TGIF Tech-May 20th

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Here is the May 20th installment sent to my ES staff at the Shanghai American School.

TGIF all,

SAS ES Puxi Tech Showcase:

Grades pk/k,2,4 are employing and leveraging the power of technology through MacBooks and equitrax printers in the classrooms. No but seriously, grade 4 is still working on the Silk Road Google Maps (These are gonna be sweet, I’m looking forward to seeing the finished products).

Grade 3 is wrapping up a major foray into green screening and you can see some examples here:

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26662/Julien_Greenscreen/

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26660/Joey_Greenscreen/

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26551/Hannah_Greenscreen/

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26554/Nicky_Greenscreen/

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26639/Ejen_Greenscreen/

http://portal.saschina.org/video/media/26746/Adam_Greenscreen/

Grade 1 is working on making Insect lifecycle photostories in Kidpix.

Whats Hot this week
Your Internet Bubble:
From the Librarian by Day blog (http://librarianbyday.net/2011/05/11/beware-your-information-bubble/ )
“Eli Pariser talks about filter bubbles in this terrific TED Talk. As human beings were prone to bubbles, we gravitate to people like us, people with the same views, the same socio-economic class, the same habits etc. All sorts of studies show that if you’re likely to have similar habits and life-styles as the people you associate with. The web has been applauded as a way to escape that echo-chamber you live in. Except, as Pariser points out, there are companies like Google and Facebook and Yahoo looking to personalize your web experience, and that personalization makes your bubble even smaller. Making it even easier to forget that your world view is not the world view.”

ELI SAYS: So I do think this is a problem. And I think, if you take all of these filters together, you take all these algorithms, you get what I call a filter bubble. And your filter bubble is your own personal unique universe of information that you live in online. And what’s in your filter bubble depends on who you are, and it depends on what you do. But the thing is that you don’t decide what gets in. And more importantly, you don’t actually see what gets edited out.

This is huge. Not just to library professionals, but to everyone. Watch the video. There are some excellent other links at the bottom of the post linked above. Think about this in your Face 2 Face life. Are you limiting your bubble? What does this mean for new ideas and creativity? Do you do this at school? What impact does this have on your teaching practice?

http://www.ted.com/talks/view/lang///id/1091

Useful Links

School

We talk about collaborating a lot but when it comes to walking the talk…well let’s just say there is room for improvement. Here is a short list of 10 ways you as a teacher can foster collaboration among your peers. Remember sharing is caring. It will improve your practice, give you new ideas, and overall result in better learning experiences for your students. It is best practice.

http://whatedsaid.wordpress.com/2011/05/18/10-ways-for-teachers-to-collaborate/

Need some inspiration, or just a good laugh. Watch this (geared towards educational woes in the US but still applicable here):

A beauty from Bill Maher. “Don’t fire the teachers-Fire the Parents”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3vPkFhtGGI&feature=player_embedded ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3vPkFhtGGI&feature=player_embedded )

Personal:

Flight searching (from Netted by the Webbys):

Many of you will be traveling over the summer holiday in your home country and naturally will be searching for the best deal. Good news, here is a flight finder that does not suck. Simplifying the process is Hipmunk, a new service that makes it easy to find the right flight, thanks to its drop dead simple visual interface. To start just enter your locale, your destination and your departure/return date.  Then prepare to be dazzled. The results show up in a colorful grid-like chart (with prices on the vertical axis and times on the horizontal axis).  You see all of your options right there in one place, free of clutter, text chunks and ads.

You can sort by price, flight duration, and the number of layover (hint: use “agony” button for a one-click version of all three). When you find a flight you like you can click on it for more information. The site doesn’t sell tickets directly, but they do direct you to services that do sell the flights they list.

iPhone/iPad:

First off, if you still don’t have an iPhone, quit convincing yourself you don’t need one or want one, and just go buy the damned thing. The Shanghai Taxi Guide (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/shanghai-taxi-guide/id292704635?mt=8 ( http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/shanghai-taxi-guide/id292704635?mt=8 ) ) for the iPhone is worth having a phone if you don’t use it for anything else. Sunny, the guy who has the apple store down Jeng Feng Lu, across from Starbucks has great prices on iPhone 4′s right now. No, I am not getting a cut, but I wish I was.

With summer break looming, hopefully you have some plans to reconnect with nature and get outside into air that smells good. If so check out the colloction of apps under the “Great Outdoors” apps

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewMultiRoom?fcId=437058977 ( http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewMultiRoom?fcId=437058977 )

CLOUD STORAGE (from Tek Tok blog):

Cloud storage is hotter than Lady Gaga right now: critics and detractors alike won’t stop writing about it, it’s young and fresh, and it’s about to release a Beyoncé collaboration.   Amazon Cloud Drive provides the Internet’s most reputable and reliable cloud storage. It provides 5GB of free backup storage, no physical hard drive necessary. If you have the Internet, you have your files.  The first 5 gigabytes come free, but if you find yourself running out of space yearly plans are also available. Options include $20 for 20GB, $50 for 50GB and so on up to a Terabyte (1000GB).   Awesome Deal Alert: purchase of an MP3 album on Amazon comes with 20GB of free storage on the Cloud Drive for a year. And Amazon’s Cloud Player for your desktop or Android phone lets you take your music with you wherever you go.  Be warned though, Cloud Drive is by no means the best way to get songs unstuck from your head.

MAC Hints/Tips: (from Tek Tok blog):

Move Your iTunes Library Location in 6 Easy Steps

Some folks have such large music or photo libraries that they are running out of space on their Mac’s internal hard drive. Luckily, with just a few quick steps, you can move your iTunes or iPhoto library to an external drive, with all the necessary files it needs to retain its neat and organized structure.

You will need three things to complete this task:

*an external hard drive with a good amount of free space,

*your Mac,

*some time to let the files copy over.

For this example, we will move an iTunes library from a Mac to the external drive; the same basic procedure can be used to move an iPhoto Library as well.

1. Connect your external hard drive to your computer.

2. Use Finder to locate your Music folder on your Mac, and open it to find your iTunes folder.

3. Drag your entire iTunes folder onto your external hard drive, which should be visible on the left-hand sidebar in your finder window. This process can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours depending how much data you have to move. Moving the iTunes folder copies over ALL of your iTunes content, including music, apps, playlists, and videos.

4. Once you’ve moved your iTunes folder, you need to tell your computer to look for the iTunes library in its new location on the external drive. To do this, make sure iTunes is not running, and then open iTunes while holding down the Option key on your keyboard.

5. A window will appear prompting you to either create a new library or choose an existing one. Because we’ve moved the library file, we are going to choose an existing one. The iTunes library file is located inside of the iTunes folder that you just moved onto the external drive. The file path should look like External HD > iTunes > iTunes Library.

Once you choose the library file on your external drive, iTunes will continue to look for its library here, until you tell it otherwise. This means that whenever you add new content to your iTunes library, it automatically will be stored on the external drive as opposed to your Mac’s internal hard drive.

6. You can now move the iTunes folder on your Mac to the trash to free up lots of extra room (Please be careful and make sure you actually have moved your music before deleting it!).

Have a great weekend….

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