The End of Bliss, or, Why You Should Think About Upgrading from Windows XP

Bliss is the default wallpaper for Windows XP.

If you are trying to find Bliss you may want to start your search at 3050 Fremont Drive, roughly halfway between the towns of Napa and Sonoma, California. Subconsciously I think most of us know exactly what Bliss looks like — a lovely, vivid, green meadow on a perfectly rolling hill, lying under a deep […]

Adventures in Tech: Sharing an iPad in a Video Teleconference

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I was worried at first when asked to research the problem: how to share the screen of an Apple iPad within an Adobe Connect meeting. Screen sharing using an app is not just unavailable, but prevented by the iPad’s basic design. But then I had a glimmer of an idea, and thus of hope: AirPlay.

Video Collaboration: What’s on the Menu at W&M?

You can do more than just meet via telephone at W&M these days. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.

When there are many software products that do similar things it can be a little confusing to choose one. Like a neophyte oenophile looking at a wine list, one might be tempted to make an arbitrary choice just to move things along — and wind up with a snootful of inappropriate complexity and a character that doesn’t suit the meal. So, without further ado (or beating this metaphor to death), here’s a sampler of the computer video conferencing and collaborating products in use at the College, somewhat arranged in order of complexity.

Cloudy With a Chance of Risks: Adobe Takes a Plunge

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On May 6th, Adobe announced at a major trade conference that it would no longer continue to develop the Adobe Creative Suite of software (Photoshop, Illustrator, Premier, Dreamweaver, InDesign, etc.). Adobe’s future versions of these applications will be developed and offered ONLY through a membership (subscription) basis under the Adobe’s Creative Cloud (CC), although end-users can for an undefined amount of time continue to purchase “traditional” copies of its CS6 products. While this change in policy was not completely unexpected, the suddenness and finality of the implementation plan, as well as the rapid and overwhelmingly negative reception (often caustic) by end-users seems to have caught many by surprise.

MOOC(h): How MOOCs Will Help the Rest of Us

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As high-profile universities and professors set out to “change the world” with MOOCs and deliver courses to thousands of students at a time, they will also develop tools that will help everyone else teach and learn. Software engineers and professors will create new tools to manage large courses, and as they do so, they will change the conventions about what professors need from a learning management system (like Blackboard). While conversations about MOOCs can be about “democratizing education,” they can also be about getting professors better tools.

Dedoose: an Alternative Application for Qualitative Data Analysis

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As I approach the dissertation phase of my doctoral program, I’m particularly interested in research methods and the software I may need to analyze data. Of course, I’ve taken statistics courses and used SPSS for my quantitative data analysis. However, it looks like my own dissertation research will require qualitative methods and a different kind of software for data analysis. I’ve discovered Dedoose, a relatively new Web-based application that works well for my needs.

What Do You Do When Your Favorite Tool Goes Away?

The icon for Jing (tears courtesy of Photoshop)

In this post, Mike talks about the discontinuation of one of his favorite applications, the screen-capturing Jing.

Using Microsoft Word for Managing Citations

Create a New Source with the Citation Manager

Until recently, I used Scrivener for all my writing projects.  However, when I started to share drafts with my writing group and my advisors, everyone used Microsoft’s Word comments and track changes to mark up my writing.  Rather than deal importing and exporting from Scrivener, I thought I would try Word again.  When starting to […]

Organizing Your Research with DEVONthink Pro Office

Devonthink Pro Office Logo

When it comes to organizing research, the humanities scholar has any number of options. Most of us need to be able to organize a mix of notes, images, articles, and other kinds of documents in a way that allows us to group them in different ways. I eventually decided that DEVONthink Pro Office (available for OS X) makes the most sense to me to store the ten thousand or so items that make up my dissertation research.

Five Things Scrivener Can Do for You (Besides Word Processing)

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Writing and organizing research for a large project can be a frustrating task. Scrivener, an application designed just for this purpose, works great as a word processor and all-around writing workspace. In this post, Kim talks about the things that Scrivener can do for you.