Thursday, December 06, 2007

Article on Top Windows File Utilities

Lifehacker has a great article on what they consider the top 10 free Windows file utilities. I've used most of these utilities or ones like them. They are all very useful. The WinDirStat is very useful when you suddenly find out that all your free disk space has gone -- in my case, it usually turns out to be podcasts I've downloaded using iTunes.

I recommend that you try out all of these utilities. When you need them, you'll probably need them right away and you will want to have had some previous experience.

T

Friday, November 09, 2007

Adobe's Buzzword has some new tricks


Adobe has a new online editor which not surprisingly uses Flash to offer a rich editing environment. There are other on-line editors, such as Google Docs, but they all pretty much look like glorified text editors. Buzzword looks more like a traditional word processor. The functionality may not be different, but the attitude of your students and staff may be a lot better with with they will probably perceive as a more sophisticated application.

Here are some screen snapshots. Signing up is free.

T

Monday, October 29, 2007

Explore your ideas with exploratree


Exploratree is a new web site that allows you to create what they call thinking guides. I was impressed with the wide variety of concept maps on their web site -- and they are still in beta.

This site would be great for any form of analysis or brainstorming.
T

Monday, October 15, 2007

Earth blog day and green pc

October 15th is blog action day for global warming. While this is a school technology blog, we all have to live on this planet. So, I picked a device that is about as friendly a computer as possible. The Fit-PC is a small sized PC that consumes only 5 watts of power. It also produces no sound due to not having a fan.

This unit would be great for a number of situations where electrical power is not ample or noise is a concern. The small size would allow a small computer lab to bolt the unit to the bottom of a bench. The down side is the lack of CD-ROM drive and its lower performance. But let's face it, even a low-end PC has more than enough power for word processing and for Internet browsing. This unit can be installed with Windows XP or Linux. They don't say what will happen when Vista is the only Windows OS.

And, this makes for a good firewall. It may cost a bit more than reusing an old PC and open source firewall applications, but it can live in a small closet in a way that an old 486 tower could not.

T

Friday, October 05, 2007

Puppy Linux

LifeHacker has a good review on the recently released new version of Puppy Linux. To be honest, I've not heard of this version. I'm a fan of small form factors of Linux for older computers. This version is also designed to run from a USB flash device.

Running from a flash device can be a good feature for students who need the same application at home -- a likely situation if you're using Linux in the school. This removes the issue of not having the required application at home.

T

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What in the world is my computer doing?

One of the most common questions I get is: why is my computer suddenly going so slow? There are often explainable reasons, such as a new version of a program having been installed or a download of a patch in the background. But sometimes there isn't a clear answer. I found this blog posting which provides an easy way to capture what is connecting to the Internet. If nothing else, you'll learn just how many of your programs are communicating with the Internet. Most of them will.

This system is very useful but it may not discover today's Trojan horses. The new Trojans and spyware try to appear to be a legitimate program so that a personal firewall will not block its communication.

Give it a try. It doesn't cost anything and you'll probably learn something useful.

T

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Google announces its own "Power Point"

The lack of a presentation application was one of the problems with switching over to Google's online application suite. Now they have their own presentation application. If you already have Google Docs, you will find that when you go to create a new document, presentation will now be one of the options.

T

Monday, September 17, 2007

Easy Wiki for Kids


Wikis are great tools for schools. I've put in more than a few posts on wikis. The main problem for using a wiki for younger kids is that they have to learn an odd syntax to make the page. And making a nice looking page is quite a challenge. PikiWiki is more oriented to multimedia and to drag-and-drop editing. This is a system which younger students can use. It's also free.

T

Friday, September 14, 2007

CMS Review

Information Week has a done a nice short review on CMSes (Content Management Systems). People have been using CMSes for document management to web site construction. They are powerful tools to accomplish most anything because they combine the power of a database with the design skills of a fairly good web designer. The user needs very little expertise to make the system work.

There are many CMS systems and they don't do the same exact things. So, if you are clear as to what you want, the number of choices often goes down to a handful from that of dozens. The review is a good one but a few important CMSes were left off the. Read the comments to get a fuller picture.

T

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Another free Project Mangement Software

GanttProject is another project management software program that came to my attention via a posting on yesterday's OpenProj software. I'm not sure which is best, GanttProject has more screen snapshots and more listed features than does OpenProj. They both look great and they both work on all the major operating systems.

They both look like they are worth a shot. I don't use this type of software; please leave a comment if you have used one or both of these programs.

T

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Project Management Software for free

Project management has been one of those applications where there has not been a lot of open source activity. Now there is OpenProj to take on Microsoft Project. The difference is that OpenProj is designed to take on the desktop version of MS Project. If you need a server based version, the same firm has a commercial version that runs in cooperation with a server. For most schools, the desktop version will be just fine. District offices and construction projects will need to spend some money.

T

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Ophcrack: Your double-edged sword

Ophcrack is one of many password cracking tools. While I cannot attest to their claims that they can crack 99.9% of passwords within seconds, it does should like they can get most passwords quicker than you would like. One of their tricks is to have a very large number of passwords encrypted into their protected form. The software then compares the encrypted password it finds on your system with the ones it has made. Once it finds it, it then knows the password required for that pattern to be produced.

The good side of this program is that it can help you to unlock computers that you don't have the password for. This can happen when you either forget, someone as reset it to something you don't know, or the computer has been donated and the owner is not around.

But, the downside is more obvious. A student could put in the ophcrack CD, boot the computer off that CD and then get the password. While I'm not positive, I suspect that finger scanners would not be much help because the finger scanner is only to confirm you identity and then the system inserts a password. The password would be sitting on the system. Probably it's complicated enough that you don't have to worry, but you may want to find out. The only system I would have confidence in would be a smart card system where the password is always changing and checked against a server in a remote and hopefully well-protected location.

T

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Radio based computer communication



While in Mali I visited a regional communications center that transmitted market information collected by a market enumerator (see photo to right). The enumerator's job is to observe real market transactions taking place on a variety of important crops. That information is then transmitted by a form of ham radio to other regional centers and to the capital, Bamako.

Internet access in Africa is very expensive and unreliable. Most of the places we visited were using vstat connections. Those links are running about $1,000-1500 per month for a 128-256Kb connection. The use of a radio based system was not a great solution in terms of speed and each center does have to have a tall tower, but at least the costs of running the centers are not high once they are going. This is a very good example of a way to handle some of the harsher technology environments. And, by the way, the room we were in was almost 100 degrees and humid. How the head of the center was able to keep his coat on was a mystery to me. I was afraid to ask how long computer equipment would last in such an environment.

T

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Back from Africa

I just got back from a two week trip to Mali and Zambia. I saw some very interesting uses of radio-based education. I may post on some of these activities, but I have these and other postings at my project website: worldaginfo.org.

Here is a link for my photo album:

AfricanSiteVisits

Friday, July 27, 2007

Blowing in the dust

If you're like me you have plenty of very old computers coming across your work bench. I usually have a can of compressed air to clean off all the dust. Recently, I've come across information which may make my clean tendencies to be downright dangerous.

While I knew that using compressed air on a hot computer mother board was a bad idea because the extreme cold of the propellant could potentially crack the board, I had no thought of the possibility for static to be released. There is of course the concern of blowing dust deeper into the equipment and thus ruin an otherwise working computer.

Here's what I'm doing: I use a vacuum cleaner on keyboards, fan vents and drive bays. I used the compressed air on very dirty mother boards -- which have completely cooled down.

T

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Drop of a file

DropBoks offers the simplest interface I've seen for uploading a file that you or others can access at a later time. The site is both free and use encryption to secure the contents. You may send up to a 50 meg file.

T

Monday, July 16, 2007

Remote control and beyond

Controlling a remote computer can be useful for troubleshooting or for demonstration purposes. There are many expensive ways to do this and there are few free systems, such as VNC.

I've always liked VNC for remote control but it was not easy to use, especially when used with SSH encryption. ShowMyPC.com eliminates all that complexity and adds the additional service of allowing multiple units behind a firewall to communicate. This is not an easy thing because home users have rotating IP addresses. ShowMyPC can also be used for broadcasting a desktop for demonstration purposes. This often requires a lot of money. The expensive alternatives include neat features, such as voice, but it's been my experience that these advanced features don't always work well on less than great bandwidth.

T

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Getting the picture in math and science

Teaching math and science is not always easy to visualize. Equations are often nothing more than something to be memorized for the next test and then promptly forgotten. The University of Colorado has a fantastic site that models and demonstrates mathematical equations and many scientific concepts -- even Schrodinger's quantum wave model. Wonder how is cat is doing...

T

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Making a child-friendly PC


SendMeOn has a good article on how to create a child-friendly computer. The purpose of the article is to get people to donate their old computers or work on other people's old computers to make them available for children. That goal is something that a school computer club might find interesting or you could use the information for parents who ask what they can do to keep their children safe or what to do with an old computer they have laying around home.

T

Monday, July 02, 2007

What does Microsoft know about you?

The answer is quite a lot. This article gives the most complete list I've seen of what types of information Microsoft's Vista operating system collects and then sends to Microsoft. XP also collects information but not on this scale. Microsoft would certainly point out that this information goes into making their products better and their service to you more effective. That may not mean much to you if the government decides to collect these records -- as they have with searches on the major search sites -- or the RIAA figures out how to get them.

T

Monday, June 25, 2007

Back from India



It's been three long weeks but I had a great time and I learned a lot about how to make do with even less money than I'm accustomed to working with. I hope to bring some of that experience to this blog now that I'm back.

T

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Online Bibliography with a Twist

bibme is one of several tools I've seen to create bibliographies. What I like about this service -- in addition to it being free -- is that it can perform a search and then create bibliographies for the ones you pick. I just hope the students read the books they reference. This system would make it all too easy to pad a paper with references the student wouldn't even recognize they were placed in their hand.

T

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Google's new position on paid essay writing


The BBC is reporting that Google will stop selling advertisements for paid essay services. The Internet in general has made keeping students honest more difficult and paid essay services are one of the more obvious manifestations of this problem. Thanks, Google!

T

Monday, May 21, 2007

Bring out the dead!


<span class=LifeHacker has a story on how Staples will be accepting old computers and computer monitors at a price of $10 each. Keeping old equipment around isn't going to become any easier in the future. Most communities now prevent the disposal of computer equipment in the garbage because of all the toxic ingredients.

T

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Just Scratch-ing the surface

The BBC has an interesting write-up on a new programing system that allows students to create multimedia presentations without a high level of programing. It works on both Macs and Windows and is free.

Looks very interesting. If you have experience with it, please enter a post.

T

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Put your computer in oil

I've been thinking about what would happen if I put a computer in a tub of oil, but I was too afraid the result would be a big fire. Apparently, it's not a big deal and it could make for an interesting school science project. Just discussing the issues of heat would make for a number of interesting classes.

Here is an article on how to make the oil-bath computer.

T

Monday, May 14, 2007

SELinux and what it means to you

SELinux is a system and not yet another version of Linux -- we certainly have enough of those. SELinux is a security system that locks down the internal operations of program or process so that even if there is a bug in an application, the hacker will not be able to exploit it because the SELinux will forbid the hacker to use the compromised application in any unauthorized method.

Here is a good article on SELinux.

T

Friday, May 11, 2007

AJAX and Sun's new product

AJAX is one of the hottest new technologies on the web. It is a core technology for the entire Web 2.0 world. AJAX, which is the system which provides interactivity and customizability, is not one single technology. In fact, it may surprise you to learn that Microsoft is the first major implementer of AJAX with it's Exchange mail web portal.

Sun has long been a player in the AJAX world with its Java Script, but now it is releasing a new framework that looks almost as easy to use but far more powerful. Here is an article that compares the major AJAX systems -- including the new Sun announcement.

T

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

ColorJack

ColorJack is an online tool which helps web designers to pick the right set of colors. Graphic designers know about selecting compatible colors but most people only know when things look right. This color picker will help you to get the things looking "right" sooner.

T

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Google Calendar Connector

GCALDaemon is a process a way to allow you to synchronize your Google Calendar with Sunbird, an open source cousin of FireFox and ThunderBird.

This is a great idea because you don't want to miss appointments because of being off-line.

T

Monday, April 30, 2007

Reducing your digital foot print


I recently had the opportunity to attend the 2007 GEL conference and listen to Mark Hurst describe the concepts behind his new book, "Bit Literacy." Mark's essential concept is that knowing how to operate a computer application is one form of intelligence and knowing when to use an application is another form of intelligence. His most striking observation is that users are using their email inboxes as all purpose tools -- a task they were not intended for or well suited to perform. He recommends that users process the messages that come in every day and go home with the inbox having been completely emptied. This does not mean that everything in the messages has been done, but rather that the information in the messages have been processed. Processing means that assignments are put in a task list and events are put in a calendar, etc.

At first the concepts seemed too simple for the complex issues of information overload, but after reading his book and trying out some of his concepts -- I'm still working on other areas -- I've become convinced that his ideas workable. They may not be pleasant but I could not come up with a solution to information overload that was less unpleasant.

While I have always been fairly good at handling my email, I have to say that Mark's zero inbox solution is a real help. I know each morning that what's in my inbox needs to be dealt with and when there is no more messages in the inbox, that I'm done. The effect is less stress and greater effectiveness. Just think of how many times you look at old emails in the inbox and have to think what they are and if you need to do something about them. I had not realized what a hidden drain that was until now.

Why am I posting this on a blog dedicated to education? Well, first if makes life more productive and it even reduce the load on your email and file servers. Mark also has some very good recommendations regarding file names and folder structures. If you replace "projects" with "classes" his observations make a lot of sense.

This book is certainly worth a read.

T

Thursday, April 26, 2007

1 Terabyte Drives


The arrival of the new one-terabyte drives is just one reminder of how fast storage capacity is growing. The one-terabyte limit seems like a significant milestone.

What does this mean? Well, it means server storage can be consolidated and it means that information needs not be moved off to archives or deleted. It also allows you to store videos and other storage hogs on the hard drive.

As this trend continues, we may seen entirely new patterns for backing up data and in what we store on the disks. While this will probably be a good overall change, the sheer size of the data stored will become a burden on other aspects of the computer -- and to our ability to make sense from all the information at our finger tips.

T

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Backup4All


I've been testing out Backup4all's professional backup tool. I have to say that it has worked well and provides useful ways to look at stored data. While virtually all backup programs will do a good job of backing up, not all have good interfaces. It's not free, but at $50 for the professional version, it's close enough.

T

Monday, April 23, 2007

20Q is more than fun and games


2oQ is an online "game" that allows users to answer a series of 20 questions about something they are thinking about. 20Q uses artificial intelligence to figure our what the answer is. As more people uses the system, 20Q learns to be better. The system can even accept a few wrong answers and still figure out the answer. This system is very useful for your students to learn a bit about artificial intelligence and about how regular computers operate.

T

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Google's new presentation application

Google's announcement that they are going to offer a presentation application along the lines of Power Point is of particular interest to schools. The reason I believe this to be the case is because students usually don't require the advanced features of a Microsoft Office. They also don't require Outlook or Access. The applications they need are presentation, word processing, and spreadsheets. They also need a graphic editing and/or paint program. But that's not really in Office, so the comparison is not relevant.

This means that you can have your students use Google Docs for all their school work. Because of the free storage and collaboration features, your work will be reduced significantly. I'll make another posting after I get to play with new application.

And, BTW, Google Spreadsheets now has charts. Students love to create charts.

T

Friday, April 13, 2007

OLPC Interface


The OLPC program could be a total bust or it could revolutionize the education of children in poorer parts of the world. I like the fact that they are justifying the $100 price based against books and not against other computers. I think you have to show how money that is already present can be redirected. Of course, much of that money is never used or budgeted, but at least it's there in theory.

Anyway, the OLPC people have release screen shots of their system and you can even download the working system to see how it functions. Getting the hardware is another story all together. As far as I know, the general public cannot purchase these units.

T

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Adobe Spry

I recently came across Adobe's labs section of their web site. One of the more interesting projects is called "Spry." Spry is a collection of AJAX type of tools. Web designers can use the collections of computer code to add functionality to their web sites. It does not appear to be difficult to do and I think a computer-savvy bunch of students working on a web site would really like Spry.

T

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Understanding UNIX Processes

IBM has prepared a series of articles on understanding UNIX. One article I particularly liked is the one on understanding UNIX processes. While it is pretty easy to work with multiple applications at the same time in a graphic interface, it is far less intuitive on how to do this in a command line environment.

Being able to control processes can be very useful. For example, you start a very long task, such as searching a huge hard drive, and you want to do something else as the window scrolls by with thousands of lines of results. This can be done. Or, let's say that an application is slowing down your server more than you expected and you want to stop it for a few hours. This can be done, as well. Learning these commands will make your time on a UNIX/Linux server a much more productive one. These commands will also work within OS X given that OS X is a UNIX system.

T

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Debian 4.0 Released

DeskTopLinux has a write-up on the recently released Debian 4.0. Apparently, it's a major upgrade. I've used Debian on a number of servers and have been very impressed. This version has a copy of Astrix phone system installed. This inclusion could make Debian a fast way to test out Astrix.
The release of Debian's newest version is also important because many other distributions of Linux are build using Debian. So expect to see many more upgrades in the near future. Debian is also good about producing CD-ROM images which can be used to run Debian from a CD-ROM for testing purposes. Obviously, one cannot do practical work on a CD-ROM based system, but you can test the look-and-feel of the software.

Another thing you can do with the CD-ROM versions is to run a low-end computer as a firewall. Running the OS from a CD-ROM makes it virtually impossible for a hacker to modify the files. You would still require a hard drive for log files and temporary files. You could use a floppy disk for configuration settings or configure the software before burning the CD-ROM.

T

Friday, April 06, 2007

Peepel Online Applications


Google is not the only provider with a free set of online applications. Peepel also a free system. It' seems pretty basic in terms of functions but might be a good solution for younger students.

T

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

How Encryption Works


Here is a nice article on how encryption works. I find that many people don't understand the fundamentals of encryption. Given that encryption is in many products, it's important to understand.

T

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Getting up to Speed on Word 2007

The new version of Microsoft Office is a major shift. The addition of a menu ribbon is new to the Windows platform. There is something like it in Word for the Mac, but it's not called the same thing. ComputerWorld has written an article that describes the tricks to learning Word 2007. Normally, I tell people to hold off on new versions of software, but everything I've read indicates the new version of Office is worth looking at sooner rather than later. Do remember that the new file format is not compatible with older versions of Word unless the recipient downloads a free file converter. You can also save in an older version of Word. In any case, you should be testing out the new version on your personal system so that you are ready to roll it out to your users.
T

Monday, April 02, 2007

Learning Flickr

I thought Flickr was fairly easy to use until I had to tell others that they should use it. I soon got a number of questions about how to use it. I found a nice article that describes how to learn the ropes.

Flickr is a great way to host photos for school newspapers, art/photography classes, school trips, and school reports. With a little money, Flickr offers many more useful features. Give it a try.

T

Friday, March 30, 2007

New Google Notebook


I've been using Google's Notebook clipping service for some time. While it's not as feature-rich as my old favorite, Onfolio, it is web-based and thus more handy. The new version just released has a few small improvements. Not a lot but enough to keep me from looking elsewhere.

T

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Intel's Anser to One Laptop Per Child

Intel and Microsoft have not been very happy about the One Laptop Per Child program. It's not that they don't like the general idea of using technology to help children around the world; rather, it is that they believe it should be done another way. Microsoft wants to see Windows -- OLPC uses Linux -- and Intel wants to use the millions of units being distributed with Intel chips -- not OLPC's AMD chips.

Here is a review of Intel's inexpensive laptop. And, yes, it does run Windows if one adds more memory -- not an uncommon requirement for Windows. ;-). Personally, I don't like it as much. The traditional screen technology eats up lots more energy -- and where's the crank? This unit might work in the US and other places looking for a rugged laptop for k-12 students, but I don't see it being as good as the OLPC unit for the rest of the world.

T

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Wireless Security Myths

George Ou at ZDnet has written a good article on some of the myths related to wireless security. Given that I hear these frequently mentioned. Read what he has to say.

T

Friday, March 23, 2007

ConceptShare


ConceptShare is an online design sharing system. While there are a number of online collaboration systems, this one excels at collaborating on images. If your school has a newspaper or year book, this might be a useful tool. It could also be a fun tool for students who need to work in teams on projects with a significant amount of graphic work -- such as an art class. The system is not free, but it's not nearly as expensive as other systems I've reviewed.

T

Thursday, March 22, 2007

New Version of TrueCrypt


TrueCrypt has just announced a new version of their encryption software. Everyone is going in their direction, but they are still ahead of most of the new solutions in terms of being cross-platform and feature-rich. The new version works on Vista and adds a number of useful features. It's free and easy to play with.

T

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Adding Calendars to Your Site


Adding calendars to a web site is not easy if you don't have a CMS system, such as Joomla! or Drupal. Here is an article that reviews three easy ways to add calendars.

==Thane

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Minix Operating System


If you're like me, I've not heard of the Minix system before. Here is an interesting journal article on done by the FreeSoftware Magazine. It is something like Linux in that it took lessons from UNIX with the intention of running on lower-end hardware. Minix became a learning tool for students wanting to learn about operating system kernels. The kernel is the heart of the operating system. Minix's kernel is very small and thus fairly easy to study. No the people behind Minix have come out with a new version that does many of the things Linux does but on lower-end hardware. It's worth taking a look if you teach computer science or want a possible solution for what to do with old 386 and 486 computers.

T

Monday, March 19, 2007

Another PDF Creator


I love PDF as a format but I don't like the price of the Acrobat creator program. Here is one firm, Foxit, that produces a PDF creator at a much cheaper price. There are some free programs, but they don't always have advanced features.

T

Friday, March 16, 2007

Keep Track of your Network


FreeMeter is an open source tool that gives you the ability to see what's going on with your network connection. It has tools that display the volume of traffic and tools that allow you to test connections. If you find that you are often wondering if something is wrong with your computer or with your network connection, this tool may help you to decide.

T

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Getting Online Help with Signing

Mobilsign has a great service that allows you to put in a word and then see a video showing how it is signed. It's too slow for any sort of conversation, but it can help you remember something you may have forgotten.

T

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Need a silent computer?


There are situations where a noisy computer is simply not acceptable. There are a few computers that make any sound. Here is a Linux-based computer that does not have a hard drive or a fan.

T

Monday, March 12, 2007

Understanding Wikipedia

Here is an article which provides answers to some of the many questions you probably receive regarding Wikipedia.

T

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Asterisk made easy


Asterisk is a very good open source telephone system. The people I know who have one love the system after the pain and suffering of installation. Trixbox removes the installation pain out of the equation. So, if you have a small telephone system, you should check out trixbox.
T

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Wake up and smell the coffee -- DST is coming

Daylight Savings Time is different this year for people in the US. It starts March 11th. What this means can be a simple as your computers being an hour off to being out of compliance with laws that could get you and your organization into big trouble.

If you have XP, you should be okay. There are certain areas of the world, that require an additional download, but you should be doing checks for downloads on a regular basis. Windows 2000 computers do require updating and older versions of Linux also require help. Here is a good article on what to do with Linux server.

T

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Automate the security of your Linux servers

A firm called ConfigServer Services is offering a free script that will run a security assessment on many Linux versions. The script goes through the myriad of configuration settings to make sure that the most secure options have been selected. An operating system is no more secure than its settings. A poor job of configuration can make any operating system open to attack.

There are a number of similar services, such as Bastille, that should also be considered. Bastille also works on OS X.

T

Friday, March 02, 2007

Free Whiteboard - skrbl


skrbl -- yes, that's how it's spelled -- is a new online whiteboard application. It's still in beta testing, but it looks interesting. There are other systems that do this type of work, but there are not many that are free.

T

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Open Source Science Application


Scilab is an open source software program which handles a wide variety of mathematical calculations. This program appears well-suited to the university and advanced high school student. It runs on a variety of operating systems, so this could be a good solution for a heterogeneous computer environment.

T

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

WordPerfect Lightning


I use to really admire WordPerfect. It had one of the best DOS word processors going. While I seem to find WordPerfect on most new computers, this new research tool, Lightning, may be something you will want. The main downside I saw was that there isn't Mac support. The features look good.

T

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

xFruits to collect and distributed RSS-based info

xFruits appears to work much like Yahoo! Pipes. It takes RSS data and does all types of tricks with it. You can collect a variety of sources and then redistribute the information in ways the original source did not even imagine possible. This could be very useful for teachers wanting to distribute information on certain topics. I could also be used to collect emergency information and then send alerts to staff.

T

Monday, February 26, 2007

Arranging Complicated Meetings

I've been having a lot of trouble recently planning meetings where many people have to be accommodated. While I found a few paid systems that did this work, Diarised is a free online system that appears to get the job done. I'll let you know how it works out.

T