Tuesday, July 28, 2009

File Magic review

Okay...this is pretty cool. Using Splash Data's File Magic desktop and iPhone app, I am typing this blog post in the email component of the File Magic desktop app. Once I am done, since I have no data connection from my laptop, I simply hit "send" and the email moves over to the open File Magic app on the iPhone, and then I can simply use the iPhone's cellular data connection to send this post! (Now, I know I could have typed this message directly on the iPhone, but it is quite long, and it is easier to use the full-size keyboard for this purpose!)

However, that email component is secondary to the main strengths of File Magic. This app allows you to easily move files, with both the iPhone/Touch app and the desktop app (Mac/Windows) open, from your desktop to your iPhone, or just via the iPhone app from iPhone to iPhone. These both work as long as both devices are on the same wireless network or accessing a WAP on the same network. You could just use the File Magic app on the iPhone/Touch as a data transfer-and-storage app if you wanted to.

But, the File Magic app on the iPhone/Touch also allows you view several different file types, some of which are not native to the iPhone or iPod Touch. If you move a Word doc, a MS Powerpoint presentation, an Excel spreadsheet, or an Adobe PDF file to the iPhone/Touch, you can view it through the File Magic app on the device. Pretty sweet!

You can find out more about the $4.99 app here if you are interested:
http://www.splashdata.com/filemagic/ or in the App Store in iTunes.

Interesting phenomenon

I have been noticing something more and more lately. When I chaperoned the recent 8th grade trip to New York City, I observed that students in every pair of seats were sharing a single set of earbuds attached to one music or DVD player; one student was using the left one and one was using the right. I wondered how it sounded, since one student was listening to the right channel and one to the left. Was one hearing just the melody and one hearing just the bass line?

I also noticed this was not happening because every other student did not have some type of a device. Every student on the bus seemed to have a music player of some sort.

I would never think of sharing music this way. I guess this has become a common practice because, first, many of the popular audio players do not have a speaker, so the use of a headphone is the only way to listen to the music, and, second, the dramatic rise in the use of the earbud style of headphone lends itself well to this practice.

Interestingly enough, I noticed a few laptops at the local computer store that now have two audio-out jacks built-in. Well, at least if students are sharing a movie on this brand of computer, they will each have access to the full stereo experience via their own set of earbuds!

Have you noticed any other "interesting" cultural practices lately due to technology advances?

Photo attribution:

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

NECC 2009 Interview

After my presentation on Tuesday, ISTE asked to interview me about a few things for the home audience who were watching via Ustream. That video is below. After watching it, I have adopted a couple of new rules for myself.
  1. Don't give an interview directly after presenting to 1500 people. The adrenalin is still flowing and I seem a tad frenetic!
  2. Don't give an interview in a referee's uniform (or any costume for that matter!)
  3. Learn to control my hand movements, thought this will probably be unlikely.
  4. I know I slow down my speech when I present, but, boy, I was whipping through this interview!
  5. Go get lunch first, then do the interview...
However, I don't think I did too bad with the content, so I am happy with that, anyhow!