Archive for the 'Web 2.0' Category

iPhone is perfect for ePortfolios!

UpdateI have recently initiated a new website called iPhone in Ed related to the relevance of iPhones as 21C learning tools.  iPhone in Education aims to collate, ed review and categorise applications made for the iPhone and specifically useful in teaching and learning.

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Alas, cardiologist quite a few Mac related things have been ticking over in my mind. Or is this an open letter to Jonathan Ive? I’ve fantasised about iPhones place in education before; I’ve also publicly fantasised about ePortfolios before - please indulge me again.

Wiki/Blog server integrationRecently I attended a seminar by Professor Richard Kimbell from, pharm Director of Technology Education Research Unit, Goldsmiths’ College, University of London. This seminar provided an opportunity for educators in W.A. to learn about the use of PDAs and other digital technologies to support assessment. The event was summarised thus:

Embedding ICT across the curriculum (i.e. getting it out of ICT suites) has been a notoriously difficult and frequently unsuccessful enterprise. Embedding ICT into assessment practice might therefore be thought to be even more tricky. The use of mobile / hand-held digital technologies transforms the debate and makes possible a complete re-visioning of the teaching/learning/assessing relationship. The e-scape pilot (just completed in 15 schools) provides glimpses into the possible futures for e-assessment.

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Skitch in the classroom

SkitchThanks to Bronwen for bringing to my attention Skitch - the latest highly intuitive tool from the guys at Plasq. ICTs that have *FUN FOR ALL AGES* written all over them are hard to find. Three years ago when Comic Life appeared on the Mac platform it became a quick way to show the amazing simplicity of the OS X interface and the iLife suite integration. Apple loved it so much they began include it free on most Macs. Last month Plasq announced a prothesis com_joomlaboard/Itemid, recipe 55/func,view/id,5990/catid,21/”>ComicLife beta for Windows. The Windows beta of ComicLife is currently down but will be up again soon. Treat your Windows using pals to a nice UI! First time users are regularly amazed at the ease of use Comic Life provides. Skitch has a similar “wow why hasn’t anyone done this b4?” factor. For Skitch sign up is req’d to try the beta - I don’t have any invites yet but Plasq promises more soon. Please email me and I’ll pass one on. Possible uses of Skitch in the classroom:

  1. Quick screen-cap and draw function has the most immediately obvious use in an educational setting.
  2. The UI offers many neat features like not having to select the text tool - just start typing.
  3. Web-sharing across schools and annotating resources and user-guides.
  4. Using iSight to capture live video shots that one can scribble and jot on.
  5. Re-size and crop by simply dragging a corner + all sketches are vector and scaleable.
  6. All images are saved in history.
  7. Web upload in two clicks to mySkitch or Flickr or .Mac school server.
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Please excuse the intrusion….

How do I join Aus Mac Ed?

AusMacEd uses a blogging system called WordPress to allow you to post directly to the website. First you need to register.

Register or log-in here:

Be sure to fill out all the fields of your profile. This will display next to the automated archive for all your posts. eg: http://ausmaced.org/author/paul-reid/ Your display name should be your full name; eg Steve Wozniak.
Now you can comment on the posts of other ‘Aus Mac Edders’. Your membership status is now “Author” allowing you to post and comment.

Once you are logged into the WordPress “Dashboard”, check basically if you click on “write post” you can get started contributing. Here are some more details:

How do I post to Aus Mac Ed?

NB: WordPress claims to be as a easy as sending an email - more detailed tutorials are available here.
To write a post on Wordpress you need to follow these steps:

  1. Log-in and click on “Write” in the sidebar.
  2. Give the post a “Title”. Copy and paste the text you have written offline into the WYSIWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) editor.
  3. a). Click on the “Chain-icon” in the WYSIWYG editor to add a link.b). Click on the “Indent-icon” to add a quote you have pulled from somewhere else.c). To add an image you need to browse to the image on your hard drive using the upload tab below the post editing box. Then click on the “Image” (tree) icon in the WYSIWYG editor menu to add an image to the WYSIWYG editor.

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BEAUT Podcast V2

Last year I made BEAUT podcasts and managed to publish 10 podcasts. My BEAUT Podcast Vol2 has been accepted in the iTunes music Store. It should appear tomorrow or later today. If you do a search for BEAUT you will find it. I would love to have some feedback on the podcasts. Somethings mentioned may be local but a lot is for all educators using Macs. This latest podcast (11) has a great tip on keeping a track of enhanced or as Dan Schmit says interactive podcasts.

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Flip Clips - for the web2.0 tool-belt

Flipbooks This online service called FlipClip takes short-video clips and transforms them into small flip books traditionally the domain of quirky gift shops. This is an interesting way to share and preserve short clips your students make in the physical world - great for clay animation made with iStopMotion or for clips with subtitles in iMovie. Basically you upload 15 or 30 seconds of video to the website and select a book size. They print out several frames from your video and assemble a book which animates when flipped. Check out a short video clip here. Surprisingly they aren’t very expensive considering they are personalised. Pricing works out to AUD$11 per book, about it and $13.40 for postage. A bulk order of 25 books can be sent for the postage price of AUD$34. Some technical info from the FlipClip website:

The ideal resolution for a FlipClip is 640×480, and there are some great cameras available now that will record movies at that resolution or higher. Although FlipClips can be printed from any resolution video, short clips (under 30 seconds) at 320×240 or 640×480 are optimal. Frame rates aren’t as important, so you can safely record at 10 or 15 frames per second and still have a great looking FlipClip. FlipClips.com currently restricts the size of file uploads to 25 Megabytes, so you may want to edit your video’s length and, if possible, compress it before uploading. FlipClips are intended to be used for movies, where flipping the pages reveals the motion.

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Happy Australia Day - AusMacEd is *LIVE*

AusMacEd logoWelcome to AusMacEd - this is our official launch post to the group blog.

Good luck to all AusMacEdders and may the force be with you ;-)
As promised I’ve been working on a multi-user blog for Australian educators using Macs and iPods (and iPhones). The goal of AusMacEd is to bring our vibrant discussions about the huge potential of Apple based solutions in Australian education out onto the internet in a pro-active and web2.0 manner. So this is a personal invite to be the first to the *LIVE* launch of http://ausmaced.org.

I intend to let the Maced list know later this weekend. If you think there are any issues or ideas that need discussing related to the launch please contact me. In the meantime if you have the time and inclination please make a post and comment to get things kickstarted. As they say on Windows click to “ start

If any of you are interested in joining a voluntary AusMacEd moderation and administration team of the website please do let me know. Recently I began a new role in the Curriculum Through ICT section of WA’s DET so I may be a little pushed for time in the next month as I get my head around the new position.

Some background. The idea of ‘AusMacEd’ for came about for these reasons:

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