Facing

see this site for full technical spec':  http://www.edepot.com/iphone.html  & more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPhone_4#Camera

Before I mention my new iphone4, I 'd like to point you in the direction of 3 ipad reviews to bring you up-to-date on the best gadget of the century :

Now back to my new work iphone4. I took delivery of it yesterday.  Out f the box, it's less curvy than my old (orginal version 1), but on first inspection the interface is much improved. The most obvious difference is the obligatory 4 digit passcode needed to accces it. Not a bad idea. 
I re-instated my itunes account to begin download new apps. More about those on following posts. 

I tested the camera and video functionality yesterday and was impressed by the ability to shoot video and images from the same app. Not sure of the quality yet, but I do know there's an imovie app that enables simple video editing on the move.  I'll try that soon. ~   I've just downloaded the first images and; I'm very impressed at the quality (much improved - see above).The video clips I shot yesterday are also very good quality - apart from the fact that I shot them in portrait format - and I should have used landscape!  I'll upload one of those  videos to vimeo and embed it in this post shortly. But again the video quality looks outstanding for a mobile phone :OD

Now to add the Blackboard and Pabblepad apps. I'll update you on those and others in the near future. I'll also put up another post about the video capabilities of sed iphone, soon.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

the attitude or the technology?

Just noticed this short article on Wired Campus 

So I've just copied it >>>

"Faculty members and information-technology staff members alike say technology is useful for teaching and learning, but professors take a narrower view of what technology belongs in today's classroom, according to a report released on Monday by the technology company CDW Government Inc.

Eighty-eight percent of the 303 faculty members surveyed said technology was essential or useful for student learning, and over 60 percent said they used electronic materials in their teaching, according to the report.

The most popular tools cited by professors were e-textbooks and online documents, with faculty members reporting far less enthusiasm for other electronic tools. Under a quarter of faculty members surveyed use wikis or blogs in their teaching, and only 31 percent of professors surveyed considered online collaboration tools "essential" to today's classroom, compared with 72 percent of over 300 IT employees surveyed.
That suggests an interesting gap between technology staff members and professors when it comes to how smart classrooms need to be. How wired should teaching spaces be?

It's only a short article but really resonates with the situation here in the UK education arena. i.e. some see the benefits of the technology, and strive to create environments to nurture 21st century learning expereinces. This is often hampered by differeing levels of support (both IT and senior management) .

The comments about the reluctance to grasp the significance of collaborative platforms also does not surprise me - sadly.  The thread of comments posted under the article could have been penned by any UK educator - which is also quite scary. I advise you to read them - very insightful to see the interpretation of technology enhanced learning from differing perspectives. I especially like this comment :

If you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

My advice is to get back to basics and work from curriculum up - redesign to incorporate these (collaborative) learning methods - or they'll always be bolt-on. And also ensure the support mechanisms are in place - implementing technology is so about the people and so not about the "systems"
Use the JISC infokit to help redesign your courses - you know it makes sense !o) , it really is very good :

Transforming Curriculum Design and Curriculum Delivery through Technology

Friday, 9 July 2010

Bb merger frenzy

Bb - ellumninate- Wimba - become one!

Blackboard (VLE)  announced this week a pair of acquisitions in the “synchronous learning and collaboration” software business - Elluminate Inc. and Wimba Inc. - for a combined $116 million in cash. 

The provider of enterprise software for the education market said the two companies combined provide services to more than 2,600 institutions in the K-12, higher education and professional education markets.

Wow, this is big news.  But is it good news or bad news?  That of course depends on your stance.  If you have Elluminate or Wimba already, could you be facing the support debacle that transpired after Blackboard took over WebCT a few years ago.   Not good, and I think Bb are stil suffering the fall out from that poorly managed merger.  Let's hope they've learned their lesson?

So where does that leave Bb now? In a very strong position I'd say. My take on it is that the corporate and education sectors  are using VLE's much less given the rise of web 2.0 apps and of course the rise of Moodle giant slayer. This fall in their bread and butter market and the impending explosion of live webinars would have certainly dented share dividends.  Corporate training budges are being routinely decimated in this economic climate, which now makes it a neccessity to use webinars (Connect Pro, Dimdim, Wimba and Elluminate, etc) to train many staff with them leaving their home or office. Mi££ions can be saved.

Of course those just wanting  Elluminate or Wimba as a stand alone product may face a price rise? Or those who need them to plug into other VLEs may be thwarted in the future - by being forced into using Bb just to get Ellumniate or Wimba? Who knows? Or will one of these tools go to leave just the best from Wimba & Elluminate, that would not be such a bad thing?

Uncertain times, but definitely a bold and visionary move by Bb to keep it's market share by investing in synchronous technology - now we (well most) have the bandwidth to exploit these tools.

BTW,  if you need an alternative webinar tool like DimDim.com , visit my page on all things webinars.