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How do you use your iPad with a projector? For example, how do you project a slide show, make annotations, and display what you type on a screen? Are there other apps that allow for other interesting classroom activities?
You have an iPad, a vga cable, and a projector. Plug it all in and what happens? Not much. You will not be able to see your iPad screen on a projector. That is, you can’t just plug it into a projector and have it display, or mirror, whatever you are seeing or doing on the iPad. Instead of building into the iPad the ability to mirror its display, the projection function is available only at the application level. What does that mean for you? You will need to look for apps that include “vga” support, and those apps will display only certain screens in the app. Fortunately, the number of apps that support vga is growing.
Let’s start with some simple ones. If you want to display a web page on a projector, Safari won’t do it. The options are to use a different browser or another app that includes web browsing capabilities. Both Atomic Web ($.99) and Perfect Web ($2.99) are web browsers like Safari. Perfect Web has several additional features that make it well worth the $2.99. Tabs, hand gestures, and the ability to act like different kinds of browsers so you can display a web page to its best advantage are a few. Try it and you may never go back to Safari again.
Several apps include the ability to browse the web among their other functions. For example, GoodReader and iAnnotate are primarily designed for you to download, read and annotate PDF files but include the ability to display web pages as well. More on those below.
For displaying slide shows? Keynote is Apple’s slide show creator, and it does what it does elegantly and simply. However, while you can create and display your slides with Keynote (or import your PowerPoint or PDF files to edit and display) you cannot annotate your slides while projecting a slideshow. There are other apps that can. After trying out several I find myself returning most often to 2Screens ($4.99). This app allows you to call up ppt, pdf, rtf, even docx files and draw or write annotations on them. You can open several documents, then tab back and forth between these documents and a blank whiteboard to write additional notes. Notice I say write and draw, not type. The annotations that you can create with 2Screens are those which you do with a stylus or finger. There is a note feature built in so you can type and store notes in your slideshow. However, these notes are only visible to you–they are not displayed.
Any drawbacks? The annotations made in 2Screens are not saved with the presentation, but you can save a screenshot of each slide with its annotations. Another thing that might take some practise to get used to is the way 2Screens displays your ppt slides. You can choose to have it automatically create thumbnails of all slides. These are displayed to you but not projected, making it fairly easy to skip from slide to slide. Or, you can move from slide to slide by vertically scrolling. The practise part is necessary because you are ‘finger scrolling’ and so need to line the slides up to the screen as you go. It’s not hard, just something to be aware of. So, by all means, create in Keynote, but display and annotate in 2Screens.
If you want to do typed annotations on a slide show the choices are more limited. Infonet Presenter ($9.99) is similar to 2Screens in that you can open ppt pdf files and annotate them. It also lets you open a variety of image and video files, even xls files. You can annotate with finger/stylus drawing but it adds the ability to type in a text box that you draw on the screen. You can collect a variety of files and images, place them in a folder that you then use for a presentation. This is particularly nice if the slideshow is composed of many images; no more having to mess about with PowerPoint, dragging dropping and resizing, when you simply want to display lots of images. Just drag them all into a Librry in Infonet Presenter and away you go. This is a somewhat different approach to presenting material and the app as a whole has some quirks. So, worth a look but may not be precisely what you need.
So how can you project text as you type it? Surprisingly, presentation apps are not the best choice. Instead, take a look at some of the note-taking apps that are available. Some now come with vga support. My favorite at the moment is Noterize ($3.99), but PaperDeskLT ($1.99) is also worth a look.
Like the other annotation apps, Noterize let’s you open a variety of file types (ppt, pdf, txt, images or even snapshots of web pages) and then draw or write on them. If you insert a new blank page you can type on that page, or you can annotate a page with a text box into which you can type. There are several fonts and font sizes available as well as a handful of colors. You can even turn on audio recording and attach that recording to your notes. These notes can be exported to Google Docs, Facebook, Twitter, Box.net, Dropbox, Email, or opened in any iPad apps that support “Open In” for these file types. To save a copy of the note with the audio intact, you save it as a pdf+audio file that will be transferred and accessible through iTunes.
PaperDeskLT is a similar product, simpler and less fully-featured than Noterize but contains the basics: text, drawing, audio that can be stored on the iPad or stored and synced with an account at paperdesk. It takes a slightly different approach to vga display: you need to create the notes as a “vga whiteboard” to display them, that is, when creating a new note you can choose the standard notebook or a vga whiteboard. You cannot simply display any notebook that you have created.
Other notable vga apps? Penultimate ($1.99), the handwriting and annotating app is a delight. No typing, but everything else works simply and smoothly. As mentioned above, iAnnotate ($9.99) and GoodReader ($2.99) both have vga display capabilities. Both are wonderful at storing and organizing your files. GoodReader annotations are particularly good because you can send the annotated files to yourself or others by email, with the annotations stored directly on them. Another plus is the way you get files into GoodReader. I find the apps that have to talk to iTunes are just annoying. GoodReader can access files by webdav, through a web browser, by email, etc. And, once the files are in GoodReader you can project them or a simple “Open in” command lets you open the files right in 2Screens for projecting and annotating. Fast. Easy.
And then there is AirSketch ($7.99). All of the apps mentioned above work with your projector by plugging your iPad into the projector itself. AirSketch takes a different approach. You connect a laptop to the projector, fire up a browser on the laptop (must be HTML5 compatible, like Firefox, Safari, Chrome), direct the browser to the address AirSketch tells you, then walk away from the laptop. You carry the iPad around the room and write on the iPad screen from wherever you are. What you write will be appear on the laptop screen and be projected from there. You can open pdf files, open ppt files that have been saved as pdf, or open images and annotate all those as well. Since the display is your laptop, you can even start a screencasting program on that laptop and capture what you are drawing or writing on your iPad as it is being displayed on the projector. The educational possibilities are obvious: project a piece of code, a formula, some grammatical errors or piece of writing, pass the iPad around and have students annotate what’s on the screen up front. Have students draw graphs on the iPad and project those. This one definitely deserves a look.
So, there’s a quick round up of some of the current vga enabled apps. If you are a UVMer and would like to see any of these in action just let me know. I’d be happy to show them to you (email@example.com). And for a little screencast of AirSketch in action, here you go: AirSketch
If you have been using Zotero, the bibliographic management plug-in for the Firefox browser, you may have wished for a standalone version that you can use offline as well as online. Just announceed today are two changes that will be most welcome:
1) Zotero will soon be available as a plug-in for Google Chrome, Apple Safari, and Microsoft Internet Explorer.
2) It will soon be available as a standalone program for Mac, Windows, and Linux.
They are also releasing their application programming interface (API) to developers so that they can “integrate a full range of Zotero features into their own web, mobile, and desktop applications.”
Full announcement at: http://www.zotero.org/blog/zoteros-next-big-step/
Will the iPad save or destroy education? Is it the device that will revolutionize scholarship or is it merely a gadget that differs from many others not by its potential but simply by its marketing? The cloud is already abuzz with posts on either side of these questions; some extravagant praises, others equally extravagant jeremiads.
One way to approach iPad use in education is to explore what can actually be done with it. At the first iPad for Scholars roundtable at the CTL we discussed several apps that are useful for scholars. These can be categorized as apps that are designed for:
- collecting, storing and reading ebooks
- Stanza – ebook reader (reads ePub and eReader books, not Kindle books). Links to a library, free and non-free books, free sheet music, can download books purchased from Fictionwise. Can share books from your Mac or Windows version of Stanza.
- Kindle – ebook reader. Syncs with your Kindle.
- Nook – Barnes&Noble’s ebook reader.
- FreeBooks, ePubBooks – more books!
- storing, reading, and annotating PDF files
- Goodreader – for reading all kinds of files, especially PDFs (it will re-flow text to fit page). Coming soon in version 3: PDF annotation.
- iAnnotate – “integrates its annotations directly into the PDF such that they will be available to any standard PDF readers like Adobe Reader or Preview. You can transfer PDFs via email, iTunes sync or even clicking any PDF web link in the integrated web browser.”
- creating documents, notes or other content, either through hand writing, typing, or dictating
- accessing and editing documents that exist in other places (ex: Google Docs, docs on other local devices)
- DocsToGo – open, read, and edit .doc, .ppt. .xls files; access these files on your iPad, from Google Docs or other online services, or from a folder on your Mac.
- SharePlusLite – connect to your Sharepoint sites
- WordPress – access and edit your blog from your iPad (that’s how I wrote this!). WordPress is the new UVM blog tool for public blogging. Check it out at http://blog.uvm.edu
- browsing the web or accessing content
- Instapaper – save web pages for later offline reading
- Atomic Web – an alternative to Safari
- NYTimes – Editor’s Choice is the free iPad app (news, business, technology, opinions, arts, features, videos). Other sections available as iPhone/Touch app (will appear small on your iPad screen.
- NPR – news, live streams, etc.
- Pandora – access radio stations via your iPad
- Time Management apps – mentioned in our session were Things, Easy Task, OmniFocus, and Taska. Several of those, and others, are reviewed here.
- iPad management apps:
Another category that we are all waiting for, bibliographic management apps, is on the horizon. As of this writing there is no specific app for Endnote, but Zotero is inching closer as is the Mac-only reference manager, Sente.
For those wishing to create ebooks, a number of solutions exist, some of which we will look at in the coming months.
Our first roundtable on the iPad, “iPads for Scholars,” was held at the Center for Teaching and Learning, Wednesday, 9/8/2010. As one might expect, the web has been awash with articles, opinions, and comments about the iPad. Here are a few, from a variety of sources, that address some of the issues and in so doing represent common themes and memes. Some are enthusiastic, some are naysayers, some seem to be clear attempts at ‘first kids on the block’ headline grabbers:
Notre Dame Launches First Paperless ‘iPad Class’ - By Timon Singh, Inhabitat, Sept. 7, 2010
How Schools are Putting the IPad to Work - By Joel Mathis (of Macworld), PCWorld, Aug. 26, 2010
iPad: The New Big Gadget on Campus – By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun, Aug. 22, 2010
50 Useful Resources for Students With an iPad – Accredited Online Colleges Blog, July 27, 2010 (links)
Apple’s iPad Goes to College – By Chris Foresman, cnn.com, July 26, 2010
iPad for Education Revisited – By Lee Wilson, The Education Business Blog, June 2, 2010
First iPad University Course: An Interview with Eric Greenburg of Notre Dame – By The eLearning Coach, May 16, 2010
iPad more resources on whether it is any good in the classroom – By David Hopkins, elearning blog don’t waste your time, May 7, 2010 (with links and quotes from others)
University Presses Get Creative in an iPad World – By Hannah Elliott, Forbes.com, May 6, 2010
Will the iPad Revolutionize Higher Education? – By Adam Peck, Think Magazine, April 21, 2010
University to Provide iPads for All New Students – By Lauren Indvik, The Mashable Apple, March 30, 2010
The iPad and the Historian – By Sean Kheraj, Canadian History and Environment, January, 28, 2010
iPads in Education – an ongoing NING with links and comments from many
Next up: What’s on your iPad?
Today I attended the UVM McNair Scholars Symposium and was struck by the poise, knowledge, and presentation skills these young people possessed. I was able to stay for three of the presentations. The topics were impressive: Refugee Resettlement in VT, Affirmative Action from the African American perspective, and Improving support for African American students at two predominately white institutions. I couldn’t help but think about the amazing experiences these scholars had over the course of the summer in the McNair program. Each scholar gained the experience of doing authentic research, presentation skills for their conference at Penn State, as well as UVM, and learned to answer complex questions about their research in front of an audience.
Each year the Center for Teaching and Learning works with the McNair Scholars Program to kick off the summer with a two day “Laptop Training”. We have the pleasure of meeting the Scholars and working with them on a variety of research software as well as presentation skills. I hope they get as much out of that training, as I did watching them present at the Symposium. I was very proud of them and all that they accomplished this summer. I know they all have bright futures ahead of them as UVM graduates and McNair Scholars.
We are holding a Colleague Tea on Wednesday October 8th (3pm-4pm) to discuss the use of Virtual Worlds in Higher Education as part of a course or assignment. Come to 303 Bailey/Howe for some Coffee/Tea, goodies and some very good conversation. UVM English Professor, Richard Parent and Holly Parker from the UVM Center for Teaching and Learning will co-facilitate the discussion. Please bring your experiences, ideas, and questions. Register online at http://uvm.edu/ctl/register/. You may also be interested in the article from THE VIEW on the use of Second Life in the School of Business on campus.
Please take a look at all of our events at the Center for Teaching and Learning this semester on our events calendar.
Hope to see you this semester.
I attended the Campus Technology conference this year. The topic was WEB 2.0 technologies in Higher Education. I was excited to attend and learn more. Surprisingly I learned the most participating in the “back channel” of the conference on Twitter. I had never tried this before at a conference and I was pleasantly surprised by the comradarie and knowledge that developed between strangers. Before the conference, I signed up to network with people at the conference. One person on the list developed a twitter feed and google site for the group.
I found this so helpful. People would post notes and links from the various sessions they were attending to the feed. This way you really could be in more then one place at a time.
One session I found to be well delivered and informative was about Second Life use in Higher Education Sarah Robbins from Ball State University was the presenter. She posted a link to her PowerPoint file from the presentation on her blog.
She started the presentation by talking about the 7 principles by A. Chickering and S. Erhmann, as well as the belief that she has the I happen to agree with which is “Learning first and technology second!
Creepy Treehouse is a term that Sarah referred to in her presentation. Second Life is an application that students already like and use for fun, so why not try seeing how they can learn from it as well? Sarah has experienced a ton of success using this tool to teach a variety of concepts, including discrimination. I look forward to exploring Second Life more and talking with faculty on the UVM campus who have used it. We will be holding a Colleague Tea on the use of Second Life in a Higher Education course, this semester.
Center for Teaching and Learning
We get the opportunity to learn iMovie this morning! Lucky people!! It is one of our favorite software packages to learn. This is a place where we are listing resources for the course for Educational Value as well as general How To’s. Feel free to suggest additional resources to add to this blog posting. Have fun and learn a lot today.
Click here to complete the Video Workshop Survey.
Click Here to take Endnotes Workshop survey
Endnotes Web Site, this is a great starting point for all resources and support related to Endnotes.
UVM libraries Web Site about Endnote
Download the file to search UVM libraries in ENDNOTE here!
Enjoy EndNote. It is a very nice tool. (when it works correctly!!)
See us at the CTL Dr Is In if you need additional help.