Author Archive: Tim

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BETT 2014 ~ Make your own mini planets II

| January 24, 2014 | 0 Comments 

A fast paced whiz through just some ways to create your own planet, on the eSchools stand, at BETT.

How about trying out some still, stereographic, images?: Make a panorama, in something like CleVR. This, for free remember, will also make you a fully navigable, 3D panorama, at the same time.

Next, turn that panorama in to a stereographic world in something like Gimp (one of THE most unfortunate names for any piece of software, but a fantastic Photoshop alternative!) Online and free. To do so, follow this step-by-step guide from PhotoJojo. Continue Reading

Inkscape ~ Vector illustrating

| January 23, 2014 | 0 Comments 

Inkscape has all the capabilities of Corel draw or Adobe illustrator. This one, however, is free. Windows and Mac compatible. Work with amazing vector effects and see effects applied in real time.

Placing Literature ~ Where Your Book Meets the Map

| January 22, 2014 | 0 Comments 

With the international element of our days these days, it seems appropriate to think about geographical setting.

Setting is a vital component in any work of literature- from Charles Dickens’s London to Mark Twain’s Hannibal. Putting a story in the context of a real physical location gives stories context, placing readers in a familiar locale as the story unfolds.

Placing Literature is a new, & growing, online database of places from scenes in literature- sourced & plotted by readers & researchers. Created by an author, an engineer, & a geographer, the goal of Placing Literature is to connect readers to the places they are reading about, highlighting the meanings, values and emotions attached to a space.

Can you, and your students, add to the crowd sourcing and continue to create a respected reference material for future research. Get reading. Get mapping.

Videolicious ~ Easy video creation

| January 21, 2014 | 0 Comments 

“Video Made Easy”. You choose the content, and Videolicious does the rest—combining your video clips, photos, and sound to make a powerful, professional-quality video, without the work.

Access Videolicious on both desktop and mobile devices.

The free version allows 20 1 minute videos, with 10 shots per video.

Tell your story on camera, add a voiceover to existing shots—or switch from one to the other using simple controls. Choose the combination of sound and music to tell your story. One-swipe mixing lets you perfect your video’s sound options.

Just tap to indicate when you want each shot to start or end. Enhance your message with additional content- e.g.interviews, cutaways, shot before or after your video was compiled. Go for it!

Alchemy ~ Start designing

| January 20, 2014 | 0 Comments 

alchemy |’alkemē

Figurative: a process by which paradoxical results are achieved or incompatible elements combined with no obvious rational explanation

Alchemy is an open drawing project aimed at exploring how we can sketch, draw, and create on computers in new ways, on the Windows, Mac and Linux platforms.

Alchemy isn’t software for creating finished artwork, but rather a sketching environment that focuses on the absolute initial stage of the creation process. Experimental in nature, Alchemy lets you brainstorm visually to explore an expanded range of ideas and possibilities in a serendipitous way. We’d love to see what you create. Get doodling.

Looking forward to #BETT2014

| January 19, 2014 | 0 Comments 

After a couple of days in New Milton, Hampshire, we are really looking forward to full on BETT week.

As the comedians say, “We’re here all week folks”.

Wednesday sees us doing a keynote for 200 Dutch colleagues, at the Copthorne Tara Hotel, Kensington. Thursday, and we do a similar session with Swedish colleagues, at the Cumberland Hotel, in Marble Arch. We’ll be at the BETT arena through the rest of those days, then all day on the Friday.

From 14:00 to 14:45, on Saturday, we are honoured to be asked to contribute to ‘The BETT Closing Ceremony’ in The BETT Arena. Alongside Maggie Philbin, CEO, TeenTech; Anne-Lise Kjaer , Futurologist, Kjaer Global; Ian Bauckham, President, ASCL; and Simon Milner, UK and Ireland Policy Director, at Facebook, we’ll be sharing The Great Education Debate: Can technology ever replace the classroom?

If YOU’re around, we’d love to meet up. Twitter: @timrylands or email See you there maybe.

Mind42 ~ Collaborative Mindmapping

| January 17, 2014 | 0 Comments 

In Mind42, “42″ is not the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything. Think of it as Mind FOR TWO: A collaborative browser-based online mind mapping tool.

Whether alone, or working together with the whole world, Mind42 runs in your browser, so no installation necessary. Can be used (almost) whenever, and wherever, needed.

Wiggio ~ Online group communication

| January 16, 2014 | 0 Comments 

Fed up with multiple mailing lists, contact books, phone-chains and incompatibilities? Want everything to be in one place, and simple?

Even for the least tech-savvy members of your group, Wiggio provides everything you need to work, without bogging you down with complexities and unnecessary features.

Operation War Diary ~ Contribute to the record of history

| January 15, 2014 | 1 Comment 

Today sees the launch of Operation War Diary – a new citizen history project that needs your help to transcribe regimental diaries which describe events in the lives of British soldiers during the First World War. To get involved visit the site and follow the short tutorial.

We have mentioned the excellent Zooniverse projects before. This latest one offers some poignant glimpses in to life at a difficult time for our planet, and provides some excellent learning opportunities, alongside the chance to make a real contribution to the historical archives.

These diaries contain the thoughts and observations of soldiers on the Western Front.

They detail the location, movement and everyday activities of hundreds of thousands of individuals whose stories are otherwise unknown to us. With 15 million pages to go through, there are many amazing stories lying in these documents, waiting to be read.

By tagging people, places, and more on Operation War you can help their team of historians to begin to reconstruct the lives of the First World War for future generations.

This is an incredibly important project and they’re very excited to be working with The National Archives and the Imperial War Museum to make it happen. Maybe your students can join in too.

Thinkbinder ~ Online study groups

| January 14, 2014 | 0 Comments 

ThinkBinder builds a social platform for study groups to share files, post ideas and status updates, collaborate, and video chat.

Their tagline is “It’s not safe to study alone”. However, any social media, and way of communicating with others, takes careful consideration. Anyone can join the group as long as they know the code, so careful monitoring is, as always, essential.

Creating a study group with ThinkBinder takes less than a minute. Then, you will find a dashboard where you can post your news feeds, upload files, and share ideas on a whiteboard. You can invite friends through e-mail and once they are all in, you can collaborate through video chat, private messages, and more.

ThinkBinder also lets you post stuff from the web using the Bind bookmarklet. This helps students in clipping, referencing, or sharing resources that members in the group can learn from. And while this tool is designed for study groups, it finds more mileage in other uses like meetings, as a private group network, or even as a tool for teachers.

NeatChat ~ Online discussion

| January 13, 2014 | 0 Comments 

Neat Chat is fast and easy way to have an online conversation with a group. No signups or software installs are required. You simply use a web browser to communicate, for free.

Any social media, and method of communicating with others, takes careful consideration.

To start a chat session, all you need to do is go to the homepage, enter your nickname, and click the Start Group button. Once you do that, your chat session is started, and your browser loads the session’s chat room. You then invite people by sending them the URL of the chat room. When your invitees access the URL, they enter the chat room to chat with you. It is as simple as that!

Neat Chat provides you a clean, fast, and robust chat room. You can share files, send private messages, and change your status through an intuitive interface.