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DropBox to Pages and Back Again on an IOS Device

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By in Accessibility on .

I have frequently used Pages on either my iPhone or iPad for taking notes, for reading documents, or for minor editing.  One issue I have always had with using Pages is that it was somewhat challenging to get documents in and out of it.  I usually resorted to e-mailing myself the document.  About a year ago DropBox added the ability to open a MS Word document in Pages.  This dramatically reduced the amount of e-mailing I had to do to myself.  About a month ago I discovered that Pages has added the ability to open a document in another app.  DropBox is one of the options when using the function.  This added feature has made it much easier for me to store my documents in DropBox and edit them on either a computer or mobile device.

One can open a DropBox file in Pages by finding file in DropBox. After selecting the file, select the Export button.  Finally, select the Open In button.  Moving a document from Pages back to DropBox is a similar process.  Start by opening the file in Pages.  Select the Tools button.  Select Share and Print, Select Open in Another App, Select an output format.  Finally, select the name of the document and DropBox as the app the file should be Opened in.  DropBox will now be opened, and it will be possible to save the document.

I recently attended a conference where my laptop became non-functional.  The above process made it easier for me to take notes.  When I returned, I was able to open the Notes in MS Word, proofread them, and Spellcheck them.  I have a tendency to make spelling errors while listening to a presentation, so the ability to proofread and spell check in a full-featured word processor, such as Microsoft Word, was very helpful.

David Schwarte

Digital Learning Badges at Purdue

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By in Mobile, Student Technology Kit on .

Studio by Purdue is proud to announce Passport, a digital badge learning platform developed here at Purdue University.

Passport allows instructors to create challenges that a student can complete to earn badges. Purdue’s Passport platform integrates with Mozilla Open Badges. Bill Watson, an assistant professor in Curriculum and Instruction, was instrumental in the creation behind Passport.

“Typically in courses, we have a number of very broad learning goals, and grades are given out on student assignments tied to these broad goals,” Watson says. “But really, it is more a comparison of students rather than a focus on student learning and attainment of desired learning outcomes.”

Passport provides a framework allowing students to earn badges through uploads, sharing links, taking assessments, and through instructor approvals.

Students can show what they know by displaying their digital learning badges through Passport’s portfolio app or as a  Mozilla OpenBadge. By actively sharing badges, students can display the evidence tied to each challenge, giving a clearer picture of their learned skills and competencies to potential employers.

Purdue is accepting test pilot applications for a limited number of beta users so that instructors everywhere can explore digital badges for learning. Visit http://purdue.edu/studio to find out more.

Morning Musings: FaceTime(beta) now available for Macs! Are you going to use it?

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By in Morning Musings on .

Officially launched yesterday shortly after their ‘Back to Mac’ release keynote, Apple has launched a beta release of FaceTime for Mac computers (Snow Leopard or higher).  The popular FaceTime video chat protocol was previously available for iPhone 4 and new iPod touch users with the inception of the front facing camera on the device.  FaceTime has been a heavily marketed and hyped feature of the new iPhone that Apple hopes will be just as popular on the desktop and is promised to be the easiest “one click video chat” tool.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2Wn7rYSBVQ&feature=player_embedded]

FaceTime for Mac is in beta so there may still be bugs or minor issues that pop up while using the software.  However, it will be interesting to see if users will flock to FaceTime.  Do you plan on using the service to chat with other Mac or iTouch/iPhone 4 users?

Morning Musings: Amazon kindle books outselling hardcover

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By in Morning Musings on .

With the emergence of Apple’s iPad, many have been wondering if there was still a place in the world for the Amazon Kindle or similar least robust or less featured e-readers.  Well, it turns out there is.  In 2010 Kindle books have been outpacing Hardcover books in sales from Amazon, and the actual e-readers have been selling like hotcakes.

“Over the past month, for every 100 hardcover books Amazon.com has sold, it has sold 180 Kindle books… We’ve reached a tipping point with the new price of Kindle—the growth rate of Kindle device unit sales has tripled since we lowered the price from $259 to $189…” – Amazon

Amazon’s Kindle software e-reader hits almost every major platform from desktop to all major mobile device platforms like the iOS, Android, and Blackberry.  Have you been buying more kindle books than paper ones this year?