Tip: Kids use MySpace but is it safe? You hear stories of online predators and people posing as others in MySpace and Friendster. How can you as a professional developer or technology leader link with other people of same minds and not get bombarded with ads, SPAM, or Email from someone of whom you are not
The Lightspeed High-Capacity Network Solutions enhance user safety and productivity and strengthen network security. The integrated hardware- software packages feature two new network appliances: Lightspeed Rocket, Web Access Manager; and Lightspeed Rocket, Email Manager. Using Lightspeed Rocket, Web Access Manager’s monitoring and reporting tools, district administrators can review all user activity to enforce acceptable use policies, troubleshoot problems, and make adjustments as needed. Lightspeed Rocket, Email Manager provides districts with efficient and effective spam blocking and email archiving for high-capacity networks.Price: Contact company for pricing.Category: internet security
The OpenClassroom Server (OCS) places the teacher in control of an easily managed local Web 2.0 environment. The OCS lets the teacher and students carry out research, communication, collaboration, publication, and other network-based functions through an intuitive interface and provides classroom-level management and control. The OCS can be connected to a network that is also connected to the Internet, which allows students to search the OCS and the Internet simultaneously. PROS: Retrieving the cached data is very fast. Three models offer a price range for every use. The teacher can select what information can be stored on the OCS. Extra security is provided for wikis, blogs, and forums on the Class OCS-School and OCS-Class models since both provide local storage. Audio/video content that has been downloaded to the server can be more quickly accessed from the OCS server. This not only saves time but also external bandwidth.CONS: The cloud model does not have the same speed and security.OVERALL EVALUATION: Overall evaluation: The OCS-Class and OCS-School provide a speedy, safe, and secure learning environment, while the OCS-Cloud offers the benefits of being managed and hosted by the company.www.aspenlearning.comRetail price: OCS-Class, $1,200; OCS-School, $3,500; OCS-Cloud, $2/student/year
Calypso Systems (www.calypso systems.com) has unveiled the CB-2000 networked buttonpanel controller. The powerful CB-2000 wall-mounted controller integrates classroom A/V technology, such as projectors, document cameras, and audio amplifiers. The CB-2000 can control all networked and nonnetworked devices in the classroom, eliminating the hassle of separate controls and many steps for each device. Teachers can also use Calypso’s Encore! desktop control software with the CB-2000, thus gaining easy access to A/V controls from their classrooms’ PCs, laptops, wireless slates, interactive whiteboards, and similar networked devices.
Blackboard Connect for Teachers is used as a platform for outreach to parents concerning urgent situations and academic issues regarding their children. Now teachers can harness that same capability to better involve parents in their child’s classroom performance. Using the service, teachers can reach parents wherever they are with phone messages, and parents no longer have to wait for a quarterly report card to discover that they need to intervene in their child’s academic performance or behavior. Price: Contact company for pricing. Category: teaching tools
Samsung Opto-Electronics America (www.samsung uf-130.com) announces the Samsung UF-130DX Presentation Station, a high-definition digital presenter with an onboard processor running Windows CE. The ability to work with several memory devices, such as compact flash cards, SD cards, and even USB flash drives, allows users not only to save their presentations but also to upload their files to the UF-130DX for playback. The UF-130DX is also networkable (via Ethernet 10/100). Attach any USB keyboard and mouse to access the Internet directly from the document camera. If a presentation was left behind on another system, use the UF-130DX Remote Desktop Control to access a remote PC via a campus network to download the file. Also unique to the UF- 130DX is the ability to provide live dual outputs from the document camera as well as the input source. These live displays can be sent to several monitors for side-by-side viewing or overlaid on a single display for picture-in-picture viewing.