In ITS we often get asked about tools for creating videos for flipped or blended classrooms. Here are our current favorite five tools:
1. Movenote (free – PC, Mac, iOS, Android) – very easy tool for annotating PPT, PDF, or images with audio/video. Very low learning curve, and it generates a link or MP4 output.
2. Screencast-o-matic (PC, Mac) – awesome tool for creating screencasts with or without webcam. Allows you to annotate recordings of any area of your screen for talking over PowerPoint or any software you’d like to demo. It generates a link or MP4 output.
3. Camtasia (PC, Mac) – the “swiss army knife” of screen capture and video editing. Allows inline quizzing as well. The feature set is extensive and may overwhelm some users.
4. Jing (PC, Mac) – an oldie but a goodie. It is a free application that lets you quickly record video.
5. Explain Everything (iOS, Android, Win8) – for tablets, this is our pick. Whiteboard app with the ability to record audio and/or video from your tablet camera and manipulate slides and objects on-screen. Generates an MP4 to your Google Drive.
It’s about that time again. Finals week is approaching and students are working on papers and projects right up to the deadlines. This is the worst time for data loss on campus, so take a minute from studying and consider the following tips for protecting your files:
- Know where your file is saved – sometimes when you download a file from your email, it is saved in a temporary location. Once it is downloaded to the computer, make sure to Save As and follow tip #2.
- Save your file in a safe place – campus lab computers have deepfreeze on them, so all files saved on the C:drive will be deleted upon restart.
Safe places include:
- Save early and save often
- Save your file in two places – consider downloading Google Drive to your computer for automatic cloud backup
- Make sure to eject flash drives and other storage devices before you remove them from a computer!
Once again, ITS has received reports of a phishing scam that is being sent around campus. It is similar to a phishing email that had gone around earlier this year in that it provides a link for you to submit your username and password to “upgrade your email.” This is not a legitimate email, so please do not do this. If you have already given away your username and password, please change it immediately. Read more…
Due to a security issue with Internet Explorer,users are being advised to use an alternate browser (Chrome,Firefox,Safari). These browsers should work with most campus services, and Google Chrome is the preferred broswer for using our Google Apps for Education services (mail, calendar, Sites, calendar). The issue with Internet Explorer can cause users to gain access to your private information. For more on the issue, see http://usat.ly/1mRATge
An article (link) released January 10, 2013 by the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT.gov) states a known vulnerability in Java version 7. The overview from the mentioned article is as follows:
“A vulnerability in the way Java 7 restricts the permissions of Java applets could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary commands on a vulnerable system.”
What this means is that [essentially] all versions of Java prior to Java 7.11 (build 1.7.0_11-b21) are vulnerable to attackers ignoring security restrictions and executing potentially malicious code on your computer. These attacks on you and your computer could be “crimes from identity theft to making an infected computer part of an ad-hoc computer network that can be used to attack websites” reports Reuters.com. US-CERT also describes the most likely effected users for the vulnerability:
“Any web browser using the Java 7 plug-in is affected. The Java Deployment Toolkit plug-in and Java Web Start can also be used as attack vectors.”
How do I fix this and/or update my computer’s Java version?
The previously mentioned article from US-CERT includes a section on a Solution which initially directs users to download the weekend’s fix/update from Oracle which release notes can be found here and the actual download link can be found on this page. The US-CERT article also provides brief instructions on disabling Java in your browser for those who don’t use Java and won’t notice it being disabled.
When you’re accessing your Google Calendar on your iPad or other iOS device, you basically have three main options. Each has pros & cons.
1. Use the Mail & Calendar apps that comes from Apple
This requires you to turn on Mail or Calendar syncing under Settings…Mail, Contacts, and Calendars. You then use the native iOS apps that come preinstalled. The con to this is that your interface will be completely different from other Google Apps web-based experiences. One major plus, however, is that you can access email and calendar information when you are away from a WiFi connection or Cellular Data. Also, users have noticed that calendar changes can take around 15 minutes or so to be reflected on the web.
2. Use Safari or other browser and view the mobile version of your calendar/email
Google detects that you are on a mobile device and presents a streamlined version of your email or calendar. Some features are removed or are limited to make the mobile experience easier. To go this route, typically you just log in to your web-based Google Apps just like you would on a desktop computer, however your browser is detected to be mobile and you are redirected to the mobile site. The mobile site uses less data (WiFi or Cellular) and therefore should be fairly fast. However, you can not access this version unless you have a data connection of some kind.
3. Use Safari or other browser and view the desktop version of your calendar/email
In the mobile version of Google Apps email and calendars, you should see a link that says “Desktop” at the bottom of the page. Switching to this view should present a version of your email or calendar that looks very similar to the version on your desktop. However, since mobile browsers are limited, some features may not appear or work correctly. However, it’s nice to have the option!
Now that most users at Augustana are using Windows 7, a great new feature available is Windows DVD Maker. You can find it under Start/All Programs, or use the Search feature. A great tutorial on how to use it was posted at SevenForums.com — I am embedding it in this post.
This will show you how to open and use Windows DVD Maker in Windows 7 to create and burn a pictures and videos DVD that you can watch on a computer or on a TV using a regular DVD player. You can also customize the DVD menu style and text before you burn the DVD.
Windows DVD Maker is only available in the Windows 7 Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate, and Enterprise editions.
Users being upgraded from Windows XP to Windows 7 will receive, among many other upgrades and enhancements, a great built-in way to take screen shots. Since the early days of Windows, using the Print Screen button, located in the upper right corner of your keyboard, was a quick way to grab the entire contents of your screen into your system’s clipboard. You can still do that under Windows 7, but a new tool, the Snipping Tool, is also available. To find it, go to your Start button and then type “Snip” in the search area. The first tool that comes up should be the Snipping Tool. When you launch it, it allows you to create a new snip by dragging a box around any area of your screen. Then, you can either save it as a graphic file or copy it to your clipboard. Very handy!
Veteran Mac users will note that this capability has been built-in to the Mac OS for years. On the Mac, use Command-Shift-3 to take a whole-screen shot (which is dropped as a file on your desktop) or use Command-Shift-4 to snip out a region of your screen.
I know that I appreciate receiving mailing list emails in Digest Mode, because it makes navigating my inbox a little bit easier. Still, the option is not without its flaws. You can opt out of Digest Mode, by following the directions in last week’s blog post here. However, before you reject Digest Mode, take a look at this week’s tip regarding attachments.
Since attachments are not shown directly in the Digest, they can be difficult to locate. However, they are there! Read more…
Over the summer ITS gradually changed the Augustana mailing lists to Digest Mode. To learn more about Digest Mode, you can read the Digest Mode FAQ here. We did this to make it easier for our users to distinguish email that is sent to them personally from email that is sent campus-wide.
… Digest Mode is not a requirement. If you do not like digest email and you would like to switch back to receiving individual emails as they are sent, you can change your preferences in Gmail by following these directions: Read more…