Monday, October 24, 2011

What I Learned at CUEBC 2011 Conference

imageWhat an amazing, yet busy day at the recent CUEBC conference.  As a volunteer member of the executive, this is our largest event of the year.  We look forward to and dread the rush of the day.  So many conversations and so little time.

This year was overwhelmingly positive, well worth the effort.  How else can you be in a building with 400 like-minded educators learning, sharing and thinking.

Highlights

  • Keynote David Warlick was outstanding.  Although I was in another part of the building during the keynote, the live webcast thanks to UpperSports made it possible to participate remotely.  Already there is an archive of the event!
  • Twitter continues to grow in terms of adoption and use.  When we first introduced twitter hashtags at a conference three years ago it was a small group who participated.  My estimate is there were 100+ educators active on twitter on Friday using the tag #CUEBC, enough that the tag become a trending topic on the live trendmap.
  • Great presenters – I managed to attend a few sessions and learned from other educators.
  • Sponsors have so much to offer! I know that other non-profit organizations hesitate when it comes to including sponsors but our decision on including them has always been that they offer something to our members.  Companies like Adobe provide teachers with tools that we use on a daily basis and bringing them to a conference allows our members time to ask questions and network.
  • Welcome to everyone who attended who are now members of CUEBC and also to our two new executive members!

Learning Links

Fabulous learning summary from CUEBC presenter Phil Macoun on his blog here.

Feedback?

If you were there or if you just followed the discussion on twitter post a comment on your insights.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Android for Education: first look at the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1

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If you don’t already have a tablet computer, it is probably on your wish list.  Sales of these new types of computers has has exploded and continue to beat all expectations.  Apple’s iPad, the inventor of this type of computing is clearly the industry leader.  What I wanted to explore is if there are good reasons to look further than the iPad.  The Computer Using Educators of BC recently gave me the opportunity to find out!

I’m now equipped with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.  Early reports make this a remarkable device.  It has the best screen on the market, it is running the latest version of Google Android 3.1 Honeycomb and has the processor and speed to match.

Unpacking: what’s in the box

A surprisingly simple package included the bare necessities.  Just the tablet, power cords and a 4 page getting started guide.  It was an additional cost but a necessary one to purchase a screen protector ($19.99), folding portfolio case ($59.99) and a HD video connector ($29.99).  CUEBC bought the Galaxy Tab from BestBuy.

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Measures to Compare?

Here are some of the metrics that I’d like to explore in the coming weeks to find out if Apple has finally met it’s match in the Samsung Tab.

  • Impact  - does the Samsung leave a positive impression?
  • Apps – does the Android market have the development community behind it? 
  • Communication – how is the device surfing the internet and connecting to a wide variety of social networks?
  • Performance – speed and ease of use?
  • Value – does the price match the product?

Feedback

Interested in hearing from others, what features does the iPad have that make it irresistible for education?

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