The ThinkVision L2251x Wide (www.lenovo.com) environmentally friendly monitor uses only 18 watts during operation, unlike the average consumption of other monitors, at 49 watts. The L2251x Wide is made of 65 percent postconsumer recycled plastics and is shipped in a reusable protective bag to reduce plastics use. Other features include a 22-inch-wide screen (1,680 x 1,050) and ambient-light sensor/white LED black light, built-in webcam, and cable management.
RAPS is a 100 percent computerized diagnostic readingassessment program that automatically tests basic reading skills and diagnoses weaknesses in a single student, a classroom, or an entire school population.PROS: The product does an excellent job of testing all components of a student’s reading phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, comprehension, and grasp of vocabulary-word meaning. It automatically develops an individual learning plan for each student, measures progress to determine if remediation has been successful, determines if appropriate resources are available to assist students who need accelerated progress, sets data-driven goals, and matches timelines to high-stakes testing. It monitors students’ progress continuously throughout the year and allows importing of demographic data.CONS: As with most assessment programs, the staff must be willing to dedicate sufficient professional-development time to fully benefit from this program’s many features.OVERALL EVALUATION: Most schools are looking for a program that will improve students’ reading; RAPS360 not only does this but does it using a data-driven decision-making process.www.mindplay.comRetail price: Varies by type of installation.
The Hitachi (www.hitachi.com) CP-A52 3LCD projector offers ultrashort- throw capability, easy maintenance and the ability to project an 80-inch image from 25 inches away. This means that teachers no longer have to worry about obstructing the projected image when they stand in front of the screen. Additionally, there are no shadows to interfere with the image or any light in the presenter’s face. The CP-A52 also has a hybrid filter that requires maintenance only every 2,000 hours. The projector’s saving mode reduces power consumption to less than 5W by disabling RS-232C control except for power-on command, monitor-out and audio capability.
Black Box Corporation (www.blackbox.com) announced an enhanced version of its popular VGA Wireless Video Presentation System (VPS) that supports PDA connectivity and 4:1 split-screen projection. It also features a “plug and show” token for fast setup. The new, Plus version is an 802.11b/g receiver that plugs into any display device with a VGA port, enabling a roomful of laptop users to access a projector or other device from hundreds of feet away. The Plus works with both PC and Mac computers, supports communications with mobile PDA devices, and has features that enhance meeting productivity.
Surpass Software releases version 6 of its suite of library automation products, bringing a brand-new interface to the company’s publicaccess catalog for desktop and Web. Surpass Safari 6 is available in both a Windows desktop version and a Web-based version that runs on the latest generation of Web browsers. Drag-and-drop features make organizing the page easy. A few of the available widgets are library news and bulletins, a library calendar and events list, a list of links to Web sites, lists of recommended reading lists, and lists of new materials or popular titles that can be configured to scroll the book-jacket images of the selected materials. Surpass Safari 6’s appearance can be customized. Price: Contact company for pricing. Category: library automation
released a standard- aspect desktop display. The energyefficient 17-inch MultiSync LCD175M monitor features an EPEAT Gold rating, as well as ENERGY STAR 5.0 and TCO 5.0 compliance. Its eco-mode technology allows users to maneuver between two energy-saving modes and enables the calculation of power-consumption savings for the monitor’s carbon-footprint meter. Additionally, the monitor boasts a new power-circuit design that achieves 0.4W power in power-savings mode and in power off.www.necdisplay.com
Apex Learning introduced six new standards-based courses into its Literacy Advantage pathway. The courses, available this summer for the 2010-2011 school year, are Geometry, Biology, English II, U.S. History, U.S. History to the Civil War, and U.S. History Since the Civil War. Literacy Advantage courses help educators take advantage of online learning to provide individualized instruction, which is more and more a point of emphasis, as struggles in literacy have been found to contribute to the decision to drop out of high school. Price: Contact company for pricing.Category: courseware
GENERAL-PURPOSE: The NEC NP400 (list price, $1,199; street price, about $800) LCD projector provides bright images (2,500 lumens) and wired network connectivity to users who require remote monitoring and control at a value price. It includes built-in closed captioning, seven-watt audio, automatic keystoning and eco mode technology, which can boost lamp life to 4,000 hours.SHORT-THROW: The NP600S ($1,199) creates a 77-inch diagonal image from less than four feet; it is a 2,600-lumen projector and, like the NP400, has wired network connectivity and provides up to 4,000 hours of lamp life in eco mode.INEXPENSIVE: The NP200 is a DLP projector with a street price of about $600; it is an XGA resolution projector and has 2,100 lumens and a lamp life of 3,500 to 4,000 hours. Its inputs include composite video, dual component/VGA and S-Video.HIGH-DEFINITION: NEC recommends its NP500W ($1,399) for high-definition projection; with 3,000 lumens, it supports the 1,080i high-definition video mode.