Mobile Phone WhiteBoard app

WhiteBoard app4DSoftTech has a free WhiteBoard app which is so easy to use on a mobile phone. I would not even have considered a WhiteBoard app as an option on my phone but this one has good functionality and is easy to use.KidsBoard I actually like the KidsBoard. I think it is wrongly named! I use this aspect of WhiteBoard a lot because there are so many good features if you want to put something together. The WhiteBoard site explains very clearly what it can do and gives some good visual information as well. It is exclusively an Android app at this stage. There are other apps on their site you might like to investigate.

Graphical Input Language software system (GRAIL)

GRAIL

Curvature

Were it not for Jack Schaedler’s article Back to the Future of Handwriting Recognition I’d still be living in ignorance. For a start I was unaware it was the 50th anniversary of handwriting recognition software and then it did not ever occur to me that it is all about data points, co-ordinates and mathematics. I had never asked myself the question, “How exactly does a digital device replicate drawing and handwriting? “

This recognition scheme meets its primary objective of enabling any user to communicate naturally with a computer. A user is not distracted by any operational mechanics but, rather, may concentrate on [their] problem.”

– Gabriel Groner (1966)

Exactly. I have just used the drawing functions on a device. Yet understanding them is a wonderful insight into a practical and seemingly necessary part of our modern lives. We like to use digital devices for drawing and handwriting. Jack Schaedler does more than make a good case for it. He explains the mathematics, the processes and the logic behind how a device recognizes and creates writing. The webpage itself is a good learning tool because it enables you to interact with it , see what happens, change what you are doing and see again. It’s applied mathematics and it demonstrates very ably how valuable and important cross curriculum input, knowledge, ideas exchanging and discussion are.

Extend voice recording in Garage Band app

Garage Band appImage: EssentialMac-UK

I was trying out the different apps I had on my iPad to see which one would be the best for voice recordings. I got to Garage Band and then got stuck with an 8 second recording which I could not change. When you see the 8 bars you don’t automatically think of clicking on that to make other choices to extend the recording . EssentialMac-UK is a very handy site for all things Apple and the clarity of instruction is just what you need when you are stuck. They have a post on how to increase the recording time. Please note that you have to do this every time you make a recording. It would be better if you could leave it on the extended recording setting. Maybe next app update?

How to blend images

It’s actually quite easy to blend images together. I use ArcSoft PhotoStudio 5 which I got free with a digital camera. You can also use GIMP which is an open source image editor.It is something you can search for on YouTube and find your preferred photo editor. Our school laptops come with Photoshop and even though it looks hard , it really is straight forward. catsSometimes I splash a bit of extra colour into certain areas of the image with the paint bucket tool. You  pick the tool , the colour and click on an area of the image. If you don’t like what you have done, you simply use the undo button.

Hay Day

Hay DaySeriously, what were they thinking? This is a game with superb graphics and graphics capabilities. The graphic artists have real skills…and a sense of humour. This is not funny. It’s hideous. I won a floating balloon cow. It offends my aesthetic sensibilities so I put it on the farm to show you and now it is safely hidden away in storage. In this game you do not have the option of selling unwanted, tasteless items. So the cow is locked away forever. That’s a shame when it’s so good taking part in the global competitions or spinning the wheel. A cow like that mars your day. Apart from that I am going really well on this game and it never ceases to amaze me how much it can make me think. It poses some interesting dilemmas and forces me to be far more flexible in my thinking that I ever thought possible. I solved my mountain of dead trees and shrubs and realised you get rid of the dead trees and replant  them then you either don’t harvest them or you harvest bits of them and keep them alive. When possible you can harvest them fully and replace them. There is always a shortage of saws and axes and it does impinge on the game. I am now swamped by dead nectar bushes…the white daisy bushes in the picture. Some were nice for decorating but I am now using good land to house dead nectar bushes. They build up quickly so there is no real solution. They ought to last for longer or if you are running hives you need access to more axes. That simple. No, it’s not. You cannot keep hiring Tom at 15 diamonds a day to clean up. It solves the problem temporarily. You can choose not to make honey but a solution ought not be a deficit model. I extended my lobster farm and that is fun and I have my duck salon and that kept everyone amused and entranced at Christmas. It is so clever, funny and well thought out. So why the hideous balloon cow?

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