Gadget Show FLOSS

April 18, 2009 § Leave a comment

It would seem that FLOSS is flavour of the month. When I started in my current post FLOSS obivously well distributed, however in the last 5-6 months its seems to have a helpng hand, more government support and reconition. Today as I was settling my son and listening to the TV, FLOSS gets a mention on the Gadget Show. Not only that, but another feature, Netbooks.

Their recommendations;

Spotify
Stellarium
Dropbox
VLC Portable
Sumo Paint

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YouTube as an Educational Resource

December 30, 2008 § 2 Comments

Look, there are only ever two key questions from teachers when talking about Youtube. The first is ‘why is it blocked in school?’ Good question, but then again some many educational tools are blocked by the educational establishment; Google Image search, Ning to name a few. In fact I think it was Alan November that stated that the of the five top reasons for students to use the internet (IM, Downloading music, Video Games, Social Networks and Youtube) all five are blocked in most schools. That would be the case for the schools I have taught in. So why is it blocked…. safety. (There are alternatives, check out teachertube.)

For me it is the ‘scissors’ argument. Do you hide the scissors away from the children, of course you don’t, you show them how to use them safely…. perhaps this is not the forum for banging this drum.

So to the second question, ‘how do I get THAT Youtube video?’ or shall we be more generic and say all FLV videos from popular online websites? Its often a two stage process, getting the video and then converting it to a Windows friendly file type. Here is my new answer for 2009, thanks to another RSS posting.

YouTube FLV Downloader from Moyea, (along with a range of other products, some free and some not). A simple way to download, store, manage and convert your FLV videos from all video sharing sites so YouTube, Yahoo, Google, MySpace, iFilm, Dailymotion, Metacafe. There are even some simple tutorials on how to use it. So that’s the second question, I fear the first question will be long standing.

Pizzled yet Pleased

May 18, 2008 § Leave a comment

serif-in-education.jpgI recently read about a new addition to the dictionary, ‘pizzled,’ An amalgamation of the words “pissed off” and “puzzled.” Well I was certainly pizzled this week! Not knowing what was wrong with my PC and internet connection, we finally managed to convince Virgin to send an engineer to visit. I felt vilified when he too could not find the solution to our intermittent and erratic internet connection and we have a senior engineer coming out on Wednesday.

On the plus side, I brought home my ‘work’ laptop and installed the TRIAL Serif software I requested / was sent by Serif. So far I am very pleased with what I have encountered.  I felt that DRAW Plus software very suitable, easy to understand and the products could swiftly created. I am sure that there is much more to discover and I hardly investigated the animation options, which look interesting. The tutorials would prove useful teaching aids, but I would like more screencasts as shown on the website. Overall 8/10, a reasonable friendly software option that and might prove useful not only for Unit 2 (Web Creation), Unit 3 (Digital Imaging) and Unit 23 (Digital Video) but also Unit 4 (MultiMedia Products). We might even use Draw X2 to help emphase the branding and house style required in Unit 1. It may also prove useful for Technology. Movie Plus was quite advanced, probably a lot more advanced than we would need at Level 2 but that’s not to say it is not appropriate. Given time, I will let you know what I think of the other products. In the meantime you can read more at the Serif website or email then at ocr@serif.com

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