Academic Technology @ Palomar College

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Sine qua non Software

Sine qua non Software
Having just experienced a computer collapse and rebuild, and at the same time configured a new home laptop, it got me thinking about the software that I need that I could not do without.  I decided to construct a list.   An essential ingredient is interoperability with mobile devices, something that didn’t enter into serious consideration only a couple of years ago.  The desktop is now just one in a triad of equally important devices (the tablet and smart phone being the others) that any digitally literate person depends on, so my list has to embrace these platforms as well. First, and foremost,...
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Blackboard Adventure Time

Blackboard Adventure Time
Hi, this is David the human, and today I’ll be telling you a bit about my adventure last week in Las Vegas, at the BbWorld 2013 convention. (Okay, technically I attended both Blackboard’s Developer’s Conference, DevCon, and the main BbWorld conference, but the content from DevCon is uniformly tech in nature so likely nobody here cares.) Some of the BbWorld sessions were about esoteric topics, such as how to optimize the integration of data from the Palomar eServices system into Blackboard, or how to crawl around in the databases looking for diagnostic information to help make the...
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Student Technology Profile

Student Technology Profile
During the first two weeks of this semester we hosted an open, anyone-is-invited poll for students using our computer labs, asking them to tell us about their technology use.  Only 63 students participated, which is not too surprising during the opening of classes, where most students have many other things to worry about.  Nevertheless, the results closely parallel national polls and studies, which is a bit surprising for a survey so unscientific as ours.  The survey asked 20 questions, ten of which are reported below.  I will post at a later time on the others.  These results, along with their...
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Finding on a Web Page

Yesterday I posted on the most useful tips & tricks about using Google Search.  Today I would like to post on what to do once you use Google to go to a web page that may (or may not) contain the specific information you are looking for. For a simple example, let’s say I am examining a transcript of the original 1787 constitution of the  United States, looking for what it had to say about slavery.  I find a transcript from a reliable source (http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html) and I press Ctrl-F on my keyboard (Command-F if you are using a Mac) and the find...
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The Orchestra

The Orchestra
The most creative publisher of apps for iPad today is Touch Press, responsible for such works as The Waste Land, X is for X-Ray, Barefoot World Atlas, Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomy, and Theodore Gray’s remarkable The Elements.  Their latest triumph is The Orchestra, a rich, expansive exposition on symphonic classical music featuring the principal conductor of London’s Philharmonia Orchestra Esa-Pekka Salonen and the musicians of the orchestra.  The work features the performance by the orchestra of 8 great works of symphonic music, not entire compositions, which would make it expansive indeed,...
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